FOM: Chaitin's CMU talk

Neil Tennant neilt at
Tue May 2 23:51:32 EDT 2000

At Steve Stevenson's suggestion I read the paper he recommended
[with the URL amended in the snippet below]:
 > Gregory Chaitin gave the SCS Distinguished Lecture on March 3,
 > 2000. A transcript is available on the web at
The preamble describes the text as an "edited version" of the transcript
of the lecture. The first half or so contains material quite familiar to
people on this list. It also contains the remarkable non-sequitur
"the less you assume, the safer it is. So the fewer axioms you have, the
better off you are."

Anyone wanting to get the essence of the paper could safely skip the first
two thirds of it, and begin reading at the subheading `Randomness: lack of
structure'. There Chaitin begins to concentrate on his own work in
algorithmic information theory.

Neil Tennant

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