[FOM] Infinitesimals

lem lem at fis.cinvestav.mx
Fri Jul 13 16:16:36 EDT 2012

To Sam Sanders, my reply:
) True, infinitesimals are present all throughout physics and engineering,
they use not exact theories in general. They rely mostly on approximations
and infinitesimals in their calculations to 'approximate' nature results. 
2) True, it doesn´t matter what you use. Physicists and engineers ignore
the world there exists in mathematics around infinitesimals. They don´t
really know what real mathematics is -and do not need to know- even though
they use a wide variety of mathematical theories in their very own way.
3) True, I´m an engineer, a physicist and, unfortunately, not the best
mathematician, but mad for mathematical logic, LE. Kind Regards.

On Thu, 12 Jul 2012 09:32:01 +0100, Sam Sanders <sasander at cage.ugent.be>
> Dear members of the FOM list,
> I would like your opinion on the following statements (Please declare
> true/false, with a possible explanation why).
> 1) infinitesimals are used throughout physics and engineering (in some
> informal way, formalizable in Nonstandard Analysis).  
> 2) when infinitesimals are used in physics and engineering, the choice
> infinitesimal does not matter
> (i.e. a calculation involving an infinitesimal \e remains valid if \e is
> replaced with any other infinitesimal \e' .)  
> 3) The aforementioned independence (of the choice of infinitesimal) in
> physics and engineering has been observed before by X (Please fill in
> With kindest regards,
> Sam  
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