[FOM] The unreasonable soundness of mathematics

Daniel Mehkeri dmehkeri at gmail.com
Mon May 16 16:26:11 EDT 2016

2016-05-15 20:43 UTC, Timothy Y. Chow <tchow at alum.mit.edu>:
> O.K., this is one definition of ultrafinitism.  It isn't the definition of
> ultrafinitism I had in mind,
> Although I did say that I did not want to debate "what Nelson believed," I
> will point out the following MathOverflow question:
> http://mathoverflow.net/questions/142669/illustrating-edward-nelsons-worldview-with-nonstandard-models-of-arithmetic
> Nelson himself answered the question and engaged in some back-and-forth in
> the comments.  Based on Nelson's remarks, I believe that Nelson did not
> simply hold that "multiplication is feasible and exponentiation is not" or
> some such.  But let us not argue that point on FOM;

Very well, we won't argue it. Perhaps my hat is a bad representation
of Nelson. If so, be it on my head.

Still, I'll point out that my hat didn't say that either. I say that.
His statements were the numbered ones.

I am the one who calls my hat ultrafinitist, and I tried to justify
the label. I say the numbered statements are more or less sufficient
to merit the label, whether he calls himself that or not.

For your part, if you consider only the numbered statements and ignore
the rest of what I said, is that sufficient for you to say my hat is
_not_ ultrafinitist, according to the definition you have in mind?

> I just wanted to let
> you know of the existence of these comments by Nelson.

And, since they date from late 2013, they are some of the last things
Nelson wrote on the topic. Thank you for that.


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