RE: virus: Re: Social Metaphysics

Tim Rhodes (
Sat, 4 Oct 1997 15:06:45 -0700 (PDT)

On Fri, 3 Oct 1997, David McFadzean wrote:

> At 10:54 AM 10/3/97 -0700, Tim Rhodes wrote:
> >Only if you can't step outside the system to talk about its weaknesses
> >and strengths. In any logical system it is useful to step outside from
> >time to time in order to see where you need to work once you're back
> >/inside/ the system, no?
> I'm having trouble imagining it. Maybe you could give an example of
> something you could conclude without using logic that would be useful
> once your back inside.

Are you honestly telling me that when you work out a proof or a derivation
that you don't examine the problem first--using your intellect and
intuition--to arrive at a useful strategy for solving the problem or
constructing to proof?

When you write code, do you *only* think about it in code? Or do you
decide what you want the code to do and then work within the code for that

I think you are deceived if you believe that you don't step outside of the
system all the time in order to gain insights about the nature /of/ the
system itself.

Or you're just being stubborn.

> *They all have blind spots.* (Godel anyone?)
> >Do you agree with that statement?
> Godel's theorem only applies to formal systems.

Are you saying *logic* and *math* are not ***formal systems?***

YOU really are the mystic then!!!

> How can you judge whether some system is better at answering questions
> without using logic?

Were back to the reasoning/reasonable thing again in a different form.

This is the direction that thinking heads you in:
How could evolution select so well without logic? There must be without a
watchmaker at the heart of it all, no? Therefore God exists.

You and I both know the the failings of that argument.

A system is better at answering questions if it gives better answers. You
can /test/ which answers are better by using scientific or logical means.
ANSWERS TO THE ORIGINAL QUESTIONS!* Just because a program is good at
debugging does not mean I want to use it for my OS!!!

> And even if you could, how would you know that
> your conclusions aren't nonsensical? Or do you care?

If they are giving you what you evaluate as "good" answers I find it hard
to dismiss those as "nonsensical" answers. I don't see a question here.

> >Why do you think the scientific/logical system is immune from Godel's
> >Incompleteness?
> Godel stated that there are truths that can't be proven deductively from
> within a sufficiently complex formal system. Statements like "this statement
> cannot be proven".

Or "this is the truth"

> I believe that is true and I don't see that as much of a limitation.

Then recognize it in your own internal system as well and lighten up a
little! :-)

-Prof. Tim