The Nature And Philosophy of Debate

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by thingmaker3, Jan 30, 2009.

  1. thingmaker3

    Thread Starter Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
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    Spawned from a few pages into http://forum.allaboutcircuits.com/showthread.php?p=115112

    Okay, enough of me having fun at your expense. I'll go back to it again, of course. But for right now I want to make a clear point:

    Think about the point you just made. Think long, hard, and carefully about the point you just made. It is an excruciatingly important concept! And here's something I suspect you don't often think about (based on your copious past behavior): It applies to YOU as well as to the rest of us.

    Now think about what it means to "proove" something. There is, of course, the mathmatical "proof." Clean, unambiguous, and esthetic to those who understand it. But math proofs only work for math.

    Tell me, my good man: what constitutes "proof?" I'm not talking about Kosov. I'm asking about the nature of logic here - I'm specifically asking about your own understanding of the concept of "proof." What is "proof" as defined by Ratch?
     
  2. Ratch

    New Member

    Mar 20, 2007
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    thingmaker3,

    Don't stop now if you are having fun. So am I. Come back any time.

    I did think about the point I just made. I did not have to think very hard about it either. Nothing much on the philosophical angle. You said that Kosow did not exist. I countered that my textbook says he did/does exist. You said that my textbook does not exist either. How silly of you to say that. I guess in my case, the "proof" is having possession of the textbook.

    Ratch
     
  3. thingmaker3

    Thread Starter Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
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    That is good to know.:)

    I'm not talking about Kosov. I'm asking about the nature of logic here - I'm specifically asking about your own understanding of the concept of "proof." What is "proof" as defined by Ratch?

    But of course you knew that:
    I'm not asking for a specific example. I am curios to know your general criteria for "proof." Which general types of activity on Planet Ratch (as opposed to Space Station Thingmaker) constitutes "proving?"
     
  4. Ratch

    New Member

    Mar 20, 2007
    1,068
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    thingmaker3,

    Well, I could give you some of the many definitions found in any good dictionary. But I will try to provide a noninclusive definition that works for me.

    To wit: The presentation of evidence from which a reasonable person would infer is an indication of the veracity of a statement or proposition.

    I realize the above statement is not rigorous, but it is a working definition that I authored.

    Ratch
     
  5. beenthere

    Retired Moderator

    Apr 20, 2004
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    That begs the definition of
     
  6. Ratch

    New Member

    Mar 20, 2007
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    beenthere,

    I said that the definition was not rigorous. Feel free to supply one of your own.

    Ratch
     
  7. thingmaker3

    Thread Starter Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
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    Last time I checked, it took one or two dozen people to decide what a "reasonable person" might or might not do.

    Thank you for your answer, Ratch. It satisfies much of my curiosity on this issue.
     
  8. Ratch

    New Member

    Mar 20, 2007
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    thingmaker3,

    You are welcome, thingmaker3. It might of interest to you to know that the law is familiar with that phrase, too. Sometimes they need 12 people to decide the issue. They call that group a jury. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reasonable_person

    Ratch
     
  9. thingmaker3

    Thread Starter Retired Moderator

    May 16, 2005
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    No kidding? I wonder if the juries and grand juries (16 to 23 people) were what I meant when I said
    Last time I was on a jury, we had to decide whether someone acted "in a workmanlike manner." The phrase was defined for us as "in the manner of a trained and responsible workman." We had to make up our own collective mind what "responsible" meant.
     
  10. Ratch

    New Member

    Mar 20, 2007
    1,068
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    thingmaker3,

    You lucky dog! I was in a jury pool, but they never called me. I was looking forward to serving and delibrating with my fellow jury members, but that is not something anyone can volunteer to do.

    Ratch
     
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