September 17, 2014

11:00 PM | Poundstone on People and Predictions
"Rock Breaks Scissors"  by William Poundstone I keep seeing William Poundstone's latest book, "Rock Breaks Scissors" in the 'business' sections of bookstores… which I think is ashamed, because a lot of readers who would enjoy it may miss it there. More appropriately, and like most Poundstone books, it should be in a science/math area, or perhaps under psychology. Poundstone is one of my
3:30 PM | Frankl, My Dear : 3
Re: Dick Lipton & Ken Regan • (1) • (2) Here’s a few pages on differential logic, whose ideas I’ll be trying out in the present setting: Differential Logic : Introduction Differential Propositional Calculus Differential Logic and Dynamic Systems I … Continue reading →

September 16, 2014

7:21 AM | What makes a mathematical proof beautiful?
(Cross-posted at NewAPPS)In December, I will be presenting at the Aesthetics in Mathematics conference in Norwich. The title of my talk is Beauty, explanation, and persuasion in mathematical proofs, and to be honest at this point there is not much more to it than the title… However, the idea I will try to develop is that many, perhaps even most, of the features we associate with beauty in mathematical proofs can be subsumed to the ideal of explanatory persuasion, which I take to be the […]
1:34 AM | A crucial missing piece in the Pistorius trial? (i)
Time for a break with a “Rejected Post”[i] There’s one crucial point that Prosecutor Nell overlooked and failed to employ in the Oscar Pistorius trial–or so it appears. In fact I haven’t heard anyone mention it—so maybe it’s not as critical as I think it is. Before revealing (what I regard as the crucial missing […]

September 14, 2014

4:00 AM | Consequences of Triadic Relation Irreducibility : 2
From time to time I come to the realization that there are ways of reading Peirce that make no sense to me.  When I stop to think about the potential sources of that evident divergence from common sense, the first … Continue reading →

September 13, 2014

7:30 PM | Consequences of Triadic Relation Irreducibility : 1
2014 Sep 10 I will have to be out of the loop for some days, but this post will give me a peg on which I can hang a few thoughts via mobile device that have been tugging at the … Continue reading →
2:37 AM | “The Supernal Powers Withhold Their Hands And Let Me Alone” : C.S. Peirce
Memory Lane* in Honor of C.S. Peirce’s Birthday: (Part 3) of “Peircean Induction and the Error-Correcting Thesis” Deborah G. Mayo Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society 41(2) 2005: 299-319 Part 1 is here, Part 2, here. 8. Random sampling and the uniformity of nature We are now at the point to address the final move […]

September 12, 2014

9:00 PM | Weekend Potpourri
Some math links from the week: 1)  Evelyn Lamb interviews one of the first-ever African-American math PhDs in the country: http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/roots-of-unity/2014/09/05/mathematics-live-evelyn-boyd-granville/ 2)  Folding pizza… and Gauss: http://www.wired.com/2014/09/curvature-and-strength-empzeal/ 3)  Interesting thoughts from a one-time math-phobe: http://www.usnews.com/
4:15 PM | The Very Short Teach Yourself Logic Guide
I seem to have gone full circle! The very first instalment of the TYL Study Guide was a short blogpost here. Then things grew. And grew. Until we get to the current 100 page PDF monster — and that’s only as short(!) … Continue reading →

September 11, 2014

4:00 PM | Frankl, My Dear : 2
Re: Dick Lipton & Ken Regan • (1) • (2) Having picked up a budget of definitions and notations from Post 1, return with me now to the passage from (2) that caught my eye and seemed to jog a … Continue reading →
12:00 AM | So You Want Some Math History...
Recently finished a quickread of history professor Amir Alexander's "Infinitesimal," which has received plenty of rave reviews, a few of which I'll reference below, (as I won't fully review it myself): http://tinyurl.com/pe2dd7w http://tinyurl.com/nopb85a http://tinyurl.com/mxchx6h For whatever reason, I've never been much fascinated with math history (at least not pre-19th century history)

September 10, 2014

4:17 PM | Apologies
On behalf of the M-Phi contributors, I want to sincerely apologize to our readers for the misguided and inappropriate post that was online at M-Phi for four days (now taken down, as well as all other posts referencing the Oxford events). The moderation structure of the blog was such that none of us could do anything to take it down, except for pleading with the author to do so.The structure and moderation of the blog will change completely now; Jeffrey Ketland will no longer be a contributor […]

September 09, 2014

8:51 PM | A break
This is a short note just to say that I will not be contributing posts to M-Phi for the time being.

September 08, 2014

1:30 PM | Frederik Stjernfelt • Natural Propositions : 2
Re: Jeffrey Brian Downard • Natural Propositions Jeff & All, With regard to “non-psychologism”, it was a slip on my part to use that term.  I don’t think I’ve ever used it before.  At any rate I will try to … Continue reading →

September 07, 2014

6:48 PM | Frankl, My Dear : 1
Re: Dick Lipton & Ken Regan • (1) • (2) I need to think a little about the context of this Frankl Conjecture, if not exactly about the problem itself.  This will be a very scratchworky post-in-progress (PIP❢) — hopefully … Continue reading →
2:32 PM | Gillian Bennett: on doing the brave, decent and loving thing
If you happened not to see her final testimony and plea for the legalization of assisted suicide, then do read these very moving webpages left by Gillian Bennett (the wife for 57 years of that fine philosopher Jonathan Bennett) who … Continue reading →
3:28 AM | Statistical Science: The Likelihood Principle issue is out…!
Abbreviated Table of Contents: Here are some items for your Saturday-Sunday reading.  Link to complete discussion:  Mayo, Deborah G. On the Birnbaum Argument for the Strong Likelihood Principle (with discussion & rejoinder). Statistical Science 29 (2014), no. 2, 227-266. Links to individual papers: Mayo, Deborah G. On the Birnbaum Argument for the Strong Likelihood Principle. Statistical […]

September 06, 2014

2:56 PM | The Oxford Lynch Mob
It is a rare experience for victims of long-term stalking, violent assault and harassment to be harassed by a gang of aggressive Oxbridge thugs. As I put it in March 2014 on Prof. Leiter's blog:[....] behind the scenes a group of graduate students, including some of the signatories of the Open Letter of 5 March 2014, had been campaigning the University to have my contact with students suspended and me fired. My supervisions were reassigned, my seminars were postponed and then reassigned to my […]

September 05, 2014

7:00 PM | Skiourosemiosis • 1
The resultant metaphysical problem now is this:Does the man go round the squirrel or not? — William James, Pragmatism ☞ Differential Analysis of Propositions and Transformations
11:30 AM | Friday Grab-bag
This week's mathy selections: 1)  Been wantin' to catch up on your Babylonian math history? …well, Evelyn Lamb is right there for ya: http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/roots-of-unity/2014/08/31/look-ma-no-zero/ 2)  One of my favorites, James Grime, opened a brand-spanking new website recently (good stuff): http://www.jamesgrime.com/ 3)  Math, logic, Buddhism, and more from interview with
2:54 AM | All She Wrote (so far): Error Statistics Philosophy Contents-3 years on
  Error Statistics Philosophy: Blog Contents By: D. G. Mayo[i] Each month, I will mark (in red) 3 relevant posts (from 3 yrs ago) for readers wanting to catch-up or review central themes and discussions. September 2011 (9/3) Frequentists in Exile: The Purpose of this Blog (9/3) Overheard at the comedy hour at the Bayesian retreat (9/4) Drilling Rule #1 (9/9) Kuru (9/13) In […]

September 04, 2014

11:01 AM | One little “}”
No, you didn’t need new spectacles. One little “}” missing, and the last half of the lovingly crafted TYL version 12.0 was all in the smaller font intended for postscripts and asides. Pah! Sometimes is annoying. Just a tinsy bit. OK, so here’s version … Continue reading →
4:04 AM | Teach Yourself Logic
Peter Smith, long ago a Cambridge colleague of mine, whose blog is Logic Matters, regularly updates his Teach Yourself Logic Study Guide, an annotated reading list for mathematical logic. It's useful for students, or anyone really, who want to do some self-study. Version 12.0 of the guide can be downloaded here.

September 03, 2014

4:58 AM | 3 in blog years: Sept 3 is 3rd anniversary of errorstatistics.com
Where did you hear this?  “Join me, if you will, for a little deep-water drilling, as I cast about on my isle of Elba.” Remember this and this? And this philosophical treatise on “moving blog day”? Oy, did I really write all this stuff? I still see this as my rag-tag amateur blog. I never […]

September 02, 2014

4:29 PM | Teach Yourself Logic, version 12.0
In time for the new semester/new term/new academic year (depending on how things are chunked up in your neck of the woods), there’s a new version of the Teach Yourself Logic Study Guide and a supplementary page on Category Theory, … Continue reading →

September 01, 2014

5:00 PM | Frederik Stjernfelt • Natural Propositions : 1
Re: Frederik Stjernfelt • Natural Propositions Frederik, One small point that I find myself making on a periodic basis:  I think it is better to describe Peirce’s take on logic as “non-psychologism” rather than “anti-psychologism”, the main thing being that … Continue reading →
11:00 AM | Robin Williams Redux...
Now for something completely different (for MathTango)… I've written before how much I admire Cathy O'Neil's keen ability to touch on varying topics over at her blog. Despite coming from a mathematics academic background and titling her blog "Mathbabe," Cathy writes on a wide range of topics that rattle around in her head. So I'll sorta take that cue today to veer off and relate an odd,

August 29, 2014

5:34 PM | What we see when….
I recently listened to Krys Boyd’s interview with Peter Mendelsund, author of the new book What We See When We Read,  on North Texas’ public radio. Mendelsund is an award-winning book jacket designer. The interview had the effect of connecting his thoughts about reading to thoughts that I have had about mathematics. It wasn’t immediately [...]
3:04 PM | Breaking the Law (of likelihood): only way to keep their fit measures in line (A)
An Assumed Law of Statistical Evidence (law of likelihood) Nearly all critical discussions of frequentist error statistical inference (significance tests, confidence intervals, p- values, power, etc.) start with the following general assumption about the nature of inductive evidence or support: Data x is better evidence for hypothesis H1 than for H0 if x are more probable under H1 than […]
11:15 AM | Friday Wrap-up
Another week from the world of math: 1)  Article touting the role of rote memorization in early math education: http://tinyurl.com/lj759wd 2)  Fawn Nguyen describes the beginning of her classroom school year, as perhaps only she can: http://fawnnguyen.com/first-two-days-school/ 3)  LA Times op-ed on the gender-gap in mathematics: http://www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/
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