FOM: social construction?
kanovei at wminf2.math.uni-wuppertal.de
Fri Mar 20 09:32:08 EST 1998
<Date: Fri, 20 Mar 1998 07:50:50 -0500 (EST)
<From: Charles Silver <csilver at sophia.smith.edu>
>I'm suggesting that when
>we say that 7 or sqrt(2) or sqrt(-1) or the real number system "exist" what
>we (as mathematicians) mean (or at least ought to mean) is that we know how
>to determine some of their properties as definite and have good reason to
>think of those we can not decide as definite problems to work on.
There has been a challenge to this point (by Steel, I think).
Indeed, the statement
"Sh. Holmes existed"
obviously satisfies the definition.
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