FOM: Re: Arbitrary Objects
Torkel Franzen
torkel at sm.luth.se
Wed Jan 30 00:53:17 EST 2002
Charlie Silver says:
>It's difficult for me to
>believe that an answer to what arbitrary objects are is just to say that
>'arbitrary' is not an adjective. If not an adjective, what is it?
A part of the phrase "an arbitrary object". "Let x be an arbitrary
real number..." has the same meaning as "Let x be any number...". When
asked to "press any key", Homer Simpson asked "Where is any key?", and
the present conundrum is rather similar!
>Since
>mathematicians *use* arbitrary objects constantly, it seems to me there
>should be some well-developed and clearly understood account of them.
Mathematicians use arbitrary objects the way we press any key.
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