[ExI] The "Unreasonable" Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences

Jef Allbright jef at jefallbright.net
Fri Sep 26 14:17:42 UTC 2008

On Fri, Sep 26, 2008 at 4:56 AM, Stathis Papaioannou <stathisp at gmail.com> wrote:
> 2008/9/26 Damien Broderick <thespike at satx.rr.com>:
> > At 09:29 PM 9/25/2008 +1000, Stathis wrote:
> >
> >> So if the universe suddenly disappeared, does that mean 17 would no
> >> longer be prime?
> >
> > I should have thought it means 17 would no longer be.
> How much of the universe would have to go in order to eliminate 17?
> For example, would there be a 17 if there were only 16 electrons and
> nothing else? One electron? Empty space?

This question is similar to "when did you stop beating your wife?"
The question presumes the ontological status of "17."  A valid
question would be one that can be modeled as a system providing a
defined output.  Otherwise, what can it ***mean***?

You carry the same sort of presumption, of a singularity of self, into
many of your other online discussions.

- Jef

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