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Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Just testing to see if this thing is on. Yes, it seems to be working. How about that!? It’s pretty rusty, but apparently this site still works. That’s good to see.
Here’s a few items of news.
I’ve been way too busy coordinating the Philosophy program at the University of Melbourne to be posting here. It’s been a busy ride for the year, but it’s been fantastic. It looks like I’ll be in the saddle again for 2011, so hopefully having learned how to hold the reins this year, I’ll be able to post here a little more next year. No promises though.
I’ve been writing. Doing lots of writing. You’ll see a few changes on the writing page. I’m most happy with the new paper ”A Cut-Free Sequent System for Two-Dimensional Modal Logic: and why it matters.” There’s a little philosophy there, and a little proof theory, too. It’s not too long (just 24 pages), and I’d appreciate your comments. Head over to the paper page to download the paper and post your comments. (Make sure you admire the in-line diagrams on page 16. That’s LaTeX, with no postprocessing.)
My next travels involve a trip to Guangzhou to take part in SELLC 2010. That’s going to be a blast, helping teach a Winter School to a bunch of enthusiastic students, and with a great slate of lecturers. It’ll be good to catch up with Samson, Robin, Mehrnoosh and Dag, and to meet the rest of the lecturers, as well as my colleagues at the ILC at Sun Yat-Sen University. On the way home from Guangzhou, I’ll take a quick side trip to Boston for the Eastern APA, to contribute to a session on the future of logic, with John Horty and Johan van Benthem. What fun! This will be my first ever APA, so if you have any advice for an APA neophyte, do let me know.
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Time flies like an arrow.
Fruit flies like a banana.
If you’ve been following my twitter feed, you’d realise I’m still alive. You wouldn’t think that from the activity – or lack thereof – here. (Though a few papers have appeared – or changed their publication status – on my writing page.)
Here’s where we are: It’s been a busy, eventful semester, and the teaching period is almost done. I’ve had fun teaching proof theory to fourth-year students, tutoring intro philosophy to first years, and supervising graduate students (at last count, I have eight current research students in various stages of the degrees). One of the sadder things to befall us here at Melbourne is the departure of Allen Hazen, who as left our shores for the chillier climes of Edmonton. The Melbourne logic community’s loss is Canada’s gain here.
Tomorrow, I’m off on a short trip to Guangzhou, by way of St. Andrews and Bristol. It’s the long way around, but somebody has got to do it. I’m busy clearing the decks here of as much as I can before the trip. One of the decks to be cleared is this blog, so a post is in order.
Posting about not posting for a long time is so passé, so here’s a link to something you might like if you’re a logic person like me. Lately, I’ve enjoyed playing around with Wandering Mango’s program Deductions (Mac OS X only). It’s a very neat natural deduction educational tool: it helps you produce valid Fitch-style natural deduction proofs, using the format of the major texts used in intro teaching. Well, as far as I can tell, they’re the major texts ued in intro teaching in North America. In Australia, in Europe, in the UK, logic is taught in different ways: Smullyan-style tableaux, Gentzen tree-style natural deduction, Lemmon-style linear natural deduction (though see the update below) with labels, etc. There’s a lot you need to do if you’re going to cover the ground of all the ways of teaching introductory logic by way of ‘proofs’. I’ve been in touch with the developer, and he tells me this is only the beginning for Deductions. It’s built in a modular fashion, and it shouldn’t be too hard to start extending it to cover more systems.
So, if you teach logic, or if you’re learning logic and you’d like to learn it by having a proof assistant on side to keep your proofs on track take a look at Deductions.
Update on December 8, 2009: Jeff Pelletier reminds me in an email that Lemmon’s beginning logic was not the first to introduce what I called ‘Lemmon-style’ linear natural deduction. Patrick Suppes, in his Introduction to Logic. For more on ths history of natural deduction, a great place to start is Jeff’s own ”A Brief History of Natural Deduction.” Thanks for that, Jeff!
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Posting has been light, since I’ve been powering through work at the end of the semester, and getting ready for a quick trip west to Europe, for Non-Classical Mathematics 2009 and Logica 2009, preceded by a quick visit to Dresden to see Heinrich Wansing, and to break up the train trip from Frankfurt to Prague.
So, posting here has paused for a bit, but now that I’m settled in Hejnice and that there’s a wireless connection here, I can deal with some of my backlog of things I’ve promised to post. So, here’s a salad of links for you.
My Faculty, the Arts Faculty, at the University of Melbourne, is holding a short Winter School on July 15 and 16, for students from Ausralia (but outside Victoria), to come and get a taste of the range of research done in the Faculty. If you’re from inside Australia but outside Victoria, you’re a ‘high achieving honours student’, and you’d like a trip to Melbourne to see what we do, please apply. Applications close June 22, so you’ve got to be quick!
I’m helping organise ICLC2009, the Intenational Conference on Logic and Cognition at Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou, held from November 2 to 4, 2009. The deadline for getting your paper in for this conference is a leisurely October 1, 2009. Guangzhou is great (I was there last year and had a wonderful time at the Institute for Logic and Cognition), and if you can come along, please do submit a paper.
Nick Griffin and Bernard Linsky are hosting PM@100, a conference on the 100th Anniversary of the publication of Principia Mathematica. That conference is from 21–24 May, 2010 at McMaster University in Ontario, and paper submissions are due only on January 1, 2010, so for this you have more time to get things together.
There is no deadline at all for joining Friends of the SEP Society. Are you a Friend of the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy? So many of us – students, academics, interested readers – use it for our research, and it’s a great resource for everyone. If you’re a regular user of the SEP (and if you’re interested in philosophy, who wouldn’t be?), consider joining the Society to help support the work of the Encyclopedia. For a small fee, you support the encyclopedia, you help it keep up its mission of free, high quality introductions to philosophical themes – and you get access to great quality PDF versions of the entries in the SEP, which are just ideal for printing out and reading (and annotating) offline. You also (if you like) get email notifications whenever the articles you’ve downloaded get updated. It’s a good deal, and it’s much cheaper (at US$25 a year for a full subscription, down to US$5 a year for a student subscription) than a journal subscription.
I’ll get back to posting on more substantial things later. Now I’ve got a conference to attend. For little quips along the way, you can follow the twitter feed.
More news entries can be found at the news archive.
More can be found at the writing archive.