On the Philosophy of Mathemathics

  1. Reading a locked thread a post caught my eye:

    "Well...that's easy; if you have a finite temporal interval 1/2, and you add 1/4 and 1/8 and 1/16 and so on, then you get a temporal interval of 1. I really don't understand what "physical interpretation" is supposed to mean in this context. If 2+2=4, then adding 2 apples to 2 apples gives me 4 apples; if a geometric series converges to a sum, then adding up temporal intervals equal in magnitude to the terms of that series gives me a temporal interval equal to that sum."

    Actually only this part of it: "If 2+2=4, then adding 2 apples to 2 apples gives me 4 apples"

    I couldnt agree more...also adding 1 apple to 1 apple gives 2 apples...

    But what are we doing when we in free fall adds 1 drop of water to 1 drop of water?

    1+1=2 but here the result is not 2 drops of water but 1 drop of water. Its having the added mass of the original drops but the fact that it is only 1 drop of water remains in front of our eyes. We cant draw the conclusion that (in this case) 1+1 = 1, since the only solution to the equation x+x=x is zero...Does it matter what objects we add?

    So again: What are we doing while "adding" water drops to water drops? Destroying numbers?
  2. jcsd
  3. micromass

    micromass 19,229
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    This post does not meet the guidelines of the philosophy forum.
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