The Gödelian Puzzle Book

The Gödelian Puzzle Book

Puzzles, Paradoxes and Proofs

Book - 2013
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Dover Pubns
These logic puzzles provide entertaining variations on Gödel's incompleteness theorems, offering ingenious challenges related to infinity, truth and provability, undecidability, and other concepts. No background in formal logic is necessary.

These brand-new recreational logic puzzles provide entertaining variations on Gödel's incompleteness theorems, offering ingenious challenges related to infinity, truth and provability, undecidability, and other concepts. Created by the celebrated logician Raymond Smullyan, the puzzles require no background in formal logic and will delight readers of all ages.
The two-part selection of puzzles and paradoxes begins with examinations of the nature of infinity and some curious systems related to Gödel's theorem. The first three chapters of Part II contain generalized Gödel theorems. Symbolic logic is deferred until the last three chapters, which give explanations and examples of first-order arithmetic, Peano arithmetic, and a complete proof of Gödel's celebrated result involving statements that cannot be proved or disproved. The book also includes a lively look at decision theory, better known as recursion theory, which plays a vital role in computer science.


Book News
Mathematician and stage magician Smullyan offers this amusing puzzle book full of word games, paradoxes, and logical sleights of hand. Written in a conversational style for an audience with no more than high school education, the first part of the book introduces the puzzles with bets over petty cash and kisses. Infinity, induction, and self-reference are gently introduced and tied to the puzzles, and logical symbols are gradually incorporated. The second part is more technical and gives dense proofs of proposals related to provability and the famous Gödel theorem. The book is not indexed. Annotation ©2014 Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR (protoview.com)

Publisher: Mineola, New York :, Dover Publications,, 2013
Description: viii, 267 pages ; 22 cm
ISBN: 9780486497051
Branch Call Number: 793.74 Smu

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dnk
Nov 16, 2017

I picked this up when my homeschooled son told me he wanted to learn logic. The story-based problems have been excellent illustrations of the mathematical concepts without making certain essential concepts (OR vs. AND, negation, etc.) seem unapproachable and dry.

My one complaint with the book is that the author is pretty old-fashioned in language, bordering on sexist. Still, if you can overlook that, this is a good guide to learn from.

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