Blog by Sumana Harihareswara, Changeset founder

08 May 2002, 15:55 p.m.

Wow, the last Wednesday of classes of my college career! The…

Hi, reader. I wrote this in 2002 and it's now more than five years old. So it may be very out of date; the world, and I, have changed a lot since I wrote it! I'm keeping this up for historical archive purposes, but the me of today may 100% disagree with what I said then. I rarely edit posts after publishing them, but if I do, I usually leave a note in italics to mark the edit and the reason. If this post is particularly offensive or breaches someone's privacy, please contact me.

Wow, the last Wednesday of classes of my college career!

The home stretch in Logic: the iota operator, a descriptor. "iota x" = "the x such that blah blah blah." Examples: "The large elephant is happy." I'm glad! "The man wearing no pants is bald."

You'd think, or at least I thought, that one would represent "the man wearing no pants" as "the x such that x is a man and x is wearing no pants." But no -- it's "the x such that x is a man and there is no y such that y is pants and x is wearing y."

"The universe of discourse can't just be people, because you have ... pants. What is the universe of discourse here?"
"The UD is people and articles of clothing."

Peter the TA apologized for his long absence over the next few weeks. "I have to go to Scotland." Job interview at St. Andrews. Fore!

Peter told us that Bertrand Russell came up with a/the method for translating an iota-operated statement into a fomula using "there is an x" and "for all x" quantifiers to express the statement's [fanfare] existence and uniqueness commitments.

I'm going to miss college.