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Comment Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 156

> "...the government endorses a recent intellectual property report".

That's a first. I've lost count of the number of times some quango has been set up to bolster gov't policies and then been quietly buried when their report turns out to recommend the opposite.

Comment Re:Can't get there from here (Score 1) 709

That's called reductio ad absurdum

No it isn't. Reductio ad absurdum is where you assume the opposite (of what you want to prove) to be true and then after a series of logically correct inferences arrive at a "true" statement that is inconsistent with your assumption or the axioms.

Disproving a conjecture by finding a counter-example isn't a proof of anything except the falsehood of the conjecture. I suppose you could set up the falsehood of the conjecture as a theorem, but it doesn't really tell you anything.

Maybe you should try reductio ad nauseam. That's where you make a series of logically correct inferences until you arrive at the conclusion that everyone in your audience has dozed off. Then you suddenly announce "QED!" in a loud voice and move on to the next topic.

"Consider a spherical bear, in simple harmonic motion..." -- Professor in the UCB physics department