Catch up on stories from the past week (and beyond) at the Slashdot story archive

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).

×

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

by Pogue Mahone (#34696002) Attached to: Why Teach Programming With BASIC?

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.

The universe is an island, surrounded by whatever it is that surrounds universes.

Working...