The foundations tag has no usage guidance.

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### Illustrating Edward Nelson's Worldview with Nonstandard Models of Arithmetic

Mathematician Edward Nelson is known for his extreme views on the foundations of mathematics, variously described as "ultrafintism" or "strict finitism" (Nelson's preferred term), which came into the ...

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### Has anyone pursued Frege's idea of numbers as second-order concepts?

Gottlob Frege was a pivotal figure in the history of mathematical logic. He gave an analysis of numbers that proceeded along roughly the following lines, in his books "The Foundations of Arithmetic" ...

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### Was “arithmetical translation” (coding in the Goedel sense) ever a part of Hilbert's Program?

Was "arithmetical translation" (that is, coding in the Goedel sense) ever a part of Hilbert's Program? I ask this question for several reasons:
i) it gives the numerals |, ||, |||,.... an ersatz ...

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### About the limitation by size

This could be a big post, so I'll try to summarize my thoughts and divide them into several questions.
When working in category theory, I used to choose the following definition. A category $C$ is ...

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### Direct axiomatization of ordinal and cardinal numbers

Again, this question is related (**) to a previous one:
in standard books on basic set theory, after stating the axioms of ZFC, ordinal numbers are introduced early on. Afterwards cardinals appear: ...

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### Taller models of ZFC

This question is somewhat related to a previous one, where I asked for new forms of infinite beyond the cardinal hierarchy.
Using forcing techniques, at least the ones I know of, one starts from a ...

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### What restriction(s) of Goedel's primitive recursive functionals is (are) necessary and sufficient to prove the consistency of $PRA$

It is well known that one can use Goedel's primitive recursive functionals of finite type to prove the consistency of $PA$ (Peano Arithmetic). As such, one can certainly use them to prove the ...

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### Why hasn't mereology succeeded as an alternative to set theory?

I have recently run into this wikipedia article on mereology. I was surprised I had never heard of it before and indeed it seems to be seldom mentioned in the mathematical literature. Unlike set ...

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### A question regarding the consistency of Nelson's Predicative Arithmetic

Following Dan Willard (from his paper "Self-Verifying Axiom Systems, the Incompleteness Theorem, and Related Reflection Systems", found on his homepage, pdf here):
"Define an axiom system $\alpha$ ...

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### Ill-founded models of set theory with well-founded ordinals

Let $(\mathcal{M},E)$ be an internally non-well-founded model of set theory i.e of $ZFC^{\neg f}=ZFC\setminus \mathrm{foundation}+\neg \mathrm{foundation}$, then $\mathcal{M}$ includes an infinite ...

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### Does mathematical induction presuppose the existence of a completed infinity?

Consider the following statement by Edward Nelson--this from the "Outline" of his 'proof' of the inconsistency of $PA$ (which Terry Tao found to contain an error):
"The induction axiom schema of ...

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### Is there a simpler axiomatization for the quantifiers? [closed]

There is those one Q5 to Q7 in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hilbert_system#Formal_deductions
But I know the axioms of Boolean algebra were simplified to this ...

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### How many closed measure zero sets are needed to cover the real line, really?

This is a refinement of an earlier question.
This question assumes familiarity with combinatorial cardinal characteristics of the continuum.
For the reader's convenience, I reproduce below the ...

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### How many closed measure zero sets are needed to cover the real line?

This question assumes familiarity with combinatorial cardinal characteristics of the continuum.
Let $\mathcal{E}$ be the $\sigma$-ideal generated by closed measure zero subsets of the real line. It ...

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### Some questions regarding an alteration of Grzegorczyk's theory of concatenation, $\operatorname{TC}$

Consider Grzegorczyk's concatenation theory $\operatorname{TC}$, a "weak theory of words over the two letter alphabet $\Sigma=\{a,b\}$" (this from Grzegorczyk and Zdanowski's paper Undecidability and ...

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### Can a stochastic Turing machine output a consistent extension of PA with positive probability?

Suppose that we interpret the output tape of a Turing machine as an assignment of true or false to all sentences of PA, taking the $n$th output bit as the truth value of the sentence with Goedel ...

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### internalization of the concept of large and small category

I have been poking around the internet and nlab looking at the concept of large and small categories. My original focus was locally presentable categories of categories and I was thinking of finding ...

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### The cofinality of $(\mathbb{N}^\kappa,\le)$ for uncountable $\kappa$?

For a partially ordered set $P$, a set $A\subseteq P$ is cofinal if for each element of $P$ there is a larger element in $A$. The cofinality of $P$, ${\rm cof}(P)$, is the minimal cardinality of a ...

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### What useful admissible rules does ZFC have beyond the deduction theorem?

I'm interested in formal proof verification, and one of the surprisingly difficult parts of this is dealing with proofs by contradiction. The issue is that the final step of such proofs is typically ...

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### What is the most transparent, rigorous definition of the Univalence Axiom?

I've been studying homotopy type theory and trying to grasp the Univalence Axiom. I have yet to find a concise, accessible, rigorous definition of Univalence. I have several excellent survey papers ...

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### Nonstandard analysis in probability theory

I am quite new at nonstandard analysis, and recently I became aware of its use in probability theory mainly through the following two books:
Nelson (1987). Radically Elementary Probability Theory
...

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### Set as a (strict) infinite-category?

First, let me say that I have no idea if such a post has its place here. However, I believe that the ideas I'm going to present are important. The goal of this thread is three fold:
1) trying to ...

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### Who needs Replacement anyway?

The set theory ETCS famously comes without the Replacement axiom schema (or an equivalent) that is part of ZFC. One (to me, not apparently useful) set that one cannot build in ETCS is $\coprod_{n\in ...

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### How true are theorems proved by Coq?

Less tongue in cheek, is it known what the relative consistency is for theorems proved with an automatic theorem prover? Of course this depends somewhat on what assumptions one makes with respect to ...

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### Order theory as a foundation of mathematics?

I know the followings kinds of formalization of mathematics:
based on set theory (e.g. ZFC)
based on type theory (e.g. the formalism of Coq proof assistant, as an advanced example)
based on category ...

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### Hilb as a Colimit in the Category of Scott Complete Categories (foundations)

Here is a paper I found by Adamek that generalizes Domain theory into categories of categories called Scott Complete Categories. The category of Scott Complete categories is denoted SCC. For years, ...

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### Does the Feferman-Schutte analysis give a precise characterization of Predicative Second-Order Arithmetic?

A definition is called impredicative if it involves quantification over a domain that contains the thing being defined. For instance, if you define hereditary property to be a property which applies ...

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### Proof correctness problem

I was watching this talk by Vladimir Voevodsky which was given at the Institute of Advanced Study in 2006.
In his talk the first slide he shows has the following written on it:
...

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### Is there a notion analogous to separability but requiring definable rather than countable sets?

Among models of $\lambda$-calculus, some like the Bohm tree model have the property that every element is a directed sup of definable elements, whereas others like the $D_\infty$ and $P(\omega)$ ...

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### Can one make a category concrete by “enlarging the universe”?

This is more or less a followup of this question. There, it was established that (it is well known that) the homotopy category of topological spaces is not concrete, in other words, there is no ...

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### Does Nelson try to prove PA inconsistent directly?

Edward Nelson is known for his serious attempts to show that Peano axioms, and sometimes even weaker theories, are inconsistent. I wasn't able to find Nelson's papers anywhere, so I wanted to ask a ...

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### An axiomatic system with a set of constants that form a complete ordered field [closed]

I am developing a ZFC axiomatic system where together with the empty set, there is a singular (and huge) set of constants that are themselves sets and form a complete ordered field (cof) these ...

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### Is PA consistent? do we know it?

1) (By Goedel's) One can not prove, in PA, a formula that can be interpreted to express the consistency of PA. (Hopefully I said it right. Specialists correct me, please).
2) There are proofs ...

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### Why is adopting Russell's Axiom of Reducibility as strong as eliminating the Ramified Hierarchy?

In order to respond to concerns of impredicativity, Bertrand Russell developed a system of ramified second-order logic, which is like regular second-order logic except the comprehension schema is ...

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### ULTRAINFINITISM, or a step beyond the transfinite

Cantor has, in the immortal words of D. Hilbert, given all of us a paradise (or perhaps, I would rather say, a great vacation spot), the TRANSFINITE.
$\aleph_0, \aleph_1,\aleph_2\dots$
the lists ...

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### Is there a categorical proof of Gödel's incompleteness theorem?

A significant result in set theory was shown by Cohen when he showed that the continuum hypothesis was independent of ZFC using a new technique called forcing. In Topos theory, this result has a new ...

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### What set theoretical questions could never be answered by Turing machines of arbitrary cardinality?

Let us assume that there are Turing machines of arbitrary cardinality, by that I mean they can have input tapes of any arbitrarily high cardinality and compute for a number of steps also of ...

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### Why can't mathematics be formalised in terms of classes rather than sets? [closed]

I've always been curious about the seeming compulsion to found mathematics upon sets, be it ZF(C) or some other system. Of course, there are other approaches these days like category theory and type ...

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### Class theory with support for self-application of class functions?

To every natural number $n$, we can assign its Church numeral $\underline{n}.$ A formal definition would be:
$\underline{0}(f)=\mathrm{id}_{\mathrm{dom}(f)}$
$\underline{n+1}(f) = ...

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### Martin's “Philosophical Issues about the Hierarchy of Sets”

Some months ago (October 2010), in the context of the Workshop on Set Theory and the Philosophy of Mathematics, Professor Donald A. Martin gave a talk entitled "Philosophical issues about the ...

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### Would a non-constructible set become constructible if we had oracles of arbitrarily high cardinality for the halting problems of ordinal computers?

I still have trouble to grasp the concept of a non-constructible set, my intuition is that we could "avoid" the non-constructibility of many of them if we assume we have "ordinal computers" extended ...

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### Consistency of Analysis (second order arithmetic)

Is there a proof of the consistency of Analysis (second order arithmetic), which is similar to Gentzen's proof of the consistency of arithmetic?
Update:
Which (different) methods can be used to ...

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### What is an example of a non-axiomatic mathematical system? [closed]

In this wikipedia article on the foundations of mathematics, it says:
In practice, most mathematicians ... do not work from axiomatic systems
Is this correct? If so, what is an example of this?

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### What is the role of the (formalized) omega rule in Ramified Analysis?

In the 1960's, Feferman and Schutte did groundbreaking proof-theoretic work to find out the strength of predicative systems of second-order arithmetic. They used the ramified theory of types, a ...

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### Is there a notion of “predicative given the real numbers”?

A definition is called impredicative if it involves quantification over a domain that contains the thing being defined. For instance, if you define hereditary property to be a property which applies ...

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### Can the Burgess-Hazen analysis of Predicative Arithmetic be extended to Transfinite Types?

Around page 300 of his book "Mathematical Thought and its Objects", Charles Parsons discusses the work of Edward Nelson, who believes that mathematical induction is impredicative, because it can be ...

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### Did Gödel prove that the Ramified Theory of Types collapses at $\omega_1$?

Second-Order Arithmetic is considered impredicative, because the comprehension scheme allows formulas with bound second-order variables that range over all sets of natural numbers, including the set ...

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### Who introduced the terms “equivalence relation” and “equivalence class”?

Consider that the question does not concern the origin of the ideas of equivalence relation and equivalence class. It exactly concerns the origin of the terms "equivalence relation" and "equivalence ...

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### What is the proof-theoretic ordinal of Hyperarithmetical Comprehension?

As I discuss in my answer here, it seems to me that Solomon Feferman shows, on pages 10-11 of his seminal 1964 paper "Systems of Predicative Analysis", that if you consider predicative second-order ...

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### Has the Ramified Theory of Types been applied to Predicative Set Theories?

Questions of predicativity are well-studied in the context of arithmetic. We have a base theory, first-order Peano arithmetic. Some people, like Edward Nelson (in chapter 1 of his book) and Charles ...