On 18 Aug 2012, at 16:03, Roger wrote:

Hi Bruno Marchal

How can that be ? I'll try to keep that in mind that the natural numbers are concrete,

OK. It is a bit of a vocabulary choice, but many mathematician agrees with the idea that a number is more concrete than anything else. Hardy wrote nice text on this, that I quoted a long time ago on this list.




but to me at least concrete things are physical (exist in spacetime)
while numbers are nonphysical (exist outside of spacetime).

I understand the feeling, but with comp it is an illusion. Physical objects are fictional construct of the mind to ease the math that the brain has to do for making us feeling that we can manipulate them, and with some luck manipulating them in the local self-referentially correct way so that we augment our local chance of surviving relatively to our most statistically normal computations.

George Papy, a belgian mathematician, told me that he found funny that abstract art often presents very concrete object, like a red square or a yellow triangle, and that realist art represent things which looks concrete, like a battle field, but a battle field is something very abstract and complex. It looks concrete to us only because we have an incredibly powerful computer in the head who does all the complex abstract math needed to delude a person into the feeling that it is real and concrete.

Bruno




Roger , rclo...@verizon.net
8/18/2012
Leibniz would say, "If there's no God, we'd have to invent him so everything could function."
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From: Bruno Marchal
Receiver: everything-list
Time: 2012-08-18, 09:46:24
Subject: Re: The difference betrween abstract and concrete


On 18 Aug 2012, at 13:59, Roger wrote:

Hi meekerdb -- I go with the dictionary:

ab·stract/ab strakt/

Adjective:      
Existing in thought or as an idea but not having a physical or concrete existence.
con·crete/k n krēt/

Adjective:      
Existing in a material or physical form; real or solid; not abstract.




The dictionary has been written in the Aristotelian era. That will not work if we are machine. In that case a better definition might be on the line of:

Concrete: a precise natural number

Abstract:  anything else.

Bruno




8/18/2012
Leibniz would say, "If there's no God, we'd have to invent him so everything could function."
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From: meekerdb
Receiver: everything-list
Time: 2012-08-17, 14:38:08
Subject: Re: The difference betrween abstract and concrete

On 8/17/2012 8:30 AM, Roger wrote:

Hi Jason Resch
 
One -- especially a computer -- cannot experience abstractions.
 
One (ie only living entities) can only experience the concrete.

Except physics tells us that concrete is mostly empty space and a ray in an enormous Hilbert space.

Brent
Riddle: What's has four legs, fur, meows and is made of concrete?
Answer: A cat.  I just threw in the concrete to make it hard.

 
ab·stract

   adjective
1. thought of apart from concrete realities, specific objects, or actual instances: an abstract idea.
 
Roger , rclo...@verizon.net
8/17/2012
Leibniz would say, "If there's no God, we'd have to invent him so everything could function."


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