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5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bit overpriced but the really the best guide out there
Godel's theorem is tossed about with wild abandon, particularly by people who don't really understand it - and I certainly would not claim to understand all it's subtleties - and this is a great little book to help you clear some of the fog. It is worth noting that Godel's theorem is quite limited in practical import, a large number of the theories in Mathematics do not...
Published on 8 Aug 2009 by Danny of Arabia

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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Writing is terrible
I really wanted to read this, a book on Godel's Theorems and what they really mean, and importantly, what they don't mean.

I have no trouble with the subject but the writing style here is terrible. Like too many maths books the writing itself puts off readers, not the subject matter itself.

I gave up and started reading the more promising An...
Published on 15 Feb 2010 by Amazon Customer


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5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bit overpriced but the really the best guide out there, 8 Aug 2009
This review is from: Gödel's Theorem: An Incomplete Guide to Its Use and Abuse (Paperback)
Godel's theorem is tossed about with wild abandon, particularly by people who don't really understand it - and I certainly would not claim to understand all it's subtleties - and this is a great little book to help you clear some of the fog. It is worth noting that Godel's theorem is quite limited in practical import, a large number of the theories in Mathematics do not fit the criteria for Godel's theorem and one can safely say that Physics has far from complete in terms of working out the consequences of its theories. For example there is a million dollars waiting for you if you can mathematically prove there is mass in the universe.

A quick example of the sort of things that this book helps to make clear. For ages I didn't understand the flaw in the standard philosophical argument about how Godel's theorem "shows" that you can "know" a statement is true but not prove it... I always thought it was due to the lack of non-contradiction between the statement and the axioms but somehow this didn't seem to work. The claim is that as Godel's theorem states that if T is a consistent theory then there is a statement P that says it cannot be proved within T. Well it must be true because otherwise there would be a proof! Simple right? Well no, because it is only true if T is consistent which of course you can't.... worth the price just for clarifying that.
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1 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Writing is terrible, 15 Feb 2010
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This review is from: Gödel's Theorem: An Incomplete Guide to Its Use and Abuse (Paperback)
I really wanted to read this, a book on Godel's Theorems and what they really mean, and importantly, what they don't mean.

I have no trouble with the subject but the writing style here is terrible. Like too many maths books the writing itself puts off readers, not the subject matter itself.

I gave up and started reading the more promising An Introduction to Godel's Theorems (Cambridge Introductions to Philosophy). I may come back to this one.
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Gödel's Theorem: An Incomplete Guide to Its Use and Abuse
Gödel's Theorem: An Incomplete Guide to Its Use and Abuse by Torkel Franzén (Paperback - 6 Jun 2005)
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