Preface to GEB's Twentieth-anniversary Edition
So what is this book, Gödel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid—usually known by its acronym, "GEB"— really all about? That question has hounded me ever since I was scribblin its first drafts in !en, way back in "#$%& 'riends would inquire, of course, what I was so ri!!ed by, but I was hard !ressed to e(!lain it concisely& ) few years later, in "#*+, when GEB found itself for a while on the bestseller list of The New York Times, the obli atory one-sentence summary !rinted underneath the title said the followin , for several weeks runnin , -) scientist ar ues that reality is a system of interconnected braids&- )fter I !rotested vehemently about this utter ho wash, they finally substituted somethin a little better, .ust barely accurate enou h to kee! me from howlin a ain& /any !eo!le think the title tells it all, a book about a mathematician, an artist, and a musician& 0ut the most casual look will show that these three individuals per se, au ust thou h they undeniably are, !lay but tiny roles in the book1s content& There1s no way the book is about those three !eo!le2 3ell, then, how about describin GEB as -a book that shows how math, art, and music are really all the same thin at their core-? ) ain, this is a million miles off—and yet I1ve heard it over and over a ain, not only from nonreaders but also from readers, even very ardent readers, of the book& )nd in bookstores, I have run across GEB racin the shelves of many diverse sections, includin not only math, eneral science, !hiloso!hy, and co nitive science 4which are all fine5, but also reli ion, the occult, and 6od knows what else& 3hy is it so hard to fi ure out what this book is about? 7ertainly it1s not .ust its len th& 8o, it must be in !art that GEB delves, and not .ust su!erficially, into so many motley to!ics—fu ues and canons, lo ic and truth, eometry, recursion, syntactic structures, the nature of meanin , 9en 0uddhism, !arado(es, brain and mind, reductionism and holism, ant colonies, conce!ts and mental re!resentations, translation, com!uters and their lan ua es, :8), !roteins, the enetic code, artificial intelli ence, creativity, consciousness and free will—sometimes even art and music, of all thin s2—that many !eo!le find it im!ossible to locate the core focus&

The Key Images and Ideas that Lie at the Core of GEB
8eedless to say, this wides!read confusion has been quite frustratin to over the years, since I felt sure I had s!elled out my aims over and over in the te(t itself& 7learly, however, I didn1t do it sufficiently often, or sufficiently clearly& 0ut since now I1ve ot the chance to do it once more—and in a !rominent s!ot in the book, to boot—let me try one last time to say why I wrote this book, what it is about, and what its !rinci!al thesis is& In a word, GEB is a very !ersonal attem!t to say how it is that animate bein s can come out of inanimate matter& 3hat is a self, and how can a self come out of stuff that is as selfless as a stone or a !uddle? 3hat is an -I-, and why are such thin s found 4at least so far5 only in association with, as !oet ;ussell Edson once wonderfully !hrased it, -teeterin bulbs of dread and dream-—that is, only in association with certain kinds of

ooey lum!s encased in hard !rotective shells mounted ato! mobile !edestals that roam the world on !airs of sli htly fu<<y, .ointed stilts? GEB a!!roaches these questions by slowly buildin u! an analo y that likens inanimate molecules to meanin less symbols, and further likens selves 4or -I- 1s or -souls-, if you !refer—whatever it is that distin uishes animate from inanimate matter5 to certain s!ecial swirly, twisty, vorte(-like, and meaningful !atterns that arise only in !articular ty!es of systems of meanin less symbols& It is these stran e, twisty !atterns that the book s!ends so much time on, because they are little known, little a!!reciated, counterintuitive, and quite filled with mystery& )nd for reasons that should not be too difficult to fathom, I call such stran e, loo!y !atterns -stran e loo!s- throu hout the book, althou h in later cha!ters, I also use the !hrase -tan led hierarchies- to describe basically the same idea& This is in many ways why /& 7& Escher—or more !recisely, his art—is !rominent in the - olden braid-, because Escher, in his own s!ecial way, was .ust as fascinated as I am by stran e loo!s, and in fact he drew them in a variety of conte(ts, all wonderfully disorientin and fascinatin & 3hen I was first workin on my book, however, Escher was totally out of the !icture 4or out of the loo!, as we now say5= my workin title was the rather mundane !hrase -6>del1s Theorem and the ?uman 0rain-, and I ave no thou ht to insertin !arado(ical !ictures, let alone !layful dialo ues& It1s .ust that time and a ain, while writin about my notion of stran e loo!s, I would catch fleetin lim!ses of this or that Escher !rint flashin almost subliminally before my mind1s eye, and finally one day I reali<ed that these ima es were so connected in my own mind with the ideas that I was writin about that for me to de!rive my readers of the connection that I myself felt so stron ly would be nothin less than !erverse& )nd so Escher1s art was welcomed on board& )s for 0ach, I1ll come back to his entry into my -meta!horical fu ue on minds and machines- a little later& 0ack to stran e loo!s, ri ht now& GEB was ins!ired by my lon -held conviction that the -stran e loo!- notion holds the key to unravelin the mystery that we conscious bein s call -bein - or -consciousness-& I was first hit by this idea when, as a teen-a er, I found myself obsessedly !onderin the quintessential stran e loo! that lies at the core of the !roof of @urt 6>del1s famous incom!leteness theorem in mathematical lo ic—a rather arcane !lace, one mi ht well think, to stumble across the secret behind the nature of selves and -I-s, and yet I !ractically heard it screamin u! at me from the !a es of 8a el and 8ewman that this was what it was all about& This !reface is not the time and !lace to o into details—indeed, that1s why the tome you1re holdin was written, so it would be a bit !resum!tuous of me to think I could outdo its author in .ust these few !a es2—but one thin has to be said strai ht off, the 6>delian stran e loo! that arises in formal systems in mathematics i!e!, collections of rules for churnin out an endless series of mathematical truths solely by mechanical symbol-shuntin without any re ard to meanin s or ideas hidden in the sha!es bein mani!ulated5 is a loo! that allows such a system to -!erceive itself-, to talk about itself, to become -self-aware-, and in a sense it would not be oin too far to say that by virtue of havin such a loo!, a formal system ac"uires a self!

Meaningless Symbols Acquire Meaning

es!ite Themsel"es

3hat is so weird in this is that the formal systems where these skeletal -selvescome to e(ist are built out of nothin but meanin less symbols& The self, such as it is, arises solely because of a s!ecial ty!e of swirly, tan led pattern amon the meanin less symbols& 0ut now a confession, I am bein a bit coy when I re!eatedly ty!e the !hrase -meanin less symbols- 4as at the ends of both of the !revious sentences5, because a crucial !art of my book1s ar ument rests on the idea that meanin cannot be ke!t out of formal systems when sufficiently com!le( isomor!hisms arise& /eanin comes in des!ite one1s best efforts to kee! symbols meanin less2 Aet me re!hrase these last cou!le of sentences without usin the sli htly technical term -isomor!hism-& 3hen a system of -meanin less- symbols has !atterns in it that accurately track, or mirror, various !henomena in the world, then that trackin or mirrorin imbues the symbols with some de ree of meanin —indeed, such trackin or mirrorin is no less and no more than what meanin is& :e!endin on how com!le( and subtle and reliable the trackin is, different de rees of meanin fulness arise& I won1t o further into this here, for it1s a thesis that is taken u! quite often in the te(t, most of all in 7ha!ters B, C, D, #, and ""& 7om!ared to a ty!ical formal system, human lan ua e is unbelievably fluid and subtle in its !atterns of trackin reality, and for that reason the symbols in formal systems can seem quite arid= indeed, without too much trouble, one can look at them as totally devoid of meanin & 0ut then a ain, one can look at a news!a!er written in an unfamiliar writin system, and the stran e sha!es seem like nothin more than wondrously intricate but totally meanin less !atterns& Thus even human lan ua e, rich thou h it is, can be drained of its seemin si nificance& )s a matter of fact, there are still quite a few !hiloso!hers, scientists, and so forth who believe that !atterns of symbols per se 4such as books or movies or libraries or 7:;E/1s or com!uter !ro rams, no matter how com!le( or dynamic5 ne#er have meanin on their own, but that meanin instead, in some most mysterious manner, s!rin s only from the or anic chemistry, or !erha!s the quantum mechanics, of !rocesses that take !lace in carbon-based biolo ical brains& )lthou h I have no !atience with this !arochial, bio-chauvinistic view, I nonetheless have a !retty clear sense of its intuitive a!!eal& Tryin to don the hat of a believer in the !rimacy, indeed the uniqueness, of brains, I can see where such !eo!le are comin from& Such !eo!le feel that some kind of -semantic ma ic- takes !lace only inside our -teeterin bulbs-, somewhere behind !airs of eyeballs, even thou h they can never quite !ut their fin er on how or why this is so= moreover, they believe that this semantic ma ic is what is res!onsible for the e(istence of human selves, souls, consciousness, -I-s& )nd I, as a matter of fact, quite a ree with such thinkers that selves and semantics—in other words, that me1s and meanin s—do s!rin from one and the same source= where I take issue with these !eo!le is over their contention that such !henomena are due entirely to some s!ecial, thou h as yet undiscovered, !ro!erties of the microsco!ic hardware of brains& )s I see it, the only way of overcomin this ma ical view of what -I- and consciousness are is to kee! on remindin oneself, un!leasant thou h it may seem, that the -teeterin bulb of dread and dream- that nestles safely inside one1s own cranium is a !urely !hysical ob.ect made u! of com!letely sterile and inanimate com!onents, all of

which obey e(actly the same laws as those that overn all the rest of the universe, such as !ieces of te(t, or 7:-;E/1s, or com!uters& Enly if one kee!s on bashin u! a ainst this disturbin fact can one slowly be in to develo! a feel for the way out of the mystery of consciousness, that the key is not the stuff out of which brains are made, but the patterns that can come to e(ist inside the stuff of a brain& This is a liberatin shift, because it allows one to move to a different level of considerin what brains are, as media that su!!ort com!le( !atterns that mirror, albeit far from !erfectly, the world, of which, needless to say, those brains are themselves deni<ens —and it is in the inevitable self-mirrorin that arises, however im!artial or im!erfect it may be, that the stran e loo!s of consciousness start to swirl&

Kurt G#del Smashes through Bertrand $ussell%s Maginot Line
I1ve .ust claimed that the shift of focus from material com!onents to abstract !atterns allows the quasi-ma ical lea! from inanimate to animate, from nonsemantic to semantic, from meanin less to meanin ful, to take !lace& 0ut how does this ha!!en? )fter all, not all .um!s from matter to !attern ive rise to consciousness or soul or self, quite obviously, in a word, not all !atterns are conscious& 3hat kind of !attern is it, then, that is the telltale mark of a self $ GEB's answer is, a stran e loo!& The irony is that the first stran e loo! ever found—and my model for the conce!t in eneral—was found in a system tailor%made to keep loopiness out! I s!eak of 0ertrand ;ussell and )lfred 8orth 3hitehead1s famous treatise &rincipia 'athematica, a i antic, forbiddin work laced with dense, !rickly symbolism fillin u! volume after volume, whose creation in the years "#"+-"#"% was s!arked !rimarily by its first author1s des!erate quest for a way to circumvent !arado(es of self-reference in mathematics& )t the heart of &rincipia 'athematica lay ;ussell1s so-called -theory of ty!es-, which, much like the rou hly contem!oraneous /a inot Aine, was desi ned to kee! -the enemy- out in a most staunch and waterti ht manner& 'or the 'rench, the enemy was 6ermany= for ;ussell, it was self-reference& ;ussell believed that for a mathematical system to be able to talk about itself in any way whatsoever was the kiss of death, for self-reference would—so he thou ht—necessarily o!en the door to self-contradiction, and thereby send all of mathematics crashin to the round& In order to forestall this dire fate, he invented an elaborate 4and infinite5 hierarchy of levels, all sealed off from each other in such a manner as to definitively—so he thou ht—block the dreaded virus of self-reference from infectin the fra ile system& It took a cou!le of decades, but eventually the youn )ustrian lo ician @urt 6>del reali<ed that ;ussell and 3hitehead1s mathematical /a inot Aine a ainst selfreference could be most deftly circumvented 4.ust as the 6ermans in 3orld 3ar II would soon wind u! deftly sideste!!in the real /a inot Aine5, and that self-reference not only had lurked from :ay Ene in &rincipia 'athematica, but in fact !la ued !oor &' in a totally unremovable manner& /oreover, as 6>del made brutally clear, this thorou h riddlin of the system by self-reference was not due to some weakness in &', but quite to the contrary, it was due to its strength! )ny similar system would have e(actly the same -defect-& The reason it had taken so lon for the world to reali<e this astonishin fact is that it de!ended on makin a lea! somewhat analo ous to that from a brain to a self, that famous lea! from inanimate constituents to animate !atterns&

'or 6>del, it all came into focus in "#%+ or so, thanks to a sim!le but wonderfully rich discovery that came to be known as -6>del numberin -—a ma!!in whereby the lon linear arran ements of strin s of symbols in any formal system are mirrored !recisely by mathematical relationshi!s amon certain 4usually astronomically lar e5 whole numbers& Fsin his ma!!in between elaborate !atterns of meanin less symbols 4to use that dubious term once a ain5 and hu e numbers, 6>del showed how a statement a(out any mathematical formal system 4such as the assertion that &rincipia 'athematica is contradiction-free5 can be translated into a mathematical statement inside number theory 4the study of whole numbers5& In other words, any metamathematical statement can be im!orted into mathematics, and in its new uise the statement sim!ly asserts 4as do all statements of number theory5 that certain whole numbers have certain !ro!erties or relationshi!s to each other& 0ut on another level, it also has a vastly different meanin that, on its surface, seems as far removed from a statement of number theory as would be a sentence in a :ostoevsky novel& 0y means of 6>del1s ma!!in , any formal system desi ned to s!ew forth truths about -mere- numbers would also wind u! s!ewin forth truths—inadvertently but ine(orably—about its own !ro!erties, and would thereby become -self-aware-, in a manner of s!eakin & )nd of all the clandestine instances of self-referentiality !la uin &' and brou ht to li ht by 6>del, the most concentrated doses lurked in those sentences that talked about their own 6>del numbers, and in !articular said some very odd thin s about themselves, such as -I am not !rovable inside &'"! )nd let me re!eat, such twistin -back, such loo!in -around, such sell enfoldin , far from bein an eliminable defect, was an inevitable by-!roduct of the system1s vast !ower& 8ot too sur!risin ly, revolutionary mathematical and !hiloso!hical consequences tumbled out of 6>del1s sudden revelation that self-reference abounded in the bosom of the bastion so carefully desi ned by ;ussell to kee! it out at all costs= the most famous such consequence was the so-called -essential incom!leteness- of formali<ed mathematics& That notion will be carefully covered in the cha!ters to come, and yet, fascinatin thou h it is, incom!leteness is not in itself central to GEB's thesis& 'or GEB, the most crucial as!ect of 6>del1s work is its demonstration that a statement1s meaning can have dee! consequences, even in a su!!osedly meanin less universe& Thus it is the meaning of 6>del1s sentence 6 4the one that asserts -6 is not !rovable inside &'-5 that uarantees that 6 is not !rovable inside &' 4which is !recisely what 6 itself claims5& It is as if the sentence1s hidden 6>delian meanin had some kind of !ower over the vacuous symbol-shuntin , meanin -im!ervious rules of the system, !reventin them from ever !uttin to ether a demonstration of 6, no matter what they do&

&!side-do'n Causality and the Emergence of an (I(
This kind of effect ives one a sense of cra<ily twisted, or u!side-down, causality& )fter all, shouldn1t meanin s that one chooses to read into strin s of meanin less symbols be totally without consequence? Even stran er is that the onl) reason sentence 6 is not !rovable inside &' is its self-referential meanin = indeed, it would seem that 6, bein a true statement about whole numbers, ought to be !rovable, but—thanks to its e(tra level of meanin as a statement about itself, assertin its own non!rovability—it is not&

Somethin very stran e thus emer es from the 6>delian loo!, the revelation of the causal !ower of meanin in a rule-bound but meanin -free universe& )nd this is where my analo y to brains and selves comes back in, su estin that the twisted loo! of selfhood tra!!ed inside an inanimate bulb called a -brain- also has causal !ower—or, !ut another way, that a mere !attern called -I- can shove around inanimate !articles in the brain no less than inanimate !articles in the brain can shove around !atterns& In short, an -I- comes about—in my view, at least—via a kind of vorte( whereby !atterns in a brain mirror the brain1s mirrorin of the world, and eventually mirror themselves, whereu!on the vorte( of -I- becomes a real, causal entity& 'or an im!erfect but vivid concrete analo ue to this curious abstract !henomenon, think of what ha!!ens when a TG camera is !ointed at a TG screen so as to dis!lay the screen on itself 4and that screen on itself, etc&5—what in GEB I called a -self-en ulfin television-, and in my later writin s I sometimes call a -level-crossin feedback loo!-& 3hen and only when such a loo! arises in a brain or in any other substrate, is a person—a unique new -I-—brou ht into bein & /oreover, the more self-referentially rich such a loo! is, the more conscious is the self to which it ives rise& Hes, shockin thou h this mi ht sound, consciousness is not an onIoff !henomenon, but admits of de rees, rades, shades& Er, to !ut it more bluntly, there are bi er souls and smaller souls&

Small-souled Men) Be'are*
I can1t hel! but recall, at this !oint, a horribly elitist but very droll remark by one of my favorite writers, the )merican -critic of the seven arts-, James ?uneker, in his scintillatin bio ra!hy of 'rKdKric 7ho!in, on the sub.ect of 7ho!in1s Ktude E!& BL, 8o& "" in ) minor, which for me, and for ?uneker, is one of the most stirrin and most sublime !ieces of music ever written, -Small-souled men, no matter how a ile their fin ers, should avoid it&-Small-souled men-?2 3hew2 :oes that !hrase ever run a ainst the rain of )merican democracy2 )nd yet, leavin aside its offensive, archaic se(ism 4a crime I, too, commit in GEB, to my reat re ret5, I would su est that it is only because we all tacitly do believe in somethin like ?uneker1s shockin distinction that most of us are willin to eat animals of one sort or another, to smash flies, swat mosquitoes, fi ht bacteria with antibiotics, and so forth& 3e enerally concur that -men- such as a cow, a turkey, a fro , and a fish all !ossess some s!ark of consciousness, some kind of !rimitive -soul-, but by 6od, it1s a ood deal smaller than ours is—and that, no more and no less, is why we -men- feel that we have the !erfect ri ht to e(tin uish the dim li hts in the heads of these fractionally-souled beasts and to obble down their once warm and wi lin , now chilled and stilled !roto!lasm with limitless usto, and not to feel a trace of uilt while doin so& Enou h sermoni<in 2 The real !oint here is that not all stran e loo!s ive rise to souls as rand and lorious as yours and mine, dear reader& Thus, for e(am!le, I would not want you or anyone else to walk away from readin all or !art of GEB, shake their head and say with sadness, -That weird ?ofstadter uy has convinced himself that ;ussell and 3hitehead1s &rincipia 'athematica is a conscious !erson with a soul2?orsefeathers2 0alderdash2 Po!!ycock2 6>del1s stran e loo!, thou h it is my !ara on for the conce!t, is nonetheless only the most bare-bones stran e loo!, and it resides in a system whose com!le(ity is !athetic, relative to that of an or anic brain& /oreover, a

formal system is static= it doesn1t chan e or row over time& ) formal system does not live in a society of other formal systems, mirrorin them inside itself, and bein mirrored in turn inside its -friends-& 3ell, I retract that last remark, at least a bit, any formal system as !owerful as &' does in fact contain models not .ust of itself but of an infinite number of other formal systems, some like it, some very much unlike it& That is essentially what 6>del reali<ed& 0ut still, there is no counter!art to time, no counter!art to develo!ment, let alone to birth and death& )nd so whatever I say about -selves- comin to e(ist in mathematical formal systems has to be taken with the !ro!er rain of salt& Stran e loo!s are an abstract structure that cro!s u! in various media and in varyin de rees of richness& GEB is in essence a lon !ro!osal of stran e loo!s as a meta!hor for how selfhood ori inates, a meta!hor by which to be in to rab a hold of .ust what it is that makes an -I- seem, at one and the same time, so terribly real and tan ible to its own !ossessor, and yet also so va ue, so im!enetrable, so dee!ly elusive& I !ersonally cannot ima ine that consciousness will be fully understood without reference to 6>delian stran e loo!s or level-crossin feedback loo!s& 'or that reason, I must say, I have been sur!rised and !u<<led that the !ast few years1 flurry of books tryin to unravel the mysteries of consciousness almost never mention anythin alon these lines& /any of these books1 authors have even read and savored GEB, yet nowhere is its core thesis echoed& It sometimes feels as if I had shouted a dee!ly cherished messa e out into an em!ty chasm and nobody heard me&

The Earliest Seeds of GEB
3hy, one mi ht wonder, if the author1s aim was merely to !ro!ose a theory of stran e loo!s as the cru( of our consciousness and the source of our irre!ressible -I-feelin , did he wind u! writin such a vast book with so many seemin di ressions in it? 3hy on earth did he dra in fu ues and canons? 3hy recursion? )nd 9en? )nd molecular biolo y? Et cetera&&& The truth of the matter is, when I started out, I didn1t have the fo iest idea that I would wind u! talkin about these kinds of thin s& 8or did I dream that my future book would include dialo ues, let alone dialo ues based on musical forms& The com!le( and ambitious nature of my !ro.ect evolved only radually& In broad strokes, it came about this way& I earlier alluded to my readin , as a teen-a er, of Ernest 8a el and James ;& 8ewman1s little book Gödel's &roof! 3ell, that book .ust radiated e(citement and de!th to me, and it !ro!elled me like an arrow strai ht into the study of symbolic lo ic& Thus, as an under raduate math ma.or at Stanford and a few years later, in my short-lived career as a raduate student in math at 0erkeley, I took several advanced lo ic courses, but to my bitter disa!!ointment, all of them were arcane, technical, and utterly devoid of the ma ic I1d known in 8a el and 8ewman& The u!shot of my takin these hi hbrow courses was that my keen teen interest in 6>del1s wondrous !roof and its -stran e loo!iness- was nearly killed off& Indeed, I was left with such a feelin of sterility that in late "#D$, almost in des!eration, I dro!!ed out of math rad school in 0erkeley and took u! a new identity as !hysics rad student at the Fniversity of Ere on in Eu ene, where my once-ardent fascination with lo ic and metamathematics went into dee! dormancy&

Several years !assed, and then one day in /ay of "#$B, while browsin the math shelves in the Fniversity of Ere on bookstore, I stumbled across !hiloso!her ?oward :eAon 1s su!erb book * &rofile of 'athematical +ogic, took a chance on buyin it, and within weeks, my old love for the reat 6>delian mysteries and all they touch on was reawakened& Ideas started churnin around like mad inside my teeterin bulb of dread and dream& :es!ite this .oy, I was very discoura ed with the way my !hysics studies and my life in eneral were oin , so in July I !acked all my belon in s into a do<en or so cardboard bo(es and set out on an eastward trek across the vast )merican continent in Muicksilver, my faithful "#LD /ercury& 3here I was headed, I wasn1t sure& )ll I knew is that I was lookin for a new life& )fter crossin the beautiful 7ascades and eastern Ere on1s desert, I wound u! in /oscow, Idaho& Since Muicksilver had a little en ine trouble and needed some re!air, I took advanta e of the s!are time and went to the Fniversity of Idaho1s library to look u! some of the articles about 6>del1s !roof in :eAon 1s annotated biblio ra!hy& I !hotoco!ied several of them, and in a day or so headed off toward /ontana and )lberta& Each ni ht I would sto! and !itch my little tent, sometimes in a forest, sometimes by a lake, and then I would ea erly !lun e by flashli ht into these articles until I fell aslee! in my slee!in ba & I was startin to understand many 6>delian matters ever more clearly, and what I was learnin was truly enthrallin &

+rom Letter to ,am!hlet to Seminar
)fter a few days in the 7anadian ;ockies, I headed south a ain and eventually reached 0oulder, 7olorado& There, one afternoon, a host of fresh ideas started ushin out in a s!ontaneous letter to my old friend ;obert 0oenin er& )fter several hours of writin , I saw that althou h my letter was lon er than I1d e(!ected—thirty handwritten !a es or so —I1d said only about half of what I1d wanted to say& This made me think that maybe I should write a !am!hlet, not a letter, and to this day, ;obert has never received my unfinished missive& 'rom 0oulder I headed further east, bouncin from one university town to another, and eventually, almost as if it had been beckonin me the whole time, 8ew Hork 7ity loomed as my ultimate oal& Indeed, I wound u! s!endin several months in /anhattan, takin raduate courses at 7ity 7olle e and teachin elementary !hysics to nurses at ?unter 7olle e, but as "#$% rolled around, I faced the fact that des!ite lovin 8ew Hork in many ways, I was even more a itated than I had been in Eu ene, and I decided it would be wiser to return to Ere on and to finish raduate school there& )lthou h my ho!ed-for -new life- had failed to materiali<e, in certain res!ects I was relieved to be back& 'or one thin , the F of E in those days had the enli htened !olicy that any community member could invent and teach a for-credit -SE);7?course, as lon as one or more de!artments a!!roved it& )nd so I !etitioned the !hiloso!hy and math de!artments to s!onsor a s!rin -quarter SE);7? course centered on 6>del1s theorem, and my request was ranted& Thin s were lookin u!& /y intuition told me that my !ersonal fascination with stran e loo!s—not only with their !hiloso!hical im!ortance but also with their esthetic charm—was not .ust some unique little neurotic obsession of mine, but could well be infectious, if only I could et

across to my students that these notions were anythin but dull and dry, as in those fri id, sterile lo ic courses I1d taken, but rather—as 8a el and 8ewman had hinted—were intimately related to a slew of !rofound and beautiful ideas in mathematics, !hysics, com!uter science, !sycholo y, !hiloso!hy, lin uistics, and so on& I ave my course the half-di!!y, half-romantic title -The /ystery of the Fndecidable- in the ho!es that " mi ht attract students from wildly diverse areas, and the trick worked& Twenty-five souls were sna ed, and all were enthusiastic& I vividly remember the lovely blossoms I could see out the window each day as I lectured that s!rin , but even more vividly I remember :avid Justman, who was in art history, Scott 0uresh, who was in !olitical science, and )vril 6reenber , who was an art ma.or& These three sim!ly devoured the ideas, and we talked and talked endlessly about them& /y course thus turned out very well, both for the sna ees and for the sna er& Sometime durin the summer of "#$%," made a stab at sketchin out a table of contents for my -!am!hlet-, and at that !oint, the ambitiousness of my !ro.ect started dawnin on me, but it still felt more like a !am!hlet than a tome to me& It was only in the fall that I started writin in earnest& I had never written anythin more than a few !a es lon , but I fearlessly !lun ed ahead, fi urin it would take me .ust a few days—maybe a week or two& I was sli htly off, for in fact, the very first draft 4done in !en, .ust like my letter to ;obert, but with more cross-outs5 took me about a month—a month that overla!!ed in time with the -Hom @i!!ur war-, which made a very dee! im!ression on me& I reali<ed this first draft was not the final !roduct, but I felt I had done the ma.or work and now it was .ust a question of revision&

E-!eriments 'ith Literary +orm Start to Ta.e ,lace
)s I was writin that draft, I certainly wasn1t thinkin about Escher !ictures& 8or was I thinkin about 0ach1s music& 0ut one day I found myself on fire with ideas about mind, brain, and human identity, and so, shamelessly borrowin Aewis 7arroll1s odd cou!le of )chilles and the Tortoise, whose droll !ersonalities amused me no end, I sat down and in absolute white heat dashed off a lon , com!le( dialo ue, all about a fictitious, unima inably lar e book each of whose !a es, on a one-by-one basis, contained e(haustive information on one s!ecific neuron in Einstein1s brain& )s it ha!!ened, the dialo ue featured a short section where the two characters ima ined each other in another dialo ue, and each of them said, -Hou mi ht then say this&&& to which I mi ht well re!ly as follows&&& and then you would o on&&&- and so forth& 0ecause of this unusual structural feature, after I1d finally !ut the final !eriod on the final s!eech, I fli!!ed back to the to! of !a e one and there, on a whim, ty!ed out the sin le word -'F6FE-& /y Einstein-book dialo ue was not really a fu ue, of course—not even close— and yet it somehow reminded me of one& 'rom earliest childhood, I had been !rofoundly moved by the music of 0ach, and this off-the-wall idea of marryin 0ach-like contra!untal forms to lively dialo ues with intellectually rich content rabbed me with a !assion& Ever the ne(t few weeks, as I tossed the idea around in my head, I reali<ed how much room for !lay there was alon these lines, and I could ima ine how voraciously I as a teen-a er mi ht have consumed such dialo ues& Thus I was led to the idea of insertin contra!untal dialo ues every so often, !artly to break the tedium of the heavy ideas in my

cha!ters, and !artly to allow me to introduce li hter, more alle orical versions of all the abstruse conce!ts& The lon and the short of it is that I eventually decided—but this took many months—that the o!timal structure would be a strict alternation between cha!ters and dialo ues& Ence that was clear, then I had the .oyous task of tryin to !in!oint the most crucial ideas that I wanted to et across to my readers and then somehow embodyin them in both the form and the content of fanciful, often !unnin dialo ues between )chilles and the Tortoise 4!lus a few new friends5&

GEB Is +irst Cooled off) Then $eheated
In early "#$C, I switched Ph&:& advisors for the fourth and final time, takin on a totally unfamiliar !roblem in solid-state !hysics that smelled very sweet thou h it threatened thorniness& /y new advisor, 6re ory 3annier, wanted me to !lun e in dee!ly, and I knew in my ut that this time it was sink or swim for me in the world of !hysics& If I wanted a Ph&:&—a !recious but horribly elusive oal toward which I had been stru lin for almost a decade by then—it was now or never2 )nd so, with reat reluctance, I stowed my beloved manuscri!t in a desk drawer and told myself, -?ands off2 )nd no !eekin 2- I even instituted food-de!rivation !unishments if I so much as o!ened the drawer and riffled throu h my book-in-the-makin & Thinkin GEB thou hts— or rather, GT*T,B thou hts—was strictly #er(oten! S!eakin of 6erman, 3annier was scheduled to o to 6ermany for a si(-month !eriod in the fall of "#$C, and since I had always loved Euro!e, I asked if there was any way I could o alon & Gery kindly, he arran ed for me to be a wissenschaftlicher *ssistent — essentially a teachin assistant—in !hysics at the FniversitNt ;e ensbur , and so that1s what I did for one semester s!annin the end of "#$C and the start of "#$L& It was then that I ot most of the work done for my Ph&:& thesis& Since I had no close friends, my ;e ensbur days and ni hts were lon and lonely& In a !eculiar sense, my closest friend durin that tou h !eriod was 'rKdKric 7ho!in, since I tuned in to ;adio 3arsaw nearly every ni ht at midni ht and listened to various !ianists !layin many of his !ieces that I knew and loved, and others that were new to me and that I came to love& That whole stretch was GEB%#er(oten time, and thus it continued until the end of "#$L, when finally I closed the book on my thesis& )lthou h that work was all about an e(quisite visual structure 4see 7ha!ter L of this book5 and seemed to offer a ood launch!ad for a career, I had suffered too many blows to my e o in raduate school to believe I would make a ood !hysicist& En the other hand, the rekindlin of old intellectual flames and es!ecially the writin of GT*T,B had breathed a new kind of selfconfidence into me& Jobless but hi hly motivated, I moved to my home town of Stanford, and there, thanks to my !arents1 unquestionin and enerous financial su!!ort 4-a two-year ?ofstadter 'ellowshi!-, I .okin ly called it5, I set out to -retool myself- as an artificialintelli ence researcher& Even more im!ortant, thou h, was that I was able to resume my !assionate love affair with the ideas that had so rabbed me a cou!le of years earlier& )t Stanford, my erstwhile -!am!hlet- bloomed& It was rewritten from start to finish, because I felt that my earlier drafts, thou h focused on the !ro!er ideas, were immature and inconsistent in style& )nd I en.oyed the lu(ury of one of the world1s earliest and best word-!rocessin !ro rams, my new friend Pentti @anerva1s tremendously

fle(ible and user-friendly TG-Edit& Thanks to that !ro ram, the new version .ust flowed out, and ever so smoothly& I .ust can1t ima ine how GEB could have been written without it& Enly at this sta e did the book1s unusual stylistic hallmarks really emer e—the sometimes-silly !layin with words, the concoctin of novel verbal structures that imitate musical forms, the wallowin in analo ies of every sort, the s!innin of stories whose very structures e(em!lify the !oints they are talkin about, the mi(in of oddball !ersonalities in fantastic scenarios& )s I was writin , I certainly knew that my book would be quite different from other books on related to!ics, and that I was violatin quite a number of conventions& 8onetheless I blithely continued, because I felt confident that what I was doin sim!ly had to be done, and that it had an intrinsic ri htness to it& Ene of the key qualities that made me so believe in what I was doin is that this was a book in which form was bein iven equal billin with content—and that was no accident, since GEB is in lar e !art about how content is inse!arable from form, how semantics is of a !iece with synta(, how ine(tricable !attern and matter are from each other& )lthou h I had always known of myself that, in many as!ects of life, I was concerned as much with form as with content, I had never sus!ected how dee!ly I would et cau ht u!, in the writin of my first book, in matters of visual a!!earance on all levels& Thus, thanks to the ease of usin TG-Edit, whatever I wrote underwent !olishin to make it look better on the screen, and thou h such control would at one time have been considered a lu(ury for an author, I was very attached to it and loath to ive it u!& 0y the time I had a solid version of the manuscri!t ready to send out to !ublishers, visual desi n and conce!tual structure were intimately bound u! with each other&

The Clarion Call
I1ve oft been asked if I, an unknown author with an unorthodo( manuscri!t and an off-the-wall title, had to stru le for years a ainst the monolithic !ublishin industry1s fear of takin risks& 3ell, !erha!s I was .ust lucky, but my e(!erience was far more !leasant than that& In mid-"#$$, I sent out a little sam!le to about fifteen hi h-quality !ublishers, .ust as a feeler, to which most re!lied !olitely that this was -not the ty!e of thin - they dealt in& 'air enou h& 0ut three or four e(!ressed interest in seein more, and so, by turns, I let them take a look at the whole thin & 8eedless to say, I was disa!!ointed when the first two turned it down 4and in each case the vettin !rocess took a few months, so the loss of time was frustratin 5, but on the other hand, I wasn1t overly disheartened& Then near 7hristmastime, /artin @essler, head of 0asic 0ooks, a !ublishin outfit I had always admired, ave me some ho!eful thou h tentative si nals& The winter of "#$$-$* was so severe that Indiana Fniversity, where I was now a fled lin assistant !rofessor, ran out of coal for heatin , and in /arch the university was forced to close down for three weeks to wait for warmer weather& I decided to use this free time to drive to 8ew Hork and !oints south to see old friends& 7lear as a bell in my oft-blurry memory is my brief sto! in some din y little diner in the town of 7larion, Pennsylvania, where from a chilly !hone booth I made a quick call to /artin @essler in 8ew Hork to see if he had a verdict yet& It was a reat moment in my life when he said he would be -deli hted- to work with me—and it1s almost eerie to think that this si nal event occurred in that well-named hamlet, of all !laces&&&

$e"enge of the /oley $ollers
8ow that I had found a !ublisher, there came the question of turnin the manuscri!t from crude com!uter !rintout to a finely ty!eset book& It was a !iece of true luck that Pentti, to enhance TG-Edit, had .ust develo!ed one of the world1s first com!uter ty!esettin systems, and he stron ly encoura ed me to use it& @essler, ever the adventurer, was also willin to ive it a try—!artly, of course, because it would save 0asic 0ooks some money, but also because he was by nature a shrewd risk-taker& :o-it-yourself ty!esettin , thou h for me a reat break, was hardly a !iece of cake& 7om!utin then was a lot more !rimitive than it is today, and to use Pentti1s system, I had to insert into each cha!ter or dialo ue literally thousands of cry!tic ty!esettin commands, ne(t cho! each com!uter file into several small !ieces—five or si( !er file, usually—each of which had to be run throu h a series of two com!uter !ro rams, and then each of the resultin out!ut files had to be !unched out !hysically as a cry!tic !attern of myriad holes on a lon , thin roll of !a!er ta!e& I myself had to walk the B++ yards to the buildin where the hole-!uncher was located, load the !a!er ta!e, and sit there monitorin it carefully to make sure it didn1t .am& 8e(t, I would carry this batch of oily ta!es another quarter-mile to the buildin where The -tanford .ail) was !rinted, and if it was free, I would use their !hototy!esettin machine myself& :oin so was a lon , elaborate o!eration involvin cartrid es of !hotosensitive !a!er, darkrooms, chemical baths with rollers throu h which the !a!er had to be !assed to et all the develo!in chemicals off, and clotheslines on which all the five-foot lon alleys with my te(t on them would be hun out to dry for a day or two& The !rocess of actually seeing what my thousands of ty!esettin commands had wrou ht was thus enormously unwieldy and slow& Truth to tell, thou h, I didn1t mind that= in fact, it was arcane, s!ecial, and kind of e(citin & 0ut one day, when nearly all the alleys had been !rinted—two to three hundred of them—and I thou ht I was home free, I made a horrendous discovery& I1d seen each one emer e with .et-black !rint from the develo!in baths, and yet on some of the more recently-dried ones, the te(t looked brownish& 3hat2? )s I checked out others, sli htly older, I saw li ht-brown !rint, and on yet older ones, it was oran y, or even !ale yellow2 I couldn1t believe it& ?ow in the world had this ha!!ened? The sim!le answer left me feelin so an ry and hel!less, the a in rollers, havin worn unevenly, no lon er wi!ed the alleys clean, so acid was day by day eatin the black !rint away& 'or the .ail)'s !ur!oses, this didn1t matter—they chucked their alleys in a matter of hours—but for a book, it s!elled disaster& 8o way could a book be !rinted from yellow alleys2 )nd the !hotoco!ies I1d made of them when they were newborn were shar!, but not shar! enou h& 3hat a ni htmare2 Fntold labor had .ust one u! in smoke& I was filled with the des!air of a football team that1s .ust made a ##-yard downfield march only to be sto!!ed dead on the o!!onent1s one-yard line& I1d s!ent almost all summer "#$* !roducin these alleys, but now summer was drawin to a close, and I had to o back to Indiana to teach courses& 3hat on earth to do? ?ow could I salva e GEB? The only solution I could see was, on my own money, to fly back to Stanford every weekend of the fall, and redo the whole thin from scratch& Auckily, I was teachin only on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and so each Thursday afternoon I would <oom from class, catch a !lane, arrive at Stanford, work like a maniac until /onday afternoon, and then dash off to the air!ort to return to Indiana& I will never for et

the worst of those weekends, when I somehow mana ed to work for forty hours strai ht without a wink of slee!& That1s love for you2 In this ordeal there was a savin race, thou h, and it was this, I ot to correct all the ty!esettin errors I1d made in the first batch of alleys& The ori inal !lan had been to use a bunch of correction alleys, which would have had to be sliced u! into little !ieces in 0asic1s 8ew Hork offices and !asted in wherever there were litches—and in that first batch I1d made litches alore, that1s for sure& Such a !rocess would !robably have resulted in hundreds of errors in the layout& 0ut thanks to my ##-yard drive havin been halted at the one-yard line, I now had the chance to undo all these litches, and !roduce a nearly !ristine set of alleys& )nd thus, althou h the chemical catastro!he delayed the actual !rintin of GEB for a cou!le of months, it turned out, in retros!ect, to have been a blessin in dis uise&

0o!s111
There were of course many ideas that vied with each other for entry into the book takin sha!e durin those years, and some made it in while others did not& Ene of the ironies is that the Einstein-book dialo ue, which in its -fu ality- was the ins!iration for all dialo ues to come, was cho!!ed& There was another lon and intricate dialo ue, too, that was cho!!ed, or more accurately, that wound u! ettin transmo rified nearly beyond reco nition, and its curious story is connected with an intense debate that was ra in inside my brain at that time& I had been made acutely aware, by some leaflets I1d read in the student union at Ere on in "#$+, of se(ist lan ua e and its insidious unconscious effects& /y mind was awakened to the subtle ways that eneric -he- and -man- 4and a host of similar words and !hrases5 contribute to the sha!in of one1s sense of what is a -normal- human bein and what is an -e(ce!tion-, and I welcomed this new !ers!ective& 0ut " was not a writer at that time—I was a !hysics rad student—and these issues didn1t seem all that close to my own life& 3hen I started writin dialo ues, thou h, thin s chan ed& There came a !oint when it dawned on me that the characters in my dialo ues—)chilles, the Tortoise, the 7rab, the )nteater, and a cou!le of others with cameo roles—were without e(ce!tion males! I was shocked at my own havin fallen victim to the unconscious !ressures !ushin a ainst the introduction of female characters& )nd yet, when I toyed with the idea of oin back and !erformin a -se(-chan e o!eration- on one or more of these characters, that really rubbed me the wron way& ?ow come? 3ell, all I could tell myself was, -0rin in females and you wind u! im!ortin the whole confusin world of se(uality into what is essentially a !urely abstract discussion, and that would distract attention from my book1s main !ur!oses&- This nonsensical view of mine stemmed from and echoed many tacit assum!tions of western civili<ation at that time 4and still today5& )s I forced myself to ra!!le with my own u ly attitude, a real battle started u! in my mind, with one side of me ar uin for oin back and makin some characters female, and the other tryin to maintain the status "uo! Eut of this internal battle suddenly came a lon and rather amusin dialo ue in which my various characters, havin come to the reali<ation that they are all males, discuss why this mi ht be so, and decide that, des!ite their sense of havin free will, they must in fact be merely characters in the mind of some se(ist male author& Ene way or

another, they mana e to summon this )uthor character into their dialo ue—and what does he do when accused of se(ism? ?e !leads innocent, claimin that what his brain does is out of his control—the blame for his se(ism must instead fall on a se(ist 6od& )nd the ne(t thin you know, 6od !oofs into the dialo ue—and uess what? She turns out to be female 4ho ho ho5& I don1t remember the details of how it went on from there, but the !oint is, I was dee!ly torn, and I was ra!!lin in my own way with these com!le( issues& To my re ret—that is to say, to the re ret of the me of the years that followed— the side that wound u! winnin this battle was the se(ist side, with .ust a few concessions to the other side e!g!, the tower of :.inns in the dialo ue -Aittle ?armonic Aabyrinth-, and )unt ?illary in -Prelude&&& )nt 'u ue-5& GEB remained a book with a dee! se(ist bias sewn into its fabric& Interestin ly, it is a bias that very few readers, females or males, have commented on 4which in turn su!!orts my belief that these kinds of thin s are very subtle and insidious, and esca!e nearly everyone1s !erce!tion5& )s for eneric -man- and -he-, I certainly disliked those usa es at that time, and I tried to avoid them whenever I could 4or rather, whenever it was eas)/, but on the other hand I wasn1t !articularly concerned about cleansin my !rose of every last one of them, and as a consequence the book1s !a es are also marred, here and there, by that more obvious, more e(!licit form of se(ism& Today, I crin e whenever I come across sentences in GEB that talk about the reader as -he-, or that casually s!eak of -mankind- as if humanity were some hu e abstract gu)! Ene lives and learns, I uess& )nd lastly, as for that soul-searchin dialo ue in which the )uthor and 6od are summoned u! by )chilles and com!any to face the accusation of se(ism, well, that was somehow transformed, in a series of many, many small chan es, into the dialo ue with which GEB concludes, -Si(-!art ;icercar-& If you read it with its enesis in mind, you may find an e(tra level of interest&

Mr1 Tortoise) Meet Madame Tortue
) few years later, a wholly une(!ected chance came alon to make amends, at least in !art, for my se(ist sin& That o!!ortunity was afforded me by the challen e of translatin GEB into various forei n lan ua es& 3hen I was writin the book, the idea that it mi ht someday a!!ear in other lan ua es never crossed my mind& I don1t know why, since I loved lan ua es and loved translation, but somehow it .ust never occurred to me& ?owever, as soon as the idea was !ro!osed to me by my !ublisher, I was very e(cited about seein my book in other lan ua es, es!ecially ones that I s!oke to some e(tent—most of all 'rench, since that was a lan ua e that I s!oke fluently and loved very dee!ly& There were a million issues to consider in any !otential translation, since the book is rife not only with e(!licit word!lay but also with what Scott @im dubbed -structural !uns-—!assa es where form and content echo or reinforce each other in some une(!ected manner, and very often thanks to ha!!y coincidences involvin s!ecific En lish words& 0ecause of these intricate medium-messa e tan les, I !ainstakin ly went throu h every last sentence of GEB, annotatin a co!y for translators into any lan ua e that mi ht be tar eted& This took me about a year of on-a ain, off-a ain toil, but finally it was done, and .ust in the nick of time, because contracts with forei n !ublishers started flowin thick and fast around "#*B& I could write a short book—a !am!hlet?—on the

but in some small way. and myself was when a truly lowin full-!a e review by Jacques )ttali a!!eared in the most !resti ious 'rench news!a!er. and I even felt I was referrin to the selfsame -!erson.cra<y. if you look carefully. but as a matter of fact. I unthinkin ly and uncritically envisa ed it as a male& Thus does se(ism silently !ervade well-meanin but susce!tible brains& 0ut let1s not for et Jacqueline and 0ob2 )lthou h they could sim!ly have blud eoned their way throu h the !roblem by inventin a -/onsieur Tortue. the question never entered my mind& This was clearl) a he-tortoise& Etherwise. never to have been attributed either ender& 0ut when I first read it. a female does& )nd so.in both lan ua es& In its own funny way. overall. +e 'onde. I feel. not . erstwhile 6reek warrior and amateur !hiloso!her& There was somethin so deli htful and ratifyin to me about this new vision of -the Tortoise. iven no clue as to the Tortoise1s se(. the book1s e(cellent translators into 'rench. then switch to 'rench and to elle as well& Either !ronoun felt !erfectly natural. very favorably& Ene s!ecially ratifyin moment for 0ob. the 'rench GEB's !a es are raced throu hout with the fresh. in which I would start out in En lish usin the !ronoun -he-. the moment I read their idea. to their taste. they hel! to make u! for the lamentable outcome of my internal battle of a few years earlier& 2en Buddhism) 3ohn Cage) and My 4oguish Irrationality The 'rench translation was reeted. it !robably seemed !retty farfetched to ima ine that the author would even ive such a !ro!osal the time of day. !hiloso!hy5 needs no raison d'0tre. chose to follow suit and to convert my -/r& Tortoiseinto -si norina Tartaru a-& Ef course these radical switches in no way affect the !erce!tions of GEB1s !urely an lo!hone readers. I must ruefully mention that in the marvelous but little-known Aewis 7arroll dialo ue from which I borrowed these deli htful characters 4re!rinted in GEB as 1Two-!art Invention-5. but here I will mention . fantastic fi ure of /adame Tortue. in one of our many e(chan es of letters. but also makin a !articular !oint of !raisin its translation& . the Tortoise& 0y the way.that I was ecstatic with her& 3hat !articularly amused me were a few bilin ual conversations that I had about the Tortoise. this seemed faithful to 7arroll1s tortoise1s se(ual neutrality& )nd then. knotty !u<<les and dilemmas that arose in translatin GEB. Jacqueline ?enry and 0ob 'rench.conte(t 4e!g!. I would have known not only that it was female but also wh) it was female& )fter all. Jacqueline. the Tortoise turns out. be an to tackle the dialo ues. another lan ua e that I adored and s!oke quite well. who runs !erverse intellectual circles around her male com!anion )chilles. they rather in erly asked me if I would ever consider lettin them switch the Tortoise1s se( to female& To them.ust !raisin the book for its ideas and style. of course.ust one—how to render the sim!le-seemin !hrase -/r& Tortoise. and so. that route felt distinctly unnatural in 'rench. redoublin my !leasure. the translators into Italian.in 'rench& 3hen in the s!rin of "#*%. deli htful. I sei<ed u!on it with reat enthusiasm& )nd as a result. ri ht? 3hereas a male character in a -neutral.character. they instantly ran headlon into the conflict between the feminine ender of the 'rench noun tortue and the masculinity of my character. an author only introduces a female character for some s!ecial reason.

les 2pines!!! 4-)fter roses. Escher. .not a contradiction in terms. that in my -7anon by Intervallic )u mentation. even refreshin . hi!!ie-like irrationality ty!ical of )merican !hysicists was embraced as the su!reme !ath to enli htenment.oulou! Somehow. and—!erha!s une(!ectedly—with reat virtuosity into 7hinese& There is also a fine .ournal !ut out by the Society of 'rench 'reemasons& 0oth had issued from the !en of one author. and which then !roceeded for several !a es. es!ecially in those heady Stanford days. I had unambi uously hea!ed scorn on 7a e1s music. aided by the other 6ermanic names on the cover. with the iconoclastic 9en-influenced )merican com!oser John 7a e as the !atron saint of it all& )ll I could do was chuckle. even thou h I can1t deny that as I was writin it.) few months later. and Ja!an& The 6erman GEB. for some odd reason I had felt very sure. I received a !air of reviews !ublished in successive issues of . e(actly as ?oulou claims.and the cha!ter that follows it. lowed with !raise= I was ratified and rateful& I then went on to the second review. which started out with the !oetic !hrase *pr1s les roses. and Portu uese. but on a very dee! level utterly inimical to my core beliefs& ?owever. )lain ?oulou.ussian version all ready. Italian. albeit in a somewhat res!ectful manner& 0ut wait. and I tackled them with interest& The first one was quite len thy and. 7a e-?5 and mana ed to read into my coy allusions to and minor borrowin s from 9en an uncritical acce!tance thereof. I also find 9en1s silliness—es!ecially when it ets reall) silly—quite amusin . which in fact is not at all my stance& )s I declare at the start of 7ha!ter #. 4his reviewer saw me !raisin 7a e to the skies 4-6>del.ust waitin in the win s until it finds a !ublisher& )ll of this far transcends anythin I ever e(!ected. may have crucially s!arked GEB's !o!ularity there& GEB has also been lovin ly translated into S!anish. an obscure . both antiscientific and !ro-9en. that I am. the %++th birthyear of J& S& 0ach& It seems a bit absurd to me& 0ut who knows—that anniversary. indeed a !atent im!ossibility? )nd doesn1t such coy flirtin with self-contradiction and !arado( demonstrate. beatnik-influenced.um!ed on. in fact. I had a rowin inner feelin that GEB would make some sort of s!lash& . to my ama<ement. wait—isn1t -hea!in res!ectful scorn. after all? 3ell. and throw my hands u! in bewilderment at these Tatiesque #acarmes de monsieur . u! till readin ?oulou1s weird about-face. I find 9en not only confusin and silly. occu!ied the O" rank on the nonfiction list for somethin like fi#e months durin "#*L. dee! down. wait. ?un arian. and it was sim!ly fun for me to s!rinkle a bit of Eastern s!ice into my basically very 3estern casserole& ?owever. so be it& Even if I feel my book is as often misunderstood as understood. like that in +e 'onde.umanisme. and its translated selves hit the bestseller lists in 4at least5 'rance. ?olland. my havin s!rinkled little traces of 9en here and there does not mean that I am a 9en monk in shee!1s clothin & )s for John 7a e. I certainly can1t com!lain about the si<e or the enthusiasm of its readershi! around the world& The ori inal En lish-lan ua e GEB was and continues to be very !o!ular. to ri! GEB a!art as un pi1ge tr1s gra#e 4-a very dan erous tra!-5 in which the mindless bandwa on of 9en 0uddhism was ea erly . and in which a rabidly antiscientific. thorns&&&-5. Swedish.

ath5 ecade 6 Since sendin GEB off to the !rinters two decades a o. and the infamous -I--word—namely. each of which I1ll comment on here.ust what that is& :an and I used stories and dialo ues from a motley crew of e(cellent writers. and a closely related !henomenon that I came to call -lockin -in. on their surface. in some sense they were unified by their incessant quest for -the essence of mind and !attern-& I covered such thin s as !attern and !oetry in the music of 7ho!in= the question of whether the enetic code is arbitrary or inevitable= strate ies in the never-endin battle a ainst !seudoscience= the boundary between sense and nonsense in literature= chaos and stran e attractors in mathematics= ame theory and the Prisoner1s :ilemma= creative analo ies involvin sim!le number !atterns= the insidious effects of se(ist lan ua e= and many other to!ics& In addition. soul. recursion. our dee! and almost ineradicable sense of !ossessin a unique -I--ness transcendin our !hysical bodies and mysteriously enablin us to e(ercise somethin we call -free will-. constituted my "#*L book 'etamagical Themas: 4uesting for the Essence of 'ind and &attern! Ene of the new !ieces was a rather <any )chilles-Tortoise dialo ue called -3ho Shoves 3hom )round Inside the 7areenium?-. . !hiloso!her :aniel :ennett& Eur !ur!ose. all over the ma!. self-reference. after all& :urin the years "#*"-"#*%. and one of the !leasures for me was that I finally ot to see my Einstein-book dialo ue in !rint. 3n#ersions/ is a calli ra!hic desi n that mana es to squee<e two different readin s into the selfsame set of curves& I found the idea charmin and intellectually fascinatin . to develo! com!uter models of the mental mechanisms that underlie analo y and creativity. thou h only very briefly& The first of these. was The 'ind's 3. and so *m(igrammi. closely related to that of GEB. -I-2—!erha!s better than anythin else I1ve written—maybe even better than GEB does. I1ve somehow mana ed to kee! myself !retty busy& )side from strivin . in the most vivid and even . without ever quite knowin . which I called -/etama ical Themas. I1ve also written several further books. a!!earin in late "#*". stran e loo!s. with a team of e(cellent raduate students. my -/etama ical Themas. as well as in their wanderin throu h many disci!lines. I had the o!!ortunity to write a monthly column for -cientific *merican.were occasional themes in my columns& In that sense. which I cau ht from my friend Scott @im.oltin manner. I s!ent the ne(t year !ullin to ether the essays I1d done and !rovidin each of them with a substantial -Post Scri!tum-= these BL cha!ters. I was afflicted with a severe case of ambi rammitis-. the title of the wonderful column by /artin 6ardner that had occu!ied the same slot in the ma a<ine for the !recedin BL years5& )lthou h the to!ics I dealt with in my column were. was to force our readers to confront. thou h that mi ht be oin too far& 'or several years durin the "#*+1s. and out of which came my "#*$ book *m(igrammi! )n ambi ram 4or an -inversion-.4an ana ram of -/athematical 6ames-. as Scott calls them in his own book. the fundamental conundrum of human e(istence. which I feel ca!tures my !ersonal views on self. and as I develo!ed my own skill at this odd but ele ant art form. alon with ei ht fresh ones. an antholo y coedited with a new friend.My Subsequent Intellectual .essays echoed the flavor of GEB! )lthou h I sto!!ed writin my column in "#*%. I found that selfobservation ave me many new insi hts into the nature of creativity.

thou h crucial. includin what it means to -think in. and I re ret to say that it is no lon er available& My Subsequent Intellectual . I feel it is fair to say that des!ite many years of refinement. scientific discovery. *m(igrammi: 5n microcosmo ideale per lo studio della creati#it6 was !ublished only in Italian and by a tiny !ublisher called ?o!eful /onster. to the territory of verse translation& It all started in "#*$ with my attem!t to mimic in En lish a beautiful 'rench miniature by si(teenth-century 'rench !oet 7lement /arot. 7luid 8oncepts and 8reati#e *nalogies took sha!e.a iven lan ua e 4or a blur of lan ua es5= how constraints can enhance creativity= how meanin erminates. winds throu h many diverse terrains. and finally a!!eared in !rint in "##L& In it are !resented a series of closely related com!uter !ro rams—Seek-3hence.ust the erms of an actual architecture.aside from showcasin some B++ of my ambi rams. often melt to ether and lose some or all of their identity= how a lan ua e s!oken on a neutron star mi ht or mi ht not resemble human lan ua es= how !oetry written hundreds of years a o should be rendered today= how translation is . 7o!ycat. was not my only intellectual focus= research into co nitive mechanisms was an equally im!ortant one& /y early hunches about how to model analo y and creativity are actually set forth quite clearly in GEB's 7ha!ter "#. the time seemed ri!e for a book that would !ull all the main threads to ether and describe the !ro rams1 !rinci!les and !erformance in clear and accessible lan ua e& Thus over several years. and in redient of. but from there it s!un off in many directions at once& To make a lon story short. and so on& 'or reasons not worth oin into. wanderin meditation on the creative act. when writin GEB! This book. buds. and while writin it. 8umbo.6 ets its !ro!er billin as my collective co-author& The book shares much with GEB. in my discussion of 0on ard !roblems. !ossessin a sense of self so dee! and ineradicable that it blurs into causality—is an inevitable concomitant to. Jumbo.esearch 6rou!. in the Psycholo y :e!artment5& )fter a decade and a half of develo!ment of com!uter models. centered on the makin of ambi rams but branchin out to include musical com!osition. writin . and this led me. also features a te(t—in fact. when !ut to ether into com!ounds. and flowers in minds and mi ht someday do so in machines= how words. and althou h those were . I wound u! writin a com!le( and dee!ly !ersonal book about translation in its most eneral and meta!horical sense. a dialo ue—that is a lon . +e Ton (eau de 'arot: 3n &raise of the 'usic of +anguage. the fle(ibility and !ower that are synonymous with intelligence. in retros!ect. and indeed '). most of those ideas can be found in one form or another in the models develo!ed in my research rou! at Indiana Fniversity and the Fniversity of /ichi an 4where I s!ent the years "#*C-"#**. Tableto!. and 4still in !ro ress5 /etacat and Aetter S!irit—to ether with !hiloso!hical discussions that attem!t to set them in conte(t& Several of its cha!ters are co-authored by members of the 'luid )nalo ies . but !erha!s most im!ortant of all is the basic !hiloso!hical article of faith that bein an -I-— in other words. I e(!erienced much the same feelin of e(hilaration as I had twenty years earlier. and that the latter is but another term for conceptual fle9i(ilit). !erha!s inevitably.ath5 ecade II )s I said above. which in turn means meaningful s)m(ols! ) very different strand of my intellectual life was my dee! involvement in the translation of GEB into various lan ua es. creative writin .

not so much because it was ins!ired by a si(teenth-century !oem and deals with many other authors of the !ast. )le(ander Pushkin1s novel in verse.book. I o out on a limb and call it -!robably the best book I will ever write-& Some of my readers will maintain that GEB is su!erior. +eT(' has had far less im!act than GEB did. bein the B++th birthyear of )le(ander Pushkin& +or'ard-loo. but the fact is that many youn students read it and cau ht the bu of my own fascination with the modelin of mind in all of its elusive as!ects. des!ite havin a !oor command of . Bach! )nd the year "### !lays an equally im!ortant role in my E:'s creation. are intrinsically untranslatable= what it means to translate nonsense !assa es from one lan ua e to another= the absurdity of su!!osin that today1s mostly money-driven machine-translation immickry could handle even the sim!lest of !oetry= and on and on& The two middle cha!ters of +e Ton (eau de 'arot are devoted to a work of fiction that I had recently fallen in love with. includin the evanescent oals of -I. and then read others. but many !eo!le seemed to see somethin va uely alon those lines in it.ing Boo. there1s no denyin that.ussian. some mi ht see it almost as technolo y-bashin . and then somehow.s +e Ton (eau de 'arot is a bit lon er than GEB.'ard-loo. which is of course ridiculous. and on its first !a e. or a technolo y uru. thou h it still is far from conversationally fluent& )s I write.and free will and consciousness& )lthou h I am the furthest thin in the world from bein a futurist. and I can see why they mi ht do so& 0ut it1s so lon since I wrote GEB that !erha!s the ma ical feelin I had when writin it has faded. a science-fiction addict. durin that time. always fascinated by the translators1 different !hiloso!hies and styles& 'rom this first flame of e(citement.ing and Bac. but because there sim!ly is nothin in the book1s !a es that could be confused with lib technolo ical lit< and surreal futuristic !romises& 8ot that GEB had those either.ust about the same time in "### as the book you are holdin —the twentiethanniversary version of Gödel. or at least on its surface it ave that a!!earance& /any hailed it as somethin like -the bible of artificial intelli ence-.intimately related to analo y and to the fundamental human !rocess of understandin one another= what kinds of !assa es. but it will be a!!earin at . whereas there1s nothin of that sort to latch onto. in +eT('! In fact. in that I take . at least in the short run.ust that way. I was often !i eonholed in . GEB was a -forward-lookin . and because my book was quite a hit amon youn !eo!le interested in com!uters& 3ell. if any. eventually stunnin myself by devotin a whole year to recreatin the entire novel—nearly C++ s!arklin sonnets—in En lish verse& Ef course. Eugene :negin! I first came into contact with this work throu h a cou!le of En lish translations. by contrast. my :negin has not yet come out. sim!ly because I had written a lon treatise that dealt quite a bit with com!uters and their vast !otential 4in the most !hiloso!hical of senses5.ussian im!roved by lea!s and bounds. +e Ton (eau de 'arot mi ht be seen as a -backward-lookin book. my . and I confess that that1s disa!!ointed me quite a bit& Permit me to s!eculate for a moment as to why this mi ht be the case& In some sense. while the ma ic of +eT(' is still vivid& Still. such as :ante and Pushkin. I could not !revent myself from tryin to translate a stan<a or two& Thus started a sli!!ery slo!e that I soon slid down. I slowly was drawn into tryin to read the ori inal te(t. Escher.

that of revisin the "#$# book from to! to bottom. and about which I already knew somethin way back in "#$D? 3hy not talk more about machine translation. only a year or two alter GEB came out. a vast im!act on my own com!uter models. looks every inch the quintessential rube. as .4!!& D$D-D*+5. incor!orate those amusin chan es into a revised edition in En lish? En a more substantial level. u!datin it and talkin about how I feel in li ht of :ee! 0lue? 3ell. my ma istrally 0ach-savvy friend 0ernie 6reenber informed me that the -0)7? oblet. and es!ecially its weaknesses? 3hy not have a whole cha!ter about the most !romisin develo!ments 4andIor e(a erated claims5 over the !ast two decades in artificial intelli ence—featurin my own research rou! as well as others? Er why not. and insisted on havin a !hoto ra!h of the 0)7? oblet in the 'rench GEB! )nother delicious touch in the 'rench GEB was the re!lacement of the very formal. that amounts to a vast underestimation of the human s!irit. its key feature—that of havin the melody -0)7?. decked out in a flo!!y hat and ba y !ants held u! by awky sus!enders.ristine7 6iven that I was quite wron in a !rediction made twenty years a o.flavor !ermeatin the book. then.etched into the lass itself—is . the pa)san non identifi2 is none other than )& Einstein& 3hy not. why not rewrite the -Ten Muestions and S!eculations. and what mi ht militate a ainst. for in the end. but rather a ift from one of his !ri<e students= nonetheless. whose very subtle architecture started e(ertin . undertakin such a !ro. of course.many artificial-intelli ence researchers and machine-translation develo!ers to task for wildly e(a erated claims& I am not an enemy of these fields. character-less !hoto of 6>del by a far more en a in sna!shot in which he1s in a s!iffy white suit and is strollin with some old cod er in a forest& The latter.I had invented out of whole cloth in my dialo ue -7ontracrosti!unctus. if small. why not talk a bit about the !ioneerin artificialintelli ence !ro ram ?earsay II. so I rewrote the ca!tion as .urt Gödel a#ec un pa)san non identifi2 4-@urt 6>del with unknown !easant-5& 0ut as anyone who has lived in the twentieth century can see in a s!lit second. those few !a es nonetheless e(!ress a set of !hiloso!hical beliefs to which I am still committed in the stron est sense& To Tam!er) or to Lea"e .ect? I don1t deny that some deli htful. which is a very romantic way of lookin at the de!th of the human s!irit& )lthou h my !rediction about chess-!layin !ro rams !ut forth there turned out to be embarrassin ly wron 4as the world saw with :ee! 0lue versus @as!arov in "##$5.ust as I said in the dialo ue2 This was such an ama<in coincidence that I rewrote the dialo ue for the 'rench version to reflect the real oblet1s e(istence.actually e(ists2 The real oblet is not 4as in my dialo ue5 a !iece of lass blown by 0ach. for which I have the dee!est res!ect& )nyone who has read GEB with any care should have seen this same -backwardlookin . !erha!s most e(!licitly so in the key section -Ten Muestions and S!eculations.section. but I am a ainst vast oversim!lifications and underestimations of the challen es that they re!resent. and comin out with a s!ankin new "### edition of GEB! 3hat mi ht militate for. im!rovements were made in the translated versions& 'or e(am!le. this brin s u! a much lar er issue.

-a statement of my reli ion-& )t least I know what he meant& . aside from those listed e(!licitly under -ty!os. the one most often made to me.QSE8T)TIE 7GPI:I )G7TE. that is more com!le(& 3here would one draw the line? 3hat would be sacrosanct? 3hat would survive. will tender to me the truest of thanks for not havin tam!ered with the vessel into which he !oured so much of his youn and ea er soul—the work that he even went so far as to call. is that GEB was written in one sittin . but someone who nonetheless had a sli htly different !ers!ective and a sli htly different a enda& GEB was that !erson1s labor of love. when one fine day he finally reaches m) ri!e a e. I1ve felt sad at havin inadvertently left them out& I won1t even correct the book1s ty!os 4and. other than that life is short.ust don1t buy them& The 7:-. not as a multimedia circus.ust a la<y lout= but stubborn no doubt. so to s!eak& GEB was a clean and !ure vision that was dreamed by someone else—someone who.in the inde(52 3hy on earth am I such a stick-in-the-mud? 3hy not brin Gödel. is the sim!lest to dismiss& I intended GEB as a book.ust a cra<y !urist= !erha!s I1m .EAI6IE8IS& . and wouldn1t dream of chan in my book1s 5rte9t! That1s out2 Thus in my sternness. reverse-en ineerin old /r& T&&& Perha!s I1m . what would be tossed out? 3ere I to take that task on.some have su ested.6E. that there are a few. I somehow feel a stran e inner confidence that the true author of GEB. I mi ht well wind u! rewritin every sin le sentence—and. Escher. Bach u! to date and make it a book worthy of usherin in the twenty-first century—indeed. . the only answer I can ive. I . the third millennium? 8u9rendo In"enietis111 3ell.IS . I did find. and book it shall remain— end of story& )s for the idea of revisin the te(t. and as such—at least so say I—it should not be touched& Indeed. come out with a 7:-. I can see the ar uments for any of these.EMGIES7)T I8 7E8ST)8TI).E/ with Escher !ictures and 0ach music on it. let1s not for et. was remarkably similar to yours truly. but unfortunately. to my cha rin. over the decades. to be sure. however.EP. in what some mi ht see as a cry!tic or even naPvely romantic remark. E. as well as recordin s of all of GEB's dialo ues as !erformed by to!-notch actors? 3ell.E/ su estion. I won1t allow myself to add the names of two !eo!le—:onald @ennedy and ?oward Edenber —to my -3ords of Thanks-. des!ite the fact that for years.

Contents Everview Aist of Illustrations 3ords of Thanks Part I.ro!ositional Calculus 8ra( 8anon Cha!ter 4III5 Ty!ogra!hical .armonic +a()rinth Cha!ter 45 $ecursi"e Structures and .rocesses 8anon () 3nter#allic *ugmentation Cha!ter 4I5 The Location of Meaning 8hromatic 7antas). *nd 7eud Cha!ter 4II5 The . 6E0 Introduction5 A Musico-Logical 0ffering Three%&art 3n#ention Cha!ter I5 The M&-!u::le Two%&art 3n#ention Cha!ter II5 Meaning and +orm in Mathematics -onata for 5naccompanied *chilles Cha!ter III5 +igure and Ground 8ontracrostipunctus Cha!ter I45 Consistency) Com!leteness) and Geometry +ittle .umber Theory * 'u :ffering Cha!ter I<5 Mumon and G#del C+ DL D# $# *B #* "+" ""B ""# "C+ "DB "** "#% B"B B"L B%% B%D BDC B$$ BL %" %D .

esigning Cha!ter <4III5 Artificial Intelligence5 $etros!ects 8ontrafactus Cha!ter <I<5 Artificial Intelligence5 . *ir on G's -tring Cha!ter <I45 0n +ormally &ndecidable . To) of 'an's .Part II.ro!ositions of T. and Gloo.+5.i) and 0thers -.ros!ects -loth 8anon Cha!ter <<5 Strange Loo!s) 0r Tangled /ierarchies -i9%&art =icercar 8otes 0iblio ra!hy 7redits Inde( %+L %"C %%* %DB %*# %#B C"B CBD CL" CL# C*" C*L C## L"C LDD L$D D+" D+* DCD DLC D#B D#L $B# $L" $LC $D$ $D# . and +loo.i#erse <ariations Cha!ter <III5 Bloo. E60 &relude!!! Cha!ter <5 Le"els of escri!tion) and Com!uter Systems *nt 7ugue Cha!ter <I5 Brains and Thoughts English 7rench German -uite Cha!ter <II5 Minds and Thoughts *ria with .T and $elated Systems Birthda) 8antatatata!!! Cha!ter <45 3um!ing out of the System Edif)ing Thoughts of a To(acco -moker Cha!ter <4I5 Self-$ef and Self-$e! The 'agnificra(. 3ndeed Cha!ter <4II5 Church) Turing) Tars.=.

this leads to a discussion of !arallel ideas in Escher1s drawin s and then 6>del1s Theorem& ) brief !resentation of the history of lo ic and !arado(es is iven as back round for 6>del1s Theorem& This leads to mechanical reasonin and com!uters. and the debate about whether )rtificial Intelli ence is !ossible& I close with an e(!lanation of the ori ins of the book—!articularly the why and wherefore of the :ialo ues& Three%&art 3n#ention! 0ach wrote fifteen three-!art inventions& In this three-!art :ialo ue. to illustrate 9eno1s !arado(es of motion5& Gery short. at the far end of which is the Tortoise& Their conversation concerns the conce!ts of -fi ure. !roof. reasonin about reasonin about reasonin . and I in turn borrowed them from 7arroll& The to!ic is the relation between reasonin . rule of inference. in a way. derivation. since )chilles1 lines form a -fi ure-. its dee! connection to isomor!hism& Garious issues related to meanin are then discussed. 9eno1s !arado(es about the im!ossibility of motion.round-& . reasonin about reasonin . theorem. by usin infinite re ress. formal system. and the elusive conce!t.in various conte(ts—e& &.Everview Part I. it sim!ly ives the flavor of the :ialo ues to come& Cha!ter I5 The M&-!u::le1 ) sim!le formal system 4the /IA1-system5 is !resented. symbol mani!ulation.throu hout the book. and is referred to several times later in the book& Cha!ter II5 Meaning and +orm in Mathematics1 ) new formal system 4the !q-system5 is !resented. but by Aewis 7arroll in "*#L& 7arroll borrowed )chilles and the Tortoise from 9eno. and the Tortoise1s lines —im!licit in )chilles1 lines—form a . and the reader is ur ed to work out a !u<<le to ain familiarity with formal systems in eneral& ) number of fundamental notions are introduced. )chilles is the only s!eaker. thus makin a sort of -/etamusical Efferin -& Self-reference and the inter!lay between different levels in 0ach are discussed.round. its symbols are suddenly revealed to !ossess meanin by virtue of the form of the theorems they a!!ear in& This revelation is the first im!ortant insi ht into meanin . and so on& It !arallels.by 9eno 4as in fact they were. decision !rocedure. such as truth. a(iom. Escher1s art& The :ialo ue itself forms an e(am!le of the distinction. even sim!ler than the /IF-system of 7ha!ter I& )!!arently meanin less at first. workin insideIoutside the system& Two%&art 3n#ention! 0ach also wrote fifteen two-!art inventions& This two-!art :ialo ue was written not by me. strin . -form-& -onata for 5naccompanied *chilles& ) :ialo ue which imitates the 0ach Sonatas for unaccom!anied violin& In !articular.and . 6E0 Introduction5 A Musico-Logical 0ffering1 The book o!ens with the story of 0ach1s /usical Efferin & 0ach made an im!rom!tu visit to @in 'rederick the 6reat of Prussia. and was requested to im!rovise u!on a theme !resented by the @in & ?is im!rovisations formed the basis of that reat work& The /usical Efferin and its story form a theme u!on which I -im!rovise. that reasonin is im!ossible& It is a beautiful !arado(. the Tortoise and )chilles—the main fictional !rota onists in the :ialo ues—are -invented. since it is a transcri!t of one end of a tele!hone call. seemin to show.

in a !eculiar sense& Cha!ter 4I5 The Location of Meaning1 ) broad discussion of how meanin is s!lit amon coded messa e. and the relation of undefined terms to !erce!tion and thou ht !rocesses is considered& +ittle . as an illustration of the elusive notion of -undefined terms-& This leads to ideas about the consistency of different and !ossibly -rival. when !layed on a set of different !hono ra!hs. to 0ach1s 8hromatic 7antas) and 7ugue& It concerns the !ro!er way to mani!ulate sentences so as to !reserve truth-and in !articular the question of whether there e(ist rules for the usa e of the word -and-& This :ialo ue has much in common with the :ialo ue by Aewis 7arroll& . -3hich contains more information—a record. instead of finishin as e(!ected.armonic +a()rinth& This is based on the 0ach or an !iece by the same name& It is a !layful introduction to the notion of recursive—i&e&.eometries& Throu h this discussion the notion of undefined terms is clarified. leavin the listener dan lin without resolution& Cha!ter 45 $ecursi"e Structures and . !hysical theories. nested structures& It contains stories within stories& The frame story. however. -'or each record !layer there is a record which it cannot !lay&. and !hono ra!h records sailin out in s!ace& The relationshi! of intelli ence to -absolute. undeci!hered inscri!tions on ancient tablets. eometric structures. decoder. mathematical functions. lin uistic !atterns.meanin is !ostulated& 8hromatic 7antas).leads to the distinction between recursively enumerable sets and recursive sets& 8ontracrostipunctus& This :ialo ue is central to the book.and the word -contra!unctus-. that these melodies are -the same-.rocesses1 The idea of recursion is !resented in many different conte(ts. so the reader is left dan lin without resolution& Ene nested story concerns modulation in music—!articularly an or an !iece which ends in the wron key. musical !atterns.The :ialo ue1s title is a cross between the word -acrostic. com!uter !ro rams. and receiver& E(am!les !resented include strands of :8). is left o!en. a Aatin word which 0ach used to denote the many fu ues and canons makin u! his *rt of the 7ugue& Some e(!licit references to the )rt of the 'u ue are made& The :ialo ue itself conceals some acrostic tricks& Cha!ter I45 Consistency) Com!leteness) and Geometry1 The !recedin :ialo ue is e(!licated to the e(tent it is !ossible at this sta e& This leads back to the question of how and when symbols in a formal system acquire meanin & The history of Euclidean and non-Euclidean eometry is iven. or the !hono ra!h which !lays it? This odd question arises when the Tortoise describes a sin le record which.Cha!ter III5 +igure and Ground1 The distinction between fi ure and round in art is com!ared to the distinction between theorems and nontheorems in formal systems& The question -:oes a fi ure necessarily contain the same information as its round?. 0-)-7-? and 7-)-6-E& It turns out. e(ce!t in title. for it contains a set of !ara!hrases of 6>del1s self-referential construction and of his Incom!leteness Theorem& Ene of the !ara!hrases of the Theorem says. *nd 7eud& ) short :ialo ue bearin hardly any resemblance. and others& 8anon () 3nter#allic *ugmentation& )chilles and the Tortoise try to resolve the question. !roduces two quite different melodies.

nuclei. the )nteater& The !resent turns out to be a recordin of the 3&T&7&= it is immediately !ut on& )s they listen to a !relude. and 0ach are dee!ly intertwined in this very short :ialo ue& Cha!ter 4III5 Ty!ogra!hical . atoms. o!eratin systems. of strin s in number theory& There are fleetin references to molecular biolo y—!articularly the 6enetic 7ode& There is no close affinity to the 'usical :ffering. it is actually a thinly veiled discussion of theoremhood and nontheoremhood. E60 &relude&&& This :ialo ue attaches to the ne(t one& They are based on !reludes and fu ues from 0ach1s >ell%Tempered 8la#ier& )chilles and the Tortoise brin a !resent to the 7rab. who has a uest. which is soon taken u! in the )nt 'u ue& Cha!ter <5 Le"els of escri!tion) and Com!uter Systems1 Garious levels of seein !ictures. and com!uter systems are discussed& The last of these is then e(amined in detail& This involves describin machine lan ua es. other than in the title and the !layin of self-referential ames& Cha!ter I<5 Mumon and G#del1 )n attem!t is made to talk about the stran e ideas of 9en 0uddhism& The 9en monk /umon. as a whole. assembly lan ua es. or as a sum of !arts? This is the debate between holism and reductionism. number-theoretical reasonin can be done by ri id symbol mani!ulation& :ifferences between formal reasonin and human thou ht are considered& * 'u :ffering& This :ialo ue foreshadows several new to!ics in the book& Estensibly concerned with 9en 0uddhism and kRans.ro!ositional Calculus1 It is su ested how words such as -and. incidentally. 9en ideas bear a meta!horical resemblance to some contem!orary ideas in the !hiloso!hy of mathematics& )fter this -9ennery-.can be overned by formal rules& Ence a ain. such as s!orts teams. 6>del1s fundamental idea of 6>delnumberin is introduced. Escher. truth and falsity. they discuss the structure of !reludes and fu ues. chessboards. somewhat ton ue-incheek. since 9en kRans are deliberately illo ical stories& 8ra( 8anon& ) :ialo ue based on a !iece by the same name from the 'usical :ffering& 0oth are so named because crabs 4su!!osedly5 walk backwards& The 7rab makes his first a!!earance in this :ialo ue& It is !erha!s the densest :ialo ue in the book in terms of formal trickery and level!lay& 6>del. is a central fi ure& In a way. and so forth& Then the discussion turns to com!osite systems of other ty!es. which leads )chilles to ask how to hear a fu ue. and a first !ass throu h 6>del1s Theorem is made& Part II.umber Theory1 )n e(tension of the Pro!ositional 7alculus called -T8T. com!iler lan ua es. and so forth& The question arises as to how many intermediate levels e(ist—or indeed whether any e(ist& . who ave well known commentaries on many kRans. the ideas of isomor!hism and automatic acquisition of meanin by symbols in such a system are brou ht u!& )ll the e(am!les in this 7ha!ter.is !resented& In T8T. are -9entences--sentences taken from 9en kRans& This is !ur!osefully done.Cha!ter 4II5 The . the weather.

S*nt 7ugue! )n imitation of a musical fu ue.or !arts of 6>del1s !roof are one throu h carefully& It is shown how the assum!tion of consistency of T8T forces one to conclude that T8T 4or any similar system5 is incom!lete& . both done last century& Cha!ter <II5 Minds and Thoughts1 The !recedin !oems brin u! in a forceful way the question of whether lan ua es. -.ecture& This hybrid has as its main !ur!ose to show how number theory1s subtlety stems from the fact that there are many diverse variations on the theme of searchin throu h an infinite s!ace& Some of them lead to infinite searches.onto each other& ?ow is communication !ossible between two se!arate !hysical brains.E:F7TIE8IS/-.i#erse <ariations& ) :ialo ue whose form is based on 0ach1s 6oldber Gariations. in some ob. or indeed minds. -7an a brain be understood.T and $elated Systems1 This 7ha!ter1s title is an ada!tation of the title of 6>del1s "#%" article. and whose content is related to number-theoretical !roblems such as the 6oldbach con. by an outsider?*ria with .1 These are the names of three com!uter lan ua es& 0looP !ro rams can carry out only !redictably finite searches. a conscious ant colony& The various levels of her thou ht !rocesses are the to!ic of discussion& /any fu al tricks are ensconced in the :ialo ue& )s a hint to the reader. themes from the Prelude return& transformed considerably& Cha!ter <I5 Brains and Thoughts1 -?ow can thou hts he su!!orted by the hardware of the brain is the to!ic of the 7ha!ter& )n overview of the lar e scale and small-scale structure of the brain is first iven& Then the relation between conce!ts and neural activity is s!eculatively discussed in some detail& English 7rench German -uite! )n interlude consistin of Aewis 7arroll1s nonsense !oem -Jabberwocky11 to ether with two translations. 3hat do all human brains have in common? ) eo ra!hical analo y is used to su est an answer& The question arises. can be -ma!!ed. some of them lead to finite searches. while some others hover in between& Cha!ter <III5 Bloo. one into 'rench and one into 6erman. and -/A-& The discussion veers off to a friend of the )nteater1s )unt ?illary. references are made to !arallel tricks occurrin in the fu ue on the record to which the foursome is listenin & )t the end of the )nt 'u ue. for they are essential in 6>del1s !roof& *ir on G's -tring& ) :ialo ue in which 6>del1s self-referential construction is mirrored in words& The idea is due to 3& G& E& Muine& This :ialo ue serves as a !rototy!e for the ne(t 7ha!ter& Cha!ter <I45 0n +ormally &ndecidable . and +loo.ro!ositions of T. each voice enters with the same statement& The theme—holism versus reductionism—is introduced in a recursive !icture com!osed of words com!osed of smaller words& etc& The words which a!!ear on the four levels of this stran e !icture are -?EAIS/-. while 'looP !ro rams can carry out un!redictable or even infinite searches& The !ur!ose of this 7ha!ter is to ive an intuition for the notions of !rimitive recursive and eneral recursive functions in number theory.ective sense. and Gloo. in which his Incom!leteness Theorem was first !ublished& The two ma.elations to Euclidean and non-Euclidean eometry are discussed& Im!lications for the !hiloso!hy of mathematics are one into with some care& .

0irthday 7antatatata&&& In which )chilles cannot convince the wily and ske!tical Tortoise that today is his 4)chilles15 birthday& ?is re!eated but unsuccessful tries to do so foreshadow the re!eatability of the 6>del ar ument& Cha!ter <45 3um!ing out of the System1 The re!eatability of 6>del1s ar ument is shown. solve !roblems. with the thrust bein !roblems connected with self-re!lication and self-reference& Television cameras filmin television screens. is !resented in several versions of differin stren ths& )ll are analy<ed.& Aucas. and viruses and other subcellular entities which assemble themselves. to the effect that 6>del1s Theorem demonstrates that human thou ht cannot in any sense be -mechanical-. we o on to an abrid ed history of )rtificial Intelli ence& This covers !ro rams that can—to some de ree—!lay ames.in rather im!ressive En lish& The com!uter !ro ram a!!ears to e(hibit some real understandin —in its limited world& The :ialo ue1s title is based on ?esu. or !ro rammin into a machine an ability to sense or create beauty& The connection between brain activity and com!utation brin s u! some other to!ics. com!ose music. which relates mental activity to com!utation. !rove theorems. but -essentially incom!lete&. and self-re!roducin entities e& &. !layin them on his flute. who ives the a!!earance of havin a ma ical !ower of distin uishin between true and false statements of number theory by readin them as musical !ieces. ?o) of 'an's . 3ndeed! The title is a !un on 0ach1s /a nificat in :& The tale is about the 7rab.4e& &.The fairly notorious ar ument by J& .=. com!uter !ro rams or :8) molecules5& The relations between a self-re!roducin entity and the mechanisms e(ternal to it which aid it in re!roducin itself 4e& &. To) of 'an's . and determinin whether they are -beautiful. is analy<ed and found to be wantin & Edif)ing Thoughts of a To(acco -moker& ) :ialo ue treatin of many to!ics. are amon the e(am!les used& The title comes from a !oem by J& S& 0ach himself. the haltin !roblem of Turin .i) and 0thers1 The fictional 7rab of the !recedin :ialo ue is re!laced by various real !eo!le with ama<in mathematical abilities& The 7hurch-Turin Thesis. and Tarski1s Truth Theorem& -.+5.:AF.or not& Cha!ter <4II5 Church) Turing) Tars.esigning& This :ialo ue is lifted out of an article by Terry 3ino rad on his !ro ram S?. En lish5& . a com!uter or !roteins5 are discussed—!articularly the fu<<iness of the distinction& ?ow information travels between various levels of such systems is the central to!ic of this 7ha!ter& The 'agnificra(. !articularly in terms of their im!lications for simulatin human thou ht mechanically. with the im!lication that T8T is not only incom!lete. only a few names have been chan ed& In it& a !ro ram communicates with a !erson about the so-called -blocks world.in a machine& 'rom there. which enters in a !eculiar way& Cha!ter <4I5 Self-$ef and Self-$e!1 This 7ha!ter is about the connection between self-reference in its various uises. and use -natural lan ua e. do mathematics. one movement of 0ach1s 7antata "C$& Cha!ter <4III5 Artificial Intelligence5 $etros!ects1 This 7ha!ter o!ens with a discussion of the famous -Turin test-—a !ro!osal by the com!uter !ioneer )lan Turin for a way to detect the !resence or absence of -thou ht.esiring.

and so on& /any sur!rises arise& The :ialo ue1s content concerns !roblems of mind. the Sloth. consciousness. overnment investi atin overnmental wron doin . an avid lover of 'rench fries. symboli<in at once 0ach1s music. which be an the book= it is simultaneously a -translation. which leads into some s!eculations on creativity& The 7ha!ter concludes with a set of !ersonal -Muestions and S!eculations. and 0ach to ether once a ain& -i9%&art =icercar! This :ialo ue is an e(uberant ame !layed with many of the ideas which have !ermeated the book& It is a reenactment of the story of the /usical Efferin . and so forth. for the !ur!ose of concreteness& Then the dee! issue of the interaction of conce!ts in eneral is discussed. and 6>del1s Theorem& . Escher1s drawin s.into words of the most com!le( !iece in the /usical Efferin . thus makin the book into one bi self-referential loo!. !ianos by com!uters. and rabid hater of counterfactuals& Cha!ter <I<5 Artificial Intelligence5 . only u!side down and twice as slowly. the Si(-Part . science !robin science. which have been introduced earlier& It concludes with an im!licit reference to the be innin of the book. while a third voice is free& ?ere. and finally. the Sloth utters the same lines as the Tortoise does. )rtificial Intelli ence. humans thinkin about their own brains and minds& :oes 6>del1s Theorem have anythin to say about this last -snarl-? )re free will and the sensation of consciousness connected to 6>del1s Theorem? The 7ha!ter ends by tyin 6>del.8ontrafactus& )bout how we unconsciously or ani<e our thou hts so that we can ima ine hy!othetical variants on the real world all the time& )lso about aberrant variants of this ability— such as !ossessed by the new character.icercar& This duality imbues the :ialo ue with more levels of meanin than any other in the book& 'rederick the 6reat is re!laced by the 7rab. Escher. only ne ated 4in a liberal sense of the term5 and twice as slowly.ros!ects1 The !recedin :ialo ue tri ers a discussion of how knowled e is re!resented in layers of conte(ts& This leads to the modern )I idea of -frames-& ) frame-like way of handlin a set of visual !attern !u<<les is !resented. the Turin test. free will.on )I and minds in eneral& -loth 8anon& ) canon which imitates a 0ach canon in which one voice !lays the same melody as another. while )chilles is free& Cha!ter <<5 Strange Loo!s) 0r Tangled /ierarchies1 ) rand windu! of many of the ideas about hierarchical systems and self-reference& It is concerned with the snarls which arise when systems turn back on themselves—for e(am!le. art violatin the rules of art.

E-'I6F. The -6E0.ust under C inches on a side&5 'acin 3ords of Thanks. by /& 7& Escher& "L& -/)IA 0ET-& "D& Tilin of the !lane usin birds. The be innin of 6enesis. by /& 7& Escher& D& )scendin and :escendin . by )dol!h von /en<el& %& The . by /& 7& Escher& "%& Aiberation. and 0ach by somehow fusin their names in a strikin desi n& The two tri!-lets shown on the cover were desi ned and made by me.of all theorems of the /IF-system& "B& Sky 7astle. ) -6E0. with an end mill for the holes= they are redwood.I7E. and +A. in ancient ?ebrew.tri!-let castin its three ortho onal shadows& "& Johann Sebastian 0ach.ecursive Transition 8etworks for 0$.C= .is the name which I have iven to blocks sha!ed in such a way that their shadows in three ortho onal directions are three different letters& The tri!-let idea came to me in a flash one evenin as I was tryin to think how best to symboli<e the unity of 6odel. by Elias 6ottlieb ?aussmann& B& 7lute 8oncert in -anssouci. 9#iii Part I. by /& 7& Escher& "$& 'I6F. by Scott E& @im& "*& :ia ram of the relationshi!s between various classes of T8T strin s& "#& The last !a e of 0ach1s *rt of the 7ugue& B+& Gisual rendition of the !rinci!le underlyin 6>del1s Theorem& B"& Tower of Ba(el.armonic +a()rinth& B$& .0&.0&. and are . by /& 7& Escher& B%& 8on#e9 and 8onca#e.eflectin 6lobe. by /& 7& Escher& "C& /osaic II. castin their symbolic shadows on three !lanes that meet at the corner of a room& 4-Tri!-let.and an -E60.1& L& 3aterfall.E 'i ure. Escher.ATE . by /& 7& Escher& BL& 7retan Aabyrinth& BD& The structure of the :ialo ue +ittle . usin mainly a band saw.T8 with one node recursively e(!anded& B L D $ "" "B "% "C "D %+ C+ CB L$ D" D$ D* D# $" *+ *C *# #* "+$ ""$ ""# "B# "%B "%C . by /& 7& Escher& ""& -Tree. by /& 7& Escher& #& @urt 6>del& "+& 'ö(ius -trip 3.tri!-let sus!ended in s!ace.0&.Aist of Illustrations 7over. by /& 7& Escher& BB& =elati#it). by /& 7& Escher& *& 'etamorphosis 33.& B*& The +A. by /& 7& Escher& $& ?and with .7).C= . by /& 7& Escher& BC& =eptiles.oyal Theme& C& 0ach1s acrostic on 1. .

B#& :ia rams 6 and ? re!resented im!licitly& %+& :ia ram 6 further e(!anded& %"& )n . by /& 7& Escher& DB& ) -crisscross. by /& 7& Escher& C*& *nother >orld. by /& 7& Escher& Part II. and levels of com!uter lan ua es& L#& Intelli ence as built u! layer by layer& D+& The -/F-!icture-& D"& *nt 7ugue. by /& 7& Escher& L+& =ind. by /& 7& Escher& CD& Three >orlds. by /& 7& Escher& C$& . by /& 7& Escher& C%& ) short section of one of the 7rab1s 6enes& CC& 8ra( 8anon from the /usical Efferin . by /& 7& Escher& LB& =ippled -urface.T8 for 'ibonacci numbers& %B& 6ra!h of the function I8T495& %%& Skeletons of I8T and 6!lot& %C& 6!lot. The -E60. by /& 7& Escher& %$& Butterflies. by /& 7& Escher& %*& ) tic-tac-toe ame tree& %#& The . by /& 7& Escher& L"& &uddle. by /& 7& Escher& C#& .tri!-let castin its three ortho onal shadows& LC& 'ö(ius -trip 33.ewdrop. by /& 7& Escher& L%& Three -pheres 33.a) and Night.osetta Stone& C+& ) colla e of scri!ts& C"& 0ase sequence for the chromosome of bacterio!ha e fT"$C& CB& 8ra( 8anon. com!ilers. by J& S& 0ach& CL& +a 'e@"uita. by /& 7& Escher& L$& The idea of -chunkin -& L*& )ssemblers. Aierre5& "%L "%D "%D "%# "C" "C% "CL "C$ "C* "L" "DL "D* "$D "#* B+" B+B B%L BC$ BC# BL+ BLB BL% BLD BL$ BL* B$D B$* B*B B** B#C %++ %"+ %B% %%" %%C . by /& 7& Escher& LL& Pierre de 'ermat& LD& 8u(e with 'agic =i((ons.of two well-known names& D%& Photo of an ant brid e 4de 'ourmi. a recursive ra!h& %L& ) com!le( 'eynman dia ram& %D& 7ish and -cales.

enK /a ritte& *"& Self-en ulfin TG screens& *B& The *ir and the -ong. by /& 7& Escher& $B& The structure of a call-less 0looP !ro ram& $%& 6eor 7antor& $C& *(o#e and Below. by .8) !assin throu h a ribosome& #$& ) !olyribosome& #*& ) two-tiered molecular canon& ##& The 7entral :o ma!& "++& The 6>del 7ode& "+"& The TC bacterial virus& %%L %%# %C" %CL %L$ %L* %$+ %## C"L CB% C%B CD$ C$C C*+ C*" C*L C*# C#+-" C#C C#D C#D C#$ L++ L"+ L"" L"" L"% L"L L"L L"D LB+ LB" LB% LBD LB$ L%% L%L L%$ .enK /a ritte& $*& -tate of Grace. seen from one side& D$& . by /& 7& Escher& $$& The -hadows.E:F7TIE8IS/ -!ro!eller-& DL& Schematic drawin of a neuron& DD& The human brain.DC& ) ?EAIS/-. by .es!onses to !atterns by certain sam!le neurons& D*& Everla!!in neural !athways& D#& The construction of an arch by termite workers& $+& ) tiny !ortion of the author1s -semantic network-& $"& :rder and 8haos.enK /a ritte& *%& E!imenides e(ecutin his own death sentence& *C& )n E!imenides-!arado( iceber & *L& ) Muine-sentence soa!cake& *D& ) self-re!roducin son & *$& The Ty!o enetic 7ode& **& The tertiary structure of a ty!oen<yme& *#& Table of bindin -!references for ty!oen<ymes& #+& The 7entral :o ma of Ty!o enetics& #"& The four constituent bases of :8)& #B& Aadder-like structure of :8)& #%& /olecular model of the :8) double heli(& #C& The 6enetic 7ode& #L& Secondary and tertiary structure of myo lobin& #D& ) section of m.of T8T& $D& . by /& 7& Escher& $L& -/ultifurcation.enK /a ritte& $#& Tobacco /osaic Girus& *+& The 7air 8apti#e. by . by .ragon.

ream. and human brains& LD* 8eural and symbolic activity in the brain& L$" -Skimmin off.enK /a ritte& $+" -moke -ignal.enK /a ritte& DB$ Procedural re!resentation of -a red cube which su!!orts a !yramid. by /& 7& Escher& LL+ Srinivasa .:AF& L*D ) later scene from the :ialo ue with S?.an and one of his stran e Indian melodies& LD% lsomor!hisms connectin natural numbers.D%" 0on ard !roblem L"& DCD 0on ard !roblem C$& DC* 0on ard !roblem #"& DC# 0on ard !roblem C#& DL+ ) small !ortion of a conce!t network for 0on ard !roblems& DLB 0on ard !roblem %%& DLC 0on ard !roblems *L-*$& DLL 0on ard !roblem LL& DL* 0on ard !roblem BB& DL* 0on ard !roblem L*& DL# 0on ard !roblem D"& DL# 0on ard !roblems $+-$"& DD+ ) schematic dia ram of the :ialo ue 8ra( 8anon& DDD Two homolo ous chromosomes . by .amanu.enK /a ritte& $++ The Two ')steries.the to! level of the brain& L$% 7onflict between low and hi h levels of a brain& L$D The o!enin scene from a :ialo ue with S?.oined at the center by a centromere& DD* --loth 8anon.:AF& L*$ Ene last scene from the :ialo ue with S?. by the author& $+B &ipe .rawing .from the 'usical :ffering. by J& S& 0ach& D*B )n authorshi! trian le& D*# . by . calculators.ands& D#+ 8ommon -ense.:AF& L*# )lan /athison Turin & L#C Pons )sinorum Proof& D+D 9eno1s endless oal tree& D"+ ) meanin ful story in )rabic& DBC 'ental *rithmetic. by .rawing . by /& 7& Escher& D#+ )bstract dia ram of /& 7& Escher1s ."+B& "+%& "+C& "+L& "+D& "+$& "+*& "+#& ""+& """& ""B& ""%& ""C& ""L& ""D& ""$& ""*& ""#& "B+& "B"& "BB& "B%& "BC& "BL& "BD& "B$& "B*& "B#& "%+& "%"& "%B& "%%& "%C& "%L& "%D& "%$& "%*& "%#& "C+& Infection of a bacterium by a virus& L%* The mor!ho enetic !athway of the TC virus& L%# 8astro#al#a. by the author& $+% .ands.

by . !layed in She!ard tones. forms a Stran e Aoo!& Two com!lete cycles of a She!ard tone scale. by /& 7& Escher& )bstract dia ram of /& 7& Escher1s &rint Galler)& ) colla!sed version of 'i ure "C%& 'urther colla!se of 'i ure "C%& )nother way of colla!sin 'i ure "C%& 0ach1s Endlessly . by /& 7& Escher& 7harles 0abba e& The 7rab1s Theme& Aast !a e of the -i9%&art =icercar. by J& S& 0ach& $+L $"C $"L $"L $"D $"D $"$ $"* $%B $%% $C+ $C" .isin 7anon.enK /a ritte& &rint Galler).uman 8ondition 3."C"& "CB& "C%& "CC& "CL& "CD& "C$& "C*& "C#& "L+& "L"& "LB& The . notated for !iano& <er(um. from the ori inal edition of the 'usical :ffering.

reawakened in me a lon -dormant love of the matters in this book& I truly owe him a reat debt& :avid Jonathan Justman tau ht me what it is to be a Tortoise—an in enious. and she answered -8ine-& I wasn1t sure she knew what I meant. there was nothin more fascinatin to me than the idea of takin three %1s. which owes a reat deal to him& Scott @im has e(erted a i antic influence on me& Ever since we met some two and a half years a o. Peter Jones—I owe s!ecial thanks. and humorous bein . analo ies. and for his constant !ushin and !loddin —im!licit !raise—and occasional criticism& I am !leased to acknowled e the immense influence of Ernest 8a el. for they hel!ed mold a million ways of thou ht. they have always believed in me& It is to them that this book is dedicated& To two friends of many years—. once the book is in !rint& )nd let me not for et to thank :on for the marvelous fle(ibility-in-infle(ibility of his music-!rintin !ro ram.oy this book. and their influences and ideas are s!read all around in this book& To 7harles 0renner. and i!!! I owe more to my !arents than to anyone else& They have been !illars of su!!ort I could rely on at all times& They have uided me. which !leases me reatly& . the resonance between the two of us has been incredible& )side from his tan ible contributions of art. music.3ords of Thanks This book was brewin in my mind over a !eriod of !robably nearly twenty years—ever since I was thirteen and thinkin about how I thou ht in En lish and 'rench& )nd even before that. and so on—includin mucha!!reciated volunteer labor at crucial times—Scott has contributed new !ers!ectives and insi hts which have chan ed my own views of my endeavor as it has evolved& If anyone understands this book. and I have learned much from many conversations. I have turned re!eatedly to :on 0yrd. humor. who knows this book forwards and backwards and every which w a y& & & ?e has an unerrin sense for its overall oals and structure. I am much indebted for his havin tau ht me to !ro ram when we were both youn . a lon -time friend and mentor& I loved -8a el and 8ewman-.obert 0oenin er. ins!ired me. lon a o in Germont and more recently in 8ew Hork& ?oward :eAon . there were clear si ns of my main-line interest& I remember that at some early a e. thou h& Aater. it is Scott& 'or advice on matters of lar e scale or small. a n d time and a ain has iven me ood ideas which I have deli htedly incor!orated& /y only re ret is that I won1t be able to include all the future ideas :on will come u! with. S/FT& ?e s!ent many lon days and arduous ni hts coa(in S/FT to sit u! and do !re!osterous tricks& Some of his results are included as fi ures in this book& 0ut :on1s influence is s!read throu hout. encoura ed me. my father initiated me into the mysteries of square roots. throu h his book. and sustained me& /ost of all. !ersistent. with a fondness for !arado( and contradiction& I ho!e that he will read and en. o!eratin u!on % with itselfA I was sure that this idea was so subtle that it was inconceivable to anyone else—but I dared ask my mother one day how bi it was anyway.

that raceful !ro ram which is so sim!le in s!irit that only Pentti could have written it& It is also thanks to Pentti that I was able to do somethin which very few authors have ever done. Aarry Tesler. John Ellis. Aouis /endelowit<. 0everly ?endricks. In a @arliner. I started all over a ain and rewrote it& The first o-round was when I was still a raduate student in !hysics at the Fniversity of Ere on. Aauri @anerva. for hel! in times of dire need. Paul E!!enheimer.I could not !ossibly have written this book if it were not for the facilities of the Institute for /athematical Studies in the Social Sciences. Pranab 6hosh. and four faculty members were mi hty indul ent concernin my aberrant ways. is a lon -time friend and he was e(tremely enerous to me. Steve Emohundro. at Stanford Fniversity& Its director. 6uy Steele.osser. John /c7arthy.imbey.obin 'reeman. . Paul 7sonka read an entire early version and made hel!ful comments& Thanks to E& E& 3ilson for readin and commentin on an early version of my &relude. and 0ob 3olf for -resonatin with me at crucial times in my life. ty!eset my own book& ?e has been a ma. 0ill Aewis. my sister Aaura ?ofstadter has contributed much to my outlook on the world& ?er influence is !resent in both the form and content of this book& I would like to thank my new and old friends /arie )nthony. :avid Policansky. )vril 6reenber . 6ayle Aandt. :ave Jennin s. Persi :iaconis. Phil 3adler. *nt 7ugue! Thanks to /arsha /eredith for bein the meta-author of a droll kRan& . :an 'riedman. Sydney )rkowit<. . and for consistently ood s!irits in the face of one disaster after another& I would also like to thank 7ecille Taylor and 0arbara Aadda a. . 'rancois Gannucci. and thereby contributin in various and sundry ways to this book& I wrote this book twice& )fter havin written it once. Paul 7sonka. /ike /oravcsik. . Peter E& Parks. ivin me access to an outstandin com!uter system.ay ?yman. 3ilfried Sie . and 6re ory 3annier& I a!!reciate their understandin attitudes& In addition. Jos /arlowe. and to her crew.udy ?wa. 'eli( 0loch. Pete . /ike /ueller.or force in the develo!ment of com!uter ty!esettin at the I/SSS& Equally im!ortant to me. his sense of style& If my book looks ood. Jim /c:onald. is Pentti1s rare quality. /ichael 6oldhaber. and in eneral an e(cellent workin environment. :ianne @anerva. Pat Su!!es. 'rancisco 7laro. Terry 3ino rad. who did most of the actual work of runnin off alleys& Ever the years. . however.obert ?erman. for two whole years—and then some& This brin s me to Pentti @anerva. Eric ?ambur . in housin me in Gentura ?all. @athy . Jonathan and Ellen @in . to Pentti @anerva is due much of the credit& It was in the )SSF Ty!esettin Sho! that this book was actually born& I would like to offer many hearty words of thanks to its director. 8ai-?ua :uan. the author of the te(t-editin !ro ram to which this book owes its e(istence& I have said to many !eo!le that it would have taken me twice as lon to write my book if I hadn1t been able to use -TGEdit-.osemary 8elson. 0en t Elle 0en tsson.

and all the other !eo!le at 0asic 0ooks.ob of co!y editin . "#$#& . Gincent Torre. a -0lack 0o(. who took so many !hone messa es over the years= also to the Pine ?all crew.& ?& 0loomin ton and Stanford January. who first s!ran 9en on me= to @ees 6u elot. but I have undoubtedly failed to include all of them& In a way. Aeon :orin. this book is a statement of my reli ion& I ho!e that this will come throu h to my readers. for the 7hristmas !resent they never knew would so deli ht me. 0ob Parks. /aureen 0ischoff. and Ginnie )veni of the machine sho! in the ?i h Ener y Physics Aaboratory at Stanford. who ave me a record of the 'usical :ffering one sad 8ovember lon a o= and to Etto 'risch. Jimmy and 0etty 6ivan. Ted 0radshaw. and to Aarry 0reed for valuable last-minute !roofreadin & Thanks to my many Imlac-roommates.Thanks to /arvin /insky for a memorable conversation one /arch day in his home. for undertakin this !ublishin venture which is unusual in quite a few ways& Thanks to Phoebe ?oss for doin well the difficult . and that my enthusiasm and reverence for certain ideas will infiltrate the hearts and minds of a few !eo!le& That is the best I could ask for& :& . for enerously hel!in me make tri!-lets& Thanks to my uncle and aunt. in whose office at 7ambrid e I first saw the ma ic of Escher& I have tried to remember all the !eo!le who have contributed to the develo!ment of this book.which had no other function than to turn itself off& 'inally.which I s!ent hours !hoto ra!hin & Thanks to Jerry Pryke. and to Jeremy 0ernstein and )le( 6eor e for encoura in words when needed& Gery warm thanks to /artin @essler. I would like to ive s!ecial thanks to my freshman En lish teacher. 0rent ?arold. !arts of which the reader will find reconstructed herein& Thanks to 0ill @aufmann for advice on !ublication. who develo!ed and maintained much of the hardware and software that this book has so vitally de!ended on& Thanks to :ennis :avies of the Stanford Instructional Television 8etwork for his hel! in settin u! the -self-en ulfin televisions.

aussmann! .73G5=E B! ?ohann -e(astian Bach. in BCDE! 7rom a painting () Elias Gottlie( .

but also to e(tem!ori<e. who wrote some of their most influential works while there& 0ut music was 'rederick1s real love& ?e was an avid flutist and com!oser& Some of his com!ositions are occasionally !erformed even to this day& 'rederick was one of the first !atrons of the arts to reco ni<e the virtues of the newly develo!ed -!iano-forte.Introduction5 A Musico-Logical 0ffering *uthor: '. the soft-loud idea had s!read widely& 6ottfried Silbermann. how !leased he would be to have the elder 0ach come and !ay him a visit= but this wish had never been reali<ed& 'rederick was !articularly ea er for 0ach to try out his new Silbermann !ianos.E:E. and 0ach was known far and wide for his remarkable e(tem!ori<ations& 4'or some deli htful anecdotes about 0ach1s e(tem!ori<ation. 7arl Phili!! Emanuel 0ach was the 7a!ellmeister 4choirmaster5 at the court of @in 'rederick& 'or years the @in had let it be known.I7@ T?E 6. as its name im!lies. where 0artolommeo 7ristofori had made the first one. as well as one of his sons. in fact. @in of Prussia. the foremost 6erman or an builder of the day. while others claimed they were incom!arable master!ieces& 0ut no one dis!uted 0ach1s ability to im!rovise on the or an& In those days. 0ach was si(ty-two.!iano-forte& Fndoubtedly @in 'rederick was the reatest su!!orter of his efforts—it is said that the @in owned as many as fifteen Silbermann !ianos2 Bach 'rederick was an admirer not only of !ianos. had reached Potsdam. was endeavorin to make a -!erfect.4-softloud-5& The !iano had been develo!ed in the first half of the ei hteenth century as a modification of the har!sichord& The !roblem with the har!sichord was that !ieces could only be !layed at a rather uniform loudness —there was no way to strike one note more loudly than its nei hbors& The -soft-loud-. but also of an or anist and com!oser by the name of J& S& 0ach& This 0ach1s com!ositions were somewhat notorious& Some called them -tur id and confused-. throu h entle hints to Phili!! Emanuel. and his fame. as well as !hiloso!hers—includin Goltaire and Aa /ettrie. by ?& T& :avid and )& /endel&5 In "$C$. he was also devoted to the life of the mind and the s!irit& ?is court in Potsdam was one of the reat centers of intellectual activity in Euro!e in the ei hteenth century& The celebrated mathematician Aeonhard Euler s!ent twenty-five years there& /any other mathematicians and scientists came. which he 4'rederick5 correctly foresaw as the reat new wave in music& It was 'rederick1s custom to have evenin concerts of chamber music in his court& Eften he himself would be the soloist in a concerto for flute& ?ere we have re!roduced a . bein an or anist not only meant bein able to !lay. see The Bach =eader. !rovided a remedy to this !roblem& 'rom Italy. came to !ower in "$C+& )lthou h he is remembered in history books mostly for his military astuteness.E)T.

in the "*++1s. who.oyal Palace&-V The musicians went with him from room to room. must necessarily be attended with many a!olo ies& I will not here dwell on these a!olo ies. and immediately e(ecuted it to the astonishment of all !resent in the same ma nificent and learned manner as he had done that of the @in & ?is /a. and I must say that I still think with !leasure on the manner in which he related it& )t that time it was the fashion to make rather !roli( com!liments& The first a!!earance of J& S& 0ach before so reat a @in .esty desired also to hear his !erformance on the or an& The ne(t day therefore 0ach was taken to all the or ans in Potsdam. and the fi ure furthest to the ri ht is Joachim Muant<. that in 3ilhelm 'riedemann1s mouth they made a formal :ialo ue between the @in and the )!olo ist& 0ut what is mere im!ortant than this is that the @in ave u! his 7oncert for this evenin . and his musicians were assembled. under the title of -/usikalisches E!fer.The flute was now laid aside. !robably to see how far such art could be carried. who did not even ive him time to chan e his travelin dress for a black chanter1s own. e(!ressed a wish to hear a 'u ue with si( Ebli ato !arts& 0ut as it is not every sub.ect for a 'u ue. and 0ach was invited everywhere to try them and to !lay un!remeditated com!ositions& )fter he had ene on for some time. he com!osed the sub. and invited 0ach. made a series of !aintin s illustratin the life of 'rederick the 6reat& )t the cembalo is 7& P& E& 0ach. then already called the Eld 0ach. that he resolved to buy them all u!& ?e collected fifteen& I hear that they all now stand unfit for use in various corners of the . he asked the @in to ive him a sub. added several artificial !assa es in strict canon to it. -6entlemen.ust as he was ettin his flute ready. tells the story as follows. which stood in several rooms of the !alace& U'orkel here inserts this footnote.U 'usical :fferingV. who accom!anied his father. as he had before been to Silbermann1s forte!ianos& )fter his return to Aei!<i .ect. old 0ach is come&. Ene evenin . made by Silbermann. told me this story. who had ali hted at his son1s lod in s. !leased the @in so much.!aintin of such an evenin by the 6erman !ainter )dol!h von /en<el. in three and si( !arts. an une(!ected uest showed u!& Johann 8ikolaus 'orkel. 0ach chose one himself. one of 0ach1s earliest bio ra!hers. but merely observe. and said. to try his forte!ianos. and dedicated it to the Inventor&" . and old 0ach. . the @in 1s flute master—and the only !erson allowed to find fault with the @in 1s flute !layin & Ene /ay evenin in "$C$. in order to e(ecute it immediately without any !re!aration& The @in admired the learned manner in which his sub. was immediately summoned to the Palace& 3ilhelm 'riedemann. and had it en raved. which he had received from the @in . but immediately turned to the assembled musicians.ect was thus e(ecuted e(tem!ore= and. of 'reyber . an officer brou ht him a list of the stran ers who had arrived& 3ith his flute in his hand he ran ever the list.ect that is fit for such full harmony. -The !ianofortes manufactured by Silbermann. with a kind of a itation.

() *dolph 'en@el BEGF/! .73G5=E F! 7lute 8oncert in -anssouci.

T?E )FT?E.esty1s own au ust hand& 3ith awesome !leasure I still remember the very s!ecial . the fame of a monarch whose reatness and !ower. so es!ecially in music. in turn. to any I have heard or can ima ine. incidentally. it !robably ives somethin of the flavor of 0ach1s a!olo y for his a!!earance& /EST 6. may Hour /a.esty1s most au ust . and it has none other than this irre!roachable intent. then in five !arts. and to !rove it to me he san aloud a chromatic fu ue sub. in de!th of harmonic knowled e and !ower of e(ecution. which is of interest for its !rose style if nothin else rather submissive and flattersome& 'rom a modern !ers!ective it seems comical& )lso. the noblest !art of which derives from Hour /a.ect which he had iven this old 0ach. Aei!<i .73G5=E H! The =o)al Theme! 3hen 0ach sent a co!y of his /usical Efferin to the @in .esty1s Self dei ned to !lay to me a theme for a fu ue u!on the clavier.esty1s most au ust !resence& To obey Hour /a. however. that.)7IEFS @I862 In dee!est humility I dedicate herewith to Hour /a. was even reater& The @in is of this o!inion. who on the s!ot had made of it a fu ue in four !arts.esty dei n to di nify the !resent modest labor with a racious acce!tance. Hour /a. and 0eethoven dedicated his 'irst Sym!hony—had a conversation with @in 'rederick. to lorify. durin my visit in Potsdam.esty1s command was my most humble duty& I noticed very soon. he included a dedicatory letter. for lack of necessary !re!aration. when 0ach had been dead for twenty-four years. and continue to rant Hour /a. 'orkel dedicated his bio ra!hy of 0ach.oyal race to Hour /a.esty1s most humble and obedient servant. which he re!orted as follows. some time a o. everyone must admire and revere& I make bold to add this most humble request. a 0aron named 6ottfried van Swieten—to whom. while those who knew his father claim that he.oyal theme more fully. and of a reat or anist named 0ach. and at the same time char ed me most raciously to carry it out in Hour /a. July $ "$C$ Some twenty-seven years later. and then make it known to the world& This resolve has now been carried out as well as !ossible. if only in a small !oint. ?e U'rederickV s!oke to me. the e(ecution of the task did not fare as well as such an e(cellent theme demanded& I resolved therefore and !rom!tly !led ed myself to work out this ri ht . as in all the sciences of war and !eace. who has been for a while in 0erlin& This artist U3ilhelm 'riedemann 0achV is endowed with a talent su!erior. amon other thin s. of music. and finally in ei ht !arts&% Ef course there is no way of knowin whether it was @in 'rederick or 0aron van Swieten who ma nified the story into lar er-than-life !ro!ortions& 0ut it shows how .esty a musical offerin .oyal race when.

was. and now desi nated an erudite kind of fu ue. in essence. was the followin inscri!tion. of course. on the !a e !recedin the first sheet of music. but the term -ricercar.oyal Theme& That theme. chromatic and austere as it is& It is rather miraculous that 0ach could use such a theme to make so !leasin an interlude& The ten canons in the /usical Efferin are amon the most so!histicated canons 0ach ever wrote& ?owever.emainder . to ether with some more or less tricky hints. the ori inal name for the musical form now known as -fu ue-& 0y 0ach1s time. curiously enou h. and its theme is.had survived. is a very com!le( one. identical with the one which 0ach im!rovised for @in 'rederick& The si(-!art fu ue is one of 0ach1s most com!le( creations. shown in 'i ure %. literally. in the entire 3ell-Tem!ered 7lavier by 0ach. and a trio sonata& /usical scholars have concluded that the three-!art fu ue must be. -sou ht out-. ten canons. the Son and the . rhythmically irre ular and hi hly chromatic 4that is. it too is based lar ely on the @in 1s theme. because it is very melodious and sweet. containin forty-ei ht Preludes and 'u ues.esolved with 7anonic )rt&-5 ?ere 0ach is !unnin on the word -canonic-.icercar-. and winnin them all& To im!rovise an ei ht-!art fu ue is really beyond human ca!ability& In the co!y which 0ach sent to @in 'rederick. in Aatin and Italian5 had become standard. in fact. but carries the same kind of im!lication. 0ach himself never wrote them out in full& This was deliberate& They were !osed as !u<<les to @in 'rederick& It was a familiar musical ame of the day to ive a sin le theme. the . and . filled with tones which do not belon to the key it is in5& To write a decent fu ue of even two voices based on it would not be easy for the avera e musician2 0oth of the fu ues are inscribed -. and nowhere is there a si(-!art fu ue2 Ene could !robably liken the task of im!rovisin a si(-!art fu ue to the !layin of si(ty simultaneous blindfold ames of chess. meanin -to seek-& )nd certainly there is a reat deal to seek in the 'usical :ffering& It consists of one three-!art fu ue. only two have as many as five !arts. almost danceable& 8evertheless.4or fu a. namely of esoteric or hi hbrow cleverness& The trio sonata forms a deli htful relief from the austerity of the fu ues and canons. since it means not only -with canons.means. the word -fu ue. !erha!s too austerely intellectual for the common ear& ) similar usa e survives in En lish today. the word -recherche. rather than -'u a-& This is another meanin of the word= -ricercar. one si(-!art fu ue. 73G5=E D! 4-)t the @in 1s 7ommand.!owerful 0ach1s le end had become by that time& To ive an idea of how e(traordinary a si(-!art fu ue is.but also -in the best !ossible way-& The initials of this inscri!tion are RICERCAR —an Italian word.

mi ht sin the identical theme startin five notes hi her. as the first voice& The former is called diminution. and they show u! often in his work —and the 'usical :ffering is no e(ce!tion& 4'or a sim!le e(am!le of inversion. and the second voice. mi ht overla! with the first two. and so on& /ost themes will not harmoni<e with themselves in this way& In order for a theme to work as a canon theme. which means to make a melody which . or twice as slowly. and we will have much traffic with isomor!hisms in this book& Sometimes it is desirable to rela( the ti htness of the canon form& Ene way is to allow sli ht de!artures from !erfect co!yin .to let the canon based on that theme be -discovered. such as -Three 0lind /ice-. each of its notes must be able to serve in a dual 4or tri!le. and secondly it must be !art of a harmoni<ation of the same melody& 3hen there are three canonical voices. the first voice mi ht sin the theme startin on 7.ow Hour 0oat-. the most esoteric of -co!ies.by someone else& In order to know how this is !ossible. it be ins to seem quite natural& 0ach was es!ecially fond of inversions. for instance.of the theme are sta ered not only in time. or quadru!le5 role. . for the sake of more fluid harmony& )lso.is the retro rade co!y —where the theme is !layed backwards in time& ) canon which uses this trick is affectionately known as a cra( canon. but when one has heard many themes inverted. a -co!y.ow. after a fi(ed time-delay.of it enters. each note in a canon has more than one musical meanin = the listener1s ear and brain automatically fi ure out the a!!ro!riate meanin .um!s down wherever the ori inal theme .um!s up. the third voice enters carryin the theme. the theme enters in the first voice and. as well as melodically& Thus. the second voice mi ht sin twice as quickly. and by e(actly the same number of semitones& This is a rather weird melodic transformation. -. try the tune -6ood @in 3enceslas-& 3hen the ori inal and its inversion are sun to ether. some .!reserves all the information in the ori inal theme. the latter augmentation 4since the theme seems to shrink or to e(!and5& 3e are not yet done2 The ne(t sta e of com!le(ity in canon construction is to in#ert the theme. but also in pitch= thus. overla!!in with the first voice. on 6& ) third voice. because of the !eculiarities of crab locomotion& 0ach included a crab canon in the 'usical :ffering. in the sense that the theme is fully recoverable from any of the co!ies& Such an information !reservin transformation is often called an isomorphism.ow. it must firstly be !art of a melody. by referrin to conte(t& There are more com!licated sorts of canons. startin on the : yet five notes hi her.of the theme !layed by the various !artici!atin voices& 0ut there are many ways to do this& The most strai htforward of all canons is the round. you must understand a few facts about canons& Canons and +ugues The idea of a canon is that one sin le theme is !layed a ainst itself& This is done by havin -co!ies. startin an octave a!art and sta ered with a time-delay of two beats. each note of the theme must act in two distinct harmonic ways. in !recisely the same key& )fter the same fi(ed time-delay in the second voice. a !leasin canon results&5 'inally. or -'rere Jacques-& ?ere. of course& The first escalation in com!le(ity comes when the -co!ies. . needless to say& 8otice that every ty!e of -co!y. and so on& The ne(t escalation in com!le(ity comes when the s!eeds of the different voices are not equal= thus.

with the remainin voices doin whatever fanciful thin s entered the com!oser1s mind& 3hen all the voices have -arrived-. you will discover-5& )ll of the canon !u<<les have been solved& The canonical solutions were iven by one of 0ach1s !u!ils. the notion of fu ue is much less ri id than that of canon. contrario /otu-= its middle voice is free 4in fact. the 'usical :ffering re!resents one of 0ach1s su!reme accom!lishments in counter!oint& It is itself one lar e intellectual fu ue. a secondary theme. sin in the -countersub. but which sim!ly harmoni<e a reeably with the voices that are in canon with each other& Each of the canons in the 'usical :ffering has for its theme a different variant of the @in 1s Theme. however.oyal Theme5.ect& Each of the voices enters in turn. to be sure. in which many ideas and forms have been woven to ether. while the other two dance canonically above and below it. often to the accom!animent of the countersub. and occasionally at different s!eeds or u!side down or backwards& ?owever. it sin s the .4-0y seekin .oyal Theme.ect-. then a second voice enters. and consequently it allows for more emotional and artistic e(!ression& The telltale si n of a fu ue is the way it be ins. either five scale-notes u!.canons have -free. two voices !rovide a canonic harmoni<ation based on a second theme& The lower of this !air sin s its theme in 7 minor 4which is the key of the canon as a whole5.ect in some other voice. by ?& T& :avid&5 An Endlessly $ising Canon There is one canon in the 'usical :ffering which is !articularly unusual& Aabeled sim!ly -7anon !er Tonos-. they are occasionally combined& Thus. rather. harmonic. is that when it concludes—or. in that it is usually based on one theme which ets !layed in different voices and different keys. one three-voice canon is labeled -7anon !er )u mentationem. sin in the theme. while underneath it. and in which !layful double meanin s and subtle allusions are common!lace& )nd it is a very beautiful creation of the human intellect which we can a!!reciate forever& 4The entire work is wonderfully described in the book ?! -! Bach's 'usical :ffering. usin the devices of au mentation and inversion& )nother bears sim!ly the cry!tic label -Muaerendo invenietis.voices—voices which do not em!loy the canon1s theme. and all the devices described above for makin canons intricate are e(!loited to the hilt= in fact. chosen to !rovide rhythmic. Johann Phili!! @irnber er& 0ut one mi ht still wonder whether there are more solutions to seek2 I should also e(!lain briefly what a fu ue is& ) fu ue is like a canon. seems to conclude—it is no lon er in the key of 7 minor. and melodic contrasts to the sub. and the u!!er of the !air sin s the same theme dis!laced u!wards in !itch by an interval of a fifth& 3hat makes this canon different from any other.ties smoothly . with a sin le voice sin in its theme& 3hen it is done. or four down& /eanwhile the first voice oes on. but now is in : minor& Somehow 0ach has contrived to modulate 4chan e keys5 ri ht under the listener1s nose& )nd it is so constructed that this -endin . it has three voices& The u!!ermost voice sin s a variant of the . standard kinds of thin s to do — but not so standard that one can merely com!ose a fu ue by formula& The two fu ues in the 'usical :ffering are outstandin e(am!les of fu ues that could never have been -com!osed by formula-& There is somethin much dee!er in them than mere fu ality& )ll in all. then there are no rules& There are.

and this is understandable because they often are based on mathematical !rinci!les of symmetry or !attern&&& 0ut there is much more to a ty!ical Escher drawin than . for e(am!le. the Stran e Aoo! is one of the most recurrent themes in Escher1s work& Aook.ust symmetry or !attern= there is often an underlyin idea. I like to call this the -Endlessly . was 0ach1s intention= but 0ach indubitably also relished the im!lication that this !rocess could o on ad infinitum. 0ach has iven us our first e(am!le of the notion of -trange +oops& The -Stran e Aoo!. and here the !iece may be broken off in a musically a reeable way& Such. the most beautiful and !owerful visual reali<ations of this notion of Stran e Aoo!s e(ist in the work of the :utch ra!hic artist /& 7& Escher.is my advice to the reader& Escher To my mind.!henomenon occurs whenever. so that after several of them. by movin u!wards 4or downwards5 throu h the levels of some hierarchical system.To em!hasi<e its !otentially infinite as!ect. or double-meanin & /athematicians were amon the first admirers of Escher1s drawin s. so may the @in 1s 6lory&. we une(!ectedly find ourselves ri ht back where we started& 4?ere.oin a ain to the be innin & These successive modulations lead the ear to increasin ly remote !rovinces of tonality. the theme of Stran e Aoo!s will recur a ain and a ain& Sometimes it will be hidden. reali<ed in artistic form& )nd in !articular. and com!are its si(-ste! endlessly fallin loo! with the si(-ste! endlessly risin loo! of the -7anon !er Tonos-& The similarity of vision is remarkable& 0ach and Escher are !layin one sin le theme in two different -keys-.onto the be innin a ain= thus one can re!eat the !rocess and return in the key of E. after e(actly si( such modulations. who lived from "#+B to "#$B& Escher was the creator of some of the most intellectually stimulatin drawin s of all time& /any of them have their ori in in !arado(. other times it will be u!side down.ierarch) to describe a system in which a Stran e Aoo! occurs& )s we o on. one would e(!ect to be ho!elessly far away from the startin key& )nd yet ma ically. the system is that of musical keys&5 Sometimes I use the term Tangled . one ima ines. other times it will be out in the o!en= sometimes it will be ri ht side u!. at the litho ra!h >aterfall 4'i & L5. music and art& .isin 7anon-& In this canon. which is !erha!s why he wrote in the mar in -)s the modulation rises. only to . or backwards& -Muaerendo invenietis. illusion. the ori inal key of 7 minor has been restored2 )ll the voices are e(actly one octave hi her than they were at the be innin .

73G5=E G! 3aterfall. () '! 8! Escher lithograph. BIJB/! .

() '! 8! Escher lithograph.73G5=E J! )scendin and :escendin . BIJK/! .

is the loosest version. involves only si( discrete ste!s& Hou may be thinkin that there is some ambi uity in the notion of a sin le -ste!. as we already observed. BIHG/! . couldn1t *scending and . since it involves so many ste!s before the startin !oint is re ained& ) ti hter loo! is contained in >aterfall.escending be seen . '! 8! Escher lithograph.eflectin 6lobe! -elf%portrait 3n.Escher reali<ed Stran e Aoo!s in several different ways. in which monks trud e forever in loo!s.escending 4'i & D5.ust as easily as havin four levels 4staircases5 as forty-five levels 4stairs5? It is indeed true that there is an inherent ha<iness in level-countin . not only in 73G5=E C! ?and with .—for instance. which. and they can be arran ed accordin to the ti htness of the loo!& The litho ra!h *scending and .

73G5=E E! /etamor!hosis II. BIHI%DK/ . () '! 8! Escher woodcut BI!G cm! W DKK cm!.

there is always a level below. a !icture of a !icture which contains itself& Er is it a !icture of a allery which contains itself? Er of a town which contains itself? Er a youn man who contains himself? 4Incidentally. one sin le theme can a!!ear on different levels of reality& 'or instance. and what is fantasy? The enius of Escher was that he could not only concoct. and likewise. we come to the remarkable . and hence a stron sense of !arado(& Intuition senses that there is somethin mathematical involved here& )nd indeed in our own century a mathematical counter!art was discovered. a staircase—so this discovery. for any one level. then. wanderin further and further from its startin !oint. there are already su estions of infinity& 0ut wilder visions of infinity a!!ear in other drawin s by Escher& In some of his drawin s.o er Penrose. the theme of the Stran e Aoo! was already !resent in Escher1s work in "#C*. one level in a drawin mi ht clearly be reco ni<able as re!resentin fantasy or ima ination= another level would be reco ni<able as reality& These two levels mi ht be the only e(!licitly !ortrayed levels& 0ut the mere !resence of these two levels invites the viewer to look u!on himself as !art of yet another level= and by takin that ste!.escending and >aterfall was not invented by Escher.ust as the 0ach and Escher loo!s a!!eal to very sim!le and ancient intuitions —a musical scale. in "#L*& ?owever.Escher !ictures.rawing . a two-ste! Stran e Aoo!& )nd finally. 6>del1s discovery involves the translation of an ancient !arado( in !hiloso!hy into mathematical terms& That !arado( is the so-called Epimenides parado9. the illusion underlyin *scending and . worlds filled with Stran e Aoo!s.than it is& This can be mind-bo lin in itself& ?owever. . of a Stran e Aoo! in mathematical systems has its ori ins in sim!le and ancient intuitions& In its absolutely barest form.ands 4'i & "%L5. it suddenly is back& In the tiled !lanes of /etamor!hosis and other !ictures. what ha!!ens if the chain of levels is not linear. but by . but forms a loo!? 3hat is real. since what else is a loo! but a way of re!resentin an endless !rocess in a finite way? )nd infinity !lays a lar e role in many of Escher1s drawin s& 7o!ies of one sin le theme often fit into each other. which he seems to be invitin his viewers to enter& G#del In the e(am!les we have seen of Stran e Aoo!s by 0ach and Escher.rawing . half-mythical worlds. by @& 6>del.isin 7anon-. there is always another level above it of reater -reality-. with the most enormous re!ercussions& )nd.ands& &rint Galler) dates from "#LD&5 Im!licit in the conce!t of Stran e Aoo!s is the conce!t of infinity. but actually !ortray. the year he drew . formin visual analo ues to the canons of 0ach& Several such !atterns can be seen in Escher1s famous !rint 'etamorphosis 4'i & *5& It is a little like the -Endlessly . in which. do<ens of half-real. a 0ritish mathematician. but in hierarchical. many-level systems& 3e will shar!en our understandin of this ha<iness later on& 0ut let us not et too distracted now2 )s we ti hten our loo!. the viewer cannot hel! ettin cau ht u! in Escher1s im!lied chain of levels. -more ima inary. or liar parado9& . the ti htest of all Stran e Aoo!s is reali<ed in &rint Galler) 4'i & "CB5. in which each of two hands draws the other. there is a conflict between the finite and the infinite.

-)ll 7retans are liars&. because if you tentatively think it is true. 6>del1s Incom!leteness Theorem& 3hat the Theorem states and how it is !roved are two different thin s& 3e shall discuss both in . then it immediately backfires on you and makes you think it is false& 0ut once you1ve decided it is false.73G5=E I! . and !erha!s its richest im!lication was the one 6>del found.) shar!er version of the statement is sim!ly -I am lyin -= or.urt Gödel! E!imenides was a 7retan who made one immortal statement. a similar backfirin returns you to the idea that it must be true& Try it2 The E!imenides !arado( is a one-ste! Stran e Aoo!. -This statement is false-& It is that last version which I will usually mean when I s!eak of the E!imenides !arado(& It is a statement which rudely violates the usually assumed dichotomy of statements into true and false. like Escher1s &rint Galler)& 0ut how does it have to do with mathematics? That is what 6>del discovered& ?is idea was to use mathematical reasonin in e(!lorin mathematical reasonin itself& This notion of makin mathematics -intros!ective.!roved to be enormously !owerful.

in the same way as the E!imenides !arado( is a self-referential statement of lan ua e& 0ut whereas it is very sim!le to talk about lan ua e in lan ua e. the difficulty should be made absolutely clear& /athematical statements—let us concentrate on number—theoretical ones—are about !ro!erties of whole numbers& 3hole numbers are not statements. numbers are made to stand for symbols and sequences of symbols& That way. somethin like a tele!hone number or a license !late. usually called -6>del-numberin -. each statement of number theory. and !erha!s you feel that it mi ht as well be in 6erman anyway& So here is a !ara!hrase in more normal En lish.quite some detail in this book& The Theorem can be likened to a !earl.ust is a statement of number theory& This is the !roblem= but 6>del reali<ed that there was more here than meets the eye& 6>del had the insi ht that a statement of number theory could be about a statement of number theory 4!ossibly even itself5.elated Systems I&. it is not at all easy to see how a statement about numbers can talk about itself& In fact. by which it can be referred to& )nd this codin trick enables statements of number theory to be understood on two different levels. )ll consistent a(iomatic formulations of number theory include undecidable !ro!ositions& This is the !earl& In this !earl it is hard to see a Stran e Aoo!& That is because the Stran e Aoo! is buried in the oyster—the !roof& The !roof of 6>del1s Incom!leteness Theorem hin es u!on the writin of a self-referential mathematical statement.or hurdle& The actual creation of the statement was the workin out of this one beautiful s!ark of intuition& 3e shall e(amine the 6>del construction quite carefully in 7ha!ters to come. it took enius merely to connect the idea of self-referential statements with number theory& Ence 6>del had the intuition that such a statement could be created. in a few strokes. ho!in that what you see will tri er ideas in your mind& 'irst of all. it was in 6erman. as statements of number theory. in other words. such that neither # 6en r nor 8e 4# 6en r5 belon s to 'l 4@5 4where # is the free #aria(le of r5& )ctually. acquires a 6>del number. I will sketch here. and also as statements about statements of number theory& . To every w-consistent recursive class L of formulae there corres!ond recursive classsi ns r. and the method of !roof to an oyster& The !earl is !ri<ed for its luster and sim!licity= the oyster is a com!le( livin beast whose innards ive rise to this mysteriously sim!le em& 6>del1s Theorem a!!ears as Pro!osition GI in his "#%" !a!er -En 'ormally Fndecidable Pro!ositions in &rincipia 'athematica and . is at the heart of his construction& In the 6>del 7ode. if only numbers could somehow stand for statements& The idea of a code. but so that you are not left com!letely in the dark. he was over the ma. bein a sequence of s!eciali<ed symbols.It states. nor are their !ro!erties& ) statement of number theory is not about a& statement of number theory= it . the core of the idea.

-This statement of number theory is false-.ust !art of a lon attem!t by mathematicians to e(!licate for themselves what !roofs are& The im!ortant thin to kee! in mind is that !roofs are demonstrations within fi9ed s)stems of !ro!ositions& In the case of 6>del1s work. it was certainly not the last2 The !hrase -and . the 6>del sentence 6 should more !ro!erly be written in En lish as. 6>del showed that !rovability is a weaker notion than truth. the 6>del sentence 6 is un!rovable 4inside P&/&5 but true& The rand conclusion? That the system of &rincipia 'athematica is -incom!lete-—there are true statements of number theory which its methods of !roof are too weak to demonstrate& 0ut if &rincipia 'athematica was the first victim of this stroke. 6>del1s !roof !ertained to any a(iomatic system which !ur!orted to achieve the aims which 3hitehead and . and !hiloso!hers interested in the foundations of mathematics. This statement of number theory does not have any !roof in the system of &rincipia 'athematica! Incidentally.in the title of 6>del1s article is a tellin one.ussell and )lfred 8orth 3hitehead. ".ussell had set for themselves& )nd for each different system. but rather. these days.elated Systems. for it showed that no fi(ed system.Ence 6>del had invented this codin scheme. one basic method did the trick& In short. of -limitative.refers is that of &rincipia 'athematica &!'!/.rather va uely& In fact. %. alon with the conce!tual revolutions of relativity and quantum mechanics. mathematicians.ussell and 3hitehead. !ublished between "#"+ and "#"%& Therefore. this came as a bolt from the blue& . then others could have been ins!ired to im!rove u!on P&/& and to outwit 6>del1s Theorem& 0ut this was not !ossible. 6>del1s work was .3e can now state what the effect of discoverin 6 is& 3hereas the E!imenides statement creates a !arado( since it is neither true nor false. and their !hiloso!hically disorientin messa es have reached the !ublic. for if 6>del1s result had merely !ointed out a defect in the work of . +. this 6>del sentence 6 is not 6>del1s Theorem—no more than the E!imenides sentence is the observation that -The E!imenides sentence is a !arado(&. he had to work out in detail a way of trans!ortin the E!imenides !arado( into a number-theoretical formalism& ?is final trans!lant of E!imenides did not say. could re!resent the com!le(ity of the whole numbers. no matter how com!licated. since in the interim our culture has absorbed 6>del1s Theorem.&&& /odern readers may not be as non!lussed by this as readers of "#%" were. because !eo!le enerally understand the notion of -!roof. a iant o!us by 0ertrand . even if cushioned by several layers of translation 4and usually obfuscation5& There is a eneral mood of e(!ectation. the fi(ed system of number-theoretical reasonin to which the word -!roof. no matter what a(iomatic system is involved& Therefore 6>del1s Theorem had an electrifyin effect u!on lo icians. -This statement of number theory does not have any !roof-& ) reat deal of confusion can be caused by this. B.results—but back in "#%".

I will now attem!t to summari<e in a short s!ace the history of mathematical lo ic !rior to "#%"—an im!ossible task& 4See :eAon . and so . and equally valid. are not members of themselves—for e(am!le.Mathematical Logic5 A Syno!sis ) !ro!er a!!reciation of 6>del1s Theorem requires a settin of conte(t& Therefore. on first thou ht.ussell1s !arado(& /ost sets. which looked worse2 The most famous is . interestin develo!ments were takin !lace in classical mathematics& ) theory of different ty!es of infinities.ust as mathematics seemed to be recoverin from one set of !arado(es—those related to the theory of limits. and invented many !u<<les which could be solved with them& 6ottlob 're e in Jena and 6iuse!!e Peano in Turin worked on combinin formal reasonin with the study of sets and numbers& :avid ?ilbert in 6>ttin en worked on stricter formali<ations of eometry than Euclid1s& )ll of these efforts were directed towards clarifyin what one means by -!roof-& In the meantime. to mechani<e that which is most human& Het even the ancient 6reeks knew that reasonin is a !atterned !rocess. a variety of set-theoretical !arado(es had been unearthed& The situation was very disturbin . or 8a el and 8ewman. the solution to the dilemma may be a!!arent.is meant a theory of !ro!erties of abstract !oints and lines& It had lon been assumed that eometry was what Euclid had codified. and Euclid codified eometry= but thereafter. the En lish lo icians 6eor e 0oole and )u ustus :e /or an went considerably further than )ristotle in codifyin strictly deductive reasonin !atterns& 0oole even called his book "The +aws of Thought"—surely an e(a eration. in the calculus—alon came a whole new set. even to some nonmathematicians—but at the time. the set containin only Joan of )rc is not Joan of )rc 4a set is not a !erson5—and so on& In this res!ect. it would seem. and that. but intuition-defyin & 0efore lon .sets do contain themselves as members. eometries—whereby -a eometry. the set of walruses is not a walrus. some -self-swallowin . they were unim!ortant and any real !ro ress in eometry would be achieved by e(tendin Euclid& This idea was shattered by the rou hly simultaneous discovery of non-Euclidean eometry by several !eo!le—a discovery that shocked the mathematics community. most sets are rather -run-of-the-mill-& ?owever. many centuries had to !ass before !ro ress in the study of a(iomatic reasonin would take !lace a ain& Ene of the si nificant discoveries of nineteenth-century mathematics was that there are different. because .in one sin le reality? Today. but it was an im!ortant contribution& Aewis 7arroll was fascinated by these mechani<ed reasonin methods.and -lines. known as the theor) of sets. and is at least !artially overned by statable laws& )ristotle codified syllo isms. for ood !resentations of history&5 It all be an with the attem!ts to mechani<e the thou ht !rocesses of reasonin & 8ow our ability to reason has often been claimed to be what distin uishes us from other s!ecies= so it seems somewhat !arado(ical. althou h there mi ht be small flaws in Euclid1s !resentation. the dilemma created havoc in mathematical circles& Aater in the nineteenth century. because it dee!ly challen ed the idea that mathematics studies the real world& ?ow could there be many different kinds of -!oints. such as the set of all sets. was develo!ed by 6eor 7antor in the "**+1s& The theory was !owerful and beautiful. @neebone. or the set of all thin s e(ce!t Joan of )rc.

the !roblem is in tryin to line u! intuition with formali<ed. is neither run-of-the-mill nor self-swallowin . each local re ion of )scendin and :escendin is quite le itimate= it is only the way they are lobally !ut to ether that creates an im!ossibility& Since there are indirect as well as direct ways of achievin self-reference.ectives instead of sets& :ivide the ad. we can use two terms invented s!ecially for this !arado(. or -Stran e Aoo!iness-& So if the oal is to ban all !arado(es. the set of all run%of%the%mill sets & )t first. because it can be hard to fi ure out . &rincipia 'athematica was a mammoth e(ercise in e(orcisin Stran e Aoo!s from lo ic.ussell and 3hitehead did subscribe to this view. itself -a run-of-the-mill set or a self-swallowin set?. and -bisyllabic-& 8ow if we admit -non-selfdescri!tive.ands. mi ht seem a rather run-of-the-mill invention—but that o!inion must be revised when you ask yourself. those which are self-descri!tive. these sentences have the same effect as the ori inal E!imenides !arado(. for either choice leads to !arado(&. then what is it? )t the very least. -awkwardnessful-.Hou will find that the answer is.at each other& In the same way. autological 4X -self-descri!tive-5. The followin sentence is false& The !recedin sentence is true& Taken to ether.on& 7learly. -Is . namely self-reference. is neither run-of-the-mill nor self-swallowin . one must fi ure out how to ban both ty!es at once—if one sees self-reference as the root of all evil& Banishing Strange Loo!s . such as -edible-.ectives in En lish into two cate ories. . such as -!entasyllabic-.Try it2 0ut if .ust where self-reference is occurrin & It may be s!read out over a whole Stran e Aoo! with several ste!s. and accordin ly.Try it2 There seems to he one common cul!rit in these !arado(es. -3hat is wron with our intuitive conce!t of 1set1? 7an we make a ri orous theory of sets which corres!onds closely with our intuitions. yet se!arately. called -6rellin 1s !arado(-. every set is either run-of-the-mill or self-swallowin . reminiscent of . -Is 1heterolo ical1 heterolo ical?. and -recherche-. why not try bannin selfreference and anythin that allows it to arise? This is not so easy as it mi ht seem. and number theory& The idea of their system was basically this& ) set of the lowest . and no set can be both& 8ow nothin !revents us from inventin . but which skirts the !arado(es?. and heterological 4X -nonself-descri!tive-5& The question then becomes.ussell1s !arado(. as in number theory and eometry.as an ad. reasonin systems& ) startlin variant of . they are harmless and even !otentially useful sentences& The -blame. set theory. -incom!lete-.version of E!imenides. can be made usin ad.for this Stran e Aoo! can1t he !inned on either sentence—only on the way they -!oint. to which class does it belon ? If it seems questionable to include hy!henated words. !atholo ical& 0ut no one was satisfied with evasive answers of that sort& )nd so !eo!le be an to di more dee!ly into the foundations of set theory& The crucial questions seemed to be. or a(iomati<ed. and those which are not..?ere.ective. as in this -e(!anded.rawing . -.

if one could find no level in which a iven utterance fit. must be on a hi her level than the second& 0ut by the same token. or s!ecific sentences in it5& 'or that !ur!ose there would be a metalanguage& This e(!erience of two lin uistic levels is familiar to all learners of forei n lan ua es& Then there would be a metametalan ua e for discussin the metalan ua e. a set of a iven ty!e could only contain sets of lower ty!e. then. such stratification a!!ears absurd& 3e don1t think of ourselves as . -In this book.ects. and so on& It would be required that every sentence should belon to some !recise level of the hierarchy& Therefore. it mentions -this book-. nor metametalan ua e. a stratification like the theory of ty!es seems acce!table. by the way. since it s!eaks of the second.could contain only -ob. not sets& ) set of the ne(t ty!e u! could only contain ob. . brandin many !erfectly ood constructions as meanin less& The ad. this is not the way we ima ine sets& The theory of ty!es handled . and for otten& )n analysis can be attem!ted on the two-ste! E!imenides loo! iven above& The first sentence. or sets of the lowest ty!e& In eneral. old .as members.ective -meanin less-.sets e(ist in such a system= furthermore. this theor) of t)pes. the two sentences are -meanin less-& /ore !recisely. nor metalan ua e.um!in u! and down a hierarchy of lan ua es when we s!eak about various thin s& ) rather matter-of-fact sentence such as. which we mi ht also call the -theory of the abolition of Stran e Aoo!s-. successfully rids set theory of its !arado(es. even if a little stran e—but when it comes to lan ua e. would have to a!!ly to all discussions of the theory of lin uistic ty!es 4such as that of this very !ara ra!h5 for they clearly could not occur on any of the levels—neither ob.ects& Every set would belon to a s!ecific ty!e& 7learly. such sentences sim!ly cannot be formulated at all in a system based on a strict hierarchy of lan ua es& This !revents all versions of the E!imenides !arado( as well as 6rellin 1s !arado(& 4To what lan ua e level could -heterolo ical. and of disallowin the formation of certain kinds of sets—such as the set of all run-of-the-mill sets& Intuitively.ects. which deals with abstractions that we don1t use all the time. some similar -hierarchi<ation. this was quite adequate—but for !eo!le interested in the elimination of !arado(es enerally. because it does not belon to any finite ty!e& To all a!!earances.-ty!e.ect lan ua e itself 4such as its rammatical rules. then the utterance would be deemed meanin less. I critici<e the theory of ty!es. reference could be made only to a s!ecific domain—not to as!ects of the ob. the second sentence must be on a hi her level than the first& Since this is im!ossible. or ob. but only at the cost of introducin an artificial-seemin hierarchy.seemed necessary. but it did nothin about the E!imenides !arado( or 6rellin 1s !arado(& 'or !eo!le whose interest went no further than set theory. it mentions me—a !erson whom I should not be allowed to s!eak of at all2 This e(am!le !oints out how silly the theory of ty!es seems.would be doubly forbidden in the system we are discussin & 'irstly. an all-!ervadin !art of life.—the set of all run-of-the-mill sets—no lon er is considered a set at all.ussell1s !arado(. when you im!ort it into a familiar conte(t& The remedy it ado!ts for !arado(es—total banishment of self-reference in any form—is a real case of overkill.ect lan ua e. which should only be mentionable in a metabook-—and secondly. no set could contain itself because it would have to belon to a ty!e hi her than its own ty!e& Enly -run-of-the-mill.belon ?5 8ow in set theory. to forbid loo!in back inside lan ua e& )t the bottom of such a hierarchy would be an o(Mect language& ?ere.

were built on solid foundations& If !arado(es could !o! u! so easily in set theory —a theory whose basic conce!t. such as the study of whole numbers 4number theory5. mi ht turn out to be internal to mathematics.ured u! different ima es. metalo ic. since mathematics and lo ic are so intertwined& The most ur ent !riority of metamathematicians was to determine the true nature of mathematical reasonin & 3hat is a le al method of !rocedure. !uts too much stress on bland consistency. con. and too little on the quirky and bi<arre. and so forth& It seemed reasonable and even im!ortant to establish a sin le uniform notation in which all mathematical work could be done. and what is an ille al one? Since mathematical reasonin had always been done in -natural lan ua e. the drive to eliminate !arado(es at any cost. but when this effort forces you into a stu!endously u ly theory.rogram This was the oal of &rincipia 'athematica.ussell and 3hitehead. that lo ic is sim!ly a branch of mathematics5& In fact.etc& So the very act of discussin the theory would be the most blatant !ossible violation of it2 8ow one could defend such theories by sayin that they were only intended to deal with formal lan ua es—not with ordinary.4e& &. without contradictions2 It was widely admired. informal lan ua e& This may be so. which !ur!orted to derive all of mathematics from lo ic. this very question—-)re mathematics and lo ic distinct. which make life and mathematics interestin & It is of course im!ortant to try to maintain consistency. but no one was sure if 4"5 all of mathematics really was contained in the methods delineated by . that of a set. and with the aid of which any two mathematicians could resolve dis!utes over whether a su ested !roof was valid or not& This would require a com!lete codification of the universally acce!table modes of human reasonin . to be sure. is surely very intuitively a!!ealin —then mi ht they not also e(ist in other branches of mathematics? )nother related worry was that the !arado(es of lo ic. such as the E!imenides !arado(. you know somethin is wron & These ty!es of issues in the foundations of mathematics were res!onsible for the hi h interest in codifyin human reasonin methods which was !resent in the early !art of this century& /athematicians and !hiloso!hers had be un to have serious doubts about whether even the most concrete of theories. or se!arate?-—was the source of much controversy& This study of mathematics itself became known as metamathematics—or occasionally. at least as far as they a!!lied to mathematics& Consistency) Com!leteness) /ilbert%s . there was always a lot of !ossible ambi uity& 3ords had different meanin s to different !eo!le. and. but then it shows that such theories are e(tremely academic and have little to say about !arado(es e(ce!t when they cro! u! in s!ecial tailor-made systems& 0esides. and thereby cast in doubt all of mathematics& This was es!ecially worrisome to those—and there were a ood number—who firmly believed that mathematics is sim!ly a branch of lo ic 4or conversely. or 4B5 the methods iven were even self-consistent& . 'rench or Aatin or some lan ua e for normal communication5. es!ecially when it requires the creation of hi hly artificial formalisms.

if such a !roof could be found usin only methods inside &!'!. 6>del !ublished his !a!er. and were not. that every true statement of. and therefore e(!ressed the ho!e that a demonstration of consistency or com!leteness could be found which de!ended only on -finitistic. for it showed that . of course. the sum total of mathematical methods mi ht be !roved sound. !ro rammable& The first human to conceive of the immense com!utin !otential of machinery was the Aondoner 7harles 0abba e 4"$#B-"*$"5& ) character who could almost have ste!!ed out of the !a es of the &ickwick &apers. but more enerally. who set before the world community of mathematicians 4and metamathematicians5 this challen e.ussell and 3hitehead. the world was on the brink of develo!in electronic di ital com!uters& 8ow the idea of mechanical calculatin en ines had been around for a while& In the seventeenth century. however.in the a(iomatic system !ro!osed by . number theory could be derived within the framework drawn u! in P&/&5& This was a tall order. and com!lete 4i&e&.ussell and 3hitehead—that the system defined in &rincipia 'athematica was both consistent 4contradiction-free5. which in some ways utterly demolished ?ilbert1s !ro ram& This !a!er revealed not only that there were irre!arable -holes. a bastion su!!osedly invulnerable to the attacks of Stran e Aoo!s2 )lthou h 6>del1s Stran e Aoo! did not destroy &rincipia 'athematica. ?ilbert ho!ed that mathematicians could !artially lift themselves by their own bootstra!s. by any mathematicians whatsoever. then—and this is one of the most mystifyin consequences of 6>del1s work—&!'! itself would be inconsistent2 The final irony of it all is that the !roof of 6>del1s Incom!leteness Theorem involved im!ortin the E!imenides !arado( ri ht into the heart of &rincipia 'athematica. unless it were an inconsistent system2 )nd finally. however.modes of reasonin & These were a small set of reasonin methods usually acce!ted by mathematicians& In this way. it made it far less interestin to mathematicians.ustify your methods of reasonin on the basis of those same methods of reasonin ? It is like liftin yourself u! by your own bootstra!s& 43e .ust don1t seem to be able to et away from these Stran e Aoo!s25 ?ilbert was fully aware of this dilemma. the ho!e of !rovin the consistency of a system such as that !resented in &!'! was shown to be vain. by invokin only a smaller set of methods& This oal may sound rather esoteric. to demonstrate ri orously— !erha!s followin the very methods outlined by . in modern !arlance. followin the methods of . that no a(iomatic system whatsoever could !roduce all number-theoretical truths. 0abba e was most famous durin his . and one could critici<e it on the rounds that it was somewhat circular. how can you . Pascal and Aeibni< desi ned machines to !erform fi(ed o!erations 4addition and multi!lication5& These machines had no memory.ussell and 3hitehead? This question !articularly bothered the distin uished 6erman mathematician 4and metamathematician5 :avid ?ilbert. but it occu!ied the minds of many of the reatest mathematicians in the world durin the first thirty years of this century& In the thirty-first year.3as it absolutely clear that contradictory results could never be derived.ussell and 3hitehead1s ori inal aims were illusory& Babbage) Com!uters) Artificial Intelligence111 3hen 6>del1s !a!er came out.

the -:ifference En ine-. real com!uters were bein built . was !rofoundly aware that with the invention of the )nalytical En ine. the first . his -)nalytical En ine-& .in even the most !owerful com!uter ima inable& Ironically. the study of mechanical com!utation. and the !sycholo y of intelli ence& These same years saw the theory of com!uters develo! by lea!s and bounds& This theory was ti htly linked to metamathematics& In fact.were desi ned and built& They cataly<ed the conver ence of three !reviously dis!arate areas.ust as these somewhat eerie limits were bein ma!!ed out. with !itches and harmonies coded into its s!innin cylinders.4memory5 and a -mill.Thou h she well understood the !ower of artificial com!utation. 0abba e.iant electronic brains. Aady )da Aovelace 4dau hter of Aord 0yron5. she su ested that his En ine. we reco ni<e in 0abba e a man a hundred years ahead of his time.4calculatin and decision-makin unit5& These units were to be built of thousands of intricate eared cylinders interlocked in incredibly com!le( ways& 0abba e had a vision of numbers swirlin in and out of the mill tinder control of a program contained in !unched cards—an idea ins!ired by the Jacquard loom. !oetically commented that -the )nalytical En ine wea#es alge(raic patterns . her use of the !resent tense was misleadin . Aeibni<. and 0abba e died a bitterly disa!!ointed man& Aady Aovelace. mankind was flirtin with mechani<ed intelli ence— !articularly if the En ine were ca!able of -eatin its own tail.In nearly the same breath. no less than 0abba e. she cautions that -The )nalytical En ine has no !retensions whatever to originate anythin & It can do whatever we know how to order it to perform&. he was also one of the first to battle noise !ollution& ?is first machine. could enerate mathematical tables of many kinds by the -method of differences-& 0ut before any model of the -:&E&. a card-controlled loom that wove ama<in ly com!le( !atterns& 0abba e1s brilliant but ill-fated 7ountess friend. -The course throu h which I arrived at it was the most entan led and !er!le(ed which !robably ever occu!ied the human mind&-1 Fnlike any !reviously desi ned machine. -mi ht com!ose elaborate and scientific !ieces of music of any de ree of com!le(ity or e(tent&. would come and serenade him at any time of day or ni ht. 6>del1s Theorem has a counter!art in the theory of com!utation. the theory of a(iomatic reasonin .ust as the Jacquard-loom weaves flowers and leaves&Fnfortunately. the )&E& was to !ossess both a -store.ather immodestly. not only inventor of the basic !rinci!les of modern com!uters. could her keen insi ht allow her to dream of the !otential that would be o!ened u! with the tamin of electricity? In our century the time was ri!e for com!uters—com!uters beyond the wildest dreams of Pascal. . which reveals the e(istence of ineluctable -holes. however. or Aady Aovelace& In the "#%+1s and "#C+1s.4the way 0abba e described the Stran e Aoo! created when a machine reaches in and alters its own stored !ro ram5& In an "*CB memoir. for no )&E& was ever built.L she wrote that the )&E& -mi ht act u!on other thin s besides num(er-& 3hile 0abba e dreamt of creatin a chess or tic-tac-toe automaton. 0abba e became obsessed with a much more revolutionary idea.had been built. Aady Aovelace was ske!tical about the artificial creation of intelli ence& ?owever. and he would furiously chase them down the street& Today.lifetime for his vi orous cam!ai n to rid Aondon of -street nuisances-—or an rinders above all& These !ests. he wrote. discovered by )lan Turin . lovin to et his oat.

ust !lainrules= then -metametarules.ust !lain.or theses of this book is that it is not a contradiction at all& Ene of the ma. to turn it over. would !robably have been thrilled s!eechless a mere century after his death—both by the new machines.could !ossibly ca!ture all of what we think of as intelli ent behavior. to res!ond to situations very fle(ibly= to take advanta e of fortuitous circumstances= to make sense out of ambi uous or contradictory messa es= to reco ni<e the relative im!ortance of different elements of a situation= to find similarities between situations des!ite differences which may se!arate them= to draw distinctions between situations des!ite similarities may link them= to synthesi<e new conce!ts by takin old them to ether in new ways= to come u! with ideas which are novel& ?ere one runs u! a ainst a seemin !arado(& 7om!uters by their very nature are the most infle(ible. so that in the end the reader mi ht emer e with new insi hts into the seemin ly unbreachable ulf between the formal and the informal. they are nonetheless the e!itome of unconsciousness& ?ow.or !ur!oses of this book is to ur e each reader to confront the a!!arent contradiction head on. there always cro!!ed u! some new barrier to the actual creation of a enuine thinkin machine& 3as there some dee! reason for this oal1s mysterious recession? 8o one knows where the borderline between non-intelli ent behavior and intelli ent behavior lies= in fact. to savor it. can intelli ent behavior be !ro rammed? Isn1t this the most blatant of contradictions in terms? Ene of the ma. who once declared he would ladly ive u! the rest of his life if he could come back in five hundred years and have a three-day uided scientific tour of the new a e. to su est that a shar! borderline e(ists is !robably silly& 0ut essential abilities for intelli ence are certainly.rules& Some situations are mi(tures of stereoty!ed situations—thus they require rules for decidin which of the 1. desireless. to take it a!art.ust !lain. for each barrier crossed.whose !owers seemed to row and row beyond their makers1 !ower of !ro!hecy& 0abba e. rule-followin of beasts& 'ast thou h they may be. there are stereoty!ed res!onses which require -. and by their une(!ected limitations& 0y the early "#L+1s. to wallow in it. mechani<ed intelli ence seemed a mere stone1s throw away= and yet. the fle(ible and the infle(ible& This is what )rtificial Intelli ence 4)I5 research is all about& )nd the stran e flavor of )I work is that !eo!le try to !ut to ether lon sets of rules in strict formalisms which tell infle(ible machines how to be fle(ible& 3hat sorts of -rules. the animate and the inanimate. and levels of rules& The reason that so many rules on so many different levels must e(ist is that in life. and so on& The fle(ibility of intelli ence comes from the enormous number of different rules. however? 7ertainly there must be rules on all sorts of different levels& There must be many -.to modify the metarules. then.ust !lain- . a creature is faced with millions of situations of com!letely different ty!es& In some situations.rules& There must be -metarules.to modify the -.

even if one takes -rule.here alluded to was none other than Julien Effroy de la /ettrie—!hiloso!her at the court of 'rederick the 6reat. as an intuitive back round for a more serious and abstract !resentation of the same conce!t& In many of the :ialo ues I a!!ear to be talkin about one idea on the surface. but in reality I am talkin about some other idea. lived in the fifth century 0&7& Ene of his !arado(es was an alle ory.rules to a!!ly& Some situations cannot be classified—thus there must e(ist rules for inventin new rules&&& and on and on& 3ithout doubt. but which was left unfinished because his blindness intervened. and /aterialist Par E(cellence& It is now more than B++ years later. the /achine-5. inventor of !arado(es. or com!oses. and the battle is still ra in between those who a ree with Johann /ichael Schmidt. the 7horale which he dictated in his blindness to the !en of another. etc& 0ut no one has yet invented an ima e that thinks. >enn wir in höchsten Nöthen se)n & I am sure that he will soon need his soul if he wishes to observe all the beauties contained therein. who came to me from 9eno of Elea. with . author of +'homme machine 4-/an. four years after the death of J& S& 0ach. !laced the flute to its li!s and took it down a ain. the followin noteworthy !assa e. directly or indirectly.ud ment of the author& Everythin that the cham!ions of /aterialism !ut forward must fall to the round in view of this sin le e(am!le&D Muite likely. in a thinly dis uised way& Eri inally. Stran e Aoo!s involvin rules that chan e themselves. which has a!!eared in co!!er en ravin . durin the readin of the followin 7ha!ter. and those who a ree with Julien Effroy de la /ettrie& I ho!e in this book to ive some !ers!ective on the battle& (G#del) Escher) Bach( The book is structured in an unusual way. and let him observe the art that is contained therein= or what must strike him as even more wonderful. by way of Aewis 7arroll& 9eno of Elea. are at the core of intelli ence& Sometimes the com!le(ity of our minds seems so overwhelmin that one feels that there can be no solution to the !roblem of understandin intelli ence—that it is wron to think that rules of any sort overn a creature1s behavior. rolled its eyes. the only characters in my :ialo ues were )chilles and the Tortoise. in a treatise on music and the soul. the foremost of the -cham!ions of /aterialism.in the multilevel sense described above& 1 1 1and Bach In the year "$LC. 8ot many years a o it was re!orted from 'rance that a man had made a statue that could !lay various !ieces on the 7leuttra#ersiere. visual ima es= then these serve. or wills. yieldin a set of concrete. let alone wishes to !lay it to himself or to form a . almost every new conce!t is first !resented meta!horically in a :ialo ue. the Aei!<i theolo ian Johann /ichael Schmidt wrote. as a counter!oint between :ialo ues and 7ha!ters& The !ur!ose of this structure is to allow me to !resent new conce!ts twice. or even does anythin at all similar& Aet anyone who wishes to be convinced look carefully at the last fu al work of the above-!raised 0ach.

it is re!rinted here as Two%&art 3n#ention& 3hen I be an writin :ialo ues. one is never at a loss to ras! the unity that holds to ether every sin le creation by 0ach&D I have sou ht to weave an Eternal 6olden 0raid out of these three strands.ust remember one day writin -'u ue. Aewis 7arroll reincarnated )chilles and the Tortoise for the !ur!ose of illustratin his own new !arado( of infinity& 7arroll1s !arado(. however. Escher.ect. ?is form in eneral was based on relations between se!arate sections& These relations ran ed from com!lete identity of !assa es on the one hand to the return of a sin le !rinci!le of elaboration or a mere thematic allusion on the other& The resultin !atterns were often symmetrical. and while in the course of study one may discover unendin subtleties. 0ach& I be an. 6>del. instead of . 6>del and Escher and 0ach were only shadows cast in different directions by some central solid essence& I tried to reconstruct the central ob. somehow I connected them u! with musical forms& I don1t remember the moment it ha!!ened= I . which deserves to be far better known than it is. intendin to write an essay at the core of which would be 6>del1s Theorem& I ima ined it would be a mere !am!hlet& 0ut my ideas e(!anded like a s!here. and came u! with this book& . Three%&art 3n#ention& In "*#L. and soon touched 0ach and Escher& It took some time for me to think of makin this connection e(!licit. and from then on the idea stuck& Eventually I decided to !attern each :ialo ue in one way or another on a different !iece by 0ach& This was not so ina!!ro!riate& Eld 0ach himself used to remind his !u!ils that the se!arate !arts in their com!ositions should behave like -!ersons who conversed to ether as if in a select com!any-& I have taken that su estion !erha!s rather more literally than 0ach intended it= nevertheless I ho!e the result is faithful to the meanin & I have been !articularly ins!ired by as!ects of 0ach1s com!ositions which have struck me over and over.above an early :ialo ue. a few dominant features afford !ro!er orientation at first si ht or hearin . !lays a si nificant role in this book& Eri inally titled -3hat the Tortoise Said to )chilles-.ust lettin it be a !rivate motivatin force& 0ut finally " reali<ed that to me.)chilles and the Tortoise as !rota onists& 9eno1s invention of the ha!!y !air is told in my first :ialo ue. and which are so well described by :avid and /endel in The Bach =eader. but by no means necessarily so& Sometimes the relations between the various sections make u! a ma<e of interwoven threads that only detailed analysis can unravel& Fsually.

/r& T. Hou mi ht ive me a head start& *chilles. and I must a ree that such a fla is indeed im!ossible& 0ut it is beautiful anyway.ect& *chilles. Eh. /otion Is Inherently Im!ossible& ?e !roves it quite ele antly& . The rin which has been cut from it has the sha!e of the numeral for <ero. 8ot if thin s o accordin to 9eno1s !arado(. you won1t& 9eno is ho!in to use our footrace to show that motion is im!ossible. on a tall flagpole. through which one can see the sk)! *chilles. you see& It is only in the mind that motion seems !ossible. there hangs a large rectangular flag! The flag is solid red. S!eakin of 7a!itali<ed Essences. that is quite another matter& 3e are inventions of 9eno 4as you will shortly see5 and the reason we are here is to have a footrace& *chilles. 0ut I will catch you. the fleetest of foot of all mortals/ and a Tortoise are standing together on a dust) runwa) in the hot sun! 7ar down the runwa). It would have to be a hu e one& Tortoise. sooner or later—most likely sooner& Tortoise. versus you. and I never seem to have time for 7a!itali<ed Essences& *chilles. Eh. /r& T. is it not? *chilles. 7ould it be that the hole in it resembles the holes in a />bian stri! Escher once drew? Somethin is wron about the fla . e9cept where a thin ring% shaped hole has (een cut out of it. heavens. there is no doubt of its beauty& Tortoise. I can tell& Tortoise. the fleetest of foot of all mortals. ?aven1t you ever wondered why we are here. Hour ar ument is !ersuasive. ) footrace? ?ow outra eous2 /e. or who invented us? Tortoise. The rin which hasn1t been invented yet2 It will only be invented by a ?indu mathematician some millennia hence& )nd thus. I don1t ob. which is 9eno1s favorite number& *chilles. Eh. accordin to 9eno& In truth. yes. That is 9eno1s fla & *chilles. have you ever wondered about the Pur!ose of Aife? Tortoise. I wonder if its beauty is related to its im!ossibility& I don1t know.Three%&art 3n#ention *chilles a Greek warrior. )chilles. the !loddin est of the !lodders2 There can be no !oint to such a race& Tortoise. my ar ument !roves that such a fla is im!ossible& Tortoise. 3hat is that stran e fla down at the other end of the track? It reminds me somehow of a !rint by my favorite artist. /&7& Escher& Tortoise. I1ve never had the time to analy<e 0eauty& It1s a 7a!itali<ed Essence. no= *chilles.

-8ot the wind. and I always said.7igure BK! />bius stri! () '!8! Escher wood%engra#ing printed from four (locks. far from it& ?e is in fact. )chilles& 9eno is no 9en master. I1m all confused& I remember vividly how I used to re!eat over and over the names of the si( !atriarchs of 9en. it comes back to me now. a 6reek !hiloso!her from the town of Elea 4which lies halfway between !oints ) and 05& 7enturies hence. too2 . 9en kRan? 9en /aster? 3hat do you mean? *chilles. Two monks were ar uin about a fla & Ene said. yes. 9eno. ha!!ened to be !assin by& ?e told them. mind is movin &Tortoise.4-uddenl) a soft warm (ree@e picks up! 5 Eh. BIJB/ *chilles. Eh. the famous 9en kRan about 9en /aster 9eno& )s you say it is very sim!le indeed& Tortoise. -The si(th !atriarch is 9eno. The si(th !atriarch is 9enoS. not the fla . -The wind is movin &. I am afraid you are a little befuddled. It oes like this. he will be celebrated for his !arado(es of motion& In one of those !arado(es. this very footrace between you and me will !lay a central role& *chilles.The si(th !atriarch. look /r& Tortoise—look at the fla wavin 2 ?ow I love to watch the ri!!les shimmer throu h it1s soft fabric& )nd the rin cut out of it is wavin . -The fla is movin &.The other said.

and a Tortoise& In my tale. ten rods& 8ow the race be ins& In a few bounds )chilles has reached the s!ot where the Tortoise started& . scratching his head in pu@@lement5& 8ow how did he know my name? Neno. -9eno1s Theorem-? )re you. 'riends2 7ease your ar umentation2 )rrest your vitriolics2 )bandon your discord2 'or I shall resolve the issue for you forthwith& ?o2 )nd on such a fine day& *chilles. not the fla —neither one is movin . hence it can1t be wavin & The wind is wavin & *t this moment. . nor is anythin movin at all& 'or I have discovered a reat Theorem. the fleetest of foot of all mortals5. sir. 3ould the two of you humor a silly old !hiloso!her for a few moments—only a few. This fellow must be !layin the fool& Tortoise. the fifth !atriarch. I !romise you—in his eccentric theories& *chilles. which states= -/otion Is Inherently Im!ossible&. since my com!anion.)nd from this Theorem follows an even reater Theorem— 9eno1s Theorem. was only moments a o s!eakin of you with reat veneration—and he mentioned es!ecially your !arado(es& Neno. E friends. ?allo2 ?ulloo2 3hat1s u!? 3hat1s new? *chilles.Tortoise. and they don1t have time& Hou1ve no idea how disheartenin it is to meet with refusal after refusal& Eh. say. /r& Tortoise. my /aster. since the Tortoise is a much slower runner. I am indeed. tau ht me that reality is one. 7ould I !ossibly !ersuade you two to hear me out as to why this is the case? I1ve come all the way to Elea from !oint ) this afternoon. The wind is movin & Neno. Neno happens ()!/ Neno. immutable. by any chance. )chilles 4a 6reek warrior. and motion are mere illusions of the senses& Some have mocked his views= but I will show the absurdity of their mockery& /y ar ument is quite sim!le& I will illustrate it with two characters of my own Invention. The fla is movin & Tortoise. -/otion Fne(ists&*chilles. wait. 8o.ust like to ask you one thin . )chilles& Aet us hear what he has to say& Eh Fnknown Sir. they are !ersuaded by a !asserby to run a footrace down a runway towards a distant fla wavin in the bree<e& Aet us assume that. I1d . and unchan in = all !lurality. by all means2 Please do illuminate us2 I know I s!eak for both of us. he ets a head start of. Eh. do im!art to us your thou hts on this matter& Neno. I1m sorry to burden you with my troubles. the !hiloso!her 9eno of Elea? Neno. )chilles& *chilles. Thank you& Hou see. /ost willin ly& 8ot the wind.ust tryin to find someone who1ll !ay some attention to my closely honed ar ument& 0ut they1re all hurryin hither and thither. chan e. :on1t be silly& The fla is im!ossible.

this ame of -try-to-catch-me. and so )chilles is still behind& 8ow you see that in order for )chilles to catch the Tortoise. Het. ?ow about ten rods? Neno. in oin from ) to 0. based on an Escher !rint? Neno. does it not? Hou have . and so on and so forth& 0ut you see. the Tortoise has mana ed to inch ahead by ever so little.. Isn1t it a teaser? It1s my favorite !arado(& Tortoise. ?eh heh heh heh2 *chilles. but they cannot be correct& Neno. Gery ood—ten rods& *chilles. I swear. but I believe your tale illustrates the wron !rinci!le. shame on me& Ef course.eady2 Neno. I can1t quite make out what1s wron with it Neno. one has to o halfway first Y and of that stretch one also has to o halfway. I1ve only had one 6reat Idea Y I . catch u! with the Tortoise& Tortoise. both those !arado(es really have the same flavor& 'rankly. The im!ossible one. well. centuries hence. ?ee hee hee2 Neno. ?ah2 Neno. .*chilles. allowin /r& T a fair head start of. isn1t that so? Neno.ust try it outZ? Hou see that red fla wavin down here. 9eno.will have to be !layed an I8'I8ITE number of times—and therefore )chilles can 8EGE. )nd now the Tortoise is but a sin le rod ahead of )chilles& 3ithin only a moment. )chilles covers that distance too& *chilles. I don1t know— Tortoise. as 9eno1s -)chilles !arado(. you1re ri ht& That1s the new one about how.ust told us what will come to known. ?o ho2 Neno. )ny time& Neno. will you !osition yourself ten rods u!wind? The Tortoise mo#es ten rods closer to the flag/ Tortoise and *chilles. 0ut in that very short flash. En your mark2 6et set2 6o2 .ust e(!loit it in different ways& *chilles. E(actly& 3hat do you say to you and /r& Tortoise racin for it. at the far end of the runway? *chilles. E(cellent2 ?ow e(citin 2 )n em!irical test of my ri orously !roven Theorem2 /r& Tortoise. which shows 4ahem25 that )chilles will never catch the Tortoise= but the !roof that /otion Is Inherently Im!ossible 4and thence that /otion Fne(ists5 is your -dichotomy !arado(-. in that short moment. Eh. Hou doubt the validity of my !arado(? 3hy not . these ar uments contain a flaw& I don1t quite see where. ?mmS ?mmS ?mmS ?mmS ?mmSThat ar ument sounds wron to me& )nd yes. )chilles has attained that s!ot& *chilles. the Tortoise has mana ed to advance a sli ht amount& In a flash. E(cuse me.

equirement of 'ormality over and over a ain. I have !osed a little !u<<le& -7an you !roduce M&?. it is my ho!e that you will want to e(!lore this formal system at least a little= so to !rovoke your curiosity. unless you have worked with formal systems before& The first thin to say about our formal system—the '35-s)stemOis that it utili<es only three letters of the al!habet. however. the first letter of this sentence is 1'1. that is where !layin the ame of any formal system can become somethin of an art& The ma. which almost doesn1t need statin .or !oint.is the !u<<le& To be in with. the first letter of 8uadrata is 8. we shall em!loy the followin conventions when we refer to strin s& 3hen the strin is in the same ty!eface as the te(t. thou h. M& &IM M&&M&& &II&MI&&IM&II&MI&&IM&II& [ In this book. but— there is nothin that will dictate which rule you should use. you may. unless clarity demands them& 'or e(am!le. it !robably won1t need to be stressed at all& Stran e thou h it may sound. with which you can chan e one strin into another& If one of those rules is a!!licable at some !oint. then it will be enclosed in sin le or double quotes& Punctuation which belon s to the sentence and not to the strin under discussion will o outside of the quotes. quotes will usually be left off. in case there are several a!!licable rules& That is left u! to you—and of course. is that you must not do anythin which is outside the rules& 3e mi ht call this restriction the -.Cha!ter I The M&-!u::le +ormal Systems E8E E' T?E most central notions in this book is that of a formal s)stem& The ty!e of formal system I use was invented by the )merican lo ician Emil Post in the "#B+1s. while the first letter of 1this sentence1 is 1t1& 3hen the strin is in 8uadrata $oman. you will be su!!lied with a string 4which means a strin of letters5&[ 8ot to kee! you in sus!ense. as lo ic dictates& 'or e(am!le. I !redict that when you !lay around with some of the formal systems of 7ha!ters to come.equirement of 'ormality-& In the !resent 7ha!ter. and you want to use it. you will find yourself violatin the . M) I) && That means that the only strin s of the /IFsystem are strin s which are com!osed of those three letters& 0elow are some strin s of the /IF-system. that strin will be MI& Then you will be told some rules. . and is often called a -Post !roduction system-& This 7ha!ter introduces you to a formal system and moreover.

FAE I. . Su!!ose you have M9& Then you may add M99 to your collection& 3hat I mean by this is shown below. you have done somethin wron . because strin s of the /IFsystem never contain -9. you can1t et anywhere usin this rule& 4The three I1s have to be consecutive&5 .ust a -ba . you may et MI&I&& 'rom M&M. at which !oint you may make a new choice5& 8otice the third e(am!le above& It shows how. you can add on a & at the end& 0y the way. to stand for an arbitrary strin & If you ever add a strin containin an 191 to your -collection-. you may et M&&& So the letter 191 in the rule sim!ly stands for any strin = but once you have decided which strin it stands for. thou h. 1I1. you could make MI& 4also M&I5& 'rom IIMII. you could make &M&M&& 'rom MIIII. you can add another strin to your collection= but you have to et M& first2 I want to add one last comment about the letter 1 91. symbolically—and that is the function of the 191. . once you !ossess M&.0ut althou h all of these are le itimate strin s. .1s2 ?ere is the third rule.FAE II. If III occurs in one of the strin s in your collection. the only strin in your !ossession so far is MI& Enly by usin the rules. about to be introduced. a fact about the meanin of -strin is that the letters are in a fi(ed order& 'or e(am!le. and 1&1 are& It is useful for us. it is not !art of the formal system in the same way as the three letters 1 M1. 'rom &MIIIM&. to have some way to talk in eneral about strin s of the system. can you enlar e your !rivate collection& ?ere is the first rule. they are not strin s which are -in your !ossession-& In fact. you may make a new strin with & in !lace of III& E(am!les. you may et M&M&M& 'rom M&. If you !ossess a strin whose last letter is I. in a few e(am!les& 'rom MI&. if u! to this !oint you had not uessed it.of symbols. MI and IM are two different strin s& ) strin of symbols is not . in which the order doesn1t make any difference& ?ere is the second rule.FAE III. you have to stick with your choice 4until you use the rule a ain.

when -theorem. !roducible by the rules. such as 9eno1s Theorem about the -une(istence.will have its technical meanin a strin !roducible in some formal system& In these terms. but lookin for it& Hou !robably hay made some attem!ts to !roduce M&& In so doin . or Euclid1s Theorem about the infinitude of !rimes& 0ut in formal system theorems need not be thou ht of as statements—they are merely strin s of symbols& )nd instead of bein pro#en. make MIII . the /F-!u<<le asks whether M& is a theorem of the /IF-system& I ave you a theorem for free at the be innin . make M&& :on1t. think you can run this rule backwards.of motion. namely MI& Such -free. you can dro! it& 'rom &&&. you have built u! your own !rivate collection of strin s& Such strin s.is ca!itali<ed. -theorem. 'rom M&. accordin to certain ty!o ra!hical rules& To em!hasi<e this im!ortant distinction in meanin s for the word -theorem-. as in the followin e(am!le. I will ado!t the followin convention in this book. of course. are called theorems& The term -theorem.ules are one-way& ?ere is the final rule& . under any circumstances. et M&III& There you have it& 8ow you may be in tryin to make M&& :on1t worry you don1t et it& Just try it out a bit—the main thin is for you to et the flavor of this /F-!u<<le& ?ave fun& \ This is wron & Theorems) A-ioms) $ules The answer to the /F-!u<<le a!!ears later in the book& 'or now. theorems are merely produced. what im!ortant is not findin the answer.FAE IG. its meanin will be the everyday one—a Theorem is a statement in ordinary lan ua e which somebody once !roved to be true by some sort of lo ic ar ument& 3hen unca!itali<ed. or several.'rom MIII. or even infinitely many a(ioms& E(am!les of all these ty!es will a!!ear in the book& .theorem is called an a9iomOthe technical meanin a ain bein quite different from the usual meanin & ) formal system may have <ero.has. If && occurs inside one of your strin s. a common usa e mathematics which is quite different from this one& It means some statement in ordinary lan ua e which has been !roven to be true by a ri orous ar ument. as if by machine. et && 'rom M&&&III.

then. it was !robably not obvious to you that all theorems would be in with M. the !attern emer ed. and therefore it is a wild oose chase& Even if a !erson is not very bri ht. quite at random. such as the four rules of the /IFsystem& These rules are called either rules of production or rules of inference& I will use both terms& The last term which I wish to introduce at this !oint is derivation& Shown below is a derivation of the theorem M&II&. line-by-line demonstration of how to !roduce that theorem accordin to the rules of the formal system& The conce!t of derivation is modeled on that of !roof. .Every formal system has symbol-shuntin rules. lacks& . they be in to notice some !ro!erties of the theorems they have made= that is where human intelli ence enters the !icture& 'or instance. which have the !ro!erty that they make each new theorem inherit its first letter from an earlier theorem= ultimately. as we have described it. until you had tried a few& Then. but you could understand it by lookin at the rules. com!lainin that he can1t et rid of the initial M. but a derivation is an austere cousin of a !roof& It would sound stran e to say that you had pro#en M&II&. and these observations ive him ood insi ht into the task—insi ht which the com!uter !ro ram. all theorems1 first letters can be traced back to the first letter of the sole a(iom MI—and that is a !roof that theorems of the /IF-system must all be in with M& There is somethin very si nificant about what has ha!!ened here& It shows one difference between !eo!le and machines& It would certainly be !ossible—in fact it would be very easy—to !ro ram a com!uter to enerate theorem after theorem of the /IFsystem= and we could include in the !ro ram a command to sto! only u!on eneratin && Hou now know that a com!uter so !ro rammed would never sto!& )nd this does not ama<e you& 0ut what if you asked a friend to try to enerate &? It would not sur!rise you if he came back after a while. and not only could you see the !attern. he still cannot hel! makin some observations about what he is doin .ust to see what kind of thin turns u!& Pretty soon. but it does not sound so stran e to say you have deri#ed M&II&& Inside and 0utside the System /ost !eo!le o about the /F-!u<<le by derivin a number of theorems. 4"5 MI 4B5 MII 4%5 MIII 4C5 MIIII& 4L5 M&I& 4D5 M&I&&I& 4$5 M&II& a(iom from 4"5 by rule II from 4B5 by rule II from 4%5 by rule I from 4C5 by rule III from 4L5 by rule II from 4D5 by rule IG ) derivation of a theorem is an e(!licit.

then.um! out of its task. !atterns& 8ow I said that an intelli ence can . and continue doin so for hours and hours.and yet it seems the most natural thin in the world to us& Er. a system which has never before even been reco ni<ed as a system= then such !eo!le often devote their lives to convincin other !eo!le that the system really is there and that it ou ht to be e(ited from2 ?ow well have com!uters been tau ht to . no matter how much or how well it is driven. most machines made so far are !retty close to bein totally unobservant& Probably for this reason. to take a silly e(am!le.8ow let me be very e(!licit about what I meant by sayin this shows a difference between !eo!le and machines& I meant that it is possi(le to !ro ram a machine to do a routine task in such a way that the machine will never notice even the most obvious facts about what it is doin = but it is inherent in human consciousness to notice some facts about the thin s one is doin & 0ut you knew this all alon & If you !unch -". is that it is possi(le for a machine to act unobservant= it is im!ossible for a human to act unobservant& 8otice I am not sayin that all machines are necessarily inca!able of makin so!histicated observations= . if somebody says that some task is -mechanical-. are often very unobservant& 0ut machines can be made to be totally unobservant= many !eo!le cannot& )nd in fact.um! out of the system? I will cite one e(am!le which sur!rised some observers& In a com!uter chess tournament not lon a o in 7anada. and fli!!in the channel knob. lookin for a better show& Person 0 may have a more radio conce!t of what it is to -e(it the system-—namely to turn the television off& Ef course. the machine will never learn to antici!ate you. a human bein who is readin a book may row slee!y& Instead of continuin to read until the book is finished he is . and then add " a ain. and then add " to it.into an addin machine. is does not mean that !eo!le are inca!able of doin the task= it im!lies thou h.ust that some machines are& 8or am I sayin that all !eo!le are always makin so!histicated observations= !eo!le. to most !eo!le& 'or e(am!le. and shows evident dis!leasure with the situation& Person ) may think he understands the !roblem. a car will never !ick u! the idea. and a ain. that it is su!!osed to avoid other cars and obstacles on the road= and it will never learn even the most frequently traveled routes of its owner& The difference. the !ro!erty of bein = unobservant seems to be the characteristic feature of machines. in fact. a little !rom!tin will often suffice& 'or e(am!le. and survey what it has done= it is always lookin for and often findin .um! out of the task which it is !erformin . that only a machine could do it over and over without ever com!lainin . there are cases where only a rare individual will have the vision to !erceive a system which overns many !eo!les lives. and try to remedy it by e(itin the !resent system 4that television !ro ram5.ust as likely to !ut the book aside and turn off the li ht& ?e has ste!!ed -out of the system. althou h any !erson would !ick u! the !ick u! the re!etitive behavior very quickly& Er. and do it itself. one !ro ram—the weakest of all the com!etin ones—had the unusual feature . but that does not mean that it always will& ?owever. and a ain. su!!ose !erson ) is watchin television when !erson 0 comes in the room. or feelin bored& 3um!ing out of the System It is an inherent !ro!erty of intelli ence that it can .

by workin within the system= and that you then radually started ettin an(ious. and to resi n then and there. but it at least had the redeemin quality of bein able to s!ot a ho!eless !osition. com!ressin several ste!s into one.of quittin lon before the ame was over& It was not a very ood chess !layer. you work -in your ca!acity as a thinkin bein -. it did it in style& ) lot of local chess e(!erts were im!ressed& Thus. usin shorthand 4such as the letter 1915. if you think of -the system. you e(ited from the system. it is clear that this !ro ram had a so!histicated. as do most !eo!le. since I1s are otten rid of in three1s.that it may seem sim!listic to think of thin s in those terms& 0ut it is often im!ortant to formulate sim!le ideas very clearly so that one can use them as models in thinkin about more com!le( ideas& )nd that is why I am showin you formal systems= and it is about time we went back to discussin the /IFsystem& M-Mode) I-Mode) &-Mode The /F-!u<<le was stated in such a way that it encoura ed some amount of e(!loration within the /IF-system-derivin theorems& 0ut it was also stated in a way so as not to im!ly that stayin inside the system would necessarily yield fruit& Therefore it encoura ed some oscillation between the two modes of work& Ene way to se!arate these two modes would be to have two sheets of !a!er= on one sheet.and -outside the system-= life is com!osed of so many interlockin and interwoven and often inconsistent -systems. and wonderin why it was that you had not succeeded in !roducin M&& Perha!s you found a reason why you could not !roduce M&= that is thinkin about the system& Perha!s you !roduced MI& somewhere alon the way= that is workin within the system& 8ow I do not want to make it sound as if the two modes are entirely incom!atible= I am sure that every human bein is ca!able to some e(tent of workin inside a system and simultaneously thinkin about what he is doin & )ctually. it is often ne(t to im!ossible to break thin s neatly u! into -inside the system. in human affairs. !re!ro rammed ability to e(it from the system& En the other hand. and this an(iety finally built u! to the !oint where without any need for further consideration. instead of waitin for the other !ro ram to o throu h the borin ritual of checkmatin & )lthou h it lost every ame it !layed. tryin to take stock of what you had !roduced. you work -in your ca!acity as a machine-. and are allowed to do whatever your intelli ence su ests—which mi ht involve usin En lish. modifyin the rules of the system to see what that ives. sketchin ideas. workin backwards. thus fillin it with nothin but M1s.as -makin moves in a chess ame-. I1s. if you define -the system. then there is no doubt that the com!uter had no ability whatsoever to e(it from that system& It is very im!ortant when studyin formal systems to distin uish workin within the system from makin statements or observations a(out the system& I assume that you be an the /F-!u<<le.as bein -whatever the com!uter had been !ro rammed to do-. or whatever else you mi ht dream u!& Ene thin you mi ht do is notice that the numbers % and B !lay an im!ortant role. and &1s= on the second sheet. and &1s in two1s—and doublin of len th 4e(ce!t for the M5 is allowed by rule II& So the second sheet mi ht also have some fi urin on it& .

I will also mention a final mode—the 5n%mode 5%mode5. the case of & and the case of M& seem quite different& It is by very su!erficial feature of & that we reco ni<e the im!ossibility of !roducin it. M& could be !roduced& It mi ht involve len thenin the strin to some i antic si<e. MII&. it mi ht involve successive sta es of len thenin and then shortenin and then len thenin and then shortenin . worse yet. of course5= and two others allow you to shrink strin s somewhat 4a ain in very ri id ways5& There seems to be an endless variety to the order in which these different ty!es of rules mi ht be a!!lied. and then e(tractin !iece after !iece until only two symbols are left= or. it doesn1t be in with an M 4whereas all theorems must5& It is very convenient to have such a sim!le way to detect nontheorems& ?owever who says that that test will detect all nontheorems? There may be lots of strin s which be in with M but are not !roducible& /aybe M& is one of them& That would mean that the -first-letter test.It may not be obvious why that question makes sense. and who en. )!!ly every a!!licable rule to the a(iom MI& This yields two new theorems MI&. MI&I&. for instance.rocedures )n observation about this !u<<le is that it involves rules of two o!!osite tendencies—the lengthening rules and the shortening rules& Two rules 4I and II5 allow you to increase the si<e of strin s 4but only in very ri id. is a !ossible way the enie mi ht o about it Ste! ". we already observed that & cannot be !roduced at all and it will make no difference if you len then and shorten till kin dom come& Still. and this ives ho!e that one way or another. and we will call them the 'echanical mode '%mode5 and the 3ntelligent mode 3%mode5& To round out our mode with one for each letter of the /IF-system. -3hat do mean by a test?.which somehow seems to violate the s!irit of the word& Ima ine a enie who has all the time in the world.3e will occasionally refer back to these two modes of dealin with a formal system. MII& Ste! B. in this conte(t& 0ut I will ive an e(am!le of a -test.oys usin it to !roduce theorems of the /IF-system. in a rather methodical way& ?ere. but missin others& 0ut there remains the !ossibility of some more elaborate test which discriminates !erfectly between those strin s which can be !roduced by the rules and those which cannot& ?ere we have to face the question. !rescribed ways. which is the 9en way of a!!roachin thin s& /ore about this in a few 7ha!ters& ecision .is of limited usefulness able only to detect a !ortion of the nontheorems. of im!ortant. and so on& 0ut there is no uarantee of it& )s a matter of fact. )!!ly every a!!licable rule to the theorems !roduced in ste! "& This yields three new theorems. MIIII& .

MIIIIIIII. MIIII&. MI&I&I&I&.Ste! %. a test which does always terminate in a finite amount of time. M&I& This method !roduces every sin le theorem sooner or later. it is not clear how lon to wait for a iven strin to a!!ear on this list. and you don1t even know if it has any derivation. if you are interested in a s!ecific strin 4such as M&5. much less how lon that derivation mi ht be& 8ow we state the !ro!osed -theoremhood-test-. MII&II&. because the rules are a!!lied in every conceivable order& 4See 'i & ""&5 )ll of the len thenin -shortenin alternations which we mentioned above eventually et carried out& ?owever. you know it is a theorem—and if it never ha!!ens. you know that it is not a theorem& This seems ridiculous. it mi ht seem that the rules and a(ioms of the formal system !rovide no less com!lete a characteri<ation of . because it !resu!!oses that we don1t mind waitin around literally an infinite len th of time for our answer& This ets to the cru( of the matter of what should count as a -test-& Ef !rime im!ortance is a uarantee that we will et our answer in a finite len th of time& If there is a test for theoremhood. since theorems are listed accordin to the 73G5=E BB! * s)stematicall) constructed "tree" of all the theorems of the '35%s)stem! The 8th le#el down contains those theorems whose deri#ations contain e9actl) 8 steps! The encircled num(ers tell which rule was emplo)ed! 3s M& an)where in this tree$ shortness of their derivations& This is not a very useful order. 3ait until the strin in question is !roduced= when that ha!!ens. then that test is called a decision procedure for the iven formal system& 3hen you have a decision !rocedure. then you have a very concrete characteri<ation of the nature of all theorems in the system& Effhand. )!!ly every a!!licable rule to the theorems !roduced in ste! B& This yields five new theorems.

and that. a theorem& . im!licitly. they characteri<e those strin s that are not theorems& 0ut im!licit characteri<ation is not enou h. the rules of inference were sim!le. even if the test is com!licated. . or is not. the test is . at least& That is the difference between the set of a(ioms and the set of theorems. it was still totally unclear whether M& is. so the theorems had been im!licitly characteri<ed—and yet it was still quite unclear what the consequences of that characteri<ation were& In !articular.ust as easy. .ust as finite. those strin s that are theorems& Even more im!licitly. is that you can !erform a test for theoremhood of a strin . for many !ur!oses& If someone claims to have a characteri<ation of all theorems. one requirement on formal systems is that the set of a9ioms must be characteri<ed by a decision !rocedure—there must be a litmus test for a(iomhood& This ensures that there is no !roblem in ettin off the round at the be innin .ust as mechanical. as checkin whether the first letter of the strin is M& ) decision !rocedure is a -litmus test. you had to face this !roblem e(actly& The lone a(iom was known. . you would !robably tend to say that there is somethin lackin in that characteri<ation—it is not quite concrete enou h& )nd that is why discoverin that a decision !rocedure e(ists is a very im!ortant ste!& 3hat the discovery means.ust as full of certitude. it is guaranteed to terminate& In !rinci!le. the former always has a decision !rocedure. in effect.for theoremhood2 Incidentally. but the latter may not& I am sure you will a ree that when you looked at the /IF-system for the first time. but it takes him infinitely lon to deduce that some !articular strin is not a theorem.the theorems of the system than a decision !rocedure would& The tricky word here is -characteri<ation-& 7ertainly the rules of inference and the a(ioms of the /IF-system do characteri<e.

BIFE/! .73G5=E BF! Sky 7astle. () '! 8!: Escher woodcut.

that most !eo!le fancy they can et to the end of in two or three ste!s.said the Tortoise& -Even thou h it :EES consist of an infinite series of distances? I thou ht some wiseacre or other had !roved that the thin couldn1t be done?-It 7)8 be done.T?)8: isn1t invented yet2-That beautiful 'irst Pro!osition by Euclid2.the Tortoise murmured dreamily& -Hou admire Euclid?-Passionately2 So far. would you like to hear of a race-course.ust T3E ste!s. he mi ht still acce!t the SEMFE87E as a G)AI: one. and had seated himself comfortably on its back& -So you1ve ot to the end of our race-course?. I su!!ose?- .. and 8E mistake2 3ell now. >hat the Tortoise -aid to *chilles by Aewis 7arroll" )chilles had overtaken the Tortoise. let1s call them ). I su!!ose. I mean.Two-Part Invention or. /FST acce!t 9 as true?-Fndoubtedly2 The youn est child in a ?i h School—as soon as ?i h Schools are invented.E a heavy wei ht. which will not be till some two thousand years later—will rant T?)T&-)nd if some reader had 8ET yet acce!ted ) and 0 as true.eaders of Euclid will rant. at least. each one lon er than the !revious one?-Gery much indeed2.E)AAH consists of an infinite number of distances. that 9 follows lo ically from ) and 0.. !lease2 S?E.said the 6recian warrior. as he drew from his helmet 4few 6recian warriors !ossessed PE7@ETS in those days5 an enormous note-book and !encil& -Proceed2 )nd s!eak SAE3AH.the Tortoise interru!ted& -?ow then?-Then I shouldn1t be here. let1s take a little bit of the ar ument in that 'irst Pro!osition . now.said the Tortoise= -for you ). while it .)chilles modestly re!lied= -and HEF would have ot several times round the world.E)SI86?. and 9. 4)5 Thin s that are equal to the same are equal to each other& 405 The two sides of this Trian le are thin s that are equal to the same& 495 The two sides of this Trian le are equal to each other& . by this time2-Hou flatter me—'A)TTE8. 0. and the conclusion drawn from them& @indly enter them in your note-book& )nd in order to refer to them conveniently. so that any one who acce!ts ) and 0 as true.. as one 7)8 admire a treatise that won1t be !ublished for some centuries to come2-3ell.said )chilles& -It ?)S been done2 -ol#itur am(ulando& Hou see the distances were constantly :I/I8IS?I86= and so—-0ut if they had been constantly I87.

am I?.-8o doubt such a reader mi ht e(ist& ?e mi ht say. now. and takin to football&-)nd mi ht there not )ASE be some reader who would say 1I acce!t ) and 0 as true.)chilles assented& -3ell. to acce!t 9 as true&-) tortoise !layin football would be—. not 9. and to force me.the Tortoise cheerily remarked& -3e shall need them )AA2. if I failed to see its truth. 9 must be true= but I :E81T acce!t ) and ) as true&1 Such a reader would do wisely in abandonin Euclid. you /FST acce!t 9& -)nd why must I?-0ecause it follows AE6I7)AAH from them& If ) and 0 and 7 are true. of these readers. 4)5 Thin s that are equal to the same are equal to each other& 405 The two sides of this Trian le are thin s that are equal to the same& 475 If ) and 0 are true. I ima ine?-If ) and 0 and 7 are true.the Tortoise continued. I mi ht acce!t ) and 0 and 7.)chilles was be innin & -—an anomaly. I see2. -is )S HET under any lo ical necessity to acce!t 9 as true?-Muite so.said )chilles& -It comes 8ETT to the other three& If you acce!t ) and 0 and 7. -as soon as you1ve entered it in that notebook of yours& 3hat else have you ot in it?-Enly a few memoranda. but you :E81T acce!t the ?y!othetical—-Aet1s call it 7.the Tortoise hastily interru!ted& -:on1t wander from the !oint& Aet1s have 9 first.. -a few memoranda of—of the battles in which I have distin uished myself2-Plenty of blank leaves.4)chilles shuddered&5 -8ow write as I dictate. 9 /FST be true& Hou can1t dis!ute T?)T. also. mi htn1t I?- ..said the Tortoise& -Then I must ask you to acce!t 7&-I1ll do so. and football afterwards2-I1m to force you to acce!t 9. 9 /FST be true. but I :E81T acce!t the ?y!othetical1?-7ertainly there mi ht& ?E. 9 must be true&-That is my !resent !osition.said )chilles.. 1I acce!t as true the hy!othetical !ro!osition that.said the Tortoise..the Tortoise thou htfully re!eated& -That1s )8ET?E.. lo ically.. of course.. ?y!othetical.. isn1t it? )nd.)chilles said musin ly& -)nd your !resent !osition is that you acce!t ) and 0. nervously flutterin the leaves. had better take to football&-)nd 8EIT?E.said the Tortoise& -—but you :E81T acce!t 475 If ) and 0 are true. I want you to consider /E as a reader of the SE7E8: kind. and STIAA not acce!t 9. I' ) and 0 be true. 9 must be true& 495 The two sides of this Trian le are equal to each other&-Hou should call it :..

-Hou mi ht.. which a!!eared to be nearly full& The Tortoise was sayin . as he ran the !encil into its sheath& -)nd at last we1ve ot to the end of this ideal race-course2 8ow that you acce!t ) and 0 and 7 and :.re!lied the weary warrior. of course I needn1t rant 9& So it1s quite a 8E7ESS). as he buried his face in his hands& -Provided that HEF. considerin what a lot of instruction this colloquy of ours will !rovide for the Ao icians of the 8ineteenth 7entury—3EFA: you mind ado!tin a !un that my cousin the /ockTurtle will then make. you /FST acce!t 921 So you1ve no choice. and 'E. havin !ressin business at the 0ank. -?ave you ot that last ste! written down? Fnless I1ve lost count. !art. was obli ed to leave the ha!!y !air.. you see?-I see.oyfully e(claimed.SE you acce!t 9&-:o I?. I1m quite willin to rant it. in the hollow tones of des!air.. as soon as you1ve written it down& 3e will call it 4:5 If ) and 0 and 7 are true. 9 must be true& Fntil I1ve ranted T?)T.)chilles . E' 7EF. and allowin yourself to be renamed T)F6?T-FS?-)s you !lease. and did not a ain !ass the s!ot until some months afterwards& 3hen he did so. )chilles was still seated on the back of the much-endurin Tortoise. and allow yourself to be re-named ) @IAA-E)SE2- . and was writin in his notebook.7E you to do it2.ITI86 :E38. the event is PESSI0AE& So I must ask you to rant E8E more ?y!othetical&-Gery ood.said the Tortoise innocently& -Aet1s make that quite clear& I acce!t ) and 0 and 7 and :& Su!!ose I STIAA refused to acce!t 9?-Then Ao ic would take you by the throat. !lease& 3e will call it 4E5 If ) and 0 and 7 and : are true. for HEF. as a !ersonal favor.. 9 must be true& ?ave you entered that in your note-book?-I ?)GE2.H ste!. will ado!t a !un the /ock-Turtle never made. that makes a thousand and one& There are several millions more to come& )nd 3EFA: you mind.said the Tortoise& -So enter it in your book. 1Hou can1t hel! yourself& 8ow that you1ve acce!ted ) and 0 and 7 and :.the candid hero admitted= -thou h such obtuseness would certainly be !henomenal& Still.said )chilles= and there was a touch of sadness in his tone& ?ere the narrator. you see&-3hatever AE6I7 is ood enou h to tell me is worth 3.)chilles trium!hantly re!lied& -Ao ic would tell you.

and hy!hens& . it is .ust a sim!le invention of mine& Its im!ortance lies only in the fact that it !rovides an e(cellent e(am!le of many ideas that !lay a lar e role in this book& There are three distinct symbols of the !q-system. and the hy!hen& The !q-system has an infinite number of a(ioms& Since we can1t write them all down. still leaves a dee! !hiloso!hical !roblem. we want more than . we will define a(ioms in such a way that there is an obvious decision !rocedure for a(iomhood of a strin com!osed of !1s. we will look at several new formal systems& This will ive us a much wider !ers!ective on the conce!t of formal system& 0y the end of these two 7ha!ters. ! q - —the letters !. . or do the) not$ That !roblem is the !roblem of this book& In this 7ha!ter and the ne(t. we have to have some other way of describin what they are& )ctually. q. with its wit subtracted out. only each time on a hi her and hi her level= it is a wonderful analo ue to 0ach1s Ever-. the same events take !lace over and over a ain.ust a descri!tion of the a(ioms= we want a way to tell whether some iven strin is an a(iom or not& ) mere descri!tion of a(ioms mi ht characteri<e them fully and yet weakly —which was the !roblem with the way theorems in the /IF-system were characteri<ed& 3e don1t want to have to stru le for an indeterminate—!ossibly infinite len th of time. and why they are of interest to mathematicians and lo icians& The !q-System The formal system of this 7ha!ter is called the p"%s)stem& It is not im!ortant to mathematicians or lo icians—in fact. you should have quite a ood idea of the !ower of formal systems.ust to find out if some strin is an a(iom or not& Therefore.TE$ II Meaning and +orm in Mathematics T?IS Two%&art 3n#ention was the ins!iration for my two characters& Just as Aewis 7arroll took liberties with 9eno1s Tortoise and )chilles.o words and thoughts follow formal rules. so have I taken liberties with Aewis 7arroll1s Tortoise and )chilles& In 7arroll1s dialo ue. . q1s.isin 7anon& The 7arrollian :ialo ue.C/A.

will start to et rather more com!licated and abstract.:E'I8ITIE8. then a q. let us ive the name well formed string to any strin which be ins with a hy!henrou!. and the se!aratin elements are one !.is an a(iom& The literal e(!ression 19!-q9-1 is not an a(iom. --!-- . . take 9 to be 1--1. then so will --!----q--& )s is ty!ical of rules of !roduction. a strin such as --!--!--!--q--------& 8ow. I would like to !oint out that every theorem of the !q-system has three se!arate rou!s of hy!hens. the statement establishes a causal connection between the theoremhood of two strin s.rou!s should add u!. ) to be 1---1. whenever 9 is com!osed of hy!hens only& 8ote that 191 must stand for the same strin of hy!hens in both occurrences 'or e(am!le. of course 4because 191 does not belon to the !q-system5= it is more like a mold in which all a(ioms are cast— and it is called an a(iom schema& The !q-system has only one rule of !roduction.ust the way one could show that all /IFsystem theorems had to be in with M&5 This means that we can rule out. thou h it may seem too obvious to mention.rou!. and @ to be 1-1& The rule tells us. 9!-q9 is an a(iom.may seem silly= what else is there to a strin e(ce!t its form? 3hat else could !ossibly !lay a role in determinin its !ro!erties? 7learly nothin could& 0ut bear this in mind as the discussion of formal systems oes on= the notion of -form. from its form alone. stressin the !hrase -from its form alone.rocedure I !resume you have tried it& 'irst of all. --!-q--. then has a second hy!hen.rou!& for instance . and @ all stand for !articular strin s containin only hy!hens& )nd su!!ose that 9!)q@ is known to be a theorem& Then 9!)-q@. and one q.turns out to be a theorem. ). then has one !. and we will have to think more about the meanin of the word -form-& In any case. and then a final hy!henrou!& 0ack to the decision !rocedure&&& The criterion for theoremhood is that the first two hy!hen. in that order& 4This can be shown by an ar ument based on -heredity-. to the third hy!hen. Su!!ose 9. in len th. . but without assertin theoremhood for either one on its own& ) most useful e(ercise for you is to find a decision !rocedure for the theorems of the !q-system& It is not hard= if you !lay around for a while you will !robably !ick it u!& Try it& The ecision .is a theorem& 'or e(am!le. If --!---q.FAE.

and !ut the result into the bucket& 4Ba5 Throw the second-sim!lest a(iom into the bucket& . then it is by definition a theorem. via one of the rules& 0y oin over the various rules one by one. which I ive now& It is very reminiscent of the enie1s systematic theorem. or you1ll come to a !oint where you1re stuck. but is com!licated by the !resence of an a(iom schema& 3e are oin to form a -bucket. incidentally. it must have come from a shorter strin . any theorem !asses the !ro!erty on to its offs!rin & This shows why the addition criterion is correct& There is. but also e(actly which shorter strin s could be its forebears on the -family tree-& In this way. and the test is over& So su!!ose instead that it1s not an a(iom& Then. if the first strin does not satisfy the addition criterion. you can !in!oint not only the rules that could conceivably !roduce that strin . since B !lus B equals C. thin s are ho!eless5& If it is an a(iom. look first at the a(iom schema& Ebviously. 4"a5 Throw the sim!lest !ossible a(iom (-!-q--5 into the bucket& 4"b5 )!!ly the rule of inference to the item in the bucket. look at the rule of !roduction& If the first strin satisfies the addition criterion. eventually either you will find that one of your short strin s is an a(iom. then neither does the second strin & The rule makes the addition criterion into a hereditary !ro!erty of theorems. even before findin the addition criterion& That fact is that the !q-system is not com!licated by the o!!osin currents of lengthening and shortening rules= it has only len thenin rules& )ny formal system which tells you how to make lon er theorems from shorter ones. has ot to have a decision !rocedure for its theorems& 'or su!!ose you are iven a strin & 'irst check whether it1s an a(iom or not 4I am assumin that there is a decision !rocedure for a(iomhood—otherwise. you -reduce. to be contrasted with a (ottom%up decision !rocedure. but never the reverse.is a theorem. and none of them can be further shortened by runnin some rule or other backwards& This !oints out that there really is not much dee! interest in formal systems with len thenin rules only= it is the inter!lay of len thenin and shortenin rules that ives formal systems a certain fascination&& Bottom-u! #s& To!-do'n The method above mi ht be called a top%down decision !rocedure. so must the second one—and conversely. in that none of your short strin s is an a(iom.ust can1t et shorter and shorter indefinitely= therefore.into which we throw theorems as they are enerated& ?ere is how it is done.eneratin method for the /IF-system. strin s to test& )s you continue inchin your way backwards in this fashion.q---.ected to the same test& The worst that can ha!!en is a !roliferation of more and more.the !roblem to determinin whether any of several new but shorter strin s is a theorem& Each of them can in turn be sub. since B !lus B is not "& To see why this is the !ro!er criterion. it only manufactures a(ioms which satisfy the addition criterion& Second. but shorter and shorter. a fact about the !q-system which would enable us to say with confidence that it has a decision !rocedure. whereas --!--q-is not. you must be ettin closer to the source of all theorems—the a(iom schemata& Hou . to be a theorem.

is a theorem because B !lus % equals L& It could even occur to you that the theorem --!---q-is a statement. the word -isomor!hism. as time oes on& It is a ain a consequence of that lack of shortenin rules& So if you have a !articular strin . . and a source of wonderment& The !erce!tion of an isomor!hism between two known structures is a si nificant advance in knowled e—and I claim that it is such !erce!tions of isomor!hism which create meanings in the minds of !eo!le& ) final word on the !erce!tion of isomor!hisms. whose meaning is that B !lus % is L& Is this a reasonable way to look at thin s? 3ell.is . for et it—it is not a theorem& This decision !rocedure is bottom-u! because it is workin its way u! from the basics. and throw all results into the bucket& 4%a5 Throw the third-sim!lest a(iom into the bucket& 4%b5 )!!ly the rule to each item in the bucket. since they come in many sha!es and si<es. and see it from another !ers!ective& The word -isomor!hism1 a!!lies when two com!le( structures can be ma!!ed onto each other. the bucket is ettin filled with lon er and lon er theorems. it works its way back down towards the basics& Isomor!hisms Induce Meaning 8ow we come to a central issue of this 7ha!ter—indeed of the book& Perha!s you have already thou ht to yourself that the !q-theorems are like additions& The strin --!---q--. it is not always totally clear when you really have found an isomor!hism& Thus. checkin all the while for the strin in question& If it turns u! —theorem2 If at some !oint everythin that oes into the bucket is lon er than the strin in question. does the strin --!---q---. I deliberately chose 1 !1 to remind you of 1!lus1. etc& ) moment1s reflection will show that you can1t fail to !roduce every theorem of the !qsystem this way& /oreover. in such a way that to each !art of one structure there is a corres!ondin !art in the other structure. -isomor!hism.was defined as an information !reservin transformation& 3e can now o into that notion a little more dee!ly. and 1q1 to remind you of 1equals1&&& So. which you want to test for theoremhood. written in an odd notation. where -corres!ondin . such as --!---q-----. and throw all results into the bucket& etc&.4Bb5 )!!ly the rule to each item in the bucket.oy when a mathematician discovers an isomor!hism between two structures which he knows& It is often a -bolt from the blue-.means that the two !art !lay similar roles in their res!ective structures& This usa e of the word -isomor!hism.actually mean -B !lus % equals L-? 3hat would make us feel that way? /y answer would be that we have !erceived an isomorphism between !q-theorems and additions& In the Introduction.is derived from a more !recise notion in mathematics& It is cause for .ust follow the numbered ste!s. fi uratively s!eakin . which is to say the a(ioms& The !revious decision !rocedure is to!-down because it does !recisely the reverse.

your !roblem is how to assi n inter!retations to its symbols in a meanin ful way—that is. all of a sudden thin s . lin uists.a word with all the usual va ueness of words—which is a defect but an advanta e as well& In this case. ! q ---Ü Þ !lus Ü Þ equals Ü Þ one Ü Þ two Ü Þ three etc& This symbol-word corres!ondence has a name. a ma!!in between the !arts of the two structures. there is the corres!ondence between true statements and theorems& 0ut—note carefully—this hi her-level corres!ondence could not be !erceived without the !rior choice of an inter!retation for the symbols& Thus it would be more accurate to describe it as a corres!ondence between true statements and interpreted theorems& In any case we have dis!layed a two-tiered corres!ondence.ecipherment of +inear B by John 7hadwick& 0ut it is uncommon. based on educated uesses& 3hen you hit a ood choice. for someone to be in the !osition of -decodin . we have an e(cellent !rototy!e for the conce!t of isomor!hism& There is a -lower level. in such a way that a hi her-level corres!ondence emer es between true statements and theorems& Hou may make several tentative stabs in the dark before findin a ood set of words to associate with the symbols& It is very similar to attem!ts to crack a code.a formal system turned u! in the e(cavations of a ruined civili<ation2 /athematicians 4and more recently. to say the least. on a hi her level. interpretation& Secondly. and some others5 are the only users of formal systems. which is ty!ical of all isomor!hisms& 3hen you confront a formal system you know nothin of. !hiloso!hers. and they invariably have an inter!retation in mind for the formal systems which they use and !ublish& The idea of these !eo!le is to set u! a formal system whose theorems reflect some !ortion of reality isomor!hically& In such a case.choice. I was in this !osition& Hou see why I chose the symbols I chose& It is no accident theorems are isomor!hic to additions= it ha!!ened because I deliberately sou ht out a way to reflect additions ty!o ra!hically& . and work s!eeds u! enormously& Pretty soon everythin falls into !lace& The e(citement of such an e(!erience is ca!tured in The . and if you ho!e to discover some hidden meanin in it.ust feel ri ht. or to deci!her inscri!tions in an unknown lan ua e like Ainear 0 of 7rete. the only way to !roceed is by trial and error. the choice of symbols is a hi hly motivated one. a -meanin ful. as is the choice of ty!o ra!hical rules of !roduction& 3hen I devised the !q-system.of our isomor!hism—that is.

the !qsystem seems to force us into reco ni<in that s)m(ols of a formal s)stem. !ositive or ne ative. we then make new statements based on the meanin of the word& In a sense the meanin becomes acti#e.acquires a new inter!retation.4ma!!ed onto q q q-!5 . in a lan ua e. since it brin s into bein a new rule for creatin sentences& This means that our command of lan ua e is not like a finished !roduct. and reality& Such inter!retations abound—any random choice a will do& 'or instance. by the rules of !roduction& 3e can choose -meanin s. we can have a meaningless inter!retation.Meaningless and Meaningful Inter!retations Hou can choose inter!retations other than the one I chose& Hou need make every theorem come out true& 0ut there would be very little reason make an inter!retation in which.ust as much as any inter!reted theorem& The other kind of inter!retation will be called meaningful& Fnder such an inter!retation. when we have learned a meanin for a word. however& It is this. -a!!le horse a!!le hat a!!le a!!le-—a !oetic sentiment. the theorems are !redefined.oy -ha!!y ha!!y ha!!y a!!le horse. say.assi"e Meanings Probably the most si nificant fact of this 7ha!ter. which mi ht a!!eal to horses. but 1!lus1 is the only meaningful choice we1ve come u! with& In summary. ! Ü Þ horse q Ü Þ ha!!y . if understood dee!ly this. or any better. the rules for makin sentences increase when we learn new meanin s& En the other hand. take this one. certainly even less reason to make an inter!retation under which there is no correlation at all. though initiall) without meaning. between theoremhood and truth& Aet us therefore make a distinction between two ty!es of inter!retations a formal system& 'irst. all theorems came out false. the meanin of 1 !1 seems to be 1!lus1 thou h it can have a million different inter!retations& Acti"e #s! . than nontheorems& ) horse mi ht en. this inter!retation has very little -meanin fulness-= under inter!retation. theorems and truths corres!ond—that is. one in which we fail to see any isomor!hic connection between theorems of system. and mi ht even lead them to favor this mode of inter!retin !q-strin s2 ?owever.based on an isomor!hism 4if we can find one5 between theorems and true statements& 0ut this does not ive us the license to o out and add new theorems to the .Ü Þ a!!le 8ow -!-q-. cannot a#oid taking on "meaning" of sorts at least if an isomorphism is found! The difference between meanin it formal system and in a lan ua e is a very im!ortant one. an isomor!hism e(ists between theorems and some !ortion of reality& That is why it is ood to distin uish between interpretations and meanings& )ny old word can be used as an inter!retation for 1 !1. in a formal system. theorems don1t sound any truer.

curious.established theorems& That is what the . one mi ht wish that this strin were a theorem& 0ut wishin doesn1t chan e the fact that it isn1t& )nd it would be a serious mistake to think that it -must. one sin le formal system can be isomor!hic to both. -0ut which one is the meanin of the strin ?.ust as meanin ful as the old one& Ebviously.be a theorem. and our meanin ful inter!retation is entirely derived from lookin at well-formed strin s& In a formal system. one mi ht be seduced by the newly found -meanin . of course. it is silly to ask.)n inter!retation will be meanin ful to the e(tent that it accurately reflects some isomor!hism to the real world& 3hen different as!ects of the real world are isomor!hic to each other 4in this case. but we do not have the ri ht to create new theorems !urely on the basis of the meanin s we1ve assi ned the symbols& Inter!reted formal systems straddle the line between systems without meanin .equirement of 'ormality in 7ha!ter I was warnin you of& In the /IF-system. and systems with meanin & Their strin s can be thou ht of as -e(!ressin .of each symbol into thinkin that the strin --!--!--!--q------is a theorem& )t least. since it is not well-formed. the meanin must remain passi#e= we can read each strin accordin to the meanin s of its constituent symbols. . there was no tem!tation to o beyond the four rules.has a new inter!retation. --!---q----. additions and subtractions5. -B equals % taken from L-& Ef course it is a true statement& )ll theorems will come out true under this new inter!retation& It is . because no inter!retation was sou ht or found& 0ut here.ust because B !lus B !lus B !lus B equals *& It would even be misleadin to attribute it any meanin at all. ! Ü Þ equals q Ü Þ taken from . annoyin & 0ut it will come back in dee!er conte(ts and brin with it a reat richness of ideas& . but this must come only as a consequence of the formal !ro!erties of the system& ouble-Entendre* )nd now.thin s.Ü Þ one -.Ü Þ two etc& 8ow. and therefore can take on two !assive meanin s& This kind of double-valuedness of symbols at strin s is an e(tremely im!ortant !henomenon& ?ere it seems trivial. I want to destroy any illusion about havin found the meanin s for the symbols of the !q-system& 7onsider the followin association. in our new system.

that reality is itself nothin but one very com!licated formal system& Its symbols do not move around on !a!er. and seems to mimic it !erfectly. and a rule of !roduction& /y oal in inventin the !qsystem was to imitate additions.?ere is a summary of our observations about the !q-system& Fnder either of the two meanin ful inter!retations iven. however. the answer mi ht a!!ear to be yes& Ene could su est.are the laws of !hysics. reality and the formal systems are inde!endent& 8obody need be aware that there is a isomor!hism between the two& Each side stands by itself—one !lus or equals two. I wanted every true addition of !recisely two !ositive inte ers to be translatable into a strin . such as -B !lus % equals D-. resultin in a new set of !ositions and velocities belon in to the -ne(t. that all false additions. that it has only the most theoretical interest= and besides. but rather in a three-dimensional vacuum 4s!ace5= they are the elementary !articles of which everythin is com!osed& 4Tacit assum!tion. in that its theorems are isomor!hic to truths about that !art of reality& ?owever.makes sense&5 The -ty!o ra!hical rules. as far formal systems o= it is natural to wonder about what !ortion of reality can be imitated in its behavior by a set of meanin less symbols overned by formal rules& 7an all of reality be turned into a formal system? In a very broad sense. some false& The idea of well%formed strings in any formal system is that they are those strin s which. was5 the ori inal confi uration of all the !articles at the -be innin of time-& This is so randiose a conce!tion.is a theorem= and -!-q-. when inter!reted symbol for symbol. or any formal system. that it is easily mimicked by a ty!o ra!hical rule overnin meanin less symbols& This still should not be a bi sur!rise since addition is such a sim!le conce!t& It is a common!lace that addition can be ca!tured in the s!innin ears of a device like a cash re ister& 0ut it is clear that we have hardly scratched the surface. that there is an end to the descendin chain of matter. sheds new li ht on truths in the domain of its inter!retation& ?ave we learned any new additions by !roducin !q-theorems? 7ertainly not= but we have learned somethin about the nature of addition as a !rocess—namely. which tell how. but usually. which would be a theorem& That oal was achieved& 8otice. but which are not theorems& +ormal Systems and $eality This is our first e(am!le of a case where a formal system is based u!on !ortion of reality. quantum mechanics 4and other !arts of !hysics5 casts at least some . every well-formed strin has a rammatical assertion for its counter!art—some are true. there one in mind&5 )mon the well-formed strin s occur the theorems& The. whether or not we know that -!-q-. so that the e(!ression -elementary !articles. are defined by an a(iom schema. I wanted every theorem to e(!ress a true addition under inter!retation= conversely. yield grammatical sentences& 4Ef course. it de!ends on the inter!retation. therefore. are ma!!ed into strin s which are well-formed.instant& So the theorems of this rand formal system are the !ossible confi urations of !articles at different times in the history of the universe& The sole a(iom is 4or !erha!s. to modify them. iven the !ositions and velocities of all !articles at a iven instant. for instance.is still a theorem whether or not we connect it with addition& Hou mi ht wonder whether makin this formal system.

and then counted the little squares in it? /ost !eo!le would re ard the drawin and countin unnecessary& They would instead offer as !roof a few marks on !a!er. let1s limit ourselves to mathematics as our -real world-& ?ere. ". if we1ve tried to model a formal system on some !art of mathematics. unless we1ve !roven that the isomor!hism is !erfect? )nd how will we !rove that the isomor!hism is !erfect.doubt on even the theoretical worth of this idea& 0asically. if we don1t already know all about the truths in the disci!line to be in with? Su!!ose that in an e(cavation somewhere. unless we know everythin there is to know about both the formal system and the corres!ondin domain of inter!retation? It is in somewhat this odd !osition that we will find ourselves when we attem!t to match the reality of natural numbers 4i&e&. and every nontheorem come out false& 0ut this is somethin which we could only check directly in a finite number of cases& The set of theorems is most likely infinite& ?ow will we know that all theorems e(!ress truths under this inter!retation. the nonne ative inte ers.in number theory and what we can et at by symbol mani!ulation& So let us briefly look at the basis for callin some statements of number theory true.&&&5 with the ty!o ra!hical symbols of a formal system& 3e will try to understand the relationshi! between what we call -truth. B. ?ow can we be sure. we actually did discover some mysterious formal system& 3e would try out various inter!retations and !erha!s eventually hit u!on one which seemed to make every theorem come out true. which is an o!en question& Mathematics and Symbol Mani!ulation Instead of dealin with such a bi !icture. that we1ve done the . and others false& ?ow much is "B times "B? Everyone knows it is "CC& 0ut how many of the !eo!le who ive that answer have actually at any time in their lives drawn a "B by "B rectan le.ob accurately —es!ecially if we1re not one hundred !er cent familiar with that !ortion of mathematics already? Su!!ose the oal of the formal system is to brin us new knowled e in that disci!line& ?ow will we know that the inter!retation of every theorem is true. "B W "B ]]] BC "B ]]] "CC . such as are shown below. a serious question arises. we are askin if the universe o!erates deterministically. +.

the number of cubes will not chan e& 8ow these assum!tions are not verifiable in all !ossible cases.)nd that would be the -!roof-& 8early everyone believes that if you counted the squares. you would et "CC of them= few !eo!le feel that outcome is in doubt& The conflict between the two !oints of view comes into shar!er focus when you consider the !roblem of determinin the value #*$DLC%B" ( "B%CLD$*#& 'irst of all.ust the assum!tions that when you rotate the solid in various ways. load them into our car.ust a little bit& So is it ever !ossible to know what the answer is? If you trust the symbolic !rocess which involves mani!ulatin di its accordin to certain sim!le rules.ust too likely that somewhere.ust think of many cubes assembled to form a lar e rectan ular solid& /ulti!licative commutativity and associativity are . for many children. drive one hundred miles. startin from the other end& Is it clear that the two of you will et the same answer? The result of a countin !rocess is inde!endent of the way in which it is done& This is really an assum!tion about what countin is& It would be senseless to try to !rove it. find it amusin to show why that -fact. because the number of such cases is infinite& 3e take them for ranted= we believe them 4if we ever think about them5 as dee!ly as we could believe anythin & The amount of money in our !ocket will not chan e as we walk down the street.is false after all& I am such a !erson. first that ( P c Q c P ( always. because it is so basic= either you see it or you don1t—but in the latter case. un!ack it. one can et to the commutativity and associativity of addition 4i&e&. yes& That !rocess is !resented to children as a device which ets ri ht answer= lost in the shuffle. I invented situations in which they were wron & Hou may have done the same& It oes to . only a very ullible !erson would be willin to believe their final answer& It is . and as soon as I had written down the e(am!les above involvin sticks. and second that ( P c P d/ Q ( P c/ P d always5& The same assum!tion can also you to the commutativity and associativity of multi!lication= .ostlin it u! and down= the number of books we have will not chan e if we !ack them u! in a bo(. unload the bo(. somehow. somebody else counts them. money. it is virtually im!ossible to construct the a!!ro!riate rectan le= and what is worse. are the rhyme reason of that !rocess& The di it-shuntin laws for multi!lication are based mostly on a few !ro!erties of addition and multi!lication which are assumed to hold for all numbers& The Basic La's of Arithmetic The kind of assum!tion I mean is illustrated below& Su!!ose that you lay down a few sticks. a !roof won1t hel! you a bit& 'rom this kind of assum!tion. as soon as some undeniable fact is written down. and !lace the books in a new shelf& )ll of this is !art of what we mean by num(er& There are certain ty!es of !eo!le who. somebody bobbled . even if it were constructed and hu e armies of !eo!le s!ent centuries countin the little squares. . I II II II I I 8ow you count them& )t the same time. and books.

is a marvelous contrast between the formal and the informal. such as -" and " make ". if you try to look it u!.truths. questions for which no countin !rocess is sufficient to !rovide the answer—not even theoretically sufficient& Aet us take a classic e(am!le of such a !ro!erty of natural numbers& The statement is. in makin the transition from numbers as !ractical thin s to numbers as formal thin s& Ence you have decided to try to ca!suli<e all of number theory in an ideal system. or -" !lus " !lus " equals ". usin the !lus-si n is ina!!ro!riate in both cases& 0ut such cases !roliferate& Two raindro!s runnin down a window!ane mer e= does one !lus one make one? ) cloud breaks u! into two clouds—more evidence for the same? It is not at all easy to draw a shar! line between cases where what is ha!!enin could be called -addition-. and makin sure each one is clearly distin uishable from all the others& 0ut then how could one count ideas? Er the number of ases com!risin the atmos!here? Somewhere. and CDB dialects&There is somethin stran e about !recise statements like that. for instance.umbers 8umbers as realities misbehave& ?owever. removed from countin beads. and their more advanced consequences constitute number theory& There is only one relevant question to be asked. you can !robably find a statement such as. showin why.ust mean !ro!erties such as the sum of a !articular !air of inte ers& That can be found out by countin . with a fascinatin transition re ion& )re numbers really as free as birds? :o they suffer as much from bein crystalli<ed into a rule-obeyin system? Is there a ma ical transition re ion between numbers in reality and numbers on !a!er? 3hen I s!eak of the !ro!erties of natural numbers.4the Trinity5& Hou can easily !ick holes in those slo ans.and -dialect. you will !robably come u! with some criterion involvin se!aration of the ob. this assertion& The best we could do would be to count !rimes for a while and concede that there are -a lot-& 0ut no amount of countin alone . -There are "$ lan ua es in India.show that numbers as abstractions are really quite different from the everyday numbers which we use& Peo!le en. one of Escher1s most beautiful. and where some other word is wanted& If you think about the question. or refute. is it really !ossible to do the .numbers constitute arithmetic. addin .'irst of all.4for lovers5. and anybody who has rown u! in this century cannot doubt the mechani<ability of such !rocesses as countin .oy inventin slo ans which violate basic arithmetic but which illustrate -dee!er. dialects. there is an ancient and innate sense in !eo!le that numbers ou ht not to misbehave& There is somethin clean and !ure in the abstract notion of number.ob com!letely? )re numbers so clean and crystalline and re ular that their nature can be com!letely ca!tured in the rules of a formal system? The !icture +i(eration 4'i & "%5.are themselves fu<<y& Ideal . and so on& I mean the kinds of !ro!erties which mathematicians are interested in e(!lorin . multi!lyin .ects in s!ace. or clouds= and there ou ht to be a way of talkin about numbers without always havin the silliness of reality come in and intrude& The hard-ed ed rules that overn -ideal. there is no countin !rocess which will ever be able to confirm. I don1t . -There are infinitely many !rime numbers&. when the conce!ts -lan ua e.

or a!!ealin .would ever resolve the question of whether the number of !rimes is finite or infinite& There could always be more& The statement—and it is called -Euclid1s Theorem. but it is not obvious& ?owever. mathematicians since Euclid have always called it true& 3hat is the reason? .4notice the ca!ital -T-5—is quite unobvious& It may seem reasonable.

73G5=E BH! Aiberation. BIGG/! . () '!8! Escher lithograph.

if it is divisible at all 4other than by " and itself only is divisible by numbers reater than N& So either it is itself !rime. written -N2-& 3hat you et is divisible by every number u! to N& 3hen you add " to N2. or !rime divisors are reater than N! 0ut in either case we1ve shown the must e(ist a !rime above N& The !rocess holds no matter what number is& 3hatever 8 is. you1ll have to a ree with his conclusion& That1s most fortunate—because it means that mathematicians will always a ree on what statements to label -true.rather than . the startin !oints are basic ideas about multi!lication and division and forth& The short ste!s are the ste!s of reasonin & )nd thou h every individual ste! of the reasonin seems obvious. there is a !rime lar er than it& Pick a number— N& /ulti!ly all the !ositive inte ers startin with " and endin with N= in other words. when you divide by B5= can1t be a multi!le of % 4because it leaves I over.roof The reason is that reasoning tells them it is so& Aet us follow the reasonin involved& 3e will look at a variant of Euclid1s !roof& This !roof works by showin that whatever number you !ick. when you divide by N5= In other words. there seems to be no esca!e route= once you a ree to hear Euclid out.ust . can1t be a multi!le of N 4because it leaves " over. is called generali@ation. when you divide by %5= can1t be a multi!le of C 4because it leaves " over. N2 ^ ". yet we believe it. . because we believe in reasonin & If you acce!t reasonin . the result can1t be a multi!le of B 4because it leaves " over. com!ellin . . and beautiful& It illustrates that by takin several rash short ste!s one can et a lon way from one1s startin !oint& In our case. the end result is not obvious& 3e can never check directly whether the statement is true or not.and what statements to label -false-& This !roof e(em!lifies an orderly thou ht !rocess& Each statement related to !revious ones in an irresistible way& This is why it is called -!roof. incidentally.ood evidence-& In mathematics the oal always to ive an ironclad !roof for some unobvious . and we will meet a ain later in a more formal conte(t& It is where we !hrase an ar ument terms of a sin le number 4N5. form the factorial of N.Euclid%s . when you divide by C5= . and then !oint out that N was uns!ecified and therefore the ar ument is a eneral one& Euclid1s !roof is ty!ical of what constitutes -real mathematics-& It is sim!le. there is a !rime reater than N& )nd thus ends the demonstration of the infinitude of the !rimes& This last ste!.

or -no matter what number N is-& 3e could also !hrase the !roof over a ain. we never have to deal with infinitely many statements& 3e deal with . the dissection can o only so far. thou h when read aloud. thou h themselves finite. after all. so that it uses the !hrase -all N-& 0y knowin the a!!ro!riate conte(t and correct ways of usin such !hrases.obeys& 3e may be unconscious of them. and then we hit the -atomic. since they1re re!resented by means a small and styli<ed set of symbols. it makes sense for his . there are rules which our usa e of -all. consistin of symbols—suitable only for e(!ressin statements about numbers& Then we can look at the !roof as it e(ists in its translated version& It will be a set of statements which are related. the !roof would a!!ear incredibly com!licated& To our minds it is clearest when several ste!s are telesco!ed to ether. embody an infinitude= and by usin them.in a few ways which are defined by the thou ht !rocesses of reasonin & That is. is only a circumlocution for sayin that we are uided by rules which we never make e(!licit& 3e have used words all our lives in certain !atterns. we attribute the courses of our thou ht !rocesses to the -meanin s.of words& That discovery was a crucial reco nition in the lon !ath towards the formali<ation of number theory& If we were to delve into Euclid1s !roof more and more carefully. I will show one way of breakin the !roof into atomic units.ust two or three conce!ts. thou h& The o!erations in Euclid1s brain when he invented the !roof must have involved millions of neurons 4nerve cells5. they seem to be statements about numbers and their !ro!erties. we would see that it is com!osed of many. take on the as!ect of !atterns& In other words. such as the word -all-—which. still when looked at on !a!er.um!s which seem to flow smoothly when !erceived from a hi her vanta e !oint& In 7ha!ter GIII. in some detectable way& 0ut the statements. line by line. and instead of callin the !atterns -rules-. we would be in to discern individual frames& In other words. many of which fired several hundred times in a sin le second& The mere utterance of a sentence involves hundreds of thousands of neurons& If Euclid1s thou hts were that com!licated. and you will see how incredibly many ste!s are involved& Perha!s it should not sur!rise you. to form one sin le sentence& If we tried to look at the !roof in slow motion.nature of reasonin !rocesses& ) !roof can be broken down into a series of tiny but discontinuous . they seem to be abstract !atterns—and the lineby-line structure of the !roof may start to look like slow transformation of !atterns accordin to some few ty!o ra!hical rules& Getting Around Infinity )lthou h Euclid1s !roof is a !roof that all numbers have a certain !ro!erty it avoids treatin each of the infinitely many cases se!arately& It ets around it by usin !hrases like -whatever N is-. and tend to claim we o!erate on the basis of the meaning of the word= but that. we sideste! the a!!arent !roblem that there are an infinite number of facts we want to !rove& 3e use the word -all.statement& The very fact of the ste!s bein linked to ether in an ironclad way su ests that there may be a patterned structure bindin these statements to ether& This structure can best be e(!osed by findin a new vocabulary—a styli<ed vocabulary. many small—almost infinitesimal ste!s& If all those ste!s were written out line after line.

whether it is theoretically !ossible to attain the level of our thinkin abilities. we will lay out a formal system that 4"5 includes a styli<ed vocabulary in which all statements about natural numbers can be e(!ressed. and a !roof in our formal system. but the com!le(ities of the two are com!arable& It is as if nature wants the com!le(ity of the !roof of the infinitude of !rimes to be conserved.!roof to contain a hu e number of ste!s2 4There may be little direct connection between the neural actions in his brain. more enerally. by usin some formal system& . and 4B5 has rules corres!ondin to all the ty!es of reasonin which seem necessary& ) very im!ortant question will be whether the rules for symbol mani!ulation which we have then formulated are really of equal !ower 4as far as number theory is concerned5 to our usual mental reasonin abilities—or. even when the systems involved are very different from each other&5 In 7ha!ters to come.

3asn1t it terrifyin to see so many of them at the same time? *chilles. well. ?ello. it1s all the same to me& . -!hantasma orical beasts-? 73G5=E BD! /osaic II. 3ondrous many of them. no wonder it1s stiff. ) uitar2? Ef all thin s to be in the midst of all those weird creatures& Say. 3ell.Sonata for Unaccompanied Achilles The telephone ringsR *chilles picks it up! *chilles. eh? 3hat kinds. () '! 8! Escher lithograph. Eh. Eh. then& 3hat on earth induced you kee! your neck twisted that way for so lon ? *chilles. /r& T& ?ow are you? *chilles. hello. this is )chilles& *chilles. ?ow lon did you hold it in that !osition? *chilles. for e(am!le? *chilles. don1t you !lay the uitar? *chilles. 3hat do you mean. I1m sorry to hear it& :o you have any idea what caused it? *chilles. ) torticollis? Eh. BIGC/! *chilles.

Hou mean he looked like he was meditatin on esoteric 0uddhist matters. Eh. So here1s a case where havin a headache actually mi ht have hel!ed you. usin your fi ure. not forwards. Hes.round. So T?)T1S what you mean by -fi ure. then& 3here did you hear this infernal riddle? *chilles. Hou want to come over now? 0ut I thou ht— *chilles.and . Gery in enious—but that1s almost cheatin & It1s certainly not what I meant2 *chilles.and . 3ell. normally I don1t like hints. 3hat1s a word that be ins with the letters -?E. ) headache too? That1s a shame& Perha!s you should .!u<<le& *chilles. relatin it to /H !u<<le& . in that word& *chilles.and also ends with -?E-? *chilles. but in reality he was . and let me try to work on it. I don1t know what you mean by -fi ure. I see& Hes. but it1s a sort of -de eneratesolution& There1s another solution which I had in mind& *chilles. I fully know what you mean& 3ell. Hou1re ri ht= I wonder why I never noticed that difference between fiddles and uitars before& S!eakin of fiddlin . this is too tricky for me& I think I1/ startin to et a headache& *chilles. 1)1. !u<<le.ust bou ht a marvelous recordin of them& I still can1t et over the way 0ach uses a sin le violin to create a !iece with such interest& *chilles. he1s my favorite artist& In any case. ) word with the letters 1)1. I see all the black animals& *chilles. I see& ?ave you tried countin shee!? *chilles. True. )ha2—the snail knew what this fellow was u! to& 0ut how did you come to talk to the snail? *chilles. Eh. 7on ratulations2 8ow maybe you1ll be able to et to slee!2 So tell me. what is the solution? *chilles.ust tryin to think u! com!le( word !u<<les? *chilles. I1ve ot a !rint of 'osaic 33 han in on my wall. Say.occurs backwards. 1:1. Hes. if it1s T?)T distractin . oh. ?ours and hours? It sounds like I1m in for a lon !u<<le.in this case& *chilles. I also see how their -ne ative s!ace-—what1s left out—defines the white animals& *chilles. I a ree—can1t do any harm& ?ere it is. 7ertainly I know 'osaic 332 I know )AA of Escher1s works& )fter all. -):)7.ust drive you further into distraction? *chilles. 171 consecutively inside it&&& ?mm&&& 3hat about -abracadabra-? *chilles. J& S& 0ach? I .round hint.ust o to bed& *chilles. how would you like to come over and listen to one of the sonatas for unaccom!anied violin by your favorite com!oser.round-& 0ut what does that have to do with the -):)7. I once heard a word !u<<le a little bit like this one& :o you want to hear it? Er would it . rather than hinderin you& E(cellent2 0ut I1m still in the dark on your -):)7.*chilles. !erha!s you1d better tell it to me. in !lain view from here& *chilles. but all ri ht& 3hat1s your hint? *chilles.!u<<le? *chilles. Ef course you1re ri ht—it fulfills the conditions. too& *chilles. That1s e(actly it2 ?ow did you come u! with it so fast? *chilles. Gery well& Perha!s by then I1ll have thou ht of the ri ht answer to HEF.

yes. I see—sort of an o!tional feature& Ene could listen to them either way—with or without accom!animent& 0ut how would one know what the accom!animent is su!!osed to sound like? *chilles. it seems a little stran e that he would have written out the har!sichord !art. to leave it to the listener1s ima ination& )nd !erha!s. I uess that it is best. as you said. 6ood-bye. Hou1ve invented a theory about them? *chilles. )ccom!anied by what instrument? *chilles. 3ell.*chilles. )h. I1d love to !lay them for you& *chilles. if that1s the case. after all. .i ht& 3ell. I1ll see you shortly& *chilles. /r& T& . and had it !ublished as well& *chilles. 0ach never even had accom!animent in mind at all& Those sonatas seem to work very indeed as they are& *chilles. then.

and where the only such theorems would be ones in which the hy!hen-strin contained e(actly a !rime number of hy!hens& Thus.rimes #s! Com!osites T?E. but related. res!ectively.---. !roblem& 3e could try to make a system similar to the !q-system. and @& 48otice I am takin s!ecial !ains to distin uish between a strin and the number of hy!hens it contains&5 Then we wish the strin 9 t ) q @ to be a theorem if and only if S times Y equals N& 'or instance. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 readin and reco ni<in any of a finite set of symbols= writin down any symbol belon in to that set= co!yin any of those symbols from one !lace to another= erasin any of those symbols= checkin to see whether one symbol is the same as another= kee!in and usin a list of !reviously enerated theorems& The list is a little redundant.should be a theorem because B times % equals D. so we really only need to make a list of the kinds of thin s we have !ermitted. it is im!ortant to s!ecify clearly what is meant by t)pographical o!erations& The com!lete re!ertoire has been !resented in the /IF-system and the !q-system. and N are. but no matter& 3hat is im!ortant is that it clearly involves only trivial abilities. instead of addition& Aet1s call it the t"%s)stem. could we com!ound some of these o!erations to make a formal system in which !rimes are distin uished from com!osite numbers? The tq-System ) first ste! mi ht be to try to solve a sim!ler. .ust one a(iom schema and one rule of inference.ust about as easily as the !q-system namely. but --t--q--should not be a theorem& The tq-system can be characteri<ed . . and it may not have a!!eared very stran e& 0ut su!!ose the oal were to create a formal system with theorems of the form . each of them far less than the ability to distin uish !rimes from non!rimes& ?ow. but . e(ce!t that it re!resents multi!lication. the numbers of hy!hens in the hy!hen-strin s 9.would not& ?ow could this be done ty!o ra!hically? 'irst. the letter 191 standin for a hy!hen-strin . ).TE$ III +igure and Ground . --t---q----. by usin .would be a theorem.--. then.E IS ) stran eness to the idea that conce!ts can be ca!tured by sim!le ty!o ra!hical mani!ulations& The one conce!t so far ca!tured is that of addition. su!!ose S.C/A. Y.9. 1t1 for 1times1& /ore s!ecifically.

)TIE/ S7?E/), 9 t - q 9 is an a(iom, whenever 9 is a hy!hen strin & ;FAE E' I8'E;E87E, Su!!ose that 9, ), and @ are all hy!hen-strin s& )nd su!!ose that 9 t ) q @ is an old theorem& Then, 9 t ) - q @ 9 is a new theorem& 0elow is the derivation of the theorem --t---q-----4"5 4B5 4%5 --t-q---t--q-----t---q------4a(iom5 4by rule of inference, usin line 4"5 as the old theorem5 4by rule of inference, usin line 4B5 as the old theorem5

8otice how the middle hy!hen-strin rows by one hy!hen each time the rule of inference is a!!lied= so it is !redictable that if you want a theorem with ten hy!hens in the middle, you a!!ly the rule of inference nine times in a row&

Ca!turing Com!ositeness
/ulti!lication, a sli htly trickier conce!t than addition, has now been -ca!turedty!o ra!hically, like the birds in Escher1s +i(eration& 3hat about !rimeness? ?ere1s a !lan that mi ht seem smart, usin the tq-system define a new set of theorems of the form C(, which characteri<e composite numbers, as follows, ;FAE, Su!!ose 9, ), and @ are hy!hen-strin s& If 9 - t ) - q @ is a theorem then C@ is a theorem& This works by sayin that N 4the number of hy!hens in @5 is com!osite as lon as it is the !roduct of two numbers reater than "—namely, S ^ " 4the number of hy!hens in 9-5, and Y ^ " 4the number of hy!hens in )-5& I am defendin this new rule by ivin you some -Intelli ent mode- .ustifications for it& That is because you are a human bein , and want to know wh) there is such a rule& If you were o!eratin e(clusively in the -/echanical mode-, you would not need any .ustification, since /-mode workers .ust follow the rules mechanically and ha!!ily, never questionin = them2 0ecause you work in the I-mode, you will tend to blur in your mind the distinction between strin s and their inter!retations& Hou see, thin s can become quite confusin as soon as you !erceive -meanin - in the symbol which you are mani!ulatin & Hou have to fi ht your own self to kee! from thinkin that the string 1%%%1 is the num(er %& The ;equirement of 'ormality, which in 7ha!ter I !robably seemed !u<<lin 4because it seemed so obvious5, here becomes tricky, and crucial& It is the essential thin which kee!s you from mi(in u! the I-mode with the /-mode= or said another way, it kee!s you from mi(in u! arithmetical facts with ty!o ra!hical theorems&

Illegally Characteri:ing ,rimes
It is very tem!tin to .um! from the 7-ty!e theorems directly to P-ty!e theorems, by !ro!osin a rule of the followin kind, P;EPESE: ;FAE, Su!!ose 9 is a hy!hen-strin & If C9 is not a theorem, then ,9 is a theorem& The fatal flaw here is that checkin whether C9 is not a theorem is not an e(!licitly ty!o ra!hical o!eration& To know for sure that M& is not a theorem of the /IF-system, you have to o outside of the system&&& and so it is with this Pro!osed ;ule& It is a rule which violates the whole idea of formal systems, in that it asks you to o!erate informally —that is, outside the system& Ty!o ra!hical o!eration 4D5 allows you to look into the stock!ile of !reviously found theorems, but this Pro!osed ;ule is askin you to look into a hy!othetical -Table of 8ontheorems-& 0ut in order to enerate such a table, you would have to do some reasonin outside the s)stemOreasonin which shows why various strin s cannot be enerated inside the system& 8ow it may well be that there is another formal system which can enerate the -Table of 8ontheorems-, by !urely ty!o ra!hical means& In fact, our aim is to find .ust such a system& 0ut the Pro!osed ;ule is not a ty!o ra!hical rule, and must be dro!!ed& This is such an im!ortant !oint that we mi ht dwell on it a bit more& In our 8% s)stem 4which includes the tq-system and the rule which defines 7-ty!e theorems5, we have theorems of the form C9, with 191 standin , as usual, for a hy!hen-strin & There are also nontheorems of the form C9& 4These are what I mean when I refer to -nontheorems-, althou h of course t t - C q q and other ill-formed messes are also nontheorems&5 The difference is that theorems have a com!osite number of hy!hens, nontheorems have a !rime number of hy!hens& 8ow the theorems all have a common -form-, that is, ori inate from a common set of ty!o ra!hical rules& :o all nontheorems also have a common -form-, in the same sense? 0elow is a list of 7-ty!e theorems, shown without their derivations& The !arenthesi<ed numbers followin them sim!ly count the hy!hens in them& C---- 4C5 C------ 4D5 C-------- 4*5 C--------- 4#5 C---------- 4"+5 C------------ 4"B5 C-------------- 4"C5 C--------------- 4"L5 C---------------- 4"D5 C------------------ 4"*5

...

The -holes- in this list are the nontheorems& To re!eat the earlier question, :o the holes also have some -form- in common? 3ould it be reasonable to say that merely by virtue of bein the holes in this list, they share a common form? Hes and no& That they share some ty!o ra!hical quality is undeniable, but whether we want to call it -form- is unclear& The reason for hesitatin is that the holes are only negati#el) defined—they are the thin s that are left out of a list which is positi#el) defined&

+igure and Ground
This recalls the famous artistic distinction between figure and ground& 3hen a fi ure or -!ositive s!ace- 4e& &, a human form, or a letter, or a still life5 is drawn inside a frame, an unavoidable consequence is that its com!lementary sha!e—also called the - round-, or -back round-, or -ne ative s!ace-—has also been drawn& In most drawin s, however, this fi ure— round relationshi! !lays little role& The artist is much less interested in round than in the fi ure& 0ut sometimes, an artist will take interest in round as well& There are beautiful al!habets which !lay with this fi ure- round distinction& ) messa e written in such an al!habet is shown below& )t first it looks like a collection of somewhat random blobs, but if you ste! back a ways and stare at it for a while, all of a sudden, you will see seven letters a!!ear in this&&&

73G5=E BG!

'or a similar effect, take a look at my drawin -moke -ignal 4'i & "%#5& )lon these lines, you mi ht consider this !u<<le, can you somehow create a drawin containin words in both the fi ure and the round? Aet us now officially distin uish between two kinds of fi ures, cursi#el) drawa(le ones, and recursi#e ones 4by the way, these are my own terms are not in common usa e5& ) cursi#el) drawa(le fi ure is one whose round is merely an accidental by-!roduct of the drawin act& ) recursi#e fi ure is one whose round can be seen as a fi ure in its own ri ht& Fsually this is quite deliberate on the !art of the artist& The -re- in -recursive- re!resents the fact that both fore round and back round are cursively drawable—the fi ure is -twice-cursive-& Each fi ure- round boundary in a recursive fi ure is a double-ed ed sword& /& 7& Escher was a master at drawin recursive fi ures —see, for instance, his beautiful recursive drawin of birds 4'i & "D5&

73G5=E BJ! Tilin of the !lane usin birds, () '! 8! Escher from a BIDF note(ook/!

Eur distinction is not as ri orous as one in mathematics, for who can definitively say that a !articular round is not a fi ure? Ence !ointed out, almost any round has interest of its own& In that sense, every fi ure is recursive& 0ut that is not what I intended by the term& There is a natural and intuitive notion of reco ni<able forms& )re both the fore round and back round reco ni<able forms? If so, then the drawin is recursive& If you look at the rounds of most line drawin s, you will find them rather unreco ni<able& This demonstrates that There e(ist reco ni<able forms whose ne ative s!ace is not any reco ni<able form& In more -technical- terminolo y, this becomes, There e(ist cursively drawable fi ures which are not recursive& Scott @im1s solution to the above !u<<le, which I call his -'I6F;E-'I6F;E 'i ure-, is shown in 'i ure "$& If you read both black and white, you will see -'I6F;E-

everywhere, but -6;EF8:- nowhere2 It is a !ara on of recursive fi ures& In this clever drawin , there are two nonequivalent ways of characteri<in the black re ions, 4"5 as the negati#e space to the white re ions= 4B5 as altered copies of the white re ions 4!roduced by colorin and shiftin each white re ion5& 4In the s!ecial case of the 'I6F;E-'I6F;E 'i ure, the two characteri<ations are equivalent —but in most black-and-white !ictures, they would not be&5 8ow in 7ha!ter GIII, when we create our Ty!o ra!hical 8umber Theory 4T8T5, it will be our ho!e that the set of all false statements of number theory can be characteri<ed in two analo ous ways, 4"5 as the ne ative s!ace to the set of all T8T-theorems= 4B5 as altered co!ies of the set of all T8T-theorems 4!roduced by ne atin each T8T-theorem5& 0ut this ho!e will be dashed, because, 4"5 4B5 inside the set of all nontheorems are found some truths outside the set of all ne ated theorems are found some falsehoods&

Hou will see why and how this ha!!ens, in 7ha!ter TIG& /eanwhile, !onder over a !ictorial re!resentation of the situation 4'i & "*5&

+igure and Ground in Music
Ene may also look for fi ures and rounds in music& Ene analo ue is the distinction between melody and accom!animent—for the melody is always in the forefront of our attention, and the accom!animent is subsidiary, in some sense& Therefore it is sur!risin when we find, in the lower lines of a !iece of music, reco ni<able melodies& This does not ha!!en too often in !ost-baroque music& Fsually the harmonies are not thou ht of as fore round& 0ut in baroque music—in 0ach above all-the distinct lines, whether hi h or low or in between, all act as -fi ures-& In this sense, !ieces by 0ach can be called -recursive-&

73G5=E BC! 'I6F;E-'I6F;E 'i ure, () -cott E! ;im BICG/!

)nother fi ure- round distinction e(ists in music, that between on-beat and offbeat& If you count notes in a measure -one-and, two-and, three-and, four-and-, most melody-notes will come on numbers, not on -and- 1s& 0ut sometimes, a melody will be deliberately !ushed onto the -and-1s, for the sheer effect of it& This occurs in several etudes for the !iano by 7ho!in, for instance& It also occurs in 0ach—!articularly in his Sonatas and Partitas for unaccom!anied violin, and his Suites for unaccom!anied cello& There, 0ach mana es to et two or more musical lines oin simultaneously& Sometimes he does this by havin the solo instrument !lay -double sto!s-—two notes at once& Ether times, however, he !uts one voice on the on-beats, and the other voice on the off-beats,

73G5=E BE! 8onsidera(le #isual s)m(olism is featured in this diagram of the relation (etween #arious classes of TNT strings! The (iggest (o9 represents the set of all TNT strings The ne9t%(iggest (o9 represents the set of all well%formed TNT strings! >ithin it is found the set of all sentences of TNT! Now things (egin to get interesting! The set of theorems is pictured as a tree growing out of a trunk representing the set of a9ioms/! The tree%s)m(ol chosen (ecause of the recursi#e growth pattern which it e9hi(its: new (ranches theorems constantl) sprouting from old ones! The fingerlike (ranches pro(e into the corners of constraining region the set of truths/, )et can ne#er full) occup) it! The (oundar) (eta the set of truths and the set of falsities is meant to suggest a randoml) meandering coastline which, no matter how closel) )ou e9amine it, alwa)s has finer le#els of structure, an conse"uentl) impossi(le to descri(e e9actl) in an) finite wa)! -ee B! 'andel(rot's (ook 'ractals!/ The reflected tree represents the set of ne ations of theorems: all of them false )et una(le collecti#el) to span the space of false statements! U.rawing () the author!V

so the ear se!arates them and hears two distinct melodies weavin in and out, and harmoni<in with each other& 8eedless to say, 0ach didn1t sto! at this level of com!le(ity&&&

$ecursi"ely Enumerable Sets #s! $ecursi"e Sets
8ow let us carry back the notions of fi ure and round to the domain formal systems& In our e(am!le, the role of !ositive s!ace is !layed by 7-ty!e theorems, and the role of ne ative s!ace is !layed by strin s with a !rime number of hy!hens& So far, the only way we have found to re!resent !rime numbers ty!o ra!hically is as a ne ative s!ace& Is there, however, some way—I don1t care how com!licated—of re!resentin the !rimes as a positi#e s!ace—that is, as a set of theorems of some formal system? :ifferent !eo!le1s intuitions ive different answers here& I remember quite vividly how !u<<led and intri ued I was u!on reali<in the difference between a !ositive characteri<ation and a ne ative characteri<ation& I was quite convinced that not only the !rimes, but any set of numbers which could be re!resented ne atively, could also be re!resented !ositively& The intuition underlyin my belief is re!resented by the question, -,ow could a figure and its ground not carr) e9actl) the same information ?- They seemed to me to embody the same information, .ust coded in two com!lementary ways& 3hat seems ri ht to you? It turns out I was ri ht about the !rimes, but wron in eneral& This astonished me, and continues to astonish me even today& It is a fact that, There e(ist formal systems whose ne ative s!ace 4set of nontheorems5 is not the !ositive s!ace 4set of theorems5 of any formal system& This result, it turns out, is of de!th equal to 6>del1s Theorem—so it is not sur!risin that my intuition was u!set& I, .ust like the mathematicians of the early twentieth century, e(!ected the world of formal systems and natural numbers to be more !redictable than it is& In more technical terminolo y, this becomes, There e(ist recursively enumerable sets which are not recursive& The !hrase recursi#el) enumera(le 4often abbreviated -r&e&-5 is the mathematical counter!art to our artistic notion of -cursively drawable-—and recursi#e is the counter!art of -recursive-& 'or a set of strin s to be -r&e&- means that it can be enerated accordin to ty!o ra!hical rules—for e(am!le, the set of 7-ty!e theorems, the set of theorems of the /IF-system—indeed, the set of theorems of any formal system& This could be com!ared with the conce!tion of a -fi ure- as -a set of lines which can be enerated accordin to artistic rules- 4whatever that mi ht mean25& )nd a -recursive setis like a fi ure whose round is also a fi ure-not only is it r&e&, but its com!lement is also r&e& It follows from the above result that, There e(ist formal systems for which there is no ty!o ra!hical decision !rocedure&

?ow does this follow? Gery sim!ly& ) ty!o ra!hical decision !rocedure is a method which tells theorems from nontheorems& The e(istence of such a test allows us to enerate all nontheorems systematically, sim!ly by oin down a list of all strin s and !erformin the test on them one at a time, discardin ill-formed strin s and theorems alon the way& This amounts to a ty!o ra!hical method for eneratin the set of nontheorems& 0ut accordin to the earlier statement 4which we here acce!t on faith5, for some systems this is not !ossible& So we must conclude that ty!o ra!hical decision !rocedures do not e(ist for all formal systems& Su!!ose we found a set 7 of natural numbers 4171 for 1'i ure15 which we could enerate in some formal way—like the com!osite numbers& Su!!ose its com!lement is the set G 4for 16round15—like the !rimes& To ether 7 and G make u! all the natural numbers, and we know a rule for makin all the numbers in set 7, but we know no such rule for makin all the numbers in set G& It is im!ortant to understand that if the members of were always enerated in order of increasing si@e, then we could always characteri<e G& The !roblem is that many r&e& sets are enerated by methods which throw in elements in an arbitrary order, so you never know if a number which has been ski!!ed over for a lon time will et included if you .ust wait a little lon er& 3e answered no to the artistic question, -)re all fi ures recursive?- 3e have now seen that we must likewise answer no to the analo ous question in mathematics, -)re all sets recursive?- 3ith this !ers!ective, let us now come back to the elusive word -form-& Aet us take our fi ure-set and our round-set G a ain& 3e can a ree that all the numbers in set 7 have some common -form-—but can the same be said about numbers in set G? It is a stran e question& 3hen we are dealin with an infinite set to start with—the natural numbers—the holes created by removin some subs may be very hard to define in any e(!licit way& )nd so it may be that they are not connected by any common attribute or -form-& In the last analysis it is a matter of taste whether you want to use the word -form-—but .ust thinkin about it is !rovocative& Perha!s it is best not to define -form-, but to leave it with some intuitive fluidity& ?ere is a !u<<le to think about in connection with the above matter 7an you characteri<e the followin set of inte ers 4or its ne ative s!ace5 " % $ "B "* BD %L CL LD D#&&&

?ow is this sequence like the 'I6F;E-'I6F;E 'i ure?

,rimes as +igure $ather than Ground
'inally, what about a formal system for eneratin !rimes? ?ow is it done? The trick is to ski! ri ht over multi!lication, and to o directly to nondi#isi(ilit) as the thin to re!resent !ositively& ?ere are an a(iom schema and rule for !roducin theorems which re!resent the notion that one number does not di#ide 4 ; 5 another number e(actly, )TIE/ S7?E/), 9 ) ; 9 where 9 and ) are hy!hen-strin s&

'or e(am!le ----

;

--, where 9 has been re!laced by 1Y1 and ) by 1---1&

;FAE, If 9 ; ) is a theorem, then so is 9 ; 9 ) & If you use the rule twice, you can enerate this theorem, ----- ; ------------which is inter!reted as -L does not divide "B-& 0ut --- ; ------------ is not a theorem& 3hat oes wron if you try to !roduce it? 8ow in order to determine that a iven number is !rime, we have to build u! some knowled e about its nondivisibility !ro!erties& In !articular, we want to know that it is not divisible by B or % or C, etc&, all the way u! to " less than the number itself& 0ut we can1t be so va ue in formal systems as to say -et cetera-& 3e must s!ell thin s out& 3e would like to have a way of sayin , in the lan ua e of the system, -the number 9 is di#isor free u! to T-, meanin that no number between B and T divides 9& This can be done, but there is a trick to it& Think about it if you want& ?ere is the solution, ;FAE, If -- ; @ is a theorem, so is @ + --& ;FAE, If @ + 9 is a theorem and also 9- ; @ is a theorem, @ + 9 - is a theorem& These two rules ca!ture the notion of divisor freeness& )ll we need to do is to say that !rimes are numbers which are divisor-free u! to " less than themselves, ;FAE, If @- + @ is a theorem, then , @ - is a theorem& Eh—let1s not for et that B is !rime2 )TIE/, ,--. )nd there you have it& The !rinci!le of re!resentin !rimality formally is that there is a test for divisibility which can be done without any backtrackin & Hou march steadily u!ward, testin first for divisibility by B, then by %, and so on& It is this -monotonicity- or unidirectionality—this absence of cross-!lay between len thenin and shortenin , increasin and decreasin —that allows !rimality to be ca!tured& )nd it is this !otential com!le(ity of formal systems to involve arbitrary amounts of backwards-forwards interference that is res!onsible for such limitative results as 6>del1s Theorem, Turin 1s ?altin Problem, and the fact that not all recursively enumerable sets are recursive&

Contracrostipunctus
*chilles has come to #isit his friend and Mogging companion, the Tortoise, at his home *chilles, ?eavens, you certainly have an admirable boomeran collection Tortoise, Eh, !shaw& 8o better than that of any other Tortoise& )nd now would you like to ste! into the !arlor? *chilles, 'ine& 4>alks to the corner of the room &5 I see you also have a lar e collection of records& 3hat sort of music do you en.oy? Tortoise, Sebastian 0ach isn1t so bad, in my o!inion& 0ut these days, I must say, I am develo!in more and more of an interest in a rather s!eciali<ed sort of music& *chilles, Tell me, what kind of music is that? Tortoise, ) ty!e of music which you are most unlikely to have heard of& I call it -music to break !hono ra!hs by-& *chilles, :id you say -to break !hono ra!hs by-? That is a curious conce!t& I can .ust see you, sled ehammer in hand, whackin one !hono ra!h after another to !ieces, to the strains of 0eethoven1s heroic master!iece >ellington's <ictor)& Tortoise, That1s not quite what this music is about& ?owever, you mi ht find its true nature .ust as intri uin & Perha!s I should ive you a brief descri!tion of it? *chilles, E(actly what I was thinkin & Tortoise, ;elatively few !eo!le are acquainted with it& It all be an when my friend the 7rab—have you met him, by the way?—!aid me a visit& *chilles, 1twould be a !leasure to make his acquaintance, I1m sure& Thou h I1ve heard so much about him, I1ve never met him& Tortoise, Sooner or later I1ll et the two of you to ether& Hou1d hit it off s!lendidly& Perha!s we could meet at random in the !ark on day&&& *chilles, 7a!ital su estion2 I1ll be lookin forward to it& 0ut you were oin to tell me about your weird -music to smash !hono ra!hs by-, weren1t you? Tortoise, Eh, yes& 3ell, you see, the 7rab came over to visit one day& Hou must understand that he1s always had a weakness for fancy ad ets, and at that time he was quite an aficionado for, of all thin s, record !layers& ?e had .ust bou ht his first record !layer, and bein somewhat ullible, believed every word the salesman had told him about it—in !articular, that it was ca!able of re!roducin any and all sounds& In short, he was convinced that it was a Perfect !hono ra!h& *chilles, 8aturally, I su!!ose you disa reed& Tortoise, True, but he would hear nothin of my ar uments& ?e staunchly maintained that any sound whatever was re!roducible on his machine& Since I couldn1t convince him of the contrary, I left it at that& 0ut not lon after that, I returned the visit, takin with me a record of a son which I had myself com!osed& The son was called -I 7annot 0e Played on ;ecord Player "-& *chilles, ;ather unusual& 3as it a !resent for the 7rab? Tortoise, )bsolutely& I su ested that we listen to it on his new !hono ra!h, and he was very lad to obli e me& So he !ut it on& 0ut unfortunately, after only a few notes,

the record !layer be an vibratin rather severely, and then with a loud -!o!-, broke into a lar e number of fairly small !ieces, scattered all about the room& The record was utterly destroyed also, needless to say& *chilles, 7alamitous blow for the !oor fellow, I1d say& 3hat was the matter with his record !layer? Tortoise, ;eally, there was nothin the matter, nothin at all& It sim!ly couldn1t re!roduce the sounds on the record which I had brou ht him, because they were sounds that would make it vibrate and break& *chilles, Edd, isn1t it? I mean, I thou ht it was a Perfect !hono ra!h& That1s what the salesman had told him, after all& Tortoise, Surely, )chilles, you don1t believe everythin that salesmen tell you2 )re you as naPve as the 7rab was? *chilles, The 7rab was naPver by far2 I know that salesmen are notorious !revaricators& I wasn1t born yesterday2 Tortoise, In that case, maybe you can ima ine that this !articular salesman had somewhat e(a erated the quality of the 7rab1s !iece of equi!ment&&& !erha!s it was indeed less than Perfect, and could not re!roduce every !ossible sound& *chilles, Perha!s that is an e(!lanation& 0ut there1s no e(!lanation for the ama<in coincidence that your record had those very sounds on it&&& Tortoise, Fnless they ot !ut there deliberately& Hou see, before returnin the 7rab1s visit, I went to the store where the 7rab had bou ht his machine, and inquired as to the make& ?avin ascertained that, I sent off to the manufacturers for a descri!tion of its desi n& )fter receivin that by return mail, I analy<ed the entire construction of the !hono ra!h and discovered a certain set of sounds which, if they were !roduced anywhere in the vicinity, would set the device to shakin and eventually to fallin a!art& *chilles, 8asty fellow2 Hou needn1t s!ell out for me the last details, that you recorded those sounds yourself, and offered the dastardly item as a ift&&& Tortoise, 7lever devil2 Hou .um!ed ahead of the story2 0ut that wasn1t the end of the adventure, by any means, for the 7rab did not believe that his record !layer was at fault& ?e was quite stubborn& So he went out and bou ht a new record !layer, this one even more e(!ensive, and this time the salesman !romised to ive him double his money back in case the 7rab found a sound which it could not re!roduce e(actly& So the 7rab told me e(citedly about his new model, and I !romised to come over and see it& *chilles, Tell me if I1m wron —I bet that before you did so, you on a ain wrote the manufacturer, and com!osed and recorded a new son called -I 7annot 0e Played on ;ecord Player B-, based on the construction of the new model& Tortoise, Ftterly brilliant deduction, )chilles& Hou1ve quite ot the s!irit& *chilles, So what ha!!ened this time? Tortoise, )s you mi ht e(!ect, !recisely the same thin & The !hono ra!h fell into innumerable !ieces, and the record was shattered& *chilles, 7onsequently, the 7rab finally became convinced that there could be no such thin as a Perfect record !layer&

Tortoise, ;ather sur!risin ly, that1s not quite what ha!!ened& ?e was sure that the ne(t model u! would fill the bill, and havin twice the money, he— *chilles, Eho—I have an idea2 ?e could have easily outwitted you, by obtainin a AE3fidelity !hono ra!h—one that was not ca!able of re!roducin the sounds which would destroy it& In that way, he would avoid your trick& Tortoise, Surely, but that would defeat the ori inal !ur!ose—namely, to have a !hono ra!h which could re!roduce any sound whatsoever, even its own selfbreakin sound, which is of course im!ossible& *chilles, That1s true& I see the dilemma now& If any record !layer—say ;ecord Player T —is sufficiently hi h-fidelity, then when attem!ts to !lay the son -I 7annot 0e Played on ;ecord Player T-, it will create .ust those vibrations which will cause to break&&& So it fails to be Perfect& )nd yet, the only way to et around that trickery, namely for ;ecord Player T to be of lower fidelity, even more directly ensures that it is not Perfect& It seems that every record !layer is vulnerable to one or the other of these frailties, and hence all record !layers are defective& Tortoise, I don1t see why you call them -defective-& It is sim!ly an inherent fact about record !layers that they can1t do all that you mi ht wish them to be able to do& 0ut if there is a defect anywhere, is not in T?E/, but in your e(!ectations of what they should be able to do2 )nd the 7rab was .ust full of such unrealistic e(!ectations& *chilles, 7om!assion for the 7rab overwhelms me& ?i h fidelity or low fidelity, he loses either way& Tortoise, )nd so, our little ame went on like this for a few more rounds, and eventually our friend tried to become very smart& ?e ot wind of the !rinci!le u!on which I was basin my own records, and decided to try to outfo( me& ?e wrote to the !hono ra!h makers, and described a device of his own invention, which they built to s!ecification& ?e called it -;ecord Player Eme a-& It was considerably more so!histicated than an ordinary record !layer& *chilles, Aet me uess how, :id it have no movin !arts? Er was it made of cotton? Er — Tortoise, Aet me tell you, instead& That will save some time& In the first !lace, ;ecord Player Eme a incor!orated a television camera whose !ur!ose it was to scan any record before !layin it& This camera was hooked u! to a small built-in com!uter, which would determine e(actly the nature of the sounds, by lookin at the roove!atterns& *chilles, Hes, so far so ood& 0ut what could ;ecord Player Eme a do with this information? Tortoise, 0y elaborate calculations, its little com!uter fi ured out what effects the sounds would have u!on its !hono ra!h& If it deduced that the sounds were such that they would cause the machine in its !resent confi uration to break, then it did somethin very clever& Eld Eme a contained a device which could disassemble lar e !arts of its !hono ra!h subunit, and rebuild them in new ways, so that it could, in effect, chan e its own structure& If the sounds were -dan erous-, a new confi uration was chosen, one to which the sounds would !ose no threat, and this new confi uration would then be built by the rebuildin subunit, under direction

of the little com!uter& Enly after this rebuildin o!eration would ;ecord Player Eme a attem!t to !lay the record& *chilles, )ha2 That must have s!elled the end of your tricks& I bet you were a little disa!!ointed& Tortoise, 7urious that you should think so&&& I don1t su!!ose that you know 6>del1s Incom!leteness Theorem backwards and forwards, do you? *chilles, @now 3?ESE Theorem backwards and forwards? I1ve never heard of anythin that sounds like that& I1m sure it1s fascinatin , but I1d rather hear more about -music to break records by-& It1s an amusin little story& )ctually, I uess I can fill in the end& Ebviously, there was no !oint in oin on, and so you shee!ishly admitted defeat, and that was that& Isn1t that e(actly it? Tortoise, 3hat2 It1s almost midni ht2 I1m afraid it1s my bedtime& I1d love to talk some more, but really I am rowin quite slee!y& *chilles, )s am I& 3ell, I1ll be on my way& 4 *s he reaches the door, he suddenl) stops, and turns around&5 Eh, how silly of me2 I almost for ot& I brou ht you a little !resent& ?ere& 4,ands the Tortoise a small neatl) wrapped package&5 Tortoise, ;eally, you shouldn1t have2 3hy, thank you very much indeed& I think I1ll o!en it now& 4Eagerl) tears open the package, and inside disco#ers a glass go(let&5 Eh, what an e(quisite oblet2 :id you know that I am quite an aficionado for, of all thin s, lass oblets? *chilles, :idn1t have the fo iest& 3hat an a reeable coincidence2 Tortoise, Say, if you can kee! a secret, I1ll let you in on somethin , I tryin to find a Perfect oblet, one havin no defects of a sort in its sha!e& 3ouldn1t it be somethin if this oblet—let1s call it -6-—were the one? Tell me, where did you come across 6oblet 6? *chilles, Sorry, but that1s /H little secret& 0ut you mi ht like to know who its maker is& Tortoise, Pray tell, who is it? *chilles, Ever hear of the famous lassblower Johann Sebastian 0ach? 3ell, he wasn1t e(actly famous for lassblowin —but he dabbled at the art as a hobby, thou h hardly a soul knows it—and this oblet is the last !iece he blew& Tortoise, Aiterally his last one? /y racious& If it truly was made by 0ach its value is inestimable& 0ut how are you sure of its maker? *chilles, Aook at the inscri!tion on the inside—do you see where the letters 101, 1)1, 171, 1?1 have been etched? Tortoise, Sure enou h2 3hat an e(traordinary thin & 46entl) sets Go(let G down on a shelf!5 0y the way, did you know that each of the four letters in 0ach1s name is the name of a musical note? *chilles, 1tisn1t !ossible, is it? )fter all, musical notes only o from _)1 throu h 161& Tortoise, Just so= in most countries, that1s the case& 0ut in 6ermany, 0ach1s own homeland, the convention has always been similar, e(ce!t that what we call 101, they call 1?1, and what we call 10-flat1, they call 101& 'or instance, we talk about 0ach1s -/ass in 0 /inor-, whereas they talk about his -?-moll /esse-& Is that clear?

*chilles,&&& hmm&&& I uess so& It1s a little confusin , ? is 0, and 0 0-flat& I su!!ose his name actually constitutes a melody, then& Tortoise, Stran e but true& In fact, he worked that melody subtly into one of his most elaborate musical !ieces—namely, the final 8ontrapunctus in his *rt of the 7ugue& It was the last fu ue 0ach ever wrote& 3hen I heard it for the first time, I had no idea how would end& Suddenly, without warnin , it broke off& )nd then&&& dead silence& I reali<ed immediately that was where 0ach died& It is an indescribably sad moment, and the effect it had on me was—shatterin & In any case, 0-)-7-? is the last theme of that fu ue& It is hidden inside the !iece& 0ach didn1t !oint it out e(!licitly, but if you know about it, you can find it without much trouble& )h, me—there are so many clever ways of hidin thin s in music&&& *chilles, &&&or in !oems& Poets used to do very similar thin s, you know 4thou h it1s rather out of style these days5& 'or instance, Aewis 7arroll often hid words and names in the first letters 4or characters5 of the successive lines in !oems he wrote& Poems which conceal messa es that way are called -acrostics-& Tortoise, 0ach, too, occasionally wrote acrostics, which isn1t sur!risin & )fter all, counter!oint and acrostics, with their levels of hidden meanin , have quite a bit in common& /ost acrostics, however, have only one hidden level—but there is no reason that one couldn1t make a double-decker—an acrostic on to! of an acrostic& Er one could make a -contracrostic-—where the initial letters, taken in reverse order, form a messa e& ?eavens2 There1s no end to the !ossibilities inherent in the form& /oreover, it1s not limited to !oets= anyone could write acrostics—even a dialo ician&

73G5=E BI! The last page of Bach's )rt of the 'u ue! 3n the original manuscript. de#eloped at 3ndiana 5ni#ersit)V . in the handwriting of Bach's son 8arl &hilipp Emanuel.onald B)rd's program "-'5T". the composer died!" B%*%8%. is written: "N!B! 3n the course of this fugue. in (o9!/ 3 ha#e let this final page of Bach's last fugue ser#e as an epitaph! U'usic &rinted () . at the point where the name B!*!8!.! was (rought in as countersu(Mect.

do you su!!ose it would be more !ro!er for him to acrostically embed his E38 name—or that of 0ach? Eh. a shattering sound rudel) interrupts his performance! Both he and *chilles spin around. Must in time to catch a glimpse of m)riad fragments of glass tinkling to the floor from the shelf where Go(let G had stood. onl) moments (efore! *nd then!!! dead silence! . without warning. I uess I1ll have to ive you a demonstration& Aet me . and returns in a Miff) with an ancient%looking #iolin!/ —and !lay it for you forwards and backwards and every which way& Aet1s see. is e(actly the same as the ori inal? *chilles.ust occurred to me& In the unlikely event that a dialo ician should write a contra!untal acrostic in homa e to J& S& 0ach. 1!on my word. suddenl). 7orrection. aren1t you? 3ell. I said -dialo ician-.*chilles. well.. now&&& &laces his cop) of the *rt of the 7ugue on his music stand and opens it to the last page!/ &&&here1s the last 7ontra!unctus. you1re quite a ske!tic.ust o and fetch my fiddle— >alks into the ne9t room. and here1s the last theme&&& The Tortoise (egins to pla): B%*%8% O (ut as he (ows the final . if !layed u!side down and backwards. ?ow can anythin be !layed u!side down? 0ackwards. ) dial-a-lo ician? That1s a new one on me& Tortoise. I can see-you et ?-7)-0—but u!side down? Hou must be !ullin my le & Tortoise. why worry about such frivolous matters? )nybody who wanted to write such a !iece could make u! his own mind& 8ow ettin back to 0ach1s melodic name. by which I meant a writer of dialo ues& ?mm&&& somethin . did you know that the melody 0-)-7-?.

rather than to the link between that ob.that imbues them with meanin s& This is an easy enou h error to make& It attributes all the meanin to the ob.in suckin that meanin from the marks on the !a!er& . and not reco ni<in the role of the medium. which carries it from the ob.in quotes to indicate that it must be taken with a rain of salt& The symbolic !rocesses which underlie the understandin of human lan ua e are so much more com!le( than the symbolic !rocesses in ty!ical formal systems. we shall consider the events in the story to be the e(!licit meanin of the :ialo ue.ect 4the word5. in eneral.ect and the real world& Hou mi ht com!are it to the naPve belief that noise is a necessary side effect of any collision of two ob.overned symbols. we shall have to ado!t a far more fle(ible conce!tion of what isomor!hisms can be than we have u! till now& In my o!inion. we saw how meanin —at least in the relatively sim!le conte(t of formal systems—arises when there is an isomor!hism between rule. that. if we want to continue thinkin of meanin as mediated by isomor!hisms. the more -equi!ment-—both hardware and software—is required to e(tract the meanin from the symbols& If an isomor!hism is very sim!le 4or very familiar5.ects to the ear& )bove.will be the unravelin of the nature of the -isomor!hismwhich underlies meanin & E-!licit Meaning of the 8ontracrostipunctus )ll this is by way of !re!aration for a discussion of the 8ontracrostipunctusOa study in levels of meanin & The :ialo ue has both e(!licit and im!licit meanin s& Its most e(!licit meanin is sim!ly the story which was related& This -e(!licit.ects& This is a false belief= if two ob. are incredibly com!le(& 8evertheless. II. there will be no noise at all& ?ere a ain. and thin s in the real world& The more com!le( the isomor!hism. without bein in the sli htest aware of the very com!le( -isomor!hism. I used the word -isomor!hism. e(tremely implicit.meanin is.ects collide in a vacuum. in the sense that the brain !rocesses required to understand the events in the story. the key element in answerin the question -3hat is consciousness?. and assume that every reader of En lish uses more or less the same -isomor!hism.Cha!ter I4 Consistency) Com!leteness) and Geometry Im!licit and E-!licit Meaning I8 7?)PTE. we are tem!ted to say that the meanin which it allows us to see is e(!licit& 3e see the meanin without seein the isomor!hism& The most blatant e(am!le is human lan ua e. strictly s!eakin . the error stems from attributin the noise e(clusively to the collision. iven only the black marks on !a!er. in fact. where !eo!le often attribute meanin to words in themselves.

meanin of the rooves& 3hat is the Aevel Two meanin of the rooves? It is the sequence of vibrations induced in the record !layer& This meanin can only arise after the Aevel Ene meanin has been !ulled out of the rooves. I1d like to be a little more e(!licit about the e(!licit meanin of the story& 'irst I1ll talk about the record !layers and the records& The main !oint is that there are two levels of meanin for the rooves in the records& Aevel Ene is that of music& 8ow what is -music-—a sequence of vibrations in the air. the Aevel Two meanin de!ends u!on a chain of two isomor!hisms.out of the rooves by a record !layer. there have to be vibrations& 8ow the vibrations et -!ulled. 4"5 Isomor!hism between arbitrary roove !atterns and air vibrations= 4B5 Isomor!hism between ra!h vibrations. which radually transform the linear sequence of vibrations into a com!le( !attern of interactin emotional res!onses—far too com!le( for us to o into here.Even so. the vibrations act back on the oblet . or a succession of emotional res!onses in a brain? It is both& 0ut before there can be emotional res!onses. causin the record !layer to break a!art& 3hat is of interest is that the !roduction of the Aevel Ene meanin forces the !roduction of the Aevel Two meanin simultaneously—there is no way to have Aevel Ene without Aevel Two& So it was the im!licit meanin of the record which turned back on it. and destroyed it& Similar comments a!!ly to the oblet& Ene difference is that the ma!!in from letters of the al!habet to musical notes is one more level of isomor!hism. which we could call -transcri!tion-& That is followed by -translation-—conversion of musical notes into musical sounds& Thereafter. because it is mediated by the chain of two isomor!hisms& It is the Aevel Two meanin which -backfires-. much thou h I would like to& Aet us therefore content ourselves with thinkin of the sounds in the air as the -Aevel Ene. . the ear converts the vibrations into firin s of auditory neurons in the brain& Then ensue a number of sta es in the brain.ust !ullin it down the rooves& )fter this sta e. arbitrary air vibrations and !hono ra!h vibrations This chain of two isomor!hisms is de!icted in 'i ure B+& 8otice that isomor!hism I is the one which ives rise to the Aevel Ene meanin & The Aevel Two meanin is more im!licit than the Aevel Ene meanin . since the vibrations in the air cause the vibrations in the !hono ra!h& Therefore. a relatively strai htforward device= in fact you can do it with a !in.ust as they did on the escalatin series of !hono ra!hs& .

as follows&&& Aevel Ene. the Tortoise is the !er!etrator of all the mischief. in which we equate the way in which the records and oblet boomeran back to destroy themselves. (ut usuall) ignoredOis from sounds to #i(rations of the phonograph! Note that the second mapping e9ists independentl) of the first one.rawing () the author!V Im!licit Meanings of the Contracrosti!unctus 3hat about im!licit meanin s of the :ialo ue? 4Hes. in that its own structure is isomor!hic to the events it !ortrays& 4E(actly as the oblet and records refer im!licitly to themselves via the back-to-back mor!hisms of . will cause such #i(rations! The paraphrase of Gödel's Theorem sa)s that for an) record pla)er. but his own method has turned around and backfired on him2 . the 7rab becomes the Tortoise. indeed& The story is about backfirin on two levels.eminiscent of the backfirin of the records1 music—or the oblet1s inscri!tion—or !erha!s of the Tortoise1s boomeran collection? Hes. 6oblets and records which backfire= Aevel Two. it has more than one of these&5 The sim!lest of these has already been !ointed out in the !ara ra!hs above—namely. with the way in which the Tortoise1s own fiendish method boomeran s back to et him in the end& Seen this way. The Tortoise1s devilish method of e(!loitin im!licit meanin to cause backfires—which backfires& Therefore we can even make an isomor!hism between the two levels of the story. while in the second half. that the events in the two halves of the dialo ue are rou hly isomor!hic to each other. the !hono ra!h becomes a violin. the rooves become the etched auto ra!h.73G5=E FK! <isual rendition of the principle underl)ing Gödel's Theorem: two (ack%to%(ack mappings which ha#e an une9pected (oomeranging effect! The first is from groo#e patterns to sounds. he is the victim& 3hat do you know. you can o a little further& Ebserve that in the first half of the story. carried out () a phonograph! The secondOfamiliar. not Must ones produced () the phonograph itself. etc& Ence you notice this sim!le isomor!hism. the story itself is an e(am!le of the backfirin s which it discusses& So we can think of the 7ontracrosti!unctus as referrin to itself indirectly. the Tortoise becomes )chilles. there are records which it cannot pla) (ecause the) will cause its indirect self%destruction! U. for an) sound in the #icinit).

son title Ü Þ im!licit meanin of 6>del1s strin .!hono ra!h. which.!layin and vibration-causin &5 Ene may read the :ialo ue without !erceivin this fact. havin read this :ialo ue you have already tasted some of the flavor of 6>del1s Theorem without necessarily bein aware of it& I now leave you to look for any other ty!es of im!licit meanin in the 7ontracrosti!unctus& -Muaerendo invenietis2- . but it is the core of it& Hou need not worry if you don1t fully ras! 6>del1s Theorem by now—there are still a few 7ha!ters to o before we reach it2 8evertheless.ecord Player Tin 'ormal System T- This is not the full e(tent of the isomor!hism between 6>del1s theorem and the 7ontracrosti!unctus.a(iomatic system hi h-fidelity !hono ra!h Ü Þ -stron .Ü Þ com!lete system for number theory -blue!rint.of 6>del1s Theorem& 0ecause this ma!!in is the central idea of the :ialo ue and is rather elaborate. as I said in the Introduction. I have carefully charted it out below& Phono ra!h Ü Þ a(iomatic system for number theory low-fidelity !hono ra!h Ü Þ -weak. -I 7annot 0e Played -I 7annot 0e :erived on . of course—but it is there all the time& Ma!!ing Bet'een the 8ontracrostipunctus and G#del%s Theorem 8ow you may feel a little di<<y—but the best is yet to come& 4)ctually. relies heavily on two different levels of meanin of statements of number theory& Each of the two halves of the 7ontracrosti!unctus is an -isomor!hic co!y.of !hono ra!h Ü Þ a(ioms and rules of formal system record Ü Þ strin of the formal system !layable record Ü Þ theorem of the a(iomatic system un!layable record Ü Þ nontheorem of the a(iomatic system sound Ü Þ true statement of number theory re!roducible sound Ü Þ inter!reted theorem of the system unre!roducible sound Ü Þ true statement which isn1t a theorem. levels of im!licit meanin will not even be discussed here—they will be left for you to ferret out&5 The dee!est reason for writin this :ialo ue was to illustrate 6>del1s Theorem.a(iomatic system -Perfect.

0ach re ained his vision& 0ut a few hours later.ect.The Art of the +ugue ) few words on the *rt of the 7ugue&&& 7om!osed in the last year of 0ach1s life. however& ?is aim was to construct a com!lete e(!osition of fu al writin . mathematicians be an this century with . it is a collection of ei hteen fu ues all based on one theme& )!!arently.of that system& ) most !u<<lin fact about 6>del1s method of !roof is that he uses reasonin methods which seemin ly cannot be -enca!sulated-—they resist bein incor!orated into any formal system& Thus. in any iven formal system. he suffered a stroke= and ten days later. -The e(!ression of !ious resi nation and devotion in it has always affected me whenever I have !layed it= so that I can hardly say which I would rather miss—this 7horale. 0ach uses a very sim!le theme in the most com!le( !ossible ways& The whole work is in a sin le key& /ost of the fu ues have four voices. of which 0ach1s bio ra!her 'orkel wrote. 0ach wished to have an o!eration& It was done= however. in the sense of bein able to re!roduce every !ossible sound from a record& 6>del says that no sufficiently !owerful formal system can be !erfect. he lost his si ht for the better !art of the last year of his life& This did not kee! him from vi orous work on his monumental !ro. and usa e of multi!le themes was one im!ortant facet of it& In what he !lanned as the ne(t-to-last fu ue. is called -incom!leteness. at first si ht. or the end of the last fu ue&Ene day. he mana ed to dictate to his son-in-law a final chorale !relude. he inserted his own name coded into notes as the third theme& ?owever. his eyesi ht havin troubled him for years. his health became so !recarious that he was forced to abandon work on his cherished !ro.ect& In his illness. but dee!ly si nificant. in the sense of re!roducin every sin le true statement as a theorem& 0ut as the Tortoise !ointed out with res!ect to !hono ra!hs. this fact only seems like a defect if you have unrealistic e(!ectations of what formal systems should be able to do& 8evertheless. without warnin . leavin it for others to s!eculate on the incom!leteness of the *rt of the 7ugue& 7ould it have been caused by 0ach1s attainment of self-reference? . thinkin that a(iomatic reasonin was the cure to all ills& They found out otherwise in "#%"& The fact that truth transcends theoremhood. it came out quite !oorly. to demonstrate the full ran e of !ossibilities inherent in the form& In the *rt of the 7ugue. and they radually increase in com!le(ity and de!th of e(!ression& Toward the end. difference between human reasonin and mechanical .ust such unrealistic e(!ectations. of 0ach1s life5 are these. they soar to such hei hts of intricacy that one sus!ects he can no lon er maintain them& Het he does&&&until the last 8ontrapunctus& The circumstances which caused the break-off of the *rt of the 7ugue 4which is to say. he died.roblems Caused by G#del%s $esult The Tortoise says that no sufficiently !owerful record !layer can be !erfect. writin the 'usical :ffering was an ins!iration to 0ach& ?e decided to com!ose another set of fu ues on a much sim!ler theme. u!on this very act. it seems that 6>del has unearthed a hitherto unknown. and as a consequence.

leavin all the others constant= in !articular.. we also have internal !roblems with our new system. -B !lus " equals B-. )TIE/ S7?E/) II. then. the !q-system. their inter!retations are.way to view the situation& The Modified !q-System and Inconsistency In order to see the situation more realistically. for instance. res!ectively.emember that there was only one reason for ado!tin those words in in the last 7ha!ter. our new system is inconsistent with the e9ternal world! )s if this weren1t bad enou h. by the inter!retation& 0ut when you modify the rules overnin the system. in formal systems.4a new a(iom5& So our system is inconsistent in a second sense.ust cannot be hel!ed& Thus all the !roblems which were lamented over in !recedin !ara ra!hs were bo us !roblems= they can made to vanish in no time. you may well have detected the fallacies in what I have said& The crucial fallacy came when I unquestionin ly ado!ted the very same inter!retin words for the new system as I had for the old one& . our .in a wool!ullin manner. that we reinter!ret . as well as the sin le rule of inference5. the only reasonable thin to do at this !oint be dro! the new system entirely? ?ardly& I have deliberately !resented the -inconsistencies. I have tried to !ress fu<<y-headed ar uments as stron ly as !ossible. that is.ust the symbol q. it is necessary to see in more de!th why and how meanin is mediated. internally& 3ould.4an old a(iom5 and -!-q. inter!ret q by the !hrase -is reater than or equal to-& 8ow.is a theorem in the new system. by suita(l) reinterpreting some of the s)m(ols of s)stem& 8otice that I said -some-= not necessarily all symbols will have to ma!!ed onto new notions& Some may very well retain their -meanin s. therefore. and that reason was that the s)m(ols acted isomorphicall) to the concepts which they were matched with. since it contains statements which disa ree with one another such as -!-q-. and so --!--q---& )nd yet. then 9!-q9 is an a(iom& 7learly. with the !ur!ose of misleadin & In fact. by isomor!hisms& )nd I believe that this leads to a more romantic way to view the situation& So we now will !roceed to investi ate some further as!ects of the relation between meanin and form& Eur first ste! is to make a new formal system by modifyin our old friend.reasonin & This mysterious discre!ancy in the !ower of livin and nonlivin systems is mirrored in the discre!ancy between the notion of truth. and that of theoremhood or at least that is a -romantic. very sli htly& 3e add one more a(iom schema 4retainin the ori inal one. you are bound to dama e the isomor!hism& It . and -B !lus B equals %-& It can be seen that our new system contain a lot of false statements 4if you consider strin s to be statement& Thus. If 9 is a hy!hen-strin .while others chan e& $egaining Consistency Su!!ose. --!-q-.

-contradictory. that it is standin is !roof enou h that its structural elements are holdin it u!& 0ut in a book on eometry. it is a fore one conclusion that we will not do so but will instead be uided. which uides us in our use of it& The more common the word. lar ely unconsciously. there was a definite !lan to the work. was so solid that it was virtually a bible of eometry for over two thousand years—one of the most endurin works of all time& 3hy was this so? The !rinci!al reason was that Euclid was the founder of ri or in mathematics& The Elements be an with very sim!le conce!ts. when someone ives a definition for a common word in the ho!es that we will abide by that definition.theorems -!-q. when each !ro!osition is claimed to follow lo ically from earlier !ro!ositions. -" !lus " is reater than or equal to "-. around %++ 0&7&. tricky medium of communication with so many hidden !itfalls& 3hat. it is fine& 0ut it now seems as !ointless and arbitrary to a!!ly it to the new !qsystem as it was to a!!ly the -horse-a!!le-ha!!y.come out harmlessly as. -circle-. by what our minds find in their associative stores& I mention this because it is the sort of !roblem which Euclid created in his Elements. or could it have structural weaknesses? Every word which we use has a meanin to us. a skyscra!er& 4See 'i & B"&5 In the latter. -strai ht line-. of the architectural stren th of the Elements? Is it certain that it is held u! by solid structural elements. the more associations we have with it. Euclid1s Elements.and -!-q-. common words such as -!oint-. and -" !lus " is reater than or equal to B-& 3e have simultaneously otten rid of 4"5 the inconsistency with the e(ternal world. there will be no visible crash if one of the !roofs is invalid& The irders and struts are not !hysical. definitions. and the more dee!ly rooted is its meanin & Therefore. then. say. and radually built u! a vast body of results or ani<ed in such a way that any iven result de!ended only on fore oin results& Thus. it is not& )nd yet it is one of the dee!est lessons of all of nineteenth century mathematics2 It all be ins with Euclid. by attem!tin to ive definitions of ordinary. and so forth. and 4B5 the internal inconsistency& )nd our new inter!retation is a meanin ful inter!retation= of course the ori inal one is meaningless& That is. this lesson about how to inter!ret symbols by words may not seem terribly difficult once you have the han of it& In fact. it is meanin less for the new s)stem= for the ori inal !q-system. the architecture was of a different ty!e from that of. an architecture which made it stron and sturdy& 8evertheless. and so forth& ?ow can you define somethin of which everyone already has a clear conce!t? The only way is if you can make it clear that your . but abstract& In fact. the stuff out of which !roofs were constructed was human lan ua e—that elusive. com!iled and systemati<ed all of what was known about !lane and solid eometry in his day& The resultin work.inter!retation to the old !q-system& The /istory of Euclidean Geometry )lthou h I have tried to catch you off uard and sur!rise you a little. in Euclid1s Elements. who.

BIFE/! .73G5=E FB! Tower of 0abel. () '! 8! Escher woodcut.

a!s are there.in the reasonin & En the contrary. and is a little unfair to Euclid& ?e did set down a(ioms. do not by any means e(!ect to find larin -. they are very subtle.word is su!!osed to be a technical term. for an inevitable consequence of his usin ordinary words was that some of the ima es con. Euclid1s lack of absolute ri or was the cause of some of the most fertile !ath-breakin in mathematics. and would not have made any sim!leminded errors& 8onetheless. of which his Elements constituted only the first several hundred stories& The first four !ostulates are rather terse and ele ant.oinin any two !oints& 4B5 )ny strai ht line se ment can be e(tended indefinitely in a strai ht line& 4%5 6iven any strai ht line se ment. creatin sli ht im!erfections in a classic work& 0ut this is not to be com!lained about& Ene should merely ain an a!!reciation for the difference between absolute ri or and relative ri or& In the lon run. then the two lines inevitably must intersect each other on that side if e(tended far enou h& . Euclid was invitin readers to let their !owers of association run free&&& This sounds almost anarchic.round story. and is not to be confused with the everyday word with the same s!ellin & Hou have to stress that the connection with the everyday word is only su estive& 3ell. a circle can be drawn havin the se ment as radius and one end !oint as center& 4C5 )ll ri ht an les are con ruent& The fifth.um!s. however. because he felt that the !oints and lines of his Elements were indeed the !oints and lines of the real world& So by not makin sure that all associations were dis!elled.of the infinite skyscra!er of eometry. 4L5 If two lines are drawn which intersect a third in such a way that the sum of the inner an les on one side is less than two ri ht an les. for Euclid was a !enetratin thinker. nothin other than those a(ioms and !ostulates was su!!osed to be used& 0ut this is where he sli!!ed u!. if you read !roofs in the Elements. 4"5 ) strai ht line se ment can be drawn . which were su!!osed to be used in the !roofs of !ro!ositions& In fact. or !ostulates. over two thousand years after he wrote his work& Euclid ave five !ostulates to be used as the . Euclid did not do this. did not share their race.ured u! by those words cre!t into the !roofs which he created& ?owever.

8ikolay Aobachevskiy. at least twenty-ei ht deficient !roofs had been !ublished—all erroneous2 4They were all critici<ed in the dissertation of one 6& S& @l` el&5 )ll of these erroneous !roofs involve a confusion between everyday intuition and strictly formal !ro!erties& It safe to say that today. if !ossible& 'inally.and eventually became tired of it& )t one !oint. the first twenty-ei ht !ro!ositions belon to what mi ht be called -four-!ostulate eometry. and a .that !art of eometry which can be derived on the basis of the first to !ostulates of the Elements. he decided to try a novel a!!roach to the !roof of the famous fifth.ussian mathematician. rather than to have to assume it& 0ut he found no !roof. Janos 4or Johann5 0olyai. J& ?& Aambert re!eated the -near miss-.holds any mathematical or historical interest —but there are certain e(ce!tions& The Many +aces of . in one of those ine(!licable coincidences. the reat 'rench mathematician )drien-/arie Ae endre came u! with what he was sure was a !roof of Euclid1s fifth !ostulate. and therefore the soundness of Euclid1s fifth !ostulate& 3e need not o into details here& Suffice it to say that with reat skill. by a ?un arian mathematician. Saccheri worked out !ro!osition after !ro!osition -Saccherian eometry. untold numbers of !eo!le ave untold years of their lives in attem!tin to !rove that the fifth !ostulate was itself !art of four-!ostulate eometry& 0y "$D%. he robbed himself of much !osthumous lory. since he mana ed to avoid usin it in the !roofs of the first twentyei ht !ro!ositions& Thus. su!!ose you assume its o!!osite= then work with that as your fifth !ostulate&&& Surely after a while you will create a contradiction& Since no mathematical system can su!!ort a contradiction. decided he had reached a !ro!osition which was -re!u nant to the nature of the strai ht line-& That was what he had been ho!in for —to his mind. this time comin even closer. hardly any of these -!roofs. he !ublished his work under the title Euclid 7reed of E#er) 7law.oneuclid 6irolamo Saccheri 4"DD$-"$%%5 lived around 0ach1s time& ?e had the ambition to free Euclid of every flaw& 0ased on some earlier work he had done in lo ic. a e thirty& )nd. a bifurcation in the hitherto sin le stream of mathematics& In "*B%. very much alon the lines of Saccheri& . you will have shown the unsoundness of your own fifth !ostulate. in that same year.Thou h he never e(!licitly said so. and ninety years after Saccheri. without the hel! of the fifth !ostulate& 4It is also often called a(solute geometr)&5 7ertainly Euclid would have found it far !referable to !rove this u ly ducklin . Euclid considered this !ostulate to be somehow inferior to the others. a e twenty-one. nonEuclidean eometry was reco ni<ed for what it was—an authentic new brand of eometry. it was the lon -sou ht contradiction& )t that !oint. since he had unwittin ly discovered what came later to be known as -hy!erbolic eometry-& 'ifty years after Saccheri. ironically. non% Euclidean geometr) was discovered simultaneously. and then e(!ired& 0ut in so doin . and therefore ado!ted it& 0ut the disci!les of Euclid were no ha!!ier about havin to assume this fifth !ostulate& Ever the centuries. forty years after Aambert.

a ed twenty-five. 0olyai1s father.must mean& If. in which the symbols acquired !assive meanin s by virtue of their roles in theorems& The symbol q is es!ecially interestin . then you have achieved a radically new view!oint& &ndefined Terms This should be in to sound familiar& In !articular.chan ed when a new a(iom schema was added& In that very same way.Incidentally. and its variant. and merely let a -strai ht line. antici!atin correctly the simultaneity which is so frequent in scientific discovery. 3hen the time is ri!e for certain thin s.about the !ro!ositions which emer e in eometries like Saccheri1s and Aambert1s& The Saccherian !ro!ositions are only -re!u nant to the nature of the strai ht line. a close friend of the reat 6auss. Hou must not attem!t this a!!roach to !arallels& I know this way to its very end& I have traversed this bottomless ni ht. 6auss himself and a few others had more or less inde!endently hit u!on non-Euclidean ideas& These included a lawyer. a student of 6auss. '& @& Schweikart. who in "*"* sent a !a e describin a new -astral. !ityin myself and all mankind&&& I have traveled !ast all reefs of this infernal :ead Sea and have always come back with broken mast and torn sail& The ruin of my dis!osition and my fall date back to this time& I thou htlessly risked my life and ha!!iness—aut 8aesar aut nihil!" 0ut later. he tried to dissuade him from thinkin about such matters.be somethin which satisfies the new !ro!ositions. when convinced his son really -had somethin -. enormous labors= my creations are far better than those of others and yet I have not achieved com!lete satisfaction& 'or here it is true that si paullum a summo discessit. 'arkas 4or 3olf an 5 0olyai. it harks back to the !q-system. however. you can divest yourself of those !reconceived ima es. one can let the meanings of "point". leave the science of !arallels alone&&& I thou ht I would sacrifice myself for the sake of the truth& I was ready to become a martyr who would remove the flaw from eometry and return it !urified to mankind& I accom!lished monstrous. since its -meanin . #ergit ad imum! I turned back when I saw that no man can reach the bottom of this ni ht& I turned back unconsoled. "line". invested much effort in tryin to !rove Euclid1s fifth !ostulate& In a letter to his son Janos. these thin s a!!ear in different !laces in the manner of violets comin to li ht in early s!rin &B ?ow true this was in the case of non-Euclidean eometry2 In 6ermany. who did non-Euclidean tri onometry= and '& A& 3achter.oy of my life& I entreat you. havin found several dee! results in non-Euclidean eometry& The clue to non-Euclidean eometry was -thinkin strai ht.if you cannot free yourself of !reconceived notions of what -strai ht line. '& )& Taurinus. and so on (e determined () the set of theorems or propositions/ in which the) occur& This was the reat reali<ation of the discoverers of non-Euclidean eometry& They found different sorts of non-Euclidean eometries by denyin Euclid1s fifth . he ur ed him to !ublish it.eometry to 6auss= Schweikart1s ne!hew. who died in "*"$. which e(tin uished all li ht and .

even if the s!ace is not as intuitive as ordinary s!ace& )ctually. rather than e(!licitly. not a !lane& 8otice that two AI8ES always intersect in e(actly two anti!odal !oints of the s!here1s surface that is. called the parallel postulate. implicitl)—by the totality of all !ro!ositions in which they occur. like the ! and q of the !qsystem.as if they had only the meanin instilled in them by the !ro!ositions in which they occur. you reach h)per(olic geometr)& Incidentally.!ostulate in different ways and followin out the consequences& Strictly s!eakin . so two PEI8TS determine a AI8E& 0y treatin words such as -PEI8T. the reason that such variations are still called . eometry—is embedded in them& It is the !resence of this minimal core which makes it sensible to think of them as describin !ro!erties of some sort of eometrical s!ace. do et defined in a sense. but rather.ust as two AI8ES determine PEI8T. has its center at the center of the s!here5& Fnder these inter!retations. -. strai ht line which !asses throu h that !oint and never intersects the first line. and -!oint. there e(ists one.and so forth are to be !arts of the surface of an ordinary s!here& Aet us write . -lines.eometries. or four-!ostulate.and -AI8E. like the equator. since the !ro!ositions which follow from them are im!licit in the !ostulates already& This view would say that the !ostulates are im!licit definitions of all the undefined terms. -and-. in e(actly one sin le PEI8T2 )nd .when the everyday sense is desired& Then. thou h they contain words like -PEI8T. we can say that a PEI8T consists of a !air of diametrically o!!osed !oints of the s!here1s surface& ) AI8E is a reat circle on the s!here 4a circle which. at least two such lines e(ist. in a definition& Ene could maintain that a full definition of the undefined terms resides in the !ostulates alone. they 4and Saccheri5 did not deny the fifth !ostulate directly.PEI8T. elli!tical eometry is easily visuali<ed& )ll -!oints-. and a !oint not on it. the !ro!ositions of elli!tical eometry. then you reach elliptical geometr)= if you assert that. we take ste! towards com!lete formali<ation of eometry& This semiformal version still uses a lot of words in En lish with their usual meanin s 4words such -the-. which are consequently called undefined terms& Fndefined terms.oin-.and -AI8E-. they denied an equivalent !ostulate. -have-5. 6iven any strai ht line.and -AI8E s!eak of the oin s-on on a s!here.PEI8T. no matter how far they are e(tended& The second strai ht line is then said to be !arallel to the first& If you assert that no such line e(ists.is that the core element—absolute. 1 if -. althou h the everyday meanin has been drained out of s!ecial words like . all of the undefined terms bein defined in terms of the others& . and only one.when the technical term is meant. which runs as follows.

.ust relied on ood old everyday notions& 0ut now let us say e(actly what is meant by consistenc) of a formal system 4to ether with an inter!retation5. inconsistency is not an intrinsic !ro!erty of any formal system& 4arieties of Consistency 3e have been s!eakin of -consistency. and 9b) as -9 beats ) in chess always-. a formal system which has only the followin three theorems. as you know.The . it contains the essence of the idea that symbols may have many meanin ful inter!retations—it is u! to the observer to look for them& 3e can summari<e our observations so far in terms of the word -consistency-& 3e be an our discussion by manufacturin what a!!eared to be an inconsistent formal system—one which was internally inconsistent. when we reali<ed our error. so that the !assive meanin s are built into the system& That is what I did for ! and q when I first created the !q-system& 0ut there may be other !assive meanin s which are !otentially !erce!tible. Tb2. E as -E bert-. a system would be internally inconsistent if it contained two or more theorems whose inter!retations were incom!atible with one another. for e(am!le.and -inconsistency. !resumably one has an intended inter!retation for each symbol. and EbT& If T is inter!reted as -the Tortoise-. turnin every term into a -meanin less. whether !eo!le discover those meanin s. for to do so requires findin a set of conce!ts which can be linked by an isomor!hism to the symbols in the formal system& If one be ins with the aim of formali<in eometry. without definin them& 3e have . that every theorem.symbol of a formal system& I !ut quotes around -meanin less.and q as -taken from-. which no one has yet noticed& 'or instance. there were the sur!rise inter!retations of ! as -equals. we re ained consistency2 It now becomes clear that consistenc) is not a propert) of a formal s)stem per se. the symbols automatically !ick u! !assive meanin s in accordance with the theorems they occur in& It is another question. 2 as -9eno-. thou h. that we had chosen unfortunate inter!retations for the symbols& 0y chan in the inter!retations. and internally consistent if all inter!reted theorems were com!atible with one another& 7onsider.ossibility of Multi!le Inter!retations ) full formali<ation of eometry would take the drastic ste! of makin every term undefined—that is. (ut depends on the interpretation which is proposed for it & 0y the same token. becomes a true statement& )nd we will say that inconsistency occurs when there is at least one false statement amon the inter!reted theorems& This definition a!!ears to be talkin about inconsistency with the e(ternal world —what about internal inconsistencies? Presumably. then we have the followin inter!reted theorems. 2bE. in the ori inal !q-system& )lthou h this is rather a trivial e(am!le. when inter!reted. as well as inconsistent with the e(ternal world& 0ut a moment later we took it all back.all alon .because.

ust a question of truth—it is question of !ossibility& )ll three theorems would come out false if the ca!itals were inter!reted as the names of real !eo!le—but that is not why we would call the system internally inconsistent= our rounds for doin so would be the circularity. the inter!retation makes the system internally inconsistent& The internal inconsistency de!ends not on the inter!retations of the three ca!ital letters. The Tortoise was invented by 9eno& 9eno was invented by E bert& E bert was invented by the Tortoise& In this case. but merely that they come out compati(le with one another& 8ow su!!ose instead that 9b) is to be inter!reted as -9 was invented by )-& Then we would have. it doesn1t matter whether the individual statements are true or false—and !erha!s there is no way to know which ones are true. internal consistency de!ends u!on consistency with the e(ternal world—only now.in 7ha!ter TT&5 /y!othetical >orlds and Consistency 3e have iven two ways of lookin at consistency. you try to ima ine a world in which all of them could be simultaneously true& Therefore. the first says that system-!lusinter!retation is consistent with the e9ternal world if every theorem comes out true when inter!reted= the second says that a system-!lus-inter!retation is internall) consistent if all theorems come out mutually com!atible when inter!reted& 8ow there is a close relationshi! between these two ty!es of consistency& In order to determine whether several statements at mutually com!atible. the form= system in which those three strin s are theorems is internally consistent althou h. in !oint of fact. but only on that of b. althou h they describe a rather bi<arre circle of chess !layers& ?ence. combined with the inter!retation of the letter b& 40y the way.The Tortoise always beats 9eno at chess& 9eno always beats E bert at chess& E bert always beats the Tortoise at chess& The statements are not incom!atible. and which are not& 3hat is nevertheless certain is that not all three can (e true at once! Thus. it may be clear that there is no way that the rest of them can be inter!reted so that all theorems will come out true& 0ut it is not . none of the three statements is true2 Internal consistency does not require all theorems to come out true. one can have internal inconsistency without havin inter!reted all of the symbols of the formal system& 4In this case it sufficed to inter!ret a sin le symbol&5 0y the time sufficiently many symbols have been iven inter!retations. and on the fact that the three ca!itals are cyclically !ermuted around the occurrences of b& Thus. instead of the one we live in& 0ut this is an e(tremely va ue.is allowed to be an) imagina(le world. -the e(ternal world. under this inter!retation. you1ll find more on this -authorshi! trian le. .

or animals which are not made of cells& Er even. T as B. for want of a better word. 2 as +.ust as lon as no two of its theorems. for the reason that they are very hard to disentan le from one another& 3hat kind of inconsistency.ust the lo ical and mathematical kinds& )ccordin to this convention. it is !ossible to ima ine a world in which three characters invent each other cyclically& Er is it? Is it !ossible to ima ine a world in which there are square circles? Is a world ima inable in which 8ewton1s laws. then. for formal systems. and E are irrelevant. and so on& In a biolo ically consistent system. but no theorem whose inter!retation is the statement -7ell-less animals e(ist-& 6enerally s!eakin . we1d have had inconsistency& In fact.ust as lon as all its inter!reted theorems are com!atible with !hysical law= then comes biolo ical consistency. the values assi ned to T. 2. there could be a theorem whose inter!retation is the statement -Shakes!eare wrote an o!era-. !uttin no restraints on thin s at all. a system-!lus-inter!retation would be logicall) consistent . the most lenient would be -lo ical consistency-. for e(am!le. directly contradict each other= and mathematicall) consistent . and E as ""& 8otice that two theorems come out true this way. EbT inconsistent& 3e can do so by inter!retin b as -is bi er than-& 3hat about T and 2 and E? They can be inter!reted as natural numbers— for e(am!le. come to think of it. as lon as it is understood that they are restricted to natural numbers& Ence a ain we see a case where only some of the inter!retation is needed. there would have been two falsehoods and only one truth& 0ut either way. instead. reen and not reen—while some of them seem. we haven1t yet found an inter!retation which makes the trio of theorems Tb2.world? )fter all. and not relativity. it is the mathematicians and lo icians who do the drawin —hardly an im!artial crew&&&5 This means that the kinds of inconsistency which -count-. in order to reco ni<e internal inconsistency& . when inter!reted as statements. the borderline between uninterestin and interestin is drawn between !hysical consistency and mathematical consistency& 4Ef course. of course& Some of these worlds seem more ima inable than others.ou hly. 2bE. are . hold? Is it !ossible to ima ine a world in which somethin can be simultaneously reen and not reen? Er a world in which animals e(ist which are not made of cells? In which 0ach im!rovised an ei ht-!art fu ue on a theme of @in 'rederick the 6reat? In which mosquitoes are more intelli ent than !eo!le? In which tortoises can !lay football—or talk? ) tortoise talkin football would be an anomaly.unsatisfactory conclusion& 3hat constitutes an -ima inable. one false& If. -!lausible-—such as 0ach im!rovisin an ei ht-!art fu ue.ust as lon as inter!reted theorems do not violate mathematics= and ph)sicall) consistent . e(ce!t those of lo ic& /ore s!ecifically. we had inter!reted 2 as %. then. should one say is involved in the !roblem of the three characters who invent each other cyclically? Ao ical? Physical? 0iolo ical? Aiterary? Fsually. a world in which the laws of !hysics are different&&& . since some seem to embody logical contradictions—for e(am!le. it should be !ossible to establish different brands of consistency& 'or instance. these fancier kinds of inconsistency are not studied.

absolute eometry5 which partl) !ins down the !assive meanin s of its undefined terms. in which some symbols could have inter!retations while others didn1t. ivin an underlyin structure to the system= fillin in that skeleton comes other material. the !assive meanin s of 'ormal System I symbols remain valid= they form an immutable skeleton which then !lays a lar e role in the determination of the !assive meanin s of the new symbols of 'ormal System II& The second system may in turn !lay the role of skeleton with res!ect to a third system. to question the -islands of certainty-—we would also encounter trouble. of another sort& There1s no way of backtrackin and -undecidin . and so on& It is also !ossible—and eometry is a ood e(am!le of this—to have a system 4e& &. or whi!s.of a formal system& This ultimate esca!e route is an e(am!le of a -F-mode.u!on which we base our inter!retation of the overall !icture& ?avin once identified them. and.ects& It is !articularly interestin in the case understandin drawin s by Escher. or hierarchical. new vocabulary or !erceive unfamiliar ob. which can vary 4Euclidean or nonEuclidean eometry5& 'ormal systems are often built u! in . which then further restrict the !assive meanin s of the undefined terms& This the case with Euclidean versus nonEuclidean eometry& Layers of Stability in 4isual . those whose meanin is fi(ed and immutable. hierarchical way. in which there occur blatantly im!ossible ima es& Hou mi ht think that we would seek to reinter!ret the !icture over and over a ain until we came to an inter!retation of its !arts which was free of contradictions —but we don1t do that at all& 3e sit there amused and !u<<led by staircases which o every which way.ust staircases& 4There is. somewhere outside of eometry& Those words form a ri id skeleton.that they are staircases& They are not fishes. we encounter trouble& 0ut if we attem!ted to backtrack—that is. 'ormal System I may be devised. one other out—to leave all the lines of the !icture totally uninter!reted. we acquire new knowled e. is reminiscent of doin eometry in natural lan ua e usin some words as undefined terms& In such a case.ust this ty!e of sequential.Embedding of 0ne +ormal System In Another The !recedin e(am!le.usted until the system is consistent 4these are the undefined terms5& :oin eometry in this way requires that meanin s have already been established for words in the first class. we try to e(tend our understandin . words are divide into two classes.erce!tion In a similar. actually. those whose meanin is to be ad. and by !eo!le oin in inconsistent directions on a sin le staircase& Those staircases are -islands of certainty. manner& 'or e(am!le. or hands—they are . with rules and a(ioms that ive certain intended !assive meanin s to its symbols& Then 'ormal System I is incor!orated fully into a lar er system with more symbols—'ormal System II& Since 'ormal System I1s a(ioms and rules are !art of 'ormal System II.res!onse—a 9en attitude towards symbolism&5 . by seekin to establish the relationshi! which they bear to one another& )t that sta e. such as =elati#it) 4'i & BB5. and which can be su!!lemented by e(tra rules or a(ioms. like the -meanin less symbols.

elativity. one can still manufacture hy!othetical worlds. it is too late—he can1t o back and chan e his mind about how to inter!ret the lower-level ob. resultin in a com!rehensible total system. by the hierarchical nature of our !erce!tive !rocesses. to see either a cra<y world or . com!rehensible inter!retations can be found for the undefined terms. BIGH/! So we are forced. no matter how lon one stares at the !ictures& Ef course. . whereas for the former.ust a bunch of !ointless lines& ) similar analysis could be made of do<ens of Escher !ictures. () '! 8! Escher lithograph. the end result is not reconcilable with one1s conce!tion of the world. the laws of biolo y. which are then !ut to ether in nonstandard ways= and by the time the observer sees the !arado( on a hi h level. !hysics. in which Escherian events can ha!!en&&& but in such worlds.ects& The difference between an Escher drawin and nonEuclidean eometry is that in the latter. which rely heavily u!on the reco nition of certain basic forms.73G5=E FF! .

since.ect this !oint of view—it is too lo ical& In !articular. in every conceivable world. and it !retty well has to include lo ic& 4There are belief systems which re. all imagina(le worlds ha#e the same mathematics as the real world& Thus. accordin to what we sat above. a world whose only restriction is that in it. but then bein inconsistent is !art of 9en. then. 9en embraces contradictions and non-contradictions with equal ea erness& This may seem inconsistent. if not all of mathematics.mathematics. which makes them e(tremely weird worlds& 4)n e(am!le of this is in >aterfall 4'i & L5. we have shown that such worlds are indeed conceivable= but in a dee!er sense.ust been said& If in all conceivable worlds the !arallel !ostulate is obeyed. in some sense. and so&&&what can one say?5 . it seems that if we want to be able to communicate at all. while simultaneously bein obeyed on another. but where the nature s!ace violates the laws of !hysics&5 Is Mathematics the Same in E"ery Concei"able >orld7 3e have stressed the fact. there would have to be infinitely many !rime numbers= furthermore. which !uts us back in the same mental state as Saccheri and Aambert— surely an unwise move& But what. by merely inventin the conce!t. it would seem that the difference between the two ty!es of consistency should fade away. we have to ado!t some common base. must all concei#a(le worlds share? 7ould it be as little as lo ic itself? Er is even lo ic sus!ect? 7ould there be worlds where contradictions are normal !arts of e(istence—worlds where contradictions are not contradictions? 3ell. then we are assertin that non-Euclidean eometry is inconceivable. " !lus " would have to be B= likewise. where normal ravitation a!!lies to the movin water. all ri ht an les would have to be con ruent= and of course throu h any !oint not on a iven line there would have to be e(actly one !arallel line&&& 0ut wait a minute2 That1s the !arallel !ostulate—and to assert its universality would be a mistake. they are also quite inconceivable& 4This in itself is a little contradiction&5 Muite seriously. that internal consistency of a form= system 4to ether with an inter!retation5 requires that there be some imagina(le world—that is. or even lo ic will be violated on one level. however. in every conceivable world. above. mathematics and lo ic should be the same as in our world—in which all the inter!reted theorems come out true& E9ternal consistency. in li ht of what1s . however—consistency with the e(ternal world—requires that all theorems come of true in the real world& 8ow in the s!ecial case where one wishes to create consistent formal system whose theorems are to be inter!reted as statements of mathematics.

which ou ht to be included.Is . is that all? Is it really conceivable that. an invariant in redient of all number theories which identified them as number theories rather than. ->hich num(er theor) is true$-. the sum of the an les in a trian le is "*+ de rees only in Euclidean eometry= it is reater in elli!tic eometry. like -PEI8T. Everythin !roduced by the system is true-. since in the as!ects relevant to the real world. theories about cocoa or rubber or bananas& It seems to be the consensus of most modern mathematicians and !hiloso!hers that there is such a core number theory. there would be standard and nonstandard number theories& 0ut there would have to be some counter!art to absolute eometry.better thou ht of as an undefined term. number theory would be a bifurcated theory. all number theories overla!& The same cannot be said of different eometries= for e(am!le. the number of -brandsof number theory is infinite. but also in !hysics& )s for the corres!ondin question. then its com!lementary notion. with standard and nonstandard versions& Fnlike the situation in eometry.nature ives an ambi uous answer not only in mathematics. all number theories are the same& In other words. less in hy!erbolic& There is a story that 6auss once attem!ted to measure the sum of the an les in a lar e trian le defined by three mountain !eaks. in order to determine. it is now well established—as a matter of fact as a direct consequence of 6>del1s Theorem—that number theory is a bifurcated theory. there are not infinitely many !rimes? 3ould it not seem necessary that numbers should obey the same laws in all conceivable worlds? Er&&& is the conce!t -natural number. which makes the situation of number theory considerably more com!le(& 'or !ractical !ur!oses.umber Theory the Same In All Concei"able >orlds7 If we assume that logic is !art of every conceivable world 4and note that we have not defined lo ic. in some worlds. like eometry. alon with lo ic.or -AI8E-? In that case. which kind of eometry really rules our universe& It was a hundred years later that Einstein ave a theory 4 eneral relativity5 which said that the eometry of the universe is determined by its content of matter. in what we consider to be -conceivable worlds-& This core of number theory. we shall have more to say on it after oin throu h 6>del1s Theorem in detail& Com!leteness If consistency is the minimal condition under which symbols acquire !assive meanin s. com!leteness. com!leteness is the other way round. the fact that there are different number theories would not matter. once and for all. -3hich eometry is true?. -Every true statement is !roduced by the system-& 8ow to refine the notion sli htly& 3e can1t mean every true statement in the world—we mean only those which belon to the domain which we at attem!tin to . if brid e buildin de!ended on number theory 4which in a sense it does5. so that no one eometry is intrinsic to s!ace itself& Thus to the question. a -core. and we shall formali<e it in 7ha!ter GIII& )lso.theory. say. the counter!art to absolute eometry—is called &eano arithmetic. but we will in 7ha!ters to come5. however. is the ma(imal confirmation of those !assive meanin s& 3here consistency is the !ro!erty that.

comes out true 4in some ima inable world5& 7om!leteness. are more like low-fidelity !hono ra!hs= they are so !oor to be in with that it is obvious that they cannot do what we would wish them to do—namely tell us everythin about number theory& . there is no way that the !q-system tells us how many !rime numbers there are& 6>del1s Incom!leteness Theorem says that any system which is -sufficiently !owerful. on the rounds that additions of three !ositive inte ers 4such as B ^ % ^ C X#5 are not re!resented by theorems of the !q-system. and hence should be considered to be .ust as devoid of meanin as is !q!---q!q& Tri!le additions are sim!ly not e9pressi(le in the notation of the system—so the com!leteness of the system is !reserved& :es!ite the com!leteness of the !q-system under this inter!retation. --!---!---q---------5. -Every true statement which can be e(!ressed in the notation of the system is a theorem&7onsistency.is. ?owever. -)ll true additions of two !ositive inte ers are pro#a(le within the system&. !rovided we are very conscious of the blurrin that is takin !lace. when all statements which are true 4in some ima inable world5. since no false statement is —to use our new !hrase—!rovable within the system& Someone mi ht ar ue that the system is incom!lete. but which are not theorems& 4There are truths belon in to number theory which are not !rovable within the system&5 Systems like the !q-system. and which can be e(!ressed as well-formed strin s of the system. u!on inter!retation. des!ite bein translatable into the notation of the system 4e& &.43arnin . it shows that we at be innin to blur the distinction between formal systems and their inter!retations& This is all ri ht. which are com!lete but not very !owerful. 3hen we start usin the term -!rovable statements. incom!lete. are theorems& )n e(am!le of a formal system which is com!lete on its own mode level is the ori inal !q-system. in the sense that there are well-formed strin s which e(!ress true statements of number theory. with the ori inal inter!retation& )ll true additions of two !ositive inte ers are re!resented by theorems of the system& 3e mi ht say this another way. when every theorem. it certainly falls far short of ca!turin the full notion of truth in number theory& 'or e(am!le.instead of -theorems-. com!leteness means. and !rovided that we remember that multi!le inter!retations are sometimes !ossible&5 The !q-system with the ori in inter!retation is complete= it is also consistent. by virtue of its !ower. this strin is not well-formed.re!resent in the system& Therefore.

or by 4B5 tightening up the interpretation& In this case. we will be !ulled in the other direction-towards addin new rules. then we will say our record !layer was defective& 3hat. however.ustify bein inter!reted that way& Sometimes. and think carefully2 . The inter!retation is . the sensible alternative seems to be to ti hten the inter!retation& Instead of inter!retin q as -is reater than or equal to-. there are now many e(!ressible truths which are not theorems& 'or instance. the !q-system is not com!lete& 3e could re!air the situation either by 4"5 adding new rules to the system. we modified the inter!retation for q from -equalsto -is reater than or equal to-& 3e saw that the modified !q-system was consistent under this inter!retation= yet somethin about the new inter!retation is not very satisfyin & The !roblem is sim!le. that -com!leteness is the ma(imal confirmation of !assive meanin s-? It means that if a system is consistent but incom!lete. to make the system more !owerful& The irony is that we think./o' an Inter!retation May Ma. we would have to !lay friends1 records on it. if the record !asses its test. makin it more !owerful. can we conclude when we find out that (oth !ass their res!ective tests? That is the moment to remember the chain of two isomor!hisms 4'i & B+5. let1s look at the modified !q-system 4includin )(iom Schema II5 and the inter!retation we used for it& )fter modifyin the !q-system. the system can become com!lete& To illustrate this idea. as I did above. or our record !layer& In order to test our record. and we also have a record tentatively labeled -7anon on 0-)-7-?-& ?owever. if the inter!retations are -trimmed.a little. we will encounter incom!leteness a ain= but there. then we will say the record was defective= contrariwise. and see if the music we hear a rees with the labels& If our record !layer !asses its test. we would have to !lay it on friends1 record !layers. when we !lay the record on the record !layer. and listen to its quality& In order to test our phonograph. that we surely have made the system com!lete now2 The nature of the dilemma can be illustrated by the followin alle ory&&& 3e have a record !layer. each time we add a new rule. there is a mismatch between the symbols and their inter!retations& The system does not have the !ower to . to remedy the situation. we should say -equals or e(ceeds by "-& 8ow the modified !q-system becomes both consistent and com!lete& )nd the com!leteness confirms the a!!ro!riateness of the inter!retation& Incom!leteness of +ormali:ed .e or Brea.umber Theory In number theory.is e(!ressed by the nontheorem --!---q-. Com!leteness 3hat does it mean to say. -B !lus % is reater than or equal to ". the feedback-induced vibrations 4as caused by the Tortoise1s records5 interfere so much that we do not even reco ni<e the tune& 3e conclude that something is defective—either our record.ust too slo!!y2 It doesn1t accurately reflect what the theorems in the system do& Fnder this slo!!y inter!retation.

Little Harmonic Labyrinth
The Tortoise and *chilles are spending a da) at 8one) 3sland! *fter (u)ing a couple of cotton candies, the) decide to take a ride on the 7erris wheel! Tortoise, This is my favorite ride& Ene seems to move so far, and reality one ets nowhere& *chilles, I can see why it would a!!eal to you& )re you all stra!!ed in? Tortoise, Hes, I think I1ve ot this buckle done& 3ell, here we o& *chilles, Hou certainly are e(uberant today& Tortoise, I have ood reason to be& /y aunt, who is a fortune-teller told me that a stroke of 6ood 'ortune would befall me today& So I am tin lin with antici!ation& *chilles, :on1t tell me you believe in fortune-tellin 2 Tortoise, 8o&&& but they say it works even if you don1t believe it& *chilles, 3ell, that1s fortunate indeed& Tortoise, )h, what a view of the beach, the crowd, the ocean, the city&&& *chilles, Hes, it certainly is s!lendid& Say, look at that helico!ter there& It seems to be flyin our way& In fact it1s almost directly above us now& Tortoise, Stran e—there1s a cable dan lin down from it, which is very close to us& It1s comin so close we could !ractically rab it *chilles, Aook2 )t the end of the line there1s a iant hook, with a note& ,e reaches out and snatches the note! The) pass () and are on their wa) down!/ Tortoise, 7an you make out what the note says? *chilles, Hes—it reads, -?owdy, friends& 6rab a hold of the hook time around, for an Fne(!ected Sur!rise&Tortoise, The note1s a little corny but who knows where it mi ht lead, Perha!s it1s ot somethin to do with that bit of 6ood 'ortune due me& 0y all means, let1s try it2 *chilles, Aet1s2 :n the trip up the) un(uckle their (uckles, and at the crest of the ride, gra( for the giant hook! *ll of a sudden the) are whooshed up () the ca(le which "uickl) reels them sk)ward into the ho#ering helicopter! * large strong hand helps them in!/ <oice, 3elcome aboard—Suckers& *chilles, 3h-who are you?

<oice, )llow me to introduce myself& I am ?e(achloro!hene J& 6oodfortune, @idna!!er )t-Aar e, and :evourer of Tortoises !ar E(cellence, at your service& Tortoise, 6ul!2 *chilles, 4whispering to his friend5, Fh-oh—I think that this -6oodfortune- is not e(actly what we1d antici!ated& 4To Goodfortune/ )h—if I may be so bold—where are you s!iritin us off to? Goodfortune, ?o ho2 To my all-electric kitchen-in-the-sky, where I will !re!are T?IS tasty morsel—4leering at the Tortoise as he sa)s this 5—in a delicious !ie-in-the-sky2 )nd make no mistake—it1s all .ust for my obblin !leasure2 ?o ho ho2 *chilles, )ll I can say is you1ve ot a !retty fiendish lau h& Goodfortune, 4laughing fiendishl)/: ?o ho ho2 'or that remark, my friend, you will !ay dearly& ?o ho2 *chilles, 6ood rief—I wonder what he means by that2 Goodfortune, Gery sim!le—I1ve ot a Sinister 'ate in store for both of you2 Just you wait2 ?o ho ho2 ?o ho ho2 *chilles, Hikes2 Goodfortune, 3ell, we have arrived& :isembark, my friends, into my fabulous all-electric kitchen-in-the-sky& The) walk inside!/ Aet me show you around, before I !re!are your fates& ?ere is my bedroom& ?ere is my study& Please wait here for me for a moment& I1ve ot to o shar!en my knives& 3hile you1re waitin , hel! yourselves to some !o!corn& ?o ho ho2 Tortoise !ie2 Tortoise !ie2 /y favorite kind of !ie2 4E9it&5 *chilles, Eh, boy—!o!corn2 I1m oin to munch my head off2 Tortoise, )chilles2 Hou .ust stuffed yourself with cotton candy2 0esides, how can you think about food at a time like this? *chilles, 6ood ravy—oh, !ardon me—I shouldn1t use that turn of !hrase, should I? I mean in these dire circumstances&&& Tortoise, I1m afraid our oose is cooked& *chilles, Say—take a ander at all these books old 6oodfortune has in his study& Muite a collection of esoterica, Bird(rains 3 ,a#e ;nownR 8hess and 5m(rella%Twirling 'ade Eas)R 8oncerto for Tapdancer and :rchestra&&& ?mmm& Tortoise, 3hat1s that small volume lyin o!en over there on the desk, ne(t to the dodecahedron and the o!en drawin !ad? *chilles, This one? 3hy, its title is &ro#ocati#e *d#entures of *chilles and the Tortoise Taking &lace in -undr) -pots of the Glo(e& Tortoise, ) moderately !rovocative title& *chilles, Indeed—and the adventure it1s o!ened to looks !rovocative& It1s called -:.inn and Tonic-& Tortoise, ?mm&&& I wonder why& Shall we try readin it? I could take the Tortoise1s !art, and you could take that of )chilles&

*chilles, I1m ame& ?ere oes nothin &&& The) (egin reading ".Minn and Tonic"!/ *chilles has in#ited the Tortoise o#er to see his collection of prints () his fa#orite artist, '! 8! Escher!/ Tortoise, These are wonderful !rints, )chilles& *chilles, I knew you would en.oy seein them& :o you have any !articular favorite? Tortoise, Ene of my favorites is 8on#e9 and 8onca#e, where two internally consistent worlds, when .u(ta!osed, make a com!letely inconsistent com!osite world& Inconsistent worlds are always fun !laces to visit, but I wouldn1t want to live there& *chilles, 3hat do you mean, -fun to visit-? Inconsistent worlds don1t ETIST, so how can you visit one? Tortoise, I be your !ardon, but weren1t we .ust a reein that in this Escher !icture, an inconsistent world is !ortrayed? *chilles, Hes, but that1s .ust a two-dimensional world—a fictitious world—a !icture& Hou can1t visit that world& Tortoise, I have my ways&&& *chilles, ?ow could you !ro!el yourself into a flat !icture-universe? Tortoise, 0y drinkin a little lass of PFS?I86-PETIE8& That does the trick& *chilles, 3hat on earth is !ushin -!otion? Tortoise, It1s a liquid that comes in small ceramic !hials, and which, when drunk by someone lookin at a !icture, -!ushes11 him ri ht into the world of that !icture& Peo!le who aren1t aware of the !owers of !ushin -!otion often are !retty sur!rised by the situations they wind u! in& *chilles, Is there no antidote? Ence !ushed, is one irretrievably lost? Tortoise, In certain cases, that1s not so bad a fate& 0ut there is, in fact, another !otion—well, not a !otion, actually, but an eli(ir—no, not an eli(ir, but a—a— Tortoise, ?e !robably means -tonic-& *chilles, Tonic? Tortoise, That1s the word I was lookin for2 -PEPPI86-TE8I7- is what it1s called, and if you remember to carry a bottle of it in your ri ht hand as you swallow the !ushin -!otion, it too will be !ushed into the !icture= then, whenever you et a hankerin to -!o!- back out into real life, you need only take a swallow of !o!!in -tonic, and !resto2 Hou1re back in the real world, e(actly where you were before you !ushed yourself in& *chilles, That sounds very interestin & 3hat would ha!!en it you took some !o!!in -tonic without havin !reviously !ushed yourself into a !icture?

Tortoise, I don1t !recisely know, )chilles, but I would be rather wary of horsin around with these stran e !ushin and !o!!in liquids& Ence I had a friend, a 3easel, who did !recisely what you su ested—and no one has heard from him since& *chilles, That1s unfortunate& 7an you also carry alon the bottle of !ushin !otion with you? Tortoise, Eh, certainly& Just hold it in your left hand, and it too will et !ushed ri ht alon with you into the !icture you1re lookin at& *chilles, 3hat ha!!ens if you then find a !icture inside the !icture which you have already entered, and take another swi of !ushin -!otion? Tortoise, Just what you would e(!ect, you wind u! inside that !icture-in-a!icture& *chilles, I su!!ose that you have to !o! twice, then, in order to e(tricate yourself from the nested !ictures, and re-emer e back in real life& Tortoise, That1s ri ht& Hou have to !o! once for each !ush, since a !ush takes you down inside a !icture, and a !o! undoes that& *chilles, Hou know, this all sounds !retty fishy to me&&& )re you sure you1re not .ust testin the limits of my ullibility? Tortoise, I swear2 Aook—here are two !hials, ri ht here in my !ocket& 4=eaches into his lapel pocket, and pulls out two rather large unla(eled phials, in one of which one can hear a red li"uid sloshing around, and in the other of which one can hear a (lue li"uid sloshing around&5 If you1re willin , we can try them& 3hat do you say? *chilles, 3ell, I uess, ahm, maybe, ahm&&& Tortoise, 6ood2 I knew you1d want to try it out& Shall we !ush ourselves into the world of Escher1s 8on#e9 and 8onca#e? *chilles, 3ell, ah,&&& Tortoise, Then it1s decided& 8ow we1ve ot to remember to take alon this flask of tonic, so that we can !o! back out& :o you want to take that heavy res!onsibility, )chilles? *chilles, If it1s all the same to you, I1m a little nervous, and I1d !refer lettin you, with your e(!erience, mana e the o!eration& Tortoise, Gery well, then& -o sa)ing, the Tortoise pours two small portions of pushing%potion! Then he picks up the flask of tonic and grasps it firml) in his right hand, and (oth he and *chilles lift their glasses to their lips!/ Tortoise, 0ottoms u!2 The) swallow!/

73G5=E FH! 7onve( and 7oncave, () '! 8! Escher lithograph, BIGG/!

*chilles, That1s an e(ceedin ly stran e taste& Tortoise, Ene ets used to it& *chilles, :oes takin the tonic feel this stran e? Tortoise, Eh, that1s quite another sensation& 3henever you taste the tonic, you feel a dee! sense of satisfaction, as if you1d been waitin to taste it all your life& *chilles, Eh, I1m lookin forward to that& Tortoise, 3ell, )chilles, where are we? *chilles, 4taking cogni@ance of his surroundings5, 3e1re in a little ondola, lidin down a canal2 I want to et out& /r& 6ondolier, !lease let us out here& The gondolier pa)s no attention to this re"uest!/ Tortoise, ?e doesn1t s!eak En lish& If we want to et out here, we1d better .ust clamber out quickly before he enters the sinister -Tunnel of Aove-= .ust ahead of us&

*chilles, his face a little pale scram(les out in a split second and then pulls his slower friend out!/ *chilles, I didn1t like the sound of that !lace, somehow& I1m lad we ot out here& Say, how do you know so much about this !lace, anyway? ?ave you been here before? Tortoise, /any times, althou h I always came in from other Escher !ictures& They1re all connected behind the frames, you know& Ence you1re in one, you can et to any other one& *chilles, )ma<in 2 3ere I not here, seein these thin s with my own eyes, I1m not sure I1d believe you& 4They wander out throu h a little arch&5 Eh, look at those two cute li<ards2 Tortoise, 7ute? They aren1t cute—it makes me shudder .ust to think of them2 They are the vicious uardians of that ma ic co!!er lam! han in from the ceilin over there& ) mere touch of their ton ues, and any mortal turns to a !ickle& *chilles, :ill, or sweet? Tortoise, :ill& *chilles, Eh, what a sour fate2 0ut if the lam! has ma ical !owers, I would like to try for it& Tortoise, It1s a foolhardy venture, my friend& I wouldn1t risk it& *chilles, I1m oin to try .ust once& ,e stealthil) approaches the lamp, making sure not to awaken the sleeping lad near()! But suddenl), he slips on a strange shell%like indentation in the floor, and lunges out into space! +urching cra@il), he reaches for an)thing, and manages somehow to gra( onto the lamp with one hand! -winging wildl), with (oth li@ards hissing and thrusting their tongues #iolentl) out at him, he is left dangling helplessl) out in the middle of space!/ *chilles, ?e-e-e-el!2 ,is cr) attracts the attention of a woman who rushes downstairs and awakens the sleeping (o)! ,e takes stock of the situation, and, with a kindl) smile on his face, gestures to *chilles that all will (e well! ,e shouts something in a strange guttural tongue to a pair of trumpeters high up in windows, and immediatel), weird tones (egin ringing out and making (eats each other! The sleep) )oung lad points at the li@ards, and *chilles sees that the music is ha#ing a strong soporific effect on them! -oon, the) are completel) unconscious! Then the helpful lad shouts to two companions clim(ing up ladders! The) (oth pull their ladders up and then e9tend them out into space Must underneath the stranded *chilles, forming a sort of (ridge! Their gestures make it clear that *chilles should hurr) and clim(

on! But (efore he does so, *chilles carefull) unlinks the top link of the chain holding the lamp, and detaches the lamp! Then he clim(s onto the ladder%(ridge and the three )oung lads pull him in to safet)! *chilles throws his arms around them and hugs them gratefull)!/ *chilles, Eh, /r& T, how can I re!ay them? Tortoise, I ha!!en to know that these valiant lads .ust love coffee, and down in the town below, there1s a !lace where they make an incom!arable cu! of es!resso& Invite them for a cu! of es!resso2 *chilles, That would hit the s!ot& *nd so, () a rather comical series of gestures, smiles, and words, *chilles manages to con#e) his in#itation to the )oung lads, and the part) of fi#e walks out and down a steep staircase descending into the town! The) reach a charming small cafe, sit down outside, and order fi#e espressos! *s the) sip their drinks, *chilles remem(ers he has the lamp with him!/ *chilles, I for ot, /r& Tortoise—I1ve ot this ma ic lam! with me2 0ut— what1s ma ic about it? Tortoise, Eh, you know, .ust the usual—a enie& *chilles, 3hat? Hou mean a enie comes out when you rub it, and rants you wishes? Tortoise, ;i ht& 3hat did you e(!ect? Pennies from heaven? *chilles, 3ell, this is fantastic2 I can have any wish want, eh? I1ve always wished this would ha!!en to me&&& *nd so *chilles gentl) ru(s the large letter '+' which is etched on the lamp's copper surface!!! -uddenl) a huge puff of smoke appears, and in the forms of the smoke the fi#e friends can make out a weird, ghostl) figure towering a(o#e them!/ Genie, ?ello, my friends— and thanks ever so much for rescuin my Aam! from the evil Ai<ard-:uo& *nd so sa)ing, the Genie picks up the +amp, and stuffs it into a pocket concealed among the folds of his long ghostl) ro(e which swirls out of the +amp!/ )s a si n of ratitude for your heroic deed, I would like to offer you, on the !art of my Aam!, the o!!ortunity to have any three of your wishes reali<ed& *chilles, ?ow stu!efyin 2 :on1t you think so, /r& T? Tortoise, I surely do& 6o ahead, )chilles, take the first wish&

*chilles, 3ow2 0ut what should I wish? Eh, I know2 It1s what I thou ht of the first time I read the )rabian 8i hts 4that collection of silly 4and nested5 tales5—I wish that I had a ?F8:;E: wishes, instead of .ust three2 Pretty clever, eh, /r& T? I bet HEF never would have thou ht of that trick& I always wondered why those do!ey !eo!le in the stories never tried it themselves& Tortoise, /aybe now you1ll find out the answer& Genie, I am sorry, )chilles, but I don1t rant metawishes& *chilles, I wish you1d tell me what a -meta-wish- is2 Genie, 0ut T?)T is a meta-meta-wish, )chilles—and I don1t rant them, either& *chilles, 3haaat? I don1t follow you at all& Tortoise, 3hy don1t you re!hrase your last request, )chilles? *chilles, 3hat do you mean? 3hy should I? Tortoise, 3ell, you be an by sayin -I wish-& Since you1re .ust askin for information, why don1t you .ust ask a question? *chilles, )ll ri ht, thou h I don1t see why& Tell me, /r& 6enie—what is a meta-wish? Genie, It is sim!ly a wish about wishes& I am not allowed to rant metawishes& It is only within my !urview to rant !lain ordinary wishes, such as wishin for ten bottles of beer, to have ?elen of Troy on a blanket, or to have an all-e(!enses-!aid weekend for two at the 7o!acabana& Hou know—sim!le thin s like that& 0ut meta-wishes I cannot rant& 6E: won1t !ermit me to& *chilles, 6E:? 3ho is 6E:? )nd why won1t he let you rant meta-wishes? That seems like such a !uny thin com!ared to the others you mentioned& Genie, 3ell, it1s a com!licated matter, you see& 3hy don1t you .ust o ahead and make your three wishes? Er at least make one of them& I don1t have all I time in the world, you know&&& *chilles, Eh, I feel so rotten& I was ;E)AAH ?EPI86 wish for a hundred wishes&&& Genie, 6ee, I hate to see anybody so disa!!ointed that& )nd besides, metawishes are my favorite kind of wish& Aet me .ust see if there isn1t anythin I can do about this& This1ll .ust take one moment— The Genie remo#es from the wisp) folds of his ro(e an o(Mect which looks Must like the copper +amp he had put awa), e9cept that this one is made of sil#erR and where the pre#ious one had '+' etched on it, this one has ''+' in smaller letters, so as to co#er the same area!/ *chilles, )nd what is that? Genie, This is my /eta-Aam!&&&

,e ru(s the 'eta%+amp, and a huge puff of smoke appears! 3n the (illows of smoke, the) can all make out a ghostl) form towering a(o#e them!/ 'eta%Genie, I am the /eta-6enie& Hou summoned me, E 6enie? 3hat is your wish? Genie, I have a s!ecial wish to make of you, E :.inn and of 6E:& I wish for !ermission for tem!orary sus!ension of all ty!e-restrictions on wishes, for duration of one Ty!eless 3ish& 7ould you !lease rant this wish for me? 'eta%Genie, I1ll have to send it throu h 7hannels, of course& Ene half a moment, !lease& *nd, twice as "uickl) as the Genie did, this 'eta%Genie remo#es from the wisp) folds of her ro(e an o(Mect which looks Must like the sil#er 'eta% +amp, e9cept that it is made of goldR and where the pre#ious one had ''+' etched on it, this one has '''+' in smaller letters, so as to co#er the same area!/ *chilles, 4his #oice an octa#e higher than (efore5, )nd what is that? 'eta%Genie, This is my /eta-/eta-Aam!&&& -he ru(s the 'eta%'eta%+amp, and a hugs puff of smoke appears! 3n the (illows of smoke, the) can all make out a ghostl) fore towering a(o#e them!/ 'eta%'eta%Genie, I am the /eta-/eta-6enie& Hou summoned me, E /eta-6enie? 3hat is your wish? 'eta%Genie, I have a s!ecial wish to make of you, E :.inn, and of 6E:& I wish for !ermission for tem!orary sus!ension of all ty!e-restrictions on wishes, for the duration of one Ty!eless 3ish& 7ould you !lease rant this wish for me? 'eta%'eta%Genie, I1ll have to send it throu h 7hannels, of course& Ene quarter of a moment, !lease&

*nd, twice as "uickl) as the 'eta%Genie did, this 'eta%'eta% Genie remo#es from the folds of his ro(e an o(Mect which looks Must like the gold 'eta+amp, e9cept that it is made of!!!/

TG:.U

!!!swirls (ack into the 'eta%'eta%'eta%+amp, which the 'eta% 'eta%Genie then folds (ack into his ro(e, half as "uickl) as the 'eta%'eta%'eta%Genie did!/ Hour wish is ranted, E /eta-6enie& 'eta%Genie, Thank you, E :.inn, and 6E:& *nd the 'eta%'eta%Genie, as all the higher ones (efore him, swirls (ack into the 'eta%'eta%+amp, which the 'eta%Genie then folds (ack into her ro(e, half as "uickl) as the 'eta%'eta%Genie did!/ Hour wish is ranted, E 6enie& Genie, Thank you, E :.inn, and 6E:& *nd the 'eta%Genie, as all the higher ones (efore her, swirls (ack into the 'eta%+amp, which the Genie folds (ack into his ro(e, half as "uickl) as the 'eta%Genie did!/ Hour wish is ranted, )chilles& *nd one precise moment has elapsed since he "This will Must take one moment!"/ *chilles, Thank you, E :.inn, and 6E:& Genie, I am !leased to re!ort, )chilles, that you may have e(actly one 4"5 Ty!eless 3ish—that is to say wish, or a meta-wish, or a meta-metawish, as many -meta- 1s as you wish—even infinitely many 4if you wish5&

*chilles, Eh, thank you so very much, 6enie& 0ut curiosity is !rovoked& 0efore I make my wish, would you mind tellin me who—or what— 6E: is? Genie, 8ot at all& -6E:- is an acronym which stands -6E: Ever :.inn-& The word -:.inn- is used desi nate 6enies, /eta-6enies, /eta-/eta6enies, etc& It is a Ty!eless word& *chilles, 0ut-but-how can -6E:- be a word in own acronym? That doesn1t make any sense2 Genie, Eh, aren1t you acquainted with recursive acronyms? I thou ht everybody knew about them& Hou see, -6E:- stands for -6E: Ever :.inn-—which can be e(!anded as -6E: Ever :.inn, Ever :.inn-— and that can, in turn, be e(!anded to -6E: Ever :.inn, Ever :.inn, Ever :.inn-—which can its turn, be further e(!anded&&& Hou can o as far as you like& *chilles, 0ut I1ll never finish2 Genie, Ef course not& Hou can never totally e(!and 6E:& *chilles, ?mm&&& That1s !u<<lin & 3hat did you me when you said to the /eta-6enie, -I have a s!ecial wish to make of you, E :.inn, and of 6E:-? Genie, I wanted not only to make a request of /eta-6enie, but also of all the :.inns over her& The recursive acronym method accom!lishes this quite naturally& Hou see, when the /eta-6enie received my request, she then had to !ass it u!wards to her 6E:& So she forwarded a similar messa e to the /eta-/eta-6enie, who then did likewise to the /eta-/eta-/eta-6enie&&& )scendin the chain this way transmits the messa e to 6E:& *chilles, I see& Hou mean 6E: sits u! at the to! of the ladder of d.inns? Genie, 8o, no, no2 There is nothin -at the to!-, for there is no to!& That is why 6E: is a recursive acronym& 6E: is not some ultimate d.inn= 6E: is the tower of d.inns above any iven d.inn& Tortoise, It seems to me that each and every d.inn would have a different conce!t of what 6E: is, then, since to any d.inn, 6E: is the set of d.inns above him or her, and no two d.inns share that set& Genie, Hou1re absolutely ri ht—and since I am the lowest d.inn of all, my notion of 6E: is the most e(alted one& I !ity the hi her d.inns, who fancy themselves somehow closer to 6E:& 3hat blas!hemy2 *chilles, 0y um, it must have taken enies to invent 6E:& Tortoise, :o you really believe all this stuff about 6E:, )chilles? *chilles, 3hy certainly, I do& )re you atheistic, /r& T? Er are you a nostic? Tortoise, I don1t think I1m a nostic& /aybe I1m meta-a nostic& *chilles, 3haaat? I don1t follow you at all& Tortoise, Aet1s see&&& If I were meta-a nostic, I1d be confused over whether I1m a nostic or not—but I1m not quite sure if I feel T?)T way= hence I must be meta-meta-a nostic 4I uess5& Eh, well& Tell me, 6enie, does any

d.inn ever make a mistake, and arble u! a messa e movin u! or down the chain? Genie, This does ha!!en= it is the most common cause for Ty!eless 3ishes not bein ranted& Hou see, the chances are infinitesimal, that a arblin will occur at any P);TI7FA); link in the chain—but when you !ut an infinite number of them in a row, it becomes virtually certain that a arblin will occur SE/E3?E;E& In fact, stran e as it seems, an infinite number of arblin s usually occur, althou h they are very s!arsely distributed in the chain& *chilles, Then it seems a miracle that any Ty!eless 3ish ever ets carried out& Genie, 8ot really& /ost arblin s are inconsequential, and many arblin s tend to cancel each other out& 0ut occasionally—in fact, rather seldom —the nonfulfillment of a Ty!eless 3ish can be traced back to a sin le unfortunate d.inn1s arblin & 3hen this ha!!ens, the uilty d.inn is forced to run an infinite 6auntlet and et !addled on his or her rum!, by 6E:& It1s ood fun for the !addlers, and quite harmless for the !addlee& Hou mi ht be amused by the si ht& *chilles, I would love to see that2 0ut it only ha!!ens when a Ty!eless 3ish oes un ranted? Genie, That1s ri ht& *chilles, ?mm&&& That ives me an idea for my wish& Tortoise, Eh, really? 3hat is it? *chilles, I wish my wish would not be ranted2 *t that moment, an e#entOor is "e#ent" the word for it$Otakes place which cannot (e descri(ed, and hence no attempt will (e made to descri(e it!/ *chilles, 3hat on earth does that cry!tic comment mean? Tortoise, It refers to the Ty!eless 3ish )chilles made& *chilles, 0ut he hadn1t yet made it& Tortoise, Hes, he had& ?e said, -I wish my wish would not be ranted-, and the 6enie took T?)T to be his wish& *t that moment, some footsteps are heard coming down the hallwa) in their direction!/ *chilles, Eh, my2 That sounds ominous& The footsteps stopR then the) turn around and fade awa)!/ Tortoise, 3hew2 *chilles, 0ut does the story o on, let1s see& or is that the end? Turn the !a e and let1s see&

The Tortoise turns the page of ".Minn and Tonic", where the) find that the stor) goes on!!!/ *chilles, ?ey2 3hat ha!!ened? 3here is my 6enie? /y lam!? /y cu! of es!resso? 3hat ha!!ened to our youn friends from the 7onve( and 7oncave worlds? 3hat are all those little li<ards doin here? Tortoise, I1m afraid our conte(t ot restored incorrectly, )chilles& *chilles, 3hat on earth does that cry!tic comment mean? Tortoise, I refer to the Ty!eless 3ish you made& *chilles, 0ut I hadn1t yet made it& Tortoise, Hes, you had& Hou said, -I wish my wish would not be ranted-, and the 6enie took T?)T to be your wish& *chilles, Eh, my2 That sounds ominous& Tortoise, It s!ells P);):ET& 'or that Ty!eless wish to be ranted, it had to be denied—yet not to rant it would be to rant it& *chilles, So what ha!!ened? :id the earth come to a standstill? :id the universe cave in? Tortoise, 8o& The System crashed& *chilles, 3hat does that mean? Tortoise, It means that you and I, )chilles, were suddenly and instantaneously trans!orted to Tumbolia& *chilles, To where? Tortoise, Tumbolia, the land of dead hiccu!s and e(tin uished li ht bulbs& It1s a sort of waitin room, where dormant software waits for its host hardware to come back u!& 8o tellin how lon the System was down, and we were in Tumbolia& It could have been moments, hours, days—even years& *chilles, I don1t know what software is, and I don1t know what hardware is& 0ut I do know that I didn1t et to make my wishes2 I want my 6enie back2 Tortoise, I1m sorry, )chilles—you blew it& Hou crashed the System, and you should thank your lucky stars that we1re back at all& Thin s could have come out a lot worse& 0ut I have no idea where we are& *chilles, I reco ni<e it now—we1re inside another of Escher1s !ictures& This time it1s =eptiles& Tortoise, )ha2 The System tried to save as much of our conte(t as it could before it crashed, and it ot as far as recordin that it was an Escher !icture with li<ards before it went down& That1s commendable& *chilles, )nd look—isn1t that our !hial of !o!!in -tonic over there on the table, ne(t to the cycle of li<ards?

Tortoise, It certainly is, )chilles& I must say, we are very lucky indeed& The System was very kind to us, in ivin us back our !o!!in tonic—it1s !recious stuff2 *chilles, I1ll say2 8ow we can !o! back out of the Escher world, into my house& Tortoise, There are a cou!le of books on the desk, ne(t to the tonic& I wonder what they are& 4,e picks up the smaller one, which is open to a random page!5 This looks like a moderately !rovocative book& *chilles, Eh, really? 3hat is its title? Tortoise, &ro#ocati#e *d#entures of the Tortoise and *chilles Taking &lace in -undr) &arts of the Glo(e& It sounds like an interestin book to read out of&

73G5=E FD! ;e!tiles, () '! 8! Escher lithograph, BIDH5&

*chilles, 3ell, HEF can read it if you want, but as for me, I1m not oin to take any chances with that !o!!in -tonic—one of the li<ards mi ht knock it off the table, so I1m oin to et it ri ht now2

,e dashes o#er to the ta(le and reaches for the popping%tonic, (ut in his haste he somehow (umps the flask of tonic, and it tum(les off the desk and (egins rolling!/ Eh, no2 /r& T—look2 I accidentally knocked the tonic onto the floor, and it1s rollin towards- towards- the stairwell2 Muick— before it falls2 The Tortoise, howe#er, is completel) wrapped up in the thin #olume which he has in his hands!/ Tortoise 4muttering5, Eh? This story looks fascinatin & *chilles, /r& T, /r& T, hel!2 ?el! catch the tonic-flask2 Tortoise, 3hat1s all the fuss about? *chilles, The tonic-flask-I knocked it down from the desk, and now it1s rollin and— *t that instant it reaches the (rink of the stairwell, and plummets o#er!!! / Eh no2 3hat can we do? /r& Tortoise—aren1t you alarmed? 3e1re losin our tonic2 It1s .ust fallen down the stairwell2 There1s only one thin to do2 3e1ll have to o down one story2 Tortoise, 6o down one story? /y !leasure& 3on1t you .oin me? ,e (egins to read aloud, and *chilles, pulled in two directions at once, finall) sta)s, taking the role of the Tortoise!/ *chilles, It1s very dark here, /r& T& I can1t see a thin & Eof2 I bum!ed into a wall& 3atch out2 Tortoise, ?ere—I have a cou!le of walkin sticks& 3hy don1t you take one of them? Hou can hold it out in front of you so that you don1t ban into thin s& *chilles, 6ood idea& 4,e takes the stick&5 :o you et the sense that this !ath is curvin ently to the left as we walk? Tortoise, Gery sli htly, yes& *chilles, I wonder where we are& )nd whether we1ll ever see the li ht of day a ain& I wish I1d never listened to you, when you su ested I swallow some of that -:;I8@ /E- stuff& Tortoise, I assure you, it1s quite harmless& I1ve done it scads of times, and not a once have I ever re retted it& ;ela( and en.oy bein small& *chilles, 0ein small? 3hat is it you1ve done to me, /r& T? Tortoise, 8ow don1t o blamin me& Hou did it of your own free will&

no2 Tortoise.*chilles.otaur? *chilles. 0ut it1s only a myth& 7oura e. waitin for innocent victims to et lost in its fearsome com!le(ity& Then. when they wander and da<ed into the center. or somethin & 0ut the corru ations have different si<es& . Hiikes2 3hat is that? Tortoise.otaur has created a tiny labyrinth and sits in a !it in the middle of it. BICK/! Tortoise. ?ave you made me shrink? So that this labyrinth we1re in is actually some teeny thin that someone could STEP on? 73G5=E FG! 8retan +a()rinth 3talian engra#ingR -chool of 7iniguerra/! U7rom N 'atthews. /a<es and Aabyrinths. 'eel these walls& They1re like corru ated tin sheets. They say—althou h I !erson never believed it myself—that an Evil /a. Aabyrinth? Aabyrinth? 7ould it )re we in the notorious Aittle ?armonic Aabyrinth of the dreaded /a. he lau hs and lau hs at them—so hard.o#er &u(lications. Their ?istory and :evelo!ment New York: . that he lau hs them to death2 *chilles. )chilles& *nd the dauntless pair trudge on!/ *chilles. Eh.

/r& Tortoise? Tortoise. after all& *chilles. Ef course it is& 8othin to be afraid of& *chilles puts his walking stick (ack against the wall.eally? 3here are we? Tortoise.ust fi ured out where we are& *chilles. Eh. coming from the point where his stick is scraping the wall!/ Tortoise. )chilles& That Aabyrinth may not be a myth. strange noises echo up and down the long cur#ed corridor the) are in!/ Tortoise alarmed/.ust me. and the strains of melod) cease!/ ?ey2 Put that back2 I want to hear the end of this !iece2 8onfused. some musical sounds are heard. no&&& Tortoise. 3hew2 I thou ht for a moment it was the bellowin of the ferocious /a.otaur2 *chilles. I have . he sticks out his walking stick against the wall surface as he walks! *s the stick (ounces (ack and forth against the corrugations. no. 3hat? )ren1t you over. allowin us to hear the music& *chilles.oyed? ?ave you ever had the chance to be in such intimate contact with music before? *chilles. 3ait a minute& 3hat makes you chan e your mind all of a sudden? Tortoise. ?ow am I ever oin to win footraces a ainst full-si<ed !eo!le when I am smaller than a flea. I thou ht you said it was all a myth& Tortoise. .To emphasi@e his point. oh.acket& Hour stick scra!in a ainst the stran e sha!es in the wall acts like a needle runnin down the roove. *chilles o(e)s. and continues walking! *s he does so. 3hat was T?)T? *chilles. )chilles& . rubbin my walkin stick a ainst the wall& Tortoise. *chilles lowers the stick. 3e are walkin down a s!iral roove of a record in its . is that all that1s botherin you? That1s nothin to fret about. Fh-oh& I have a bad feelin . :o you hear that music? To hear more clearl). and the music resumes!/ Thank you& 8ow as I was about to say. . Eh. Eh.

I1m afraid so. I et the im!ression that you never worry at all& Tortoise. as 7 ma. and to build u! ho!es in you to hear that tonic& *chilles. you know that most music !ieces are written in a key. ?orrors2 )re you tellin me— Tortoise.or& )nd when the subsidiary oal is reached.otaur2 *chilles. yes& Ene very im!ortant thin a com!oser can do is to -modulate. 7 acts like a home base. there is— . )chilles& The music ave it away& *chilles. . :oes one then stray away from tonic with the aim of eventually returnin ? Tortoise. I immediately reali<ed that the rooves we1re walkin throu h could only be +ittle . ambi uous chords and melodies are used which lead away from the tonic& Aittle by little. 0ut you were oin to tell me about modulations& Tortoise. ?ow could it do that? Tortoise. in a way& )ctually. to hear the tonic& *chilles.i ht& This makes the situation more com!le(. 3ell. Is that why.*chilles. one of 0ach1s lesser known or an !ieces& It is so named because of its di<<yin ly frequent modulations& *chilles. Eh.!artway throu h a !iece. 3h-what are they? Tortoise. as if I had waitin my whole life to hear the tonic? Tortoise. all the while at the back of your mind you retain the lon in to hit that ori inal oal-in this case. which is the key of this one& *chilles. which means that he sets u! a tem!orary oal other than resolution into the tonic& *chilles. Hes. or tonality.armonic +a()rinth. for althou h in the short term you want to resolve in the new key.or. I don1t know& 0ut one thin for certain is that I don1t worry about bein small& Es!ecially not when faced with the awful dan er of the dreaded /a. tension builds u!—you feel an increasin desire to return home. E(actly& The com!oser has uses knowled e of harmonic !ro ressions to mani!ulate your emotions. the usual word is -tonic-& *chilles. 7 ma. I see&&& I think& :o you mean that some sequence of chords shifts the harmonic tension somehow so that I actually desire to resolve in a new key? Tortoise. Gery sim!le& 3hen I heard melody 0-)-7-? in the to! voice. The way you talk. I had heard the term before& :o that mean that 7 is the note you want to end on? Tortoise. That1s ri ht& )s the !iece develo!s. at the end of a !ie always feel so satisfied.

or& *chilles.*chilles 4suddenl) gesturing enthusiasticall)5. 8o. 3hat a dirty trick 0ach !layed on me2 Tortoise. this isn1t the end& It1s merely— *chilles. )re you tellin me that I res!onded to a resolution in a subsidiary key? Tortoise. 0ach intentionally made it sound that way& Hou . and esca!e on the outside of the record before the Evil /a. That1s ri ht& *chilles. It was e(actly what I was tellin you about& ?ere 0ach had modulated from 7 into 6. he succeeded& *chilles.for you. he will now lau h you to death—and !erha!s me with you2 *chilles. as the) emerge into an open area with no walls!/ Hou see. )chilles. you will see that it is in the wron key& )!!arently not .armonic +a()rinthA Tortoise. 0ach was !layin tricks ho!in to lead you astray& )nd in your case.otaur finds us& . and lets your emotions know what they want to hear& Hou don1t have to think about it consciously in this !iece. at that moment the music stops. 3hy should you have to kee! anythin in mind when listenin to a !iece of music? Is music only an intellectual e(ercise? Tortoise. settin u! a secondary oal of hearin 6& This means that you e(!erience two tensions at once—waitin for resolution into 6. It still sounded like an endin to me& Tortoise. )chilles.ust fell into his tra!& It was deliberately contrived to sound like an endin but if you follow the harmonic !ro ression carefully. 8o. 3hat do you mean? Tortoise. Sure it is2 3ow2 3hat a !owerful.ust you but this miserable record com!any fell for the same trick—and they truncated the !iece early& *chilles. Eh. let us hurry u! and et here2 Muick2 Aet1s run backwards in the rooves. it IS over& 3hat did I tell you? Tortoise. but most music is not& )nd most of the time your ear or brain does the -calculation. That is his whole ame—to make you lose your way in his Aabyrinth2 The Evil /a. )nd if you don1t watch out. but also kee!in in mind that ultimate desire—to resolve trium!hantly into 7 /a. of course not& Some music is hi hly intellectual. Eh.otaur is in cahoots with 0ach. stron endin 2 3hat a sense of relief2 That1s some resolution2 6ee2 *nd sure enough. Somethin is very wron & This record is a dis race to the world of music& *chilles. listen to the or eous u!ward-swoo!in chords which mark the end of this +ittle .

3atch out. Hou1ve fallen into the !it of the Evil /a.ust ho!e it isn1t !ushcorn2 Pushcorn and !o!corn are e(traordinarily difficult to tell a!art& *chilles. 6o.otaur2 ?ere.ust retrace our ste!s? Tortoise. no2 /y sensibility is far too delicate to handle the bi<arre chord !ro ressions which occur when time is reversed& *chilles. alarmingl) close to them!/ Tortoise. or is there a bowl of hot buttered !o!corn around here? *chilles. I think& Eh2 I . That1s a very ood question& * little desperatel). Eh. how will we ever et out of here. too& 3here is it comin from? Tortoise.Tortoise. am I smellin thin s. )chilles& Everythin will be all— -uddenl). /r& T. 3hat1s this about Pushkin? Tortoise. Say. if we can1t . too&&& Tortoise. I1m startin to feel weak. I1ll come hel! you out& 3e1ve ot to move fast2 *chilles. Aet1s . 7areful. indeed—it seems to be a bowl of !o!corn2 *chilles.olly2 I ho!e not& 3ell. )chilles2 This is no lau hin matter& 'aMotaur. /r& T—you fell in. Try to !ay no attention to his lau h. aren1t we? -uddenl). /r& T—I don1t want HEF to fall in here. (ooming laugh is heard. Eh. and then a "thud"!/ *chilles. and then a "thud"!/ )chilles—are you all ri ht? *chilles. 8ow we1re in a !retty !ickle. a giant. *chilles starts running a(out aimlessl) in the dark! -uddenl) there is a slight gasp. :on1t fret. too2 )re you all ri ht? Tortoise. ?eavens. Just a bit shaken u! but otherwise fine& I fell into some bi hole& Tortoise. there is a slight gasp. I1ll do my best& If only my stomach weren1t em!ty2 Tortoise. /r& T&&& Tortoise. I smell it. *chilles& That1s your only ho!e& *chilles.ust ran into a bi bowl of the stuff& Hes. let1s di in2 . I didn1t say a thin & Hou must be hearin thin s& *chilles. boy—!o!corn2 I1m oin to munch my head off2 Tortoise. ?ee hee hee2 ?o ho2 ?aw haw haw2 *chilles. Enly my !ride is hurt—otherwise I1m fine& *chilles. Ever here.

otaur1s !it or not& Poor )chilles—he wanted to be full-si<ed a ain& Tortoise. the Sch>nber food factory sto!!ed makin tonic. Ef course2 3e . 'ollow me. after all!/ Tortoise. :on1t worry—they1re out. in some !laces !eo!le very nearly o cra<y over it& )t the turn of the century in Gienna. my li!s are burnin & )nd nothin would taste better than a drink of !o!!in -tonic& Tortoise. Eh. I have an inklin & 0ut let1s o look for the tonic& ?ey—. Fmm&&& not !articularly& 3hat do you see of such reat interest? *chilles.*nd the two friends (egin munching popcornO or pushcorn$/Oand all at onceO&:&A 3 guess it was popcorn. and doubt if I could have made it& . 7ould we do the same thin to et Escher !icture we1re in? Tortoise. 3ell. That stuff is renowned for its thirst quenchin !owers& 3hy.was all about& *chilles. now I . if you have no !o!!in -tonic& The little li<ards have learned to climb FP when they want to et out of the two-dimensional sketchbook world& *chilles. and started makin cereal instead& Hou can1t ima ine the u!roar that caused& *chilles. :on1t you see it? They1re emer in from that flat !icture without drinkin any !o!!in -tonic2 ?ow are they able to do that? Tortoise.oy it? *chilles. and he is full-si<ed a ain& That1s what the -PEP. 3hat an amusin story& :id you en.E)AAH want to find that bottle of tonic& 'or some reason. I couldn1t tell& 3ell.ust a moment& Those li<ards on the desk—you see anythin funny about them? Tortoise. so it is—and am I lad for that2 I wasn1t lookin forward one whit to the lon walk back from your house& I am bushed. It1s ood to be back& 0ut somethin seems wron & This isn1t my house2 This is HEF. u! this way& *nd the) go up one stor)!/ *chilles. didn1t I tell you? Hou can et out of a !icture by movin !er!endicularly to its !lane. /r& Tortoise Tortoise. house. )nythin to et back to my house2 I1m tired of all these !rovocative adventures& Tortoise. then. Eh.ust need to o FP one story& :o you want to try it? *chilles. /ildly& Enly I wonder whether they ever ot out of that Evil /a.

so I uess it1s lucky we ended u! here.*chilles. after all& Tortoise. I1ll say2 This certainly is a !iece of 6ood 'ortune2 . I don1t mind walkin home.

ust a few of the charms of recursion&5 ?owever. often of the same ty!e& ?ere is a ood e(am!le& )n e(ecutive has a fancy tele!hone and receives many calls on it& ?e is talkin to ) when 0 calls& To ) he says. and switches to 0& 8ow 7 calls& The same deferment ha!!ens to 0& This could o on indefinitely.ussian dolls inside .Ef course he doesn1t really care if ) minds= he .Cha!ter 4 $ecursi"e Structures and . if not to !arado( !ro!er& )ctually. -3ould you mind holdin for a moment?. you should he aware that the meanin of -recursive1 in this 7ha!ter is only faintly related to its meanin in 7ha!ter III& The relation should be clear by the end of this 7ha!ter& Sometimes recursion seems to brush !arado( very closely& 'or e(am!le. . nestin . back to 0.E7F. and : is taken care of& )fter : is done.rocesses >hat Is $ecursion7 3?)T IS . movies inside movies. to be sure—but we are illustratin recursion in its most !recise form& . drummin his fin ernails a ain some table. but let us not et too bo ed down in our enthusiasm& So let1s say the call with 7 terminates& Then our e(ecutive -!o!s. a new caller—:—calls& 0 is once a ain !ushed onto the stack of waitin callers.ust !ushes a button.armonic +a()rinth.back u! to 0.SIE8? It is what was illustrated in the :ialo ue +ittle . !aintin s inside !aintin s. then back to )& This e(ecutive is ho!elessly mechanical. a recursive definition 4when !ro!erly formulated5 never leads to infinite re ress or !arado(& This is because a recursive definition never defines somethin in terms of itself. and continues& /eanwhile ) is sittin at the other end of the line.ussian dolls 4even !arenthetical comments in& side !arenthetical comments25—these are . but always in terms of simpler #ersions of itself& 3hat I mean by this will become clearer shortly. and the e(ecutive returns to ) finally& 0ut it could ha!!en that after the conversation with 0 is resumed. when I show some e(am!les of recursive definitions& Ene of the most common ways in which recursion a!!ears in daily life is when you !ost!one com!letin a task in favor of a sim!ler task. there are recursi#e definitions& Such a definition may ive the casual viewer the im!ression that somethin is bein defined in terms of itself! That would be circular and lead to infinite re ress. and listenin to some horrible /u<ak !i!ed throu h the !hone lines to !lacate him&&& 8ow the easiest case is if the call with 0 sim!ly terminates. and variations on nestin & The conce!t is very eneral& 4Stories inside stories.

En land&. it sinks a little—and when you remove a tray from the stack..and -!o!. to be !recise5 and they are all related& They were introduced in the late "#L+1s as !art of IPA. 4B5 what the relevant facts to know were at the !oints of interru!tion 4. but the secondar) ones are in some Escher !icture—and then they found this book and are readin in it. and sur!risin ly enou h. and where you were in the conversation when it was interru!ted& 0y the way. so after ivin a bit of back round. )chilles and the Tortoise a!!eared on all the different levels& Sometimes they were readin a story in which they a!!eared as characters& That is when your mind may et a little ha<y on what1s oin on. the -variable bindin s-5& 3hen you !o! back u! to resume some task. oftentimes it ha!!ens that they switch you to some forei n corres!ondent& -3e now switch you to Sally Swum!ley in Peafo . and I1m talkin with&&&. more or less& So when you !ush a tray onto the stack.s In the !recedin e(am!le. the terms -!ush-. so it1s the tertiar) )chilles and Tortoise who wanderin around inside the rooves of the +ittle . the real )chilles and Tortoise are still u! there in 6oodfortune1s helico!ter. without for ettin where you are—and to take u! a new task& The new task is usually said to be -on a lower level. and -stack. our :ialo ue& There. and to resume o!erations e(actly where you left off. here on scene .in the :ialo ue& 0ut I will s!ell thin s out anyway& To push means to sus!end o!erations on the task you1re currently workin on.8ow Sally has ot a ta!e of some local re!orter interviewin someone.armonic +a()rinth& 8o. one level hi her& 0ut how do you remember e(actly where you were on each different level? The answer is.ust outside of Peafo . where the reat robbery took !lace. and stack 4or push%down stack.ar on. the -return address-5. I have introduced some basic terminolo y of recursion—at least as seen throu h the eyes of com!uter scientists& The terms are push. we scarcely have any awareness of the sus!ension& It is all ke!t track of quite easily by our subconscious mind& Probably the reason it is so easy is that each level is e(tremely different in flavor from each other level& If they were all similar.than the earlier task& To pop is the reverse—it means to close o!erations on one level.ushing) . and you have to concentrate carefully to et thin s strai ht& -Aet1s see.ust a table tellin you such thin s as 4"5 where you were in each unfinished task 4.ar on. the stack tells you who is waitin on each different level. -!o!-. pop.o!!ing) and Stac. so you don1t feel lost& In the tele!hone-call e(am!le.all come from the visual ima e of cafeteria trays in a stack& There is usually some sort of s!rin underneath which tends to kee! the to!most tray at a constant hei ht.8ow you are three levels down& It may turn out that the interviewee also !lays a ta!e of some conversation& It is not too uncommon to o down three levels in real news re!orts. wait a minute—I left out one level . it is the stack which restores your conte(t. one of the first lan ua es for )rtificial Intelli ence& Hou have already encountered -!ush. of course. the stack !o!s u! a little& Ene more e(am!le from daily life& 3hen you listen to a news re!ort on the radio. she !lays it& -I1m 8i el 7adwallader. we would et confused in no time flat& )n e(am!le of a more com!le( recursion is. you store the relevant information in a stack& So a stack is .

the true tonic key is held and also most immediate -!seudotonic.ialogue Aittle ?armonic Aabyrinth& <ertical descents are "pushes"R rises are "pops"! Notice the similarit) of this diagram to indentation pattern of the . where there are two halves. and each one is re!eated& Aet1s take . that we maintain a mental stack of keys. when all the while you know he and the Tortoise are really awaitin their dire fates at the knife of /onsieur 6oodfortune& Since tension and resolution are the heart and soul of music. one by one.ialogue! 7rom the diagram it is clear that the initial tension OGoodfortune's threatOne#er was resol#edR *chilles and the Tortoise were Must left dangling in the sk)! -ome readers might agoni@e o#er this unpopped push.somewhere&&&. there are many. many e(am!les& 0ut let us . we should discuss somethin which is hinted at. however& )ny reasonably musical !erson automatically maintains a shallow stack with two keys& In that -short stack-. Bach's musical la()rinth likewise was cut off too soonO (ut *chilles didn't e#en notice an)thing funn)! :nl) the Tortoise was aware of the more glo(al dangling tension! Stac. if not stated e(!licitly in the :ialo ue.s in Music 3hile we1re talkin about the +ittle . while others might not (at an e)elash! 3n the stor). because it is a !iece of irony—. the most lobal key and the most local key& That the listener knows when the true tonic is re ained.form—that is. until the tonic is reached& This is an e(a eration& There is a rain of truth to it.ust look at a cou!le in 0ach& 0ach wrote many !ieces in an -))00. a !seudoresolution should hei hten the lobal tension.4the key the com!oser is !retendin to be in5& In other words. that we hear music recursively—in !articular. and that each new modulation !ushes a new key onto the stack& The im!lication is further that we want to hear that sequence of keys retraced in reverse order—!o!!in the !ushed keys off the stack. not relieve it.ust like )chilles1 rescue from his !erilous !erch on the swin in lam!.armonic +a()rinth.Hou have to have a conscious mental stack like this in order to kee! track of the recursion in the :ialo ue& 4See 'i & BD&5 73G5=E FJ! . and feels a stron sense of -relief-& The listener can also distin uish 4unlike )chilles5 between a local easin of tension—for e(am!le a resolution into the !seudotonic—and a glo(al resolution& In fact.iagram of the structure of the .

in order to avoid the mental effort of kee!in track of the stack& Every lan ua e has constructions which involve stacks. . it sounds as if the !iece has ended in the key of :2 4Er at least it mi ht sound that way to )chilles&5 0ut then a stran e thin ha!!ens—we abru!tly . some smooth—is very difficult to describe& It is !art of the ma ic of music that we can automatically make sense of these shifts& Er !erha!s it is the ma ic of 0ach that he can write !ieces with this kind of structure which have such a natural race to them that we are not aware of e(actly what is ha!!enin & The ori inal +ittle . and lettin us return to 6 once more& The !sycholo ical effect of all this key shiftin —some . native s!eaker of 6erman often unconsciously violate certain conventions which force the verb to o to the end.armonic +a()rinth is a !iece by 0ach in which he tries to lose you in a labyrinth of quick key chan es& Pretty soon you are so disoriented that you don1t have any sense of direction left—you don1t know where the true tonic is. or like Theseus. a modulation in the )-section leads to the closely related key of : 4the dominant5& 3hen the )-section ends. we don1t have very reliable dee! stacks& $ecursion in Language Eur mental stackin !ower is !erha!s sli htly stron er in lan ua e& The rammatical structure of all lan ua es involves settin u! quite elaborate !ush-down stacks. such dee! stacks almost never occur—in fact. back to 6.um! back to the be innin . the difficulty of understandin a sentence increases shar!ly with the number of !ushes onto the stack& The !roverbial 6erman !henomenon of the -verb-at-the-end-. and rehear the same transition into :& 0ut then a stran e thin ha!!ens—we abru!tly .isin 7anon— oes to show that. unless you have !erfect !itch. which means that we !o! back into the tonic. thou h usually of a less s!ectacular nature than . and then finish u! by rattlin off a strin of verbs by which their audience. as music listeners. for whom the stack had lon since lost its coherence. are told. about which droll tales of absentminded !rofessors who would be in a sentence. we are in the key of :& In fact. and rehear the same transition into :& Then comes the 0-section& 3ith the inversion of the theme for our melody. would be totally non!lussed.erkin us without warnin back into :. is an e(cellent e(am!le of lin uistic !ushin and !o!!in & The confusion amon the audience out-of-order !o!!in from the stack onto which the !rofessor1s verbs been !ushed.the i ue from the 'rench Suite no& L. thou h.erkin us without warnin back into :. we be in in : as if that had always been the tonic—but we modulate back to 6 after all. however. to be sure. and lettin us return to 6 once more& Then that funny re!etition takes !lace. which is quite ty!ical of the form& Its tonic key is 6. ramble on for an entire lecture. the thread would be a written score& This !iece—another e(am!le is the Endlessly . and we hear a ay dancin melody which establishes the key of 6 stron ly& Soon. back to 6. and the 0-section ends !ro!erly& Then that funny re!etition takes !lace. could en ender& 0ut in normal s!oken 6erman. is amusin to ima ine. have a friend like )riadne who ives you a thread that allows you to retrace your ste!s& In this case.erky.um! back to the be innin . .

so there is no way to avoid ettin a noun of some sort or other& )nd it is !ossible to be no more ornate than that.. for +A. or -bi red blue reen snee<es-. we (egin. and carry it out& Aet1s take a sam!le .0&. itself& It certainly looks as if somethin is bein defined in terms of itself& Is that what is ha!!enin .um! to the .0&.TE. then we end& 'or instance.T8.ATE . or not? .0&. would !roduce a !hrase such as -the silly sham!oo..ective& Thus we could construct -milk-.T8. or lines with arrows& The overall name for the .CE& In this case. you are to carry out the directions inside it.0&.0&. every !ossible !athway in +A.ATE . the =ecursi#e Transition Network 4. in com!uter science terminolo y& It means you tem!orarily ive control to a procedure 4here.T8 such as the one in 'i ure B$b. . an A 3ECTI4E.or -bi red blue reen snee<es-& 0ut three of the !athways involve recursi#e calls on +A. called 0$. or to .0&. and the first and last nodes have the words (egin and end in them& )ll the other nodes contain either very short e(!licit directions to !erform. etc& 3hen you hit the node .et'or. which tells how to construct a certain ty!e of En lish noun !hrase& 4See 'i & B$a&5 If we traverse 0$.0&. or little bo(es with words in them.C= . or else name other .6erman& 0ut there are always of re!hrasin sentences so that the de!th of stackin is minimal& $ecursi"e Transition . involves a call on 0$.C= .T8 called SE.& 8ow the .T8 0$.or -a thankless brunch-& 0ut the arcs show other !ossibilities such as ski!!in the article.ATE . 0$.ATE .TE.s The syntactical structure of sentences affords a ood !lace to !resent a of describin recursive structures and !rocesses. or re!eatin the ad.& )s you can see.0&.5 which 4"5 does thin 4!roduces a noun5 and then 4B5 hands control back to you& In above . you are askin the unknown black bo( called .0&.T8—for instance an . comin out merely with -milk. and a .oined by arcs.T8 is a dia ram showin various !aths which can be followed to accom!lish a !articular task& Each !ath consists of a number of nodes. then we create an A$TICLE.C= ..0&. to fetch any noun for you from its storehouse of nouns& This is known as a procedure call. des!ite callin this a -recursive transition network-. we have not e(hibited any true recursion so far& Thin s et recursive—and seemin ly circular—when you o to an .0&. could itself be called from some other .ATE . A$TICLE. there are calls on three such !rocedures. -the sham!oo.T85& )n ..0&.and then return to the !lace inside SE. A 3ECTI4E and .0&.T81s& Each time you hit a node.T8 is written se!arately at the left. !urely hori<ontally. .T8 named inside it.CE from which it had been called& It is quite reminiscent of the way in which you resume where you left off nested tele!hone calls or nested news re!orts& ?owever.

..2 Hes. and be an the new one as if nothin were unusual& So we shall do the same& 3e first write down in our stack the node we are at in the outer call on +A. +A.0&.73G5=E FC! =ecursi#e Transition Networks for 0$.CE.C= . 0$..0&. but remember our e(ecutive who was in the middle of one !hone call when he ot another one& ?e merely stored the old !hone call1s status on a stack.! The answer is -yes. $ELATI4E .ATE . -that-= and now we are suddenly asked for a +A.0&.. 4E$B.. there is a node which calls +A. and we hit that node& This means that we commit to memory 4vi<&.C= .C= . -the strange (agels-= a $ELATI4E . so we1ll know where to return to—then we transfer our attention to the !rocedure +A.0&.C= .C= .0&.$0.0&.ATE . So we s!it out an 0$.0&..C= .CE.TE.0&.C= . the stack5 the location of that node inside SE. but beni nly-& Su!!ose that.um! to the be innin of +A.C= .0&.TE.ATE .0&.0&. in the !rocedure SE..0&. in order to enerate a +A.C= .0&. so that we have a -return address-= then we .& 8ow we must choose a !athway to take.& Su!!ose we choose the lower of the u!!er !athways—the one whose callin sequence oes.& 0ut we are in the middle of +A. and +A.

but not itself& 'or e(am!le.rawing 4'i & "%L5. we hit E8:. there can be a trio of !rocedures which call one another.C= . we could have an . 4say -the purple cow-5. 4say -without-5. this findin ourselves in need of a 4E$B—so let1s choose -go((led-& This ends hi hest-level call on +A.T8 +A.0SITI0. we mi ht et .T8 named CLA&SE. or -monitor-.. itself& Ef course. one of the first cyberneticists. I believe. as if nothin were unusual& 8ow we have to choose a !athway a ain& 'or variety1s sake.C= .TE.$E.0&..0&.ect which satisfies the definition will eventually -bottom out-& 8ow there are more oblique ways of achievin recursivity in . as we !o! for the last time& )s you see.C= . .& That means we !roduce an 0$. and so we !o! u! once more.0&.never ot fully e(!anded& 0ut if the !athways are chosen at random.the purple cow without horns-& En this level. and a reverent student of brains and minds& .0&.0&. too.ATE . an infinite re ress of that sort will not ha!!en& (Bottoming 0ut( and /eterarchies This is the crucial fact which distin uishes recursive definitions from circular ones& There is always some !art of the definition which avoids reference.0&.ust 0$.horns-& 3e hit the node E.0&. +A.0&. we didn1t et into any infinite re ress& The reason is that at least one !athway inside the . 0$. we hit the recursion& So we han onto our hats.T81s which are all tan led u!.0&. one level u!—and so we resume there& This yields . to 3arren /c7ulloch.ATE . which amounts to !o!!in out.C= .ust as the acronym -6E:.ATE .0SITI0. could call $ELATI4E .ect for a transitive verb. with the result that the !hrase "the strange (agels that the purple cow without horns go((led" will et !assed u!wards to the !atient SE.0&. then we would never have otten finished. cyclically—and so on& There can be a whole family of . . let1s choose the lower !athway.C= . and so we o to our stack to find the return address& It tells us that we were in the middle of e(ecutin +A. 'or e(am!le. and descend one more level& To avoid com!le(ity.T81s than by selfcallin & There is the analo ue of Escher's .C= . whenever it needs an ob.C= .C= .CE.. does not involve recursive calls on +A.0&.C= . we could have !erversely insisted on always choosin the bottom !athway inside +A.$0.. and once a ain. in this call on +A. which calls +A. then a . so that the action of constructin an ob.0&. and conversely.0&.0&. callin each other and themselves like cra<y& ) !ro ram which has such a structure in which there is no sin le -hi hest level-. where each of two !rocedures calls the other.. and then CLA&SE whenever it wants a relative clause& This is an e(am!le of indirect recursion& It is reminiscent also of the two-ste! version of the E!imenides !arado(& 8eedless to say. let1s assume that this the !athway we take is the direct one— . the u!!er !ath of +A.$E. is called a heterarchy 4as distin uished from a hierarchy5& The term is due.

but never !erformin any action& . it always has at least one !athway which avoids recursivity 4direct or indirect5 so that infinite re ress is not created& Even the most heterarchical !ro ram structure bottoms out—otherwise it couldn1t run2 It would .T8 calls itself& E(!andin a node is a little like re!lacin a letter in an acronym by the word it stands for& The -6E:.odes Ene ra!hic way of thinkin about .C= .T8 is im!lemented as a real com!uter !ro ram. however. =TN with one node recursi#el) e9panded! 3hen you !o! out of it.that node.acronym is recursive but has the defect—or advanta e—that you must re!eatedly e(!and the 161= thus it never bottoms out& 3hen an . which means to re!lace it by a very small co!y of the . you -e(!and.T81s& 0ut by e(!andin nodes only when you come across them. even when an .0&. you may wind u! constructin even more miniature . you are automatically in the ri ht !lace in the bi one& 3hile in the small one.E-!anding .T8 it calls 4see 'i & B*5& Then you !roceed into the very small .T8.T82 73G5=E FE! The +A. you avoid the need to make an infinite dia ram.ust be constantly e(!andin node after node.T81s is this& 3henever you are movin alon some !athway and you hit a node which calls on an .

". let us define an infinite dia ram called -:ia ram 6-& To do so. une9panded! (/ . which. or -'ibonacci. une9panded d/ . im!ossible-to-reali<e :ia ram 6 really looks like& In 'i ure %+ is shown a lar er !ortion of :ia ram 6. *. %.. *#. son of 0onaccio. we shall use an im!licit re!resentation& In two nodes. and from left to ri ht& Two e(tra nodes-numbers—" and B—have been inserted at the bottom This infinite tree has some very curious mathematical !ro!erties . however. L.iagram G. B. :ia ram 6 is !ortrayed im!licitly& 8ow if we wish to see :ia ram 6 more e(!licitly. LL.&&& discovered around the year "B+B by Aeonardo of Pisa. "%.iagram G. will stand for an entire co!y of :ia ram 6& In 'i ure B#a.for short& These numbers are best 73G5=E FI! a/ . we shall write merely the letter 161.iagram .iagram .unnin u! its ri ht-hand ed e is the famous sequence of 7i(onacci num(ers& ". e9panded once! c/ . "CC. e9panded once .ust this way—that is by e(!andin node after node& 'or e(am!le. we e(!and each of the two 61s—that is. B%%. we replace them () the same diagram. where all the nodes have been numbered from the bottom u!. only reduced in scale 4see 'i & B#b5& This -second-order.version of :ia ram ives us an inklin of what the final.. %C. B".iagram G and $ecursi"e Sequences Infinite eometrical structures can be defined in . er o -'ilius 0onacci-.

further e9panded and with num(ered nodes! defined recursively by the !air of formulas 'I0E4n5 X 'I0E4n-"5 ^ 'I0E4n-B5 'I0E4l5 X 'I0E4B5 X " 8otice how new 'ibonacci numbers are defined in terms of !revious 'ibonacci numbers& 3e could re!resent this !air of formulas in an .iagram G.T8 above& This recursive definition bottoms out when you hit 'I0E4"5 or 'I0E4B5 4which are iven e(!licitly5 after you have worked your way backwards throu h descendin values of n& It is sli htly awkward to work your way backwards. until you reach 'I0E4"L5& That way you don1t need to kee! track of a stack& 8ow :ia ram 6 has some even more sur!risin !ro!erties than this& Its entire structure can be coded u! in a sin le recursive definition.ust as well work your way forwards. as follows. startin with 'I0E4l5 and 'I0E4B5 and always addin the most recent two values. .T8 4see 'i & %"5& for n a B 73G5=E HB! *n =TN for 7i(onacci num(ers! Thus you can calculate 'I0E4"L5 by a sequence of recursive calls on the !rocedure defined by the . when you could .73G5=E HK! .

6464n./4'4n-"55 /4n5 X n . for all values of n. the tree turned out to have this e(tremely orderly recursive eometrical descri!tion& 3hat is more wonderful is that if you make the analo ous tree function ?4n5 defined with one more nestin than 6— ?4n5 X n . for any de ree of nestin & There is a beautiful re ularity to the recursive eometrical structures. that is how I discovered :ia ram 6 in the !lace& I was investi atin the function 6.is defined im!licitly as shown in 'i ure B#c& The ri ht-hand trunk contains one more node= that is the difference& The first recursive e(!ansion of :ia ram ? is shown in 'i ure B#d& )nd so it oes. which corres!onds !recisely to the recursive al ebraic definitions& ) !roblem for curious readers is. su!!ose you fli! :ia ram 6 around as if in a mirror. you recreate :ia ram 6& In fact."555 ?4+5 X + —then the associated -:ia ram ?.?4?4?4n .64n5 X n . and in tryin to calculate its values quickly. and /4+5 X + The .of the ?-tree? Etc&? )nother !leasin !roblem involves a !air of recursively intertwined functions '4n5 and /4n5—-married. you mi ht say—defined this way. '4n5 X n . I conceived of dis!layin the values I already knew in a tree& To my sur!rise.functions.'4/4n-"55 for n a + b 'or n a + '4+5 X "."55 for n a + 64+5 X + ?ow does this function 64n5 code for the tree-structure? Muite sim!ly you construct a tree by !lacin 64n5 below n.T81s for these two functions call each other and themselves as well& The !roblem is sim!ly to discover the recursive structures of :ia ram '= and :ia ram /& They are quite ele ant and sim!le& A Chaotic Sequence Ene last e(am!le of recursion in number theory leads to a small mystery& 7onsider the followin recursive definition of a function. . and label the nodes of the new tree so they increase left to ri ht& 7an you find a recursive alge(raic definition for this -fli!-tree-? 3hat about for the -fli!.

"+. D.M4n5 X M4n-M4n-"55 ^ M4n-M4n-B55 for n a B M4"5 X M4B5 X "& It is reminiscent of the 'ibonacci definition in that each new value is a sum of two !revious values-but not of the immediatel) !revious two values& Instead. shown by the arrows& Their sum—""—yields the new value. chaos !roduced in a very orderly manner& Ene is naturally led to wonder whether the a!!arent chaos conceals some subtle re ularity& Ef course. M4"*5& This is the stran e !rocess by which the list of known M-numbers is used to e(tend itself& The resultin sequence is. move leftwards 4from the three dots5 res!ectively "+ and # terms= you will hit a L and a D. merely curved2 The im!lications are wild& Ene of them is that the ra!h of I8T consists of nothin but co!ies of itself. #. ". ". less and less curved& 8ow if you look closely at each such !iece. then add n back& The structure of the !lot is quite . C. the less sense it seems to make& This is one of those very !eculiar cases where what seems to be a somewhat natural definition leads to e(tremely !u<<lin behavior. D. the two immediately !revious values tell how far to count back to obtain the numbers to be added to make the new value2 The first "$ M-numbers run as follows. nested down infinitely dee!ly& If you !ick u! any !iece of the ra!h. as you can see& It consists of an infinite number of curved !ieces. *. no matter how small.&&& c c L ^ D X "" how far to mo#e to the left b To obtain the ne(t one. you will find that it is actually a co!y of the full ra!h. but what is of interest is whether there is another way of characteri<in this sequence-and with luck. there is re ularity. infinitely many co!ies of it2 b new term . D. there are a cou!le of !articularly strikin e(am!les from my own e(!erience which I feel are worth !resentin & They are both ra!hs& Ene came u! in the course of some number-theoretical investi ations& The other came u! in the course of my Ph&:& thesis work. %. B. a nonrecursive way& T'o Stri. *. you . erratic& The further out you o. L.ust find I8T4(-n5. to !ut it mildly. which et smaller and smaller towards the corners—and incidentally. you are holdin a com!lete co!y of the whole ra!h—in fact. %. by definition. *.ing $ecursi"e Gra!hs The marvels of recursion in mathematics are innumerable. in solid state !hysics& 3hat is truly fascinatin is that the ra!hs are closely related& The first one 4'i & %B5 is a ra!h of a function which I call I8T4(5& It is !lotted here for ( between + and "& 'or ( between any other !air of inte ers n and n ^ ". "+. and it is not my !ur!ose to !resent them all& ?owever.um!y. L.

%.The other half of the story—the nonrecursive half—tells where those co!ies lie in the square. "B%. if make one of the bottom values % instead of ". C.The fact that I8T consists of nothin but co!ies of itself mi ht make you think it is too e!hemeral to e(ist& Its definition sounds too circular& ?ow does it ever et off the round? That is a very interestin matter& The main thin to notice is that. -It consists of co!ies of itself&. known as the Aucas sequence. B#. ". "*. to describe I8T 73G5=E HF! Graph of the function 3NT 9/! There is a Mump discontinuit) at e#er) rational #alue of 9! to someone who hasn1t see it will not suffice merely to say. C$. "". and how they have been deformed. you will !roduce a com!letely different sequence. the other to define the (ottom 4i&e&. $.&&& B# ^ C$ X $D the "(ottom" same recursi#e rule as for the 7i(onacci num(ers b . the values at the be innin 5& To be very concrete. $D. relative to the full ra!h& Enly the combination of these two as!ects of I8T will s!ecify structure of I8T& It is e(actly as in the definition of 'ibonacci number where you need two lines—one to define the recursion.

you will create the key ra!h from my Ph&:& thesis. but at all irrational values of (.3hat corres!onds to the (ottom in the definition of I8T is a !icture 4'i & %%a5 com!osed of many bo(es. it has a . and an electron in a homo eneous ma netic field& These two sim!ler !roblems are both well understood.was not nothin —it was a !icture& To see this even more dramatically.This !roblem is interestin because it is a cross between two very sim!le and fundamental !hysical situations. usin the curved line inside it as a uide= 4B5 erase the containin bo( and its curved line& Ence this has been done for each bo( of the ori inal skeleton. that ratio holds all the information about the distribution of allowed electron ener ies— but it only ives u! its secret u!on bein e(!anded into a continued fraction& . so is I8T495& I do not know if this trend holds for hi her al ebraic de rees& )nother lovely feature of I8T is that at all rational values of 9.skeletons in !lace of one bi one& 8e(t you re!eat the !rocess one level down. an electron in a !erfect crystal. you do two o!erations. the skeleton& ) variant skeleton is shown in 'i ure %%b. a ain with bo(es which et smaller and smaller as they trail off to the four corners& If you nest this second skeleton inside itself over and over a ain. showin where the co!ies o. which are related to continued fractions& The basic idea behind I8T is that !lus and minus si ns are interchan ed in a certain kind of continued fraction& )s a consequence. 4"5 !ut a small curved co!y of the skeleton inside the bo(. and therein lies the family tie& I should not kee! you too much in the dark about the ori in of these beautiful ra!hs& I8T-standin for -interchan e-—comes from a !roblem involvin -Etasequences-. because its skeleton is quite different from—and considerably more com!le( than—that of I8T& ?owever. and how they are distorted& I call it the -skeleton. the recursive !art of the definition is identical. the ratio of their two time !eriods is the key !arameter& In fact. which I call Gplot 4'i & %C5& 4In fact. ima ine kee!in the recursive !art of the definition of I8T. it is of quite some interest to see how nature mana es to reconcile the two& )s it ha!!ens. but chan in the initial !icture. the electron behaves !eriodically in time& It turns out that when the two situations are combined. you radually construct the ra!h of I8T -from out of nothin -& 0ut in fact the -nothin . for each bo( of the skeleton. you are left with many -baby. the crystal without-ma netic-field situation and the ma netic-field-without-crystal situation do have one feature in common.um! discontinuity. -3hat are the allowed ener ies of electrons in a crystal in a ma netic field?. and their characteristic solutions seem almost incom!atible with each other& Therefore. it is continuous& 6!lot comes from a hi hly ideali<ed version of the question. I8T4I8T4955 X 9& I8T has the !ro!erty that if 9 is rational. and a ain&&& 3hat you a!!roach in the limit is an e(act ra!h of I8T. so is I8T495= if 9 is quadratic. thou h you never et there& 0y nestin the skeleton inside itself over and over a ain. you do the followin & 'irst. a ain. with all the baby skeletons& Then a ain.of I8T& To construct I8T from its skeleton. in each of them. some com!licated distortion of each co!y is needed as well-but nestin is the basic idea&5& 6!lot is thus a member of the I8T-family& It is a distant relative.

73G5=E HH a/ The skeleton from which 3NT can (e constructed () recursi#e su(stitutions! (/ The skeleton from which Gplot can (e constructed () recursi#e su(stitutions! .

thin s would be incredibly sim!le& Physicists would like such a world because then they could calculate the behavior of all !articles easily 4if !hysicists in such a world e(isted. or married !eo!le are tan led to ether& These real !articles are said to be renormali@edOan u ly but intri uin term& 3hat ha!!ens is that no !article can even be defined without referrin to all other !articles. etc& . I would be the most sur!rised !erson in the world if 6!lot came out of any e(!eriment& The !hysicality of 6!lot lies in the fact that it !oints the way to the !ro!er mathematical treatment of less ideali<ed !roblems of this sort& In other words. which is a doubtful !ro!osition5& Particles without interactions are called (are particles.rammar-& 3e be in with the observation that if !articles didn1t interact with each other. electrons. 6!lot is !urely a contribution to theoretical !hysics. and the vertical a(is re!resents the above-mentioned ratio of time !eriods. then !articles et tan led u! to ether in the way that functions ' and / are tan led to ether.in the middle5& )nd when  is irrational. !rotons. whose definitions in turn de!end on the first !articles. there is no ma netic field& Each of the line se ments makin u! 6!lot is an -ener y band-—that is. in a never-endin loo!& . neutrons.-& )t the bottom.ound and round.6!lot shows that distribution& The hori<ontal a(is re!resents ener y. two of them -kiss. and they are !urely hy!othetical creations= they don1t e(ist& 8ow when you -turn on. not a hint to e(!erimentalists as to what to e(!ect to see2 )n a nostic friend of mine once was so struck by 6!lot1s infinitely many infinities that he called it -a !icture of 6od-. !erha!s even by some sort of . of which there are infinitely many. and at the to!  is unity& 3hen  is <ero. which we can call . the bands shrink to !oints. very s!arsely distributed in a so-called -7antor set-—another recursively defined entity which s!rin s u! in to!olo y& Hou mi ht well wonder whether such an intricate structure would ever show u! in an e(!eriment& 'rankly. it re!resents allowed values of ener y& The em!ty swaths traversin 6!lot on all different si<e scales are therefore re ions of forbidden ener y& Ene of the most startlin !ro!erties of 6!lot is that when  is rational 4say pV" in lowest terms5. and we have seen one way in which recursion enters the theory of solid state !hysics& 8ow we are oin to see yet another way in which the whole world is built out of recursion& This has to do with the structure of elementary !articles. and the tiny quanta of electroma netic radiation called -!hotons-& 3e are oin to see that !articles are—in a certain sense which can only be defined ri orously in relativistic quantum mechanics— nested inside each other in a way which can be described recursively. we have seen recursive eometrical trees which row u!wards forever.  is <ero.the interactions. there are e(actly " such bands 4thou h when " is even. which I don1t think is blas!hemous at all& $ecursion at the Lo'est Le"el of Matter 3e have seen recursion in the rammars of lan ua es.

showing energ) (ands for electrons in an ideali@ed cr)stal in a magnetic field. runs #erticall) from K to B! Energ) runs hori@ontall)! The hori@ontal line segments are (ands of allowed electron energies! .73G5=E HD! GplotR a recursi#e graph.  representing magnetic field strength.

or it may even nest them. a !hysicist can understand the behavior of the bare electron in this tra. electrons and photons& 3e1ll also have to throw in the electron1s anti!article. the positron& 4Photons are their own anti!articles&5 Ima ine first a dull world where a bare electron wishes to !ro!a ate from !oint ) to !oint 0. 8ow as our electron !ro!a ates. The mathematical e(!ressions corres!ondin to these dia rams—called -'eynman dia rams-—are easy to write down. as 9eno did in my Three%&art 3n#ention! ) !hysicist would draw a !icture like this. it may emit and reabsorb one !hoton after another. The electron has a ri ht-!ointin arrow. and. as shown below. but they are harder to calculate than that for the bare electron& 0ut what really com!licates matters is that a !hoton 4real or virtual5 can decay for a brief moment into an electron-!ositron !air& Then these two annihilate each other.ectory& 8ow let us -turn on. and it is easy to write down& 3ith it. the ori inal !hoton rea!!ears& This sort of !rocess is shown below. There is a mathematical e(!ression which corres!onds to this line and its end!oints. now& Aet1s limit ourselves to only two kinds of !articles. while the !ositron1s arrow !oints leftwards& . there will nevertheless be !rofound consequences even for this sim!le tra. as if by ma ic. whereby electrons and !hotons interact& )lthou h there are no !hotons in the scene. our electron now becomes ca!able of emittin and then reabsorbin #irtual photonsO!hotons which flicker in and out of e(istence before they can be seen& Aet us show one such !rocess.the electroma netic interaction.ectory& In !articular.Aet us be a little more concrete.

!hysical electron !ro!a ates from ) to 0. such as conservation of ener y. these virtual !rocesses can be inside each other to arbitrary de!th& This can ive rise to some com!licated-lookin drawin s. to understand how a real. it is mo#ing "(ackwards in time"! * more intuiti#e wa) to sa) this is that an antielectron positron/ is mo#ing forwards in time! &hotons are their own antiparticlesR hence their lines ha#e no need of arrows! There is a sort of . in the segments where the electron's arrow points leftwards. a sin le electron enters on the left at ).rammar.to these dia rams. the one below is im!ossible. it looks as if one electron !eacefully sailed from ) to 0& In the dia ram. and then a sin le electron emer es on the ri ht at 0& To an outsider who can1t see the inner mess. like the rammars of human lan ua es. you can see how electron lines can et arbitrarily embellished.)s you mi ht have antici!ated. does some an acrobatics. such as the one in 'i ure %L& In that 'eynman dia ram. the !hysicist has to be able to take a sort of avera e of all the infinitely many different !ossible drawin s which involve virtual !articles& This is 9eno with a ven eance2 . and so can the !hoton lines& This dia ram would be ferociously hard to calculate& 73G5=E HG! * 7e)nman diagram showing the propagation of a renormali@ed electron from * to B! 3n this diagram. conservation of electric char e. in that it allows dee! nestin s of structures inside each other& It would be !ossible to draw a set of recursive transition networks definin the . that only certain !ictures to be reali<ed in nature& 'or instance. the result is renormali@ed electrons and !hotons& Thus. Hou mi ht say it is not a -well-formed. and so on& )nd. time increases to the right! Therefore.rammar.'eynman dia ram& The rammar is a result of basic laws of !hysics. this rammar has a recursive structure.of the electroma netic interaction& 3hen bare electrons and bare !hotons are allowed to interact in these arbitrarily tan led ways.

which the eye can !ick u! with a bit of effort. to et an e(!ression for the behavior of a fully renormali<ed. the less im!ortant its contribution& There is no known way of summin u! all of the infinitely many !ossible dia rams.Thus the !oint is that a !hysical !article—a renormali<ed !article involves 4"5 a bare !article and 4B5 a hu e tan le of virtual !articles. and more& The ma!!in s between the full 6!lot and the -co!iesof itself inside itself involve si<e chan es. we s!oke of different varieties of canons& Each ty!e of canon e(!loited some manner of takin an ori inal theme and co!yin it by an isomor!hism.ect itself and made it into a !rint. !hysicists use the ideas of renormali<ation to understand the !henomena& Thus !rotons and neutrons. also dra s alon its own virtual cloud. sittin inside each and every one of the fish1s cells. !i-mesons. or information-!reservin transformation& Sometimes the co!ies were u!side down. and more& )nd yet there remains a sort of skeletal identity. a fish1s :8).of the entire fish—and so there is more than a rain of truth to the Escher !icture& . and in order to understand the behavior of electrons and !hotons. !hysical electron& 0ut by considerin rou hly the sim!lest hundred dia rams for certain !rocesses. his woodcut 7ishes and -cales 4'i & %D5& Ef course these fishes and scales are the same only when seen on a sufficiently abstract !lane& 8ow everyone knows that a fish1s scales aren1t really small co!ies of the fish= and a fish1s cells aren1t small co!ies of the fish= however. sometimes backwards. is a very convoluted -co!y.enormali<ation takes !lace not only amon electrons and !hotons& 3henever any ty!es of !article interact to ether. the more com!le( a dia ram. of course. !articularly after it has !racticed with I8T& Escher took the idea of an ob. reflections. quarks—all the beasts in the subnuclear <oo—they all have bare and renormali<ed versions in !hysical theories& )nd from billions of these bubbles within bubbles are all the beasts and baubles of the world com!osed& Co!ies and Sameness Aet us now consider 6!lot once a ain& Hou will remember that in the Introduction. and so on ad infinitum& Particle !hysicists have found that this com!le(ity is too much to handle.ect1s !arts bein co!ies of the ob. ine(tricably wound to ether in a recursive mess& Every real !article1s e(istence therefore involves the e(istence of infinitely many other !articles.which surrounds it as it !ro!a ates& )nd each of the virtual !articles in the cloud. skewin s. they use a!!ro(imations which ne lect all but fairly sim!le 'eynman dia rams& 'ortunately. sometimes shrunken or e(!anded&&& In 6!lot we have all those ty!es of transformation. contained in a virtual -cloud. !hysicists have been able to !redict one value 4the socalled -factor of the muon5 to nine decimal !laces—correctly2 . neutrinos.

BIGI/! 3hat is there that is the -same. and this may be !artially on a macrosco!ic scale. but totally i nore e(act line !ro!ortions. !artially on a microsco!ic scale& The e(act !ro!ortions of !arts are not !reserved= . it ma!s functional !art onto functional !art. which are all linked to each other by mathematical ma!!in s that carry functional !art onto functional !art. we mi ht well ask. -3hat is there that is the 1same1 about all Escher drawin s?.ust the functional relationshi!s between !arts& This is the ty!e of isomor!hism which links all butterflies in Escher1s wood en ravin Butterflies 4'i & %$5 to each other& The same oes for the more abstract butterflies of 6!lot.about all butterflies? The ma!!in from one butterfly to another does not ma! cell onto cell= rather.is contained inside every tiny section of his creations& 3e don1t know what to call it but -style-—a va ue and elusive word& . so a creator1s -si nature.73G5=E HJ! 'ish and Scales. and so on& Takin this e(!loration of sameness to a yet hi her !lane of abstraction. () '! 8! Escher woodcut. an les.It would be quite ludicrous to attem!t to ma! them !iece by !iece onto each other& The ama<in thin is that even a tiny section of an Escher drawin or a 0ach !iece ives it away& Just as a fish1s :8) is contained inside every tiny bit of the fish.

and 4B5 they involve the Tortoise and )chilles& Ether than that. we find some invariant feature in them. and in the end. we shall see how dee!ly this sim!le question is connected with the nature of intelli ence& That this issue arose in the 7ha!ter on recursion is no accident.thin ha!!enin on several different levels at once& 0ut the events on different levels aren1t e(actly the same—rather. all stories on different levels are quite unrelated—their -sameness. 4"5 they are stories. BIGK/! 3e kee! on runnin u! a ainst -sameness-in-differentness-.!lays a central role& .73G5=E HC! 0utterflies. they are radically different from each other& .armonic +a()rinth.ecursion is based on the -same. for recursion is a domain where -sameness-in-differentness. and the question 3hen are two thin s the same? It will recur over and over a ain in this book& 3e shall come at it from all sorts of skew an les. in the +ittle . () '! 8! Escher wood%engra#ing. des!ite many ways in which they differ& 'or e(am!le.reside only two facts.

. then %. and wait until it is aborted& The second ty!e of loo!—which I call a free loo!—is dan erous. quit with answer -8E-= 4B5 if N .achmaninoff-scales. and in such activities as knittin or crochetin -in which very small loo!s are re!eated several times in lar er loo!s. !erha!s dis!laced in !itch each new time& 'or e(am!le. the result of a hi h-level loo! mi ht be a substantial !ortion of a !iece of clothin & In music. and slow scale-loo!s are !layed simultaneously by different rou!s of instruments. the ma(imum number of ste!s in a loo! will be known in advance= other times. quit with answer -HES-& The eneral idea of loo!s. then. each other ste!& 8otice also that the number of ste!s varies with N—hence a loo! of fi(ed len th could never work as a eneral test !rimality& There are two criteria for -abortin . su!!ose that we wish to test all the numbers between " and L+++ for !rimality& 3e can write a second loo! which uses the above-described test over and over startin with N X " and finishin with N X L+++& So our !ro ram will have a -loo!-the-loo!. medium. down& Take your !ick& ) more eneral notion than loo! is that of subroutine. for instance. !erform some series of related ste!s over and over. is this. nested loo!s often occur—as.the loo!. the last movements of both the Prokofiev fifth !iano concerto and the .ust be in. to reat effect& The Prokofiev-scales o u!= the . too. but not the same as. C. over and over."& If N has survived all these tests without be divisible. -0looP and 'looP and 6looP-& 8ow loo!s may be nested inside each other& 'or instance. in which you be in by tryin to divide N by B. which we have already discussed somewhat& The basic idea here is that a rou! of o!erations are .achmaninoff second sym!hony contain e(tended !assa es in which fast. or !rocedure. L.structure& Such !ro ram structures are ty!ical—in fact they are deemed to be ood !ro rammin style& This kind of nested loo! also occurs in assembly instructions for common!lace items. one can write a loo!. when a scale 4a small loo!5 is !layed several times in a row. which tells the com!uter to !erform a fi(ed set of o!erations and then loo! back and !erform them a ain. and abort the !rocess when s!ecific conditions are met& 8ow sometimes. you . 4"5 if so number divides N e(actly. and we shall devote an entire 7ha!ter to it. leavin the com!uter in a socalled -infinite loo!-& This distinction between (ounded loops and free loops is one the most im!ortant conce!ts in all of com!uter science. for that leads to modulari<ation—the breakin -u! of a task into natural subtasks& 'or instance. which in turn are carried out re!eatedly&&& 3hile the result of a low-level loo! mi ht be no more than cou!le of stitches. one mi ht want a sequence of many similar o!erations to be carried out one after another& Instead of writin them all out." is reached as a test divisor and N survives. because criterion for abortion may never occur.rogramming and $ecursion5 Modularity) Loo!s) . until some condition is satisfied& 8ow the (od) of the loo!—the fi(ed set of instructions to re!eated—need not actually be com!letely fi(ed& It may vary in some !redictable way& )n e(am!le is the most sim!le-minded test for the !rimality of natural number N. it1s !rime& 8otice that each ste! in the loo! is similar to. etc& until N .rocedures Ene of the essential skills in com!uter !ro rammin is to !erceive when two !rocesses are the same in this e(tended sense.

one wants a !rocedure which will act variably. he mentally runs throu h all !ossible moves and evaluates them from what he thinks is your !oint of view. !rocedures can call each other by name. and now evaluate the board from the !oint of view of your o!!onent& 0ut how does your o!!onent evaluate the !osition? 3ell.recursively. he looks for his best move& That is. it must decrease this look-ahead !arameter by "& That . the number and ty!e of !ieces under attack. accordin to conte(t& Such a !rocedure can either be iven a way of !eerin out at what is stored in memory and selectin its actions accordin ly.enerator can !o! back u!wards and ive an evaluation at the to! level of each different move& Ene of the !arameters in the self-callin .rograms ) classic e(am!le of a recursive !rocedure with !arameters is one for choosin the -bestmove in chess& The best move would seem to be the one which leaves your o!!onent in the tou hest situation& Therefore. the control of the center. the recursive move. choosin the sequence of actions to carry out amounts to choosin which pathwa) to follow& )n . it tries another move.T8 which has been sou!ed u! with !arameters and conditions that control the choice of !athways inside it is called an *ugmented Transition Network 4)T85& ) !lace where you mi ht !refer )T81s to . !retend you1ve made the move. livin cells. so that random . itself& This recursion can o several levels dee!—but it1s ot to bottom out somewhere2 ?ow do you evaluate a board !osition without lookin ahead? There are a number of useful criteria for this !ur!ose.T8 terminolo y.& )s we saw in . must tell how many moves to look ahead& The outermost call on the !rocedure will use some e(ternally set value for this !arameter& Thereafter.would be !rohibited& /ore on this in 7ha!ter TGIII. each time the !rocedure recursively calls itself. or it can be e(!licitly fed a list of !arameters which uide its choice of what actions to take& Sometimes both of these methods are used& In .u(ta!ositions like -a thankless brunch.T81s. furniture.ATE . a test for oodness of a move is sim!ly this. and thereby e(!ress very concisely sequences of o!erations which are to be carried out& This is the essence of modularity in !ro rammin & /odularity e(ists. of course. and so on& 0y usin this kind of evaluation at the bottom. ho!in they will look bad to you& 0ut notice that we have now defined -best move. then. in hi-fi systems.lum!ed to ether and considered a sin le unit with a name—such as the !rocedure 0$. such as sim!ly the number of !ieces on each side. human society—wherever there is hierarchical or ani<ation& /ore often than not. and calls on itself in the role of its o!!onent1s o!!onent—that is. however& $ecursion in Chess .T81s is in !roducin sensible—as distin uished from nonsensical—En lish sentences out of raw words.0&. accordin to a rammar re!resented in a set of )T81s& The !arameters and conditions would allow you to insert various semantic constraints. sim!ly usin the ma(im that what is best for one side is worst for the other& The !rocedure which looks for the best move o!erates by tryin a move and then calling on itself in the role of opponent2 )s such.

It always takes lon er than you e(!ect.ust one more !iece of evidence for the rather recursive . !eo!le—not com!uters—seem to e(cel at this art= it is known that to!-level !layers look ahead relatively little. even when you take into account ?ofstadter1s Aaw& 73G5=E HE! The (ranching tree of mo#es and countermo#es at the start of a game of tic%tac%toe! . the !rocedure will follow the alternate !athway— the non-recursive evaluation& In this kind of ame-!layin !ro ram.ofstadter's +aw. de!ictin the start of a tic-tac-toe ame& There is an art to fi urin out how to avoid e(!lorin every branch of a look-ahead tree out to its ti!& In chess trees. com!ared to most chess !ro rams—yet the !eo!le are far better2 In the early days of com!ute !eo!le used to estimate that it would be ten years until a com!uter 4or !ro ram5 was world cham!ion& 0ut after ten years had !assed. with the move itself as the trunk. it seemed that the day a com!uter would become world cham!ion was still more than ten years away&&& This is . each move investi ated causes the eneration of a so-called -look-ahead tree-. counter-res!onses as subsidiary branches. when the !arameter reaches <ero.way. res!onses as main branches. and so on& In 'i ure %* I have shown a sim!le look-ahead tree.

the set rows and rows. so that the further out you o.$ecursion and &n!redictability 8ow what is the connection between the recursive !rocesses of this 7ha!ter. in a sort of -mathematical snowball-& 0ut this is the essence of recursion—somethin bein defined in terms of sim!ler versions of itself. each new element bein com!ounded somehow out of !revious elements. and the recursive sets of the !recedin 7ha!ter? The answer involves the notion of a recursi#el) enumera(le set& 'or a set to be r&e& means that it can be enerated from a set of startin !oints 4a(ioms5. why not et really so!histicated.ecursive enumeration is a !rocess in which new thin s emer e from old thin s by fi(ed rules& There seem to be many sur!rises in such !rocesses—for e(am!le the un!redictability of the M-sequence& It mi ht seem that recursively defined sequences of that ty!e !ossess some sort of inherently increasin com!le(ity of behavior. by the re!eated a!!lication of rules of inference& Thus. e(tendin them. instead of e(!licitly& The 'ibonacci numbers and the Aucas numbers are !erfect e(am!les of r&e& sets—snowballin from two elements by a recursive rule into infinite sets& It is . enerali<in them. im!rovin them. fi(in them. and so on? This kind of -tan led recursion. the less !redictable they et& This kind of thou ht carried a little further su ests that suitably com!licated recursive systems mi ht be stron enou h to break out of any !redetermined !atterns& )nd isn1t this one of the definin !ro!erties of intelli ence? Instead of .ust considerin !ro rams com!osed of !rocedures which can recursively call themselves.!robably lies at the heart of intelli ence& .ust a matter of convention to call an r&e& set whose com!lement is also r&e& -recursive-& . and invent !ro rams which can modif) themselves—!ro rams which can act on !ro rams.

Please& Those little cookies look delicious& 4 &icks one up. but I1ll bet I know more about Ja!anese !oetry than you do& ?ave you ever read any haiku? Tortoise. then seven. )chilles? *chilles. ?mm&&& That1s an evocative statement& The waiter arri#es with their (ill. another pot of tea. at the (est 8hinese restaurant in town! *chilles.ust sit here and talk a little while? Tortoise. !lease. you come to think of fortune cookies less as cookies than as messa e bearers Fnfortunately. which is evocative in the same way.oy your meal. I1m afraid not& 3hat is a haiku? *chilles. I have had a fondness for Eriental cuisine& )nd you—did you en. Immensely& I1d not eaten 7hinese food before& This meal was a s!lendid introduction& )nd now. or shall we . I ou ht to& Ever since my youth. (ites into it and (egins to chew!5 ?ey2 3hat1s this funny thin inside? ) !iece of !a!er? Tortoise. !erha!s. of five. as a way of softenin the blow& If you frequent 7hinese restaurants. /r& T& Tortoise. Hou wield a mean cho!stick. or a lily !ond in a li ht dri<<le& It enerally consists of rou!s of. Such com!ressed !oems with seventeen syllables can1t have much meanin &&& *chilles. )chilles? *chilles. are you in a hurry to o. as a fra rant !etal is. you seem to have swallowed some of your fortune& 3hat does the rest say? . and two fortune cookies!/ Thank you. /r& T. and some more tea? The waiter rushes off!/ *chilles. then five syllables& Tortoise. /eanin lies as much in the mind of the reader as in the haiku& Tortoise. ) haiku is a Ja!anese seventeen-syllable !oem—or mini!oem rather. waiter& 7are for more tea.Canon by Intervallic Au!mentation *chilles and the Tortoise ha#e Must finished a delicious 8hinese (an"uet for two. Hou may know more about 7hinese cuisine than I do. )chilles& /any 7hinese restaurants ive out fortune cookies with their bills. That1s your fortune. I1d love to talk while we drink our tea& 3aiter2 * waiter comes up!/ 7ould we have our bill.

6lory be2 I would never have noticed that. T3E E). of course.ust shows that each of us has his own characteristic way of inter!retin messa es which we run across&&& 3dl). it comes out com!letely different2 It1s not a LI"$-haiku at all& It is a si(-syllable messa e which says. and he is quite ea er to meet you& ?e is ettin alon .ukebo(& *chilles. it has e(actly one record& . I have told him about you. I uess it .T 3EE ). is o!en to inter!retation& *chilles. E. /r& Tortoise& Tortoise 4deftl) splitting open his cookie.it. woe are we&&& /ay I look at it? *chilles 4handing the Tortoise the small slip of paper5. a rare ty!e of . Hour fortune is also a haiku. so quaint and reminiscent of by one eras& Tortoise. This . In that case. )chilles. )chilles? *chilles. with their flashin colored li hts and silly son s.ukebo(es. -'ortune lies as much in the hand of the eater as in the cookie&*chilles. /ore tea. 3hy.ukebo( is too lar e to fit in his house. )s a matter of fact. *chilles ga@es at the tea lea#es on the (ottom of his empt) teacup!/ Tortoise.ust fine& In fact. Eh. for all the letters are run to ether. 7ertainly& Tortoise. now I see& If you !ut the s!aces back in where they belon . Hes.E 3E-& That sounds like an insi htful commentary on the new art form of LI"$-haiku& *chilles. I can1t ima ine why it would be so lar e. )ll I did was to shift the readin frame by one unit—that is.ority of syllables& Tortoise. -E 8E3 ). it says. too. so he had a shed s!ecially built in back for it& *chilles. E3E-& I can1t quite make head or tail of that& /aybe it was a haiku-like !oem. when I -decode. how is your friend the 7rab? I have been thinkin about him a lot since you told me of your !eculiar !hono ra!h-battle& Tortoise. with no s!aces in between& Perha!s it needs decodin in some way? Eh. /r& Tortoise—at least it1s ot seventeen syllables in the L-$-L form& Tortoise. your fortune is now a mere LI"$-haiku& )nd a curious ima e it evokes& If LI"$-haiku is a new art form.*chilles. )chilles& It1s the kind of thin only you would have noticed& 3hat struck me more is what it says—which. would you tell me about it? I find . Hou1re ri ht& Isn1t it astonishin that the !oem contains its own commentary2 Tortoise. thank you& 0y the way. he recently made a new acquisition in the record !layer line. shift all the s!aces one unit to the ri ht& *chilles. then I1d say woe. of which I ate the ma. It1s a little stran e. Aet1s see what your fortune says. reads5. -E8E 3). unless it has an unusually lar e selection of records& Is that it? Tortoise.

ukebo(-style record& *chilles.ukebo( with only one record? That1s a contradiction in terms& 3hy is the . so that 7-% could be slid into !osition& *chilles. )h. that selects one of the record !layers& This tri ers an automatic mechanism that starts the record !layer squeakily rollin alon the rusty tracks& It ets shunted alon side the record—then it clicks into !layin !osition& *chilles. what kind of a .ukebo( I1ve ever run into obeyed the fundamental . it1s . 3hat? ) . I mi ht have known& 0ut how.ukebo( so bi . stuffed it in the slot. one son -& Tortoise. then 7-% then 0-"+—all . So !hono ra!h 0-" came slidin down the rail. )chilles? *chilles.ukebo(-a(iom. 8ot quite& The record stands still—it1s the record !layer which rotates& *chilles. which I believe you remember& *chilles. 8o. I su!!ose. you must be .ust at random& *chilles. and behind it there is a small but elaborate network of overhead rails. !lu ed itself into the vertical record. or another band on the same side& Tortoise. 8ow don1t tell me that 7-% !layed another son ? Tortoise. such as 0-". if you have but one record to !lay can you et more than one son out of this cra<y contra!tion? Tortoise. and hit buttons 0-".*chilles. It did . I myself asked the 7rab that question& ?e merely su ested I try it out& So I fished a quarter from my !ocket 4you et three !lays for a quarter5. )chilles& The one record sits vertically. )nd then the record be ins s!innin and music comes out—ri ht? Tortoise. /r& Tortoise.ukebo( is it that has only a sin le son ? Tortoise. 7ould I ever for et it? Tortoise. based the famous old tune 0-)-7-?. Every . the record has rooves only on one side.oshin me& )fter all. This was record !layer 0-"& Then it finished.ust that& *chilles. and was slowly rolled back into its han in !osition. 8o. then? Is its sin le record i antic—twenty feet in diameter? Tortoise. 8ow.ust a re ular . and be an s!innin ? Tortoise. and has only a sin le band& . -Ene record. E(actly& The music that came out was quite a reeable. 3ho said anythin about a sin le son .ukebo( is different. This . from which han various record !layers& 3hen you !ush a !air of buttons. I understand& It !layed the fli! side of the first son . sus!ended.

)re you su estin that 7a e belon s in the <oo? 3ell. ?ow did the second son o? Tortoise. 3ell. another !lace where D'HH" would come in handy is the ?all of 0i 7ats. a threemovement !iece consistin of silences of different len ths& It1s wonderfully e(!ressive—if you like that sort of thin & *chilles. )nd isn1t John 7a e a com!oser of modern music? I seem to remember readin about him in one of my books on haiku& Tortoise. I don1t understand that at all& Hou 7)81T !ull different son s out of the same record2 Tortoise. -"& Tortoise.i ht—who wants to hear the racket of clinkin dishes and . in this case. -%. ^"+. That1s the interestin thin &&& It was a son based on the melody 7-)-6-E& *chilles. at feedin time& *chilles. I uess that makes some sense& 0ut about the 7rab1s . and takin the nearest whole number& *chilles. such as D'HH". Aet me see& 'irst it oes down one semitone. That1s a totally different melody2 Tortoise. Indeed it is& They have e(actly the same -skeleton-.*chilles. -". )chilles.ukebo(&&& I am baffled& ?ow could both -0)7?. in a certain sense& Hou can make 7-)-6-E out of 0-)-7-? by multi!lyin all the intervals by %d. True& *chilles. Precisely& 3hat about 7-)-6-E.and -7)6E. and that the various record !layers add their own inter!retations to that code? . 3ell. Hou may notice that there is some relation between the two. it be ins by fallin three semitones. if you ins!ect them carefully& Aet me !oint the way& 3hat do you et if you list the successive intervals in the melody 0-)-7-?? *chilles. blow me down and !ick me u!2 So does that mean that only some sort of skeletal code is !resent in the rooves. I can see where if I were in a loud and brash cafe I mi ht ladly !ay to hear 7a e1s D'HH" on a . and finally falls three more semitones& That means the !attern is. ^%.ukebo(& It mi ht afford some relief2 Tortoise. . isn1t it? Tortoise. E(actly& ?e has com!osed many celebrated !ieces. -%& It1s very much like the other one. That1s what I thou ht until I saw /r& 7rab1s . then rises ten semitones 4nearly an octave5.be coded inside a sin le record at once? Tortoise. now? *chilles. to ?& That yields the !attern.an lin silverware? 0y the way. from 0 to ) 4where 0 is taken the 6erman way5= then it rises three semitones to 7= and finally it falls one semitone.ukebo(& *chilles.

?ow did it o? Tortoise. -"+.ust to slow the melody down& ?ere.umbled u! inside. you et 0)7? back. I find it curious that when you au ment 0)7? you et 7)6E and when you au ment 7)6E over a ain. where all the time values notes in a melody et multi!lied by some constant& There. The melody consisted of enormously wide intervals. as if 0)7? had an u!set stomach after !assin throu h the intermediate sta e of 7)6E& Tortoise. )ma<in & So all three melodies you tried were intervallic au mentations of one sin le underlyin roove-!attern in the record. That1s what I concluded& *chilles. I don1t know.Tortoise. e(ce!t . and went 0-7-)-?& The interval !attern in semitones was. the effect . Tortoise. when record !layer 0-" swiveled into !lace& *chilles. and roundin to whole numbers& *chilles. -"+& It can be otten from the 7)6E !attern by yet another multi!lication by %d. Ene could call it -intervallic au mentation-& It is similar to the canonic device of tem!oral au mentation. for sure& The ca ey 7rab wouldn1t fill me in on the details& 0ut I did et to hear a third son . That sounds like an insi htful commentary on the new art form of 7a e& . ^%%. the effect is to e(!and the melodic ran e in a curious way& *chilles. Is there a name for this kind of interval multi!lication? Tortoise.

nor could it be said that a messa e has any universal. claimin it for all messa es& The idea of an -ob. or ob. and the record !layer is a mechanism which !hysically reali<es that isomor!hism& It is natural. and the -information-revealer.In this 7ha!ter. in an interestin way. without. information-revealers5 sim!ly reveal information which is intrinsically inside the structures.is the inter!retation. to the sim!licity with which intelli ence can be described& Information-Bearers and Information-$e"ealers I1ll be in with my favorite e(am!le. -3hen is one thin not always the same?. then. the relationshi! between records.ot Al'ays the Same7 A)ST 7?)PTE. and record !layers& 3e feel quite comfortable with the idea that a record contains the same information as a !iece of music.TE$ 4I The Location of Meaning >hen Is 0ne Thing . -3hen are two thin s the same?. 3E came u!on the question. we will deal with the fli! side of that question.of a messa e will turn out to be related. and the record-!layer as an information%re#ealer& ) second e(am!le of these notions is iven by the !q-system& There.are the theorems. to be sure. you can !ull very recondite !ieces of information out of certain structures& In fact.ective meanin . there are certain !ieces of information which can be !ulled out of it. meanin would have both location and universality& In this 7ha!ter. music.The issue we are broachin is whether meanin can be said to be inherent in a messa e. since each observer could brin its own meanin to each messa e& 0ut in the former case. there is an isomor!hism between roove-!atterns and sounds. while there are other !ieces of information which cannot be !ulled out of it& 0ut what does this !hrase -!ull out. or whether meanin is always manufactured by the interaction of a mind or a mechanism with a messa e—as in the !recedin :ialo ue& In the latter case.really mean? ?ow hard are you allowed to !ull? There are cases where by investin sufficient effort. the -information-bearers. meanin could not said to be located in any sin le !lace. which is so trans!arent that we don1t need any electrical machine to hel! us e(tract the information from !q-theorems& Ene ets the im!ression from these two e(am!les that isomor!hisms and decodin mechanisms 4i&e&. waitin to be -!ulled out-& This leads to the idea that for each structure. because of the e(istence of record !layers.C/A.ective..records and convert the roove-!atterns into sounds& In other words. to think of the record as an information%(earer. the !ullin -out may involve such com!licated o!erations that it makes you feel you are !uttin in more information than you are !ullin out& . which can -read. meanin . I want to !resent the case for the universality of at least some messa es.

rosaic Isomor!hisms Therefore one seems forced into acce!tin the idea that the :8)1s structure contains the information of the !henoty!e1s structure. by lar e -chunks. when :8) is modified. if you wanted to find some !iece of your :8) which accounts for the sha!e of your nose or the sha!e of your fin er!rint. of all the biolo ical molecules. and one could !in!oint it arbitrarily accurately. where one knows that to any sound in the !iece there e(ists an e(act -ima e. the isomor!hism is an e(otic one. taken to ether.are not necessarily sets of conti uous notes= there may be disconnected sections which.in the !atterns etched into rooves. not by sin le notes& Incidentally. such as !roteins. by contrast. the two are isomorphic& ?owever. would be ones in which the !arts of one structure are easily ma!!able onto the !arts of the other& )n e(am!le is the isomor!hism between a record and a !iece of music. you would have a very hard time& It would be a little like tryin to !in down the note in a !iece of music which is the carrier of the emotional meanin of the !iece& Ef course there is no such note. which is to say. the re!lication the :8).which can be ma!!ed onto each other& Prosaic isomor!hisms. such -chunks. by which I mean that it is hi hly nontrivial to divide the !henoty!e and enoty!e into -!arts. only :8) transmits hereditary !ro!erties& Ene can modify other molecules in an or anism. and in 7ha!ter TGI we shall devote our full attention to it& E!i enesis is uided by a set of enormously com!le( cycles of chemical reactions and feedback loo!s& 0y the time the full or anism has been constructed. and overwhelmin corroborative evidence has since been amassed& )very1s e(!eriments showed that. there is not even the remotest similarity between its !hysical characteristics and its enoty!e& )nd yet. carry some emotional meanin & .of the !iece. involvin the manufacture of !roteins. im!lies that those instructions must be coded somehow in the structure of the :8)& E-otic and . it is standard !ractice to attribute the !hysical structure of or anism to the structure of its :8). this unrollin of !henoty!e from enoty!e epigenesisO is the most tan led of tan led recursions. all successive enerations inherit the modified :8)& Such e(!eriments show that the only way of chan in the instructions for buildin a new or anism is to chan e the :8)—and this. and to that alone& The first evidence for this !oint of view came from e(!eriments conducted by Eswald )very in "#CD.Genoty!e and . in turn. because the emotional meanin is carried on a very hi h level. the radual differentiation of cell ty!es and so on& Incidentally. and the mechanism which carries it out !hysically is awesomely com!licated& 'or instance. but such modifications will not be transmitted to later enerations& ?owever. the re!lication of cells.henoty!e Take the case of the enetic information commonly said to reside in the double heli( of deo(yribonucleic acid 4:8)5& ) molecule of :8)—a genot)peOis converted into a !hysical or anism—a phenot)peOby a com!le( !rocess. if the need arose& )nother !rosaic isomor!hism is that between 6!lot and any of its internal butterflies& The isomor!hism between :8) structure and !henoty!e structure is anythin but !rosaic.

Similarly, - enetic meanin -—that is, information about !henoty!e structure—is s!read all throu h the small !arts of a molecule of :8), althou h nobody understands the lan ua e yet& 43arnin , Fnderstandin this -lan ua e- would not at all be the same as crackin the 6enetic 7ode, somethin which took !lace in the early "#D+1s& The 6enetic 7ode tells how to translate short !ortions of :8) into various amino acids& Thus, crackin the 6enetic 7ode is com!arable to fi urin out the !honetic values of the letters of a forei n al!habet, without fi urin out the rammar of the lan ua e or the meanin s of any of its words& The crackin of the 6enetic 7ode was a vital ste! on the way to e(tractin the meanin of :8) strands, but it was only the first on a lon !ath which is yet to be trodden&5

3u.ebo-es and Triggers
The enetic meanin contained in :8) is one of the best !ossible e(am!les of im!licit meanin & In order to convert enoty!e into !henoty!e, a set of mechanisms far more com!le( than the enoty!e must o!erate on the enoty!e& The various !arts of the enoty!e serve as triggers for those mechanisms& ) .ukebo( —the ordinary ty!e, not the 7rab ty!e2—!rovides a useful analo y here, a !air of buttons s!ecifies a very com!le( action to be taken by the mechanism, so that the !air of buttons could well be described as -tri erin - the son which is !layed& In the !rocess which converts enoty!e into !henoty!e, cellular .ukebo(es—if you will !ardon the notion2—acce!t -button-!ushin sfrom short e(cer!ts from a lon strand of :8), and the -son s- which they !lay are often !rime in redients in the creation of further -.ukebo(es-& It is as if the out!ut of real .ukebo(es, instead of bein love ballads, were son s whose lyrics told how to build more com!le( .ukebo(es&&& Portions of the :8) tri er the manufacture of !roteins= those !roteins tri er hundreds of new reactions= they in turn tri er the re!licatin -o!eration which, in several ste!s, co!ies the :8)—and on and on&&& This ives a sense of how recursive the whole !rocess is& The final result of these many-tri ered tri erin s is the !henoty!e—the individual& )nd one says that the !henoty!e is the revelation—the -!ullin -out-—-of the information that was !resent in the :8) to start with, latently& 4The term -revelation- in this conte(t is due to Jacques /onod, one of the dee!est and most ori inal of twentieth-century molecular biolo ists&5 8ow no one would say that a son comin out of the louds!eaker of .ukebo( constitutes a -revelation- of information inherent in the !air of buttons which were !ressed, for the !air of buttons seem to be mere triggers, whose !ur!ose is to activate information-bearin !ortions of the .ukebo( mechanism& En the other hand, it seems !erfectly reasonable to call the e(traction of music from a record a -revelation- of information inherent in the record, for several reasons, 4"5 the music does not seem to be concealed in the mechanism of the record !layer= 4B5 it is !ossible to match !ieces of the in!ut 4the record5 with !ieces of the out!ut 4the music5 to an arbitrary de ree of accuracy=

4%5 it is !ossible to !lay other records on the same record !layer and et other sounds out= 4C5 the record and the record !layer are easily se!arated from one another& It is another question alto ether whether the fra ments of a smashed record contain intrinsic meanin & The ed es of the se!arate !ieces fit to ether and in that way allow the information to be reconstituted—but somethin much more com!le( is oin on here& Then there is the question of the intrinsic meanin of a scrambled tele!hone call&&& There is a vast s!ectrum of de rees of inherency of meanin & It is interestin to try to !lace e!i enesis in this s!ectrum& )s develo!ment of an or anism takes !lace, can it be said that the information is bein -!ulled out- of its :8)? Is that where all of the information about the or anism1s structure resides?

;A and the ;ecessity of Chemical Conte-t
In one sense, the answer seems to be yes, thanks to e(!eriments like )very1s& 0ut in another sense, the answer seems to be no, because so much of the !ullin -out !rocess de!ends on e(traordinarily com!licated cellular chemical !rocesses, which are not coded for in the :8) itself& The :8) relies on the fact that they will ha!!en, but does not seem to contain a code which brin s them about& Thus we have two conflictin views on the nature of the information in a enoty!e& Ene view says that so much of the information is outside the .N* that it is not reasonable to look u!on the :8) as anythin more than a very intricate set of tri ers, like a sequence of buttons to be !ushed on a .ukebo(= another view says that the information is all there, but in a very im!licit form& 8ow it mi ht seem that these are .ust two ways of sayin the same thin , but that is not necessarily so& Ene view says that the :8) is quite meanin less out of conte(t= the other says that even if it were taken out conte(t, a molecule of :8) from a livin bein has such a compelling inner logic to its structure that its messa e could be deduced anyway& To !ut it as succinctly as !ossible, one view says that in order for :8) to have meanin , chemical conte9t is necessary= the other view says that only intelligence is necessary to reveal the -intrinsic meanin - of a strand of :8)&

An &nli.ely &+0
3e can et some !ers!ective on this issue by considerin a stran e hy!othetical event& ) record of :avid Eistrakh and Aev Eborin !layin 0ach1s sonata in ' /inor for violin and clavier is sent u! in a satellite& 'rom the satellite it is then launched on a course which will carry it outside of the solar system, !erha!s out of the entire ala(y —.ust a thin !lastic !latter with a hole in the middle, swirlin its way throu h inter alactic s!ace& It has certainly lost its conte(t& ?ow much meanin does it carry? If an alien civili<ation were to encounter it, they would almost certainly be struck by its sha!e, and would !robably be very interested in it& Thus immediately its sha!e, actin as a tri er, has iven them some information, that it is an artifact, !erha!s an information-bearin artifact& This idea—communicated, or tri ered, by the record itself

—now creates a new conte(t in which the record will henceforth be !erceived& The ne(t ste!s in the decodin mi ht take considerably lon er—but that is very hard for us to assess& 3e can ima ine that if such a record had arrived on earth in 0ach1s time, no one would have known what to make of it, and very likely it would not have otten deci!hered& 0ut that does not diminish our conviction that the information was in !rinci!le there= we .ust know that human knowled e in those times was not very so!histicated with res!ect to the !ossibilities of stora e, transformation, and revelation of information&

Le"els of &nderstanding of a Message
8owadays, the idea of decodin is e(tremely wides!read= it is a si nificant !art of the activity of astronomers, lin uists, archaeolo ists, military s!ecialists, and so on& It is often su ested that we may be floatin in a sea of radio messa es from other civili<ations, messa es which we do not yet know how to deci!her& )nd much serious thou ht has been iven to the techniques of deci!herin such a messa e& Ene of the main !roblems—!erha!s the dee!est !roblem—is the question, -?ow will we reco ni<e the fact that there is a messa e at all? ?ow to identify a frame?- The sendin of a record seems to be a sim!le solution—its ross !hysical structure is very attention-drawin , and it is at least !lausible to us that it would tri er, in any sufficiently reat intelli ence, the idea of lookin for information hidden in it& ?owever, for technolo ical reasons, sendin of solid ob.ects to other star systems seems to be out of the question& Still, that does not !revent our thinkin about the idea& 8ow su!!ose that an alien civili<ation hit u!on the idea that the a!!ro!riate mechanism for translation of the record is a machine which converts the roove-!atterns into sounds& This would still be a far cry from a true deci!herin & 3hat, indeed, would constitute a successful deci!herin of such a record? Evidently, the civili<ation would have to be able to make sense out of the sounds& /ere !roduction of sounds is in itself hardly worthwhile, unless they have the desired tri erin effect in the brains 4if that is the word5 of the alien creatures& )nd what is that desired effect? It would be to activate structures in their brains which create emotional effects in them which are analo ous to the emotional effects which we e(!erience in hearin the !iece& In fact, the !roduction of sounds could even be by!assed, !rovided that they used the record in some other way et at the a!!ro!riate structures in their brains& 4If we humans had a way of tri erin the a!!ro!riate structures in our brains in sequential order, as music does, we mi ht be quite content to by!ass the sounds—but it seems e(traordinarily unlikely that there is any way to do that, other than via our ears& :eaf com!osers—0eethoven, :voefk, 'aurK—or musicians who can -hear- music by lookin at a score, do not ive the lie to this assertion, for such abilities are founded u!on !recedin decades of direct auditory e(!eriences&5 ?ere is where thin s become very unclear& 3ill bein s of an alien civili<ation have emotions? 3ill their emotions—su!!osin they have some—be ma!!able, in any sense, onto ours? If they do have emotions somewhat like ours, do the emotions cluster to ether in somewhat the same way as ours do? 3ill they understand such amal ams as

tra ic beauty or coura eous sufferin ? If it turns out that bein s throu hout the universe do share co nitive structures with us to the e(tent that even emotions overla!, then in some sense, the record can never be out of its natural conte(t= that conte(t is !art of the scheme of thin s, in nature& )nd if such is the case, then it is likely that a meanderin record, if not destroyed en route, would eventually et !icked u! by a bein or rou! of bein s, and et deci!hered in a way which we would consider successful&

(Imaginary S!acesca!e(
In askin about the meanin of a molecule of :8) above, I used the !hrase -com!ellin inner lo ic-= and I think this is a key notion& To illustrate this, let us sli htly modify our hy!othetical record-into-s!ace event by substitutin John 7a e1s -Ima inary Aandsca!e no& C- for the 0ach& This !iece is a classic of aleatoric, or chance, music— music whose structure is chosen by various random !rocesses, rather than by an attem!t to convey a !ersonal emotion& In this case, twenty-four !erformers attach themselves to the twenty-four knobs on twelve radios& 'or the duration the !iece they twiddle their knobs in aleatoric ways so that each radio randomly ets louder and softer, switchin stations all the while& The total sound !roduced is the !iece of music& 7a e1s attitude is e(!ressed in "C own words, -to let sounds be themselves, rather than vehicles for manmade theories or e(!ressions of human sentiments&8ow ima ine that this is the !iece on the record sent out into s!ace& It would be e(traordinarily unlikely—if not downri ht im!ossible—for an alien civili<ation to understand the nature of the artifact& They would !robably be very !u<<led by the contradiction between the frame messa e 4-I am a messa e= decode me-5, and the chaos of the inner structure& There are few -chunks- to sei<e onto in this 7a e !iece, few !atterns which could uide a deci!herer& En the other hand, there seems to be, in a 0ach !iece, much to sei<e onto—!atterns, !atterns of !atterns, and so on& 3e have no way of knowin whether such !atterns are universally a!!ealin & 3e do not know enou h about the nature of intelli ence, emotions, or music to say whether the inner lo ic of a !iece by 0ach is so universally com!ellin that its meanin could s!an ala(ies& ?owever, whether 0ach in !articular has enou h inner lo ic is not the issue here= the issue is whether any messa e has, !er se, enou h com!ellin inner lo ic that its conte(t will be restored automatically whenever intelli ence of a hi h enou h level comes in contact with it& If some messa e did have that conte(t-restorin !ro!erty, then it would seem reasonable to consider the meanin of the messa e as an inherent !ro!erty of the messa e&

The /eroic

eci!herers

)nother illuminatin e(am!le of these ideas is the deci!herment of ancient te(ts written in unknown lan ua es and unknown al!habets& The intuition feels that there is information inherent in such te(ts, whether or not we succeed in revealin it& It is as stron a feelin as the belief that there is meanin inherent in a news!a!er written in

7hinese, even if we are com!letely i norant of 7hinese& Ence the scri!t or lan ua e of a te(t has been broken, then no one questions where the meanin resides, clearly it resides in the te(t, not in the method of deci!herment .ust as music resides in a record, not inside a record !layer2 Ene of the ways that we identify decodin mechanisms is by the fact that they do not add any meanin to the si ns or ob.ects which they take as in!ut= they merely reveal the intrinsic meanin of those si ns or ob.ects& ) .ukebo( is not a decodin mechanism, for it does not reveal any meanin belon in to its in!ut symbols= on the contrary, it su!!lies meanin concealed inside itself&

73G5=E HI! The =osetta -tone Ucourtes) of the British 'useum!V

8ow the deci!herment of an ancient te(t may have involved decades of labor by several rival teams of scholars, drawin on knowled e stored in libraries all over the world&&& :oesn1t this !rocess add information, too? Just how intrinsic is the meanin of a te(t, when such mammoth efforts are required in order to find the decodin rules? ?as one !ut

meanin into the te(t, or was that meanin already there? /y intuition says that the meanin was always there, and that des!ite the arduousness of the !ullin -out !rocess, no meanin was !ulled out that wasn1t in the te(t to start with& This intuition comes mainly from one fact, I feel that the result was inevitable= that, had the te(t not been deci!hered by this rou! at this time, it would have been deci!hered by that rou! at that time —and it would have come out the same way& That is why the meanin is !art of the te(t itself= it acts u!on intelli ence in a !redictable way& 6enerally, we can say, meanin is !art of an ob.ect to the e(tent that it acts u!on intelli ence in a !redictable way& In 'i ure %# is shown the ;osetta stone, one of the most !recious of all historic discoveries& It was the key to the deci!herment of E y!tian hiero ly!hics, for it contains !arallel te(t in three ancient scri!ts, hiero ly!hic demotic characters, and 6reek& The inscri!tion on this basalt stele was first deci!hered in "*B" by Jean 'rancois 7ham!ollion, the -father of E y!tolo y-= it is a decree of !riests assembled at /em!his in favor of Ptolemy G E!i!hanes&

Three Layers of Any Message
In these e(am!les of deci!herment of out-of-conte(t messa es, we can se!arate out fairly clearly three levels of information, 4"5 the frame messa e= 4B5 the outer messa e= 4%5 the inner messa e& The one we are most familiar with is 4%5, the inner messa e= it is the messa e which is su!!osed to be transmitted, the emotional e(!eriences in music, the !henoty!e in enetics, the royalty and rites of ancient civili<ations in tablets, etc& To understand the inner messa e is to have e(tracted the meanin intended by the sender&&& The frame messa e is the messa e -I am a messa e= decode me if you can2-= and it is im!licitly conveyed by the ross structural as!ects of any information-bearer& To understand the frame messa e is to reco ni<e the need for a decodin -mechanism& If the frame messa e is reco ni<ed as such, then attention is switched to level 4B5, the outer messa e& This is information, im!licitly carried by symbol-!atterns and structures in the messa e, which tells how to decode the inner messa e& To understand the outer messa e is to build, or know how to build, the correct decodin mechanism for the inner messa e& This outer level is !erforce an im!licit messa e, in the sense that the sender cannot ensure that it will be understood& It would be a vain effort to send instructions which tell how to decode the outer messa e, for they would have to be !art of the inner messa e, which can only be understood once the decodin mechanism has been found& 'or this reason, the

outer messa e is necessarily a set of tri ers, rather than a messa e which can be revealed by a known decoder& The formulation of these three -layers- is only a rather crude be innin at analy<in how meanin is contained in messa es& There may be layers and layers of outer and inner messa es, rather than .ust one of each& Think, for instance, of how intricately tan led are the inner and outer messa es of the ;osetta stone& To decode a messa e fully, one would have to reconstruct the entire semantic structure which underlay its creation and thus to understand the sender in every dee! way& ?ence one could throw away the inner messa e, because if one truly understood all the finesses of the outer messa e, the inner messa e would be reconstructible& The book *fter Ba(el, by 6eor e Steiner, is a lon discussion of the interaction between inner and outer messa es 4thou h he never uses that terminolo y5& The tone of his book is iven by this quote,
3e normally use a shorthand beneath which there lies a wealth of subconscious, deliberately concealed or declared associations so e(tensive and intricate that they !robably equal the sum and uniqueness of our status as an individual !erson& "

Thou hts alon the same lines are e(!ressed by Aeonard 0& /eyer, in his book 'usic, the *rts, and 3deas:
The way of listenin to a com!osition by Elliott 7arter is radically different from the way of listenin a!!ro!riate to a work by John 7a e& Similarly, a novel by 0eckett must in a si nificant sense be read differently from one by 0ellow& ) !aintin by 3illem de @oonin and one by )ndy 3arhol require different !erce!tional-co nitive attitudes& B

Perha!s works of art are tryin to convey their style more than anythin else& In that case, if you could ever !lumb a style to its very bottom you could dis!ense with the creations in that style& -Style-, -outer messa e -decodin technique-—all ways of e(!ressin the same basic idea&

Schrodinger%s A!eriodic Crystals
3hat makes us see a frame messa e in certain ob.ects, but none in other= 3hy should an alien civili<ation sus!ect, if they interce!t an errant record, that a messa e lurks within? 3hat would make a record any different from a meteorite? 7learly its eometric sha!e is the first clue that -somethin funny is oin on-& The ne(t clue is that, on a more microsco!ic scale, it consists of a very lon a!eriodic sequence of !atterns, arran ed in a s!iral& If we were to unwra! the s!iral, we would have one hu e linear sequence 4around B+++ feet lon 5 of minuscule symbols& This is not so different from a :8) molecule, whose symbols, drawn from a mea er -al!habet- of four different chemical bases, are arrayed in a one-dimensional sequence, and then coiled u! into a heli(& 0efore )very had established the connection between enes and :8), the !hysicist Erwin Schr>din er !redicted, on !urely theoretical rounds, that enetic information would have to be stored in -a!eriodic crystals-, in his influential book >hat 3s +ife? In fact, books themselves are

a!eriodic crystals contained inside neat eometric forms& These e(am!les su est that, where an a!eriodic crystal is found -!acka ed- inside a very re ular eometric structure, there may lurk a inner messa e& 4I don1t claim this is a com!lete characteri<ation of frame messa es= however, it is a fact that many common messa es have frame messa es of this descri!tion& See 'i ure C+ for some ood e(am!les&5

Languages for the Three Le"els
The three levels are very clear in the case of a messa e found in a bottle washed u! on a beach& The first level, the frame messa e, is found when one !icks u! the bottle and sees that it is sealed, and contains a dry !iece of !a!er& Even without seein writin , one reco ni<es this ty!e of artifact as an information-bearer, and at this !oint it would take an e(traordinary—almost inhuman—lack of curiosity, to dro! the bottle and not look further&

73G5=E DK! * collage of scripts! 5ppermost on the left is an inscription in the undeciphered (oustrophedonic writing s)stem from Easter 3sland, in which e#er) second line is upside down! The characters are chiseled on a wooden ta(let, D inches () HG inches! 'o#ing clockwise, we encounter #erticall) written 'ongolian: a(o#e, present%da) 'ongolian, (elow, a document dating from BHBD! Then we come to a poem in Bengali () =a(indranath Tagore in the (ottom righthand corner! Ne9t to it is a newspaper headline in 'ala)alam >est ;erala, southern 3ndia/, a(o#e which is the elegant cur#ilinear language Tamil East ;erala/! The smallest entr) is part of a folk tale in Buginese 8ele(es 3sland, 3ndonesia/! 3n the center of the collage is a paragraph in the Thai language, and a(o#e it a manuscript in =unic dating from the fourteenth centur), containing a sample of the pro#incial law of -cania south -weden/! 7inall), wedged in on the left is a section of the laws of ,ammura(i, written in *ss)rian cuneiform! *s an outsider, 3 feel a deep sense of m)ster) as 3 wonder how meanin is cloaked in the strange cur#es and angles of each of these (eautiful aperiodic cr)stals! 3n form, there is content! U7rom ,am ?ensen, Si n, Symbol, and Scri!t New York: G! &utnam's -ons, BIJI/, pp! EI cuneiform/, HHJ Easter 3sland/, HEJ, DBC 'ongolian/, GGF =unic/R from ;eno ;at@ner, The Aan ua es of the 3orld New York: 7unk W >agnalls, BICG/, pp! BIK Bengali/, FHC Buginese/R from 3! *! =ichards and 8hristine Gi(son, En lish Throu h Pictures New York: >ashington -"uare &ress, BIJK/, pp! CH Tamil/, EF Thai5&

8e(t, one o!ens the bottle and e(amines the marks on the !a!er& Perha!s, they are in Ja!anese= this can be discovered without any of the inner messa e bein understood— it merely comes from a reco nition of the characters& The outer messa e can be stated as an En lish sentence, -I am in Ja!anese&- Ence this has been discovered, then one can !roceed to the inner messa e, which may be a call for hel!, a haiku !oem, a lover1s lament&&& It would be of no use to include in the inner messa e a translation of the sentence -This messa e is in Ja!anese-, since it would take someone who knew Ja!anese to read it& )nd before readin it, he would have to reco ni<e the fact that, as it is in Ja!anese, he can read it& Hou mi ht try to wri le out of this by includin translations of the statement -This messa e is in Ja!anese- into many different lan ua es& That would hel! in a !ractical sense, but in a theoretical sense the same difficulty is there& )n En lish-s!eakin !erson still has to reco ni<e the -En lishness- of the messa e= otherwise it does no ood& Thus one cannot avoid the !roblem that one has to find out how to deci!her the inner messa e from the outside= the inner messa e itself may !rovide clues and confirmations, but those are at best tri ers actin u!on the bottle finder 4or u!on the !eo!le whom he enlists to hel!5& Similar kinds of !roblem confront the shortwave radio listener& 'irst he has to decide whether the sounds he hears actually constitute a messa e, or are .ust static& The sounds in themselves do not ive the answer, not even in the unlikely case that the inner messa e is in the listener1s own native lan ua e, and is sayin , -These sounds actually constitute a messa e and are not .ust static2- If the listener reco ni<es a frame messa e in the sounds, then he tries to identify the lan ua e the broadcast is in —and clearly, he is still on the outside= he acce!ts triggers from the radio, but they cannot e(!licitly tell him the answer& It is in the nature of outer messa es that they are not conveyed in any e(!licit lan ua e& To find an e(!licit lan ua e in which to convey outer messa es would not be a breakthrou h—it would be a contradiction in terms2 It is always the listener1s burden to understand the outer messa e& Success lets him break throu h into the inside, at which !oint the ratio of tri ers to e(!licit meanin s shifts drastically towards the latter& 0y com!arison with the !revious sta es, understandin the inner messa e seems effortless& It is as if it .ust ets !um!ed in&

The (3u.ebo-( Theory of Meaning
These e(am!les may a!!ear to be evidence for the view!oint that no messa e has intrinsic meanin , for in order to understand any inner messa e, no matter how sim!le it is, one must first understand its frame messa e and its outer messa e, both of which are carried only by tri ers 4such as bein written in the Ja!anese al!habet, or havin s!iralin rooves, etc&5& It be ins to seem, then, that one cannot et away from a -.ukebo(- theory of meanin —the doctrine that no message contains inherent meaning, because, before any messa e can be understood, it has to be used as the in!ut to some -.ukebo(-, which means that information contained in the -.ukebo(- must be added to the messa e before it acquires meanin &

This ar ument is very similar to the tra! which the Tortoise cau ht )chilles in, in Aewis 7arroll1s :ialo ue& There, the tra! was the idea that before you can use any rule, you have to have a rule which tells you how to use that rule= in other words, there is an infinite hierarchy of levels of rules, which !revents any rule from ever ettin used& ?ere, the tra! is the idea that before you can understand any messa e, you have to have a messa e which tells you how to understand that messa e= in other words, there is an infinite hierarchy of levels of messa es, which !revents any messa e from ever ettin understood& ?owever, we all know that these !arado(es are invalid, for rules do et used, and messa es do et understood& ?ow come?

Against the 3u.ebo- Theory
This ha!!ens because our intelli ence is not disembodied, but is instantiated in !hysical ob.ects, our brains& Their structure is due to the lon !rocess of evolution, and their o!erations are overned by the laws of !hysics& Since they are !hysical entities, our (rains run without (eing told how to run & So it is at the level where thou hts are !roduced by !hysical law that 7arroll1s rule-!arado( breaks down= and likewise, it is at the level where a brain inter!rets incomin data as a messa e that the messa e-!arado( breaks down& It seems that brains come equi!!ed with -hardware- for reco ni<in that certain thin s are messa es, and for decodin those messa es& This minimal inborn ability to e(tract inner meanin is what allows the hi hly recursive, snowballin !rocess of lan ua e acquisition to take !lace& The inborn hardware is like a .ukebo(, it su!!lies the additional information which turns mere tri ers into com!lete messa es&

Meaning Is Intrinsic If Intelligence Is ;atural
8ow if different !eo!le1s -.ukebo(es- had different -son s- in them, and res!onded to iven tri ers in com!letely idiosyncratic ways, then we would have no inclination to attribute intrinsic meanin to those tri ers& ?owever, human brains are so constructed that one brain res!onds in much the same way to a iven tri er as does another brain, all other thin s bein equal& This is why a baby can learn any lan ua e= it res!onds to tri ers in the same way as any other baby& This uniformity of -human .ukebo(esestablishes a uniform -lan ua e- in which frame messa es and outer messa es can be communicated& If, furthermore, we believe human intelli ence is .ust one e(am!le of a eneral !henomenon in nature—the emer ence of intelli ent bein s in widely varyin conte(ts—then !resumably the -lan ua e- in which frame messa es and outer messa es are communicated amon humans is a -dialect- of a uni#ersal lan ua e by which intelli ences can communicate with each other& Thus, there would be certain kinds of tri ers which would have -universal tri erin !ower-, in that all intelli ent bein s would tend to res!ond to them in the same way as we do& This would allow us to shift our descri!tion of where meanin located& 3e could ascribe the meanin s 4frame, outer, and inner5 of a messa e to the messa e itself, because of the fact that deci!herin mechanisms are themselves universal—that is, they are fundamental forms of nature which arise in the same way in diverse conte(ts& To make it

concrete, su!!ose that -)-L- tri ered the same son in all .ukebo(es —and su!!ose moreover that .ukebo(es were not man-made artifacts, but widely occurrin natural ob.ects, like ala(ies or carbon atoms& Fnder such circumstances, we would !robably feel .ustified in callin the universal tri erin !ower of -)-L- its -inherent meanin -= also, -)-L- would merit the name of -messa e-, rather than -tri er-, and the son would indeed be a -revelation- of the inherent, thou h im!licit, meanin of -)-L-&

Earth Chau"inism
This ascribin of meanin to a messa e comes from the invariance of the !rocessin of the messa e by intelli ences distributed anywhere in the universe& In that sense, it bears some resemblance to the ascribin of mass to an ob.ect& To the ancients, it must have seemed that an ob.ect1s wei ht was an intrinsic !ro!erty of the ob.ect& 0ut as ravity became understood, it was reali<ed that wei ht varies with the ravitational field the ob.ect is immersed in& 8evertheless, there is a related quantity, the mass, which does not vary accordin to the ravitational field= and from this invariance came the conclusion that an ob.ect1s mass was an intrinsic !ro!erty of the ob.ect itself& If it turns out that mass is also a variable, accordin to conte(t, then we will backtrack and revise our o!inion that it is an intrinsic !ro!erty of an ob.ect& In the same way, we mi ht ima ine that there could e(ist other kinds of -.ukebo(es-—intelli ences—which communicate amon each other via messa es which we would never reco ni<e as messa es, and who also would never reco ni<e our messa es as messa es& If that were the case, then the claim that meanin is an intrinsic !ro!erty of a set of symbols would have to be reconsidered& En the other hand, how could we ever reali<e that such bein s e(isted? It is interestin to com!are this ar ument for the inherency of meanin with a !arallel ar ument for the inherency of wei ht& Su!!ose one defined an ob.ect1s wei ht as -the ma nitude of the downward force which the ob.ect e(erts when on the surface of the !lanet Earth-& Fnder this definition, the downward force which an ob.ect e(erts when on the surface of /ars would have to be iven another name than -wei ht-& This definition makes wei ht an inherent !ro!erty, but at the cost of eocentricity—-Earth chauvinism-& It would be like -6reenwich chauvinism-—refusin to acce!t local time anywhere on the lobe but in the 6/T time <one& It is an unnatural way to think of time& Perha!s we are unknowin ly burdened with a similar chauvinism with res!ect to intelli ence, and consequently with res!ect to meanin & In our chauvinism, we would call any bein with a brain sufficiently much like our own -intelli ent-, and refuse to reco ni<e other ty!es of ob.ects as intelli ent& To take an e(treme e(am!le, consider a meteorite which, instead of deci!herin the outer-s!ace 0ach record, !unctures it with colossal indifference, and continues in its merry orbit& It has interacted with the record in a way which we feel disre ards the record1s meanin & Therefore, we mi ht well feel tem!ted to call the meteorite -stu!id-& 0ut !erha!s we would thereby do the meteorite a disservice& Perha!s it has a -hi her intelli ence- which we in our Earth chauvinism cannot !erceive, and its interaction with the record was a manifestation of that hi her intelli ence& Perha!s, then, the record has a -hi her meanin - —totally different from that

which we attribute to it= !erha!s its meanin de!ends on the ty!e of intelli ence !erceivin it& Perha!s& It would be nice if we could define intelli ence in some other way than -that which ets the same meanin out of a sequence of symbols as we do-& 'or if we can only define it this one way, then our ar ument that meanin is an intrinsic !ro!erty is circular, hence content-free& 3e should try to formulate in some inde!endent way a set of characteristics which deserve the name -intelli ence-& Such characteristics would constitute the uniform core of intelli ence, shared by humans& )t this !oint in history we do not yet have a well-defined list of those characteristics& ?owever, it a!!ears likely that within the ne(t few decades there will be much !ro ress made in elucidatin what human intelli ence is& In !articular, !erha!s co nitive !sycholo ists, workers in )rtificial Intelli ence, and neuroscientists will be able to synthesi<e their understandin s, and come u! with a definition of intelli ence& It may still be human-chauvinistic= there is no way around that& 0ut to counterbalance that, there may be some ele ant and beautiful —and !erha!s even sim!le—abstract ways of characteri<in the essence of intelli ence& This would serve to lessen the feelin of havin formulated an anthro!ocentric conce!t& )nd of course, if contact were established with an alien civili<ation from another star system, we would feel su!!orted in our belief that our own ty!e of intelli ence is not .ust a fluke, but an e(am!le of a basic form which rea!!ears in nature in diverse conte(ts, like stars and uranium nuclei& This in turn would su!!ort the idea of meanin bein an inherent !ro!erty& To conclude this to!ic, let us consider some new and old e(am!les, and discuss the de ree of inherent meanin which they have, by !uttin ourselves, to the e(tent that we can, in the shoes of an alien civili<ation which interce!ts a weird ob.ect&&&

T'o ,laques in S!ace
7onsider a rectan ular !laque made of an indestructible metallic alloy, on which are en raved two dots, one immediately above the another, the !recedin colon shows a !icture& Thou h the overall form of the mi ht su est that it is an artifact, and therefore that it mi ht conceal some messa e, two dots are sim!ly not sufficient to convey anythin & 47an you, before readin on, hy!othesi<e what they are su!!osed to mean?5 0ut su!!ose that we made a second !laque, containin more dots, as follows&

. . .. ... ..... ........ ............... .......................... .......................................

8ow one of the most obvious thin s to do —so it mi ht seem to a terrestrial intelli ence at least—would be to count the dots in the successive rows& The sequence obtained is, ", ", B, %, L, *, "%, B", %C& ?ere there is evidence of a rule overnin the !ro ression from one line to the ne(t& In fact, the recursive !art of the definition of the 'ibonacci numbers can be inferred, with some confidence, from this list& Su!!ose we think of the initial !air of values 4","5 as a - enoty!e- from which the -!henoty!e-—the full 'ibonacci sequence—is !ulled out by a recursive rule& 0y sendin the enoty!e alone—namely the first version !laque—we fail to send the information which allows reconstitution !henoty!e& Thus, the enoty!e does not contain the full s!ecification of the !henoty!e& En the other hand, if we consider the second version of the !laque to be the enoty!e, then there is much better cause to su!!ose that the !henoty!e could actually be reconstituted& This new version of the enoty!e—a -lon enoty!e-—contains so much information that the mechanism () which phenot)pe is pulled out of genot)pe can (e inferred () intelligence from the genot)pe alone! Ence this mechanism is firmly established as the way to !ull !henoty!e from enoty!e, then we can o back to usin -short enoty!es-—like the first !laque& 'or instance, the -short enoty!e- 4",%5 would yield the !henoty!e ", %, C, $, "", "*, B#, C$,&&&

—the Aucas sequence& )nd for every set of two initial values —that is, for every short enoty!e—there will be a corres!ondin !henoty!e& 0ut the short enoty!es, unlike the lon ones, are only tri ers—buttons to be !ushed on the .ukebo(es into which the recursive rule has been built& The lon enoty!es are informative enou h that they tri er, in an intelli ent bein , the reco nition of what kind of -.ukebo(- to build& In that sense, the lon enoty!es contain the information of the !henoty!e, whereas the short enoty!es do not& In other words, the lon enoty!e transmits not only an inner messa e, but also an outer messa e, which enables the inner messa e to be read& It seems that the clarity of the outer messa e resides in the sheer len th of the messa e& This is not une(!ected= it !arallels !recisely what ha!!ens in deci!herin ancient te(ts& 7learly, one1s likelihood of success de!ends crucially on the amount of te(t available&

Bach #s! Cage Again
0ut .ust havin a lon te(t may not be enou h& Aet us take u! once more the difference between sendin a record of 0ach1s music into s!ace, and a record of John 7a e1s music& Incidentally, the latter, bein a 7om!osition of )leatorically 6enerated Elements, mi ht be handily called a -7)6E-, whereas the former, bein a 0eautiful )!eriodic 7rystal of ?armony, mi ht a!tly be dubbed a -0)7?-& 8ow let1s consider what the meanin of a

7a e !iece is to ourselves& ) 7a e !iece has to be taken in a lar e cultural settin —as a revolt a ainst certain kinds of traditions& Thus, if we want to transmit that meanin , we must not only send the notes of the !iece, but we must have earlier communicated an e(tensive history of 3estern culture& It is fair to say, then, that an isolated record of John 7a e1s music does not have an intrinsic meanin & ?owever, for a listener who is sufficiently well versed in 3estern and Eastern cultures, !articularly in the trends in 3estern music over the last few decades, it does carry meanin —but such a listener is like a .ukebo(, and the !iece is like a !air of buttons& The meanin is mostly contained inside the listener to be in with= the music serves only to tri er it& )nd this -.ukebo(-, unlike !ure intelli ence, is not at all universal= it is hi hly earthbound, de!endin on idiosyncratic sequences of events all over our lobe for lon !eriod of time& ?o!in that John 7a e1s music will be understood by another civili<ation is like ho!in that your favorite tune, on a .ukebo( on the moon, will have the same buttons as in a saloon in Saskatoon& En the other hand, to a!!reciate 0ach requires far less cultural knowled e& This may seem like hi h irony, for 0ach is so much more com!le( and or ani<ed, and 7a e is so devoid of intellectuality& 0ut there stran e reversal here, intelli ence loves !atterns and balks at randomness& 'or most !eo!le, the randomness in 7a e1s music requires much e(!lanation= and even after e(!lanations, they may feel they are missin the messa e—whereas with much of 0ach, words are su!erfluous& In sense, 0ach1s music is more self-contained than 7a e1s music& Still, it is not clear how much of the human condition is !resumed by 0ach& 'or instance, music has three ma.or dimensions of structure 4melody, harmony, rhythm5, each of which can be further divided into small-scale, intermediate, and overall as!ects& 8ow in each of these dimensions, there is a certain amount of com!le(ity which our minds can handle before bo lin = clearly a com!oser takes this into account, mostly unconsciously, when writin a !iece& These -levels of tolerable com!le(ity- alon different dimensions are !robably very de!endent on the !eculiar conditions of our evolution as a s!ecies, and another intelli ent s!ecies mi ht have develo!ed music with totally different levels of tolerable com!le(ity alon these many dimensions& Thus a 0ach !iece mi ht conceivably have to be accom!anied by a lot of information about the human s!ecies, which sim!ly could not be inferred from the music1s structure alone& If we equate the 0ach music with a enoty!e, and the emotions which it is su!!osed to evoke with the !henoty!e, then what we are interested in is whether the enoty!e contains all the information necessary for the revelation of the !henoty!e&

/o' &ni"ersal Is

;A%s Message7

The eneral question which we are facin , and which is very similar to the questions ins!ired by the two !laques, is this, -?ow much of the conte(t necessary for its own understandin is a messa e ca!able of restorin ?- 3e can now revert to the ori inal biolo ical meanin s of - enoty!e- and -!henoty!e-—:8) and a livin or anism—and ask similar questions& :oes :8) have universal tri erin !ower? Er does it need a -bio.ukebo(- to reveal its meanin ? 7an :8) evoke a !henoty!e without bein

it is the issue of abortion& . and so in a very !ra matic sense. the odds are virtually nil that this.embedded in the !ro!er chemical conte(t? To this question the answer is no —but a qualified no& 7ertainly a molecule of :8) in a vacuum will not create anythin at all& ?owever. would tri er the !ro!er decodin mechanism which would enable the !henoty!e to be drawn out of the enoty!e& This would be a case of wra!!in an inner messa e in such an abstract outer messa e that the conte(t-restorin !ower of the outer messa e would be lost. and then su!!ly such an environment& Successively more refined attem!ts alon these lines mi ht eventually lead to a full restoration of the chemical conte(t necessary for the revelation of :8)1s !henoty!ical meanin & This may sound a little im!lausible. they mi ht o on to try to deduce from its chemical structure what kind of chemical environment it seemed to want. the set of symbols would have no intrinsic meanin & Aest you think this all sounds ho!elessly abstract and !hiloso!hical. but if one allows many millions of years for the e(!eriment. if the sequence of bases which com!ose a strand of :8) were sent as abstract symbols 4as in 'i & C"5. as we ima ined the 0)7? and the 7)6E were. by enoty!e. !erha!s the :8)1s meanin would finally emer e& En the other hand. not as a lon helical molecule. consider that the e(act moment when !henoty!e can be said to be -available-. or -im!lied-. if a molecule of :8) were set to seek its fortune in the universe. as an outer messa e. is a hi hly char ed issue in our day. it mi ht be interce!ted by an intelli ent civili<ation& They mi ht first of all reco ni<e its frame messa e& 6iven that.

KKK of these (oustrophedonic pages would (e needed to show the (ase se"uence of a single E! 8oli cell.73G5=E DB! This Giant *periodic 8r)stal is the (ase se"uence for the chromosome of (acteriophage fSBCD! 3t is the first complete genome e#er mapped out for an) organism! *(out F.N* of a single human cell! The (ook now in )our hands contains roughl) the same amount of information as a molecular (lueprint for one measl) E! 8oli cell! . and a(out one million pages to show the (ase se"uence of the .

it isn1t reen& *chilles. It looks wonderfully clean2 Tortoise. 3ell. I never said such a thin = but I wish I had& *chilles. humble observer of !henomena. 3ell.a#ing had a splendid dip in the pond. I certainly am not& Tortoises treat words as sacred& Tortoises revere accuracy& *chilles. didn1t you . ?o there. too. Aet1s see&&& how shall I be in? ?mm&&& 3hat strikes you most about my shell. it is reen& Tortoise. and as you know. That certainly contradicts what you said before2 Tortoise. /r& T& Tortoise. )chilles& I was .ust tell me your shell was reen? Tortoise. )chilles? *chilles. then.ust went swimmin and washed off several layers of dirt which had accumulated last century& 8ow you can see how reen my shell is& *chilles. I understand your ame& Hou1re hintin to me that what you say isn1t necessarily true= that Tortoises !lay with lan ua e= that your statements and reality don1t necessarily match= that— Tortoise. Eh. 8ot a bit& I re ret sayin it. !lod alon and !uff my silly words into the air rather uns!ectacularly. 8o. Hou think so? It reminds me of a thou ht I was ho!in to share with you& 3ould you like to hear it? *chilles. botherin nobody and leadin a entle. in fact. Such a ood healthy reen shell. and disa ree wholeheartedly with it& *chilles. herbivorous life& )nd my thou hts merely drift amon the oddities and quirks of how thin s are 4as I see them5& I. I would be deli hted& That is. while I meandered throu h the meadows& They1re so reen at this time of year& Tortoise. Isn1t that curious? I was .ust thinkin of you. and that it is not reen also? Tortoise. Hou would have liked to say that? Tortoise. we a ree.Chromatic "antasy# And "eud . I did& *chilles. my curiosity quite !iqued& I would certainly like to listen to what you have to say. when who (ut *chilles walks ()! Tortoise. you do me wron & 3ould I do anythin wicked? I1m a !eaceful soul. 3icked tra!s? Eh. I am afraid& 0ut to reassure you about my intentions. Eh. Then. the Tortoise is Must crawling out and shaking himself dr). it1s nice to see it shinin in the sun& Tortoise. 7ontradicts? 7ontradicts? I never contradict myself& It1s not !art of Tortoisenature& . 6reen? It1s not reen& *chilles. Thank you& I . even if it is uns!ectacular& Tortoise.ust thinkin of you as I s!lashed around in the !ond& *chilles. Hour words :E reassure me. I would be deli hted as lon you1re not oin to try to snare me in one of your wicked tra!s of lo ic. those thin s have nothin —nothin whatsoever—to do with lo ic2 *chilles. /r& T& )nd. why did you say that your shell is reen. I was only !lannin to s!eak of my Tortoise-shell today.

as it were& 0ut I1m not a ventriloquist& *chilles. Hes—two sentences that contradict each other2 Tortoise. ?mm&&& 8ow I hardly know where to be in& Eh&&& I know& Hou first said that 4"5 your shell is reen. or somethin dee! and !rofound2 Tortoise. I1ve cau ht you this time. 3ell. 3ell. Just kindly !oint out the contradiction& Muit beatin around the bush& *chilles.ust that somebody can say one thin and deny it all within one sin le sentence2 It doesn1t literally have to be in the same instant& Tortoise. it1s . )chilles& 'irst you told me that a contradiction is some thin which occurs in a sin le sentence& Then you told me that you found a contradiction in a !air of sentences I uttered& 'rankly. wouldn1t you? . now I be in to see& 4Sometimes I am so slow-witted25 It must be that you and I differ as to what constitutes a contradiction& That1s the trouble& 3ell. There you o a ain2 8ow you1re contradictin yourself more and more2 Hou are so stee!ed in contradiction it1s im!ossible to ar ue with you2 Tortoise. if it1s so. an indis!utable one& *chilles.ust as I said& Hour own system of thou ht is so delusional that you mana e to avoid seein how inconsistent it is& 'rom the outside. I assure you. and there are no two ways about it& Tortoise. ood& I ho!e it1s an easy ste!. you sli!!ery fellow. s!eakin out of both sides of their mouth. 8ot really& I ar ue with myself without any trouble at all& Perha!s the !roblem is with you& I would venture a uess that maybe you1re the one who1s contradictory. 6ood. Sometimes I et so confused by your diversionary tactics that I can1t quite tell if we1re ar uin about somethin utterly !etty. ) neat trick& I1d like to see it done& Probably ventriloquists would e(cel at contradictions. and I see the necessary lo ical ste! to convince you that you contradicted yourself& Tortoise. let me make myself very clear. you& 7au ht you in a fullfled ed contradiction& Tortoise. 3ell. 3ell. It certainly is& Even you will a ree with it& The idea is that since you believed sentence " 4-/y shell is reen-5. your task ou ht to be cut out for you& 3hat could be easier than to !oint out a contradiction? 6o ahead—try it out& *chilles. what I actually meant is . I am very reassured& Thank you& 8ow I have had a moment to reflect. )8: you believed sentence B 4-/y shell is not reen-5. you didn1t ive E8E sentence& Hou ave T3E& *chilles. 3hat an insultin su estion2 I1m oin to show you that you1re the contradictory one. 0ut-but-but&&& Eh. a contradiction occurs when somebody says one thin and denies it at the same time& Tortoise. I am sad to see the tan led structure of your thou hts becomin so e(!osed.*chilles. however !lain as day& *chilles. Hes. and then you went on to say that 4B5 your shell is not reen& 3hat more can I say? Tortoise. you would believe one com!ound sentence in which both were combined. Tortoises don1t s!end their time on the !etty& ?ence it1s the latter& *chilles. I uess you did& *chilles. but you1re so tra!!ed in your own tan led web that you can1t see how inconsistent you1re bein & *chilles.

in my quest for Truth& Tortoise. if HEF1: had HEF. Today1s e(chan e may have served a little to ri ht your course& 6ood day. 8ow wait a minute&&& -Politicians lie in cast-iron sinks?. Hou should have used the word -and-.is true. but— Tortoise. is it? *chilles. I1m used to the unreasonable ways of the folk about me& I en. Hou1ve left me s!eechless& Hou make me feel like a villain. and then I1ll have you2 The combination I !ro!ose is— Tortoise.ect to in the way I combined them? 3ould you have me do otherwise? *chilles. and will !robably continue to err and err a ain. Then. I should have? Hou mean.8o. way.is a valid utterance. when you resort to your Ao ic and its hi hsoundin Princi!les& 8one of that for me today. Eh. why would you be tryin so bloody hard to et me to do it? Eh? *chilles. to use words to snare you in a selfcontradiction& I feel so rotten& Tortoise. I1m so sorry I started all this& Tortoise. 6ood& Aikewise.means2 It1s harmless to combine true sentences with -and-2 Tortoise. Shame on me—tryin to outwit you. bumblin Tortoise in a fatal contradiction& If it were so harmless. don1t !ut me throu h all this a ony& Hou know very well that that1s what -and. Silly? 3hat have you ot to ob. combinin two true sentences in one is not a !olicy. So. my eye2 3hat all2 This is certainly a !ernicious !lot to entra! a !oor. Hes&&& 3ell. wouldn1t you? *chilles. even if your thinkin lacks clarity& *chilles. not -in-& Tortoise. -7ast-iron sinks. 3ho could deny it? Tortoise.oy your com!any. isn1t it? *chilles. innocent. )chilles& *chilles. This is where you always lose me. 6ood day. )chilles. I should have& *chilles. Hes. -/y shell is reen and my shell is not reen-& )nd such a blatant falsehood is re!ellent to the Ton ue of a Tortoise& *chilles. to wit. -?armless-. Eh.ust that the manner of combination is universally acce!table& 0ut I1m sure we1ll a ree on that& *chilles. !uttin them to ether. 0ut we must be careful in combinin sentences& 'or instance you1d rant that -Politicians lie. 0ut you—you combined the two—in such a silly way2 Tortoise. Ef course& It would only be reasonable&&& !rovidin . That1s what everyone believes of himself&&& *chilles. where I really had only the most innocent of motivations& Tortoise. is it? *chilles. you see. !lease& *chilles. I fear I am set in my ways. Indubitably& Tortoise. we et -Politicians lie in cast iron sinks-& 8ow that1s not the case.Tortoise. )nd well you should& I know what you were tryin to set u!& Hour !lan was to make me acce!t sentence %. Hou needn1t be sorry& /y feelin s aren1t hurt& )fter all. 8o—it1s the AE6I7)A thin to do& It1s ot nothin to do with !ersonally& Tortoise. /r& T& . /r& Tortoise.

but lettin you thin s out to some e(tent& 3e be in with the list of symbols. 1or1 and 1not1& . not e(!lainin everythin at once. like a !u<<le.FAE E' JEI8I86. If 9 and ) are theorems of the system.easonin which de!ends only on correct usa e of these words is termed propositional reasoning& Al!habet and +irst $ule of the . and they will all be !resented shortly—but first. ordinary way—or at least he refuses to do so when it is not to his advanta e to do so& ) way to think about the 7arroll !arado( was iven last 7ha!ter& In this 7ha!ter we are oin to make symbols do what )chilles couldn1t make the Tortoise do with his words& That is.  ' ~ The first rule of this system that I will reveal is the followin .TE$ 4II The . called the Pro!ositional 7alculus. the Tortoise refuses to use normal. then so is the strin g 9) a& This rule takes two theorems and combines them into one& It should remind you of the :ialo ue& >ell-+ormed Strings There will be several other rules of inference. we are oin to make a formal system one of whose symbols will do .E7E:I86 :I)AE6FE is reminiscent of the Two%&art 3n#ention by Aewis 7arroll& In both. < 8  [ > $  ] . . when s!oken by the Tortoise.ro!ositional Calculus >ords and Symbols T?E P.C/A. and another of whose symbols will behave the way the words 'if!!! then!!!1 ou ht to behave& There are only two other words which we will attem!t to deal with. namely the well%formed strin s& They will be defined in a recursive way& 3e be in with the .ro!ositional Calculus I will !resent this new formal system. ordinary words in the normal.ust what )chilles wished the word 1and1 would do. it is im!ortant to define a subset of all strin s.

h81 a ghg. $1.aa . then the followin four strin s are also well-formed. atoms& Hou sim!ly run the formation rules backwards until you can no more& This !rocess is uaranteed to terminate. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 h9 g 9)a g 9)a g 9)a 'or e(am!le. all of the followin are well-formed.8$a g. ..a g.8a8h.FAES. 8.)TE/S. h. since each formation rule 4when run forwards5 is a lengthening rule.h81 aa atom by 4"5 by 4"5 atom by 4"5 by 4B5 by 4"5 by 4C5 by 4%5 The last one may look quite formidable. hh. so that runnin it backwards always drives you towards atoms& This method of decom!osin strin s thus serves as a check on the wellformedness of any strin & It is a top%down decision procedure for well-formedness& Hou can test your understandin of this decision !rocedure by checkin which of the followin strin s are well-formed.ust above it& Each of them is in turn built u! from !revious lines&&& and so on& Every well-formed strin can in this way be traced back to its elementary constituent—that is. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 g.8a gg. etc& This ives an endless su!!ly of atoms& )ll atoms are well-formed& Then we have four recursive 'E. .h81 ahhg.h81 a hg. 8-. but it is built u! strai htforwardly from two com!onents—namely the two lines . and $ are called atoms&& 8ew atoms are formed by a!!endin !rimes onto the ri ht of old atoms-thus. If ( and y are well-formed.h81 a hhg./)TIE8 .111.a gh. 81 h81 g. .

4D5 g. the first thin you do is to write down an well-formed strin ( you like. Those whose numbers are 'ibonacci numbers are not formed& The rest are wellformed&5 More $ules of Inference 8ow we come to the rest of the rules by which theorems of this system constructed& ) few rules of inference follow& In all of them.FAE E' SEP). you o ahead and make a derivation with ( as the o!enin line= let us su!!ose y is the last line& 4Ef course the derivation must strictly follow the rules of the system&5 Everythin from ( to y 4inclusive5 is the fantas)= ( is the premise of the fantasy.8ag 8. ) would be a theorem& Still.FAE. then& ?ow does everythin et started? The answer is that there is one rule which manufactures theorems from out of thin air—it doesn1t need an -old theorem. If g 9)a is a theorem. you may wonder how there can be any theorems.a 4)nswer.by askin . :EF0AE-TIA:E .h$1aa 4*5 g. it is the troublesome word from the !recedin :ialo ue&5 'rom the followin rule. ->hat if strin ( were an a(iom.h. havin learned from it that If 9 were a theorem. where is the real theorem? The real theorem is the strin .as in!ut& 4The rest of the do require in!ut&5 This s!ecial rule is called the fantas) rule& The reason I call it that is quite sim!le& To use the fantasy rule.g8$aagh. you mi ht wonder. The strin 1hh1 can be deleted from any theorem& It can also be inserted into any theorem. and then -fantasi<e. you should have a !retty ood uess by now as to what conce!t the symbol 11 stands for& 4?int. then both 9 and ) are theorems& Incidentally.)TIE8. the symbols 1 9' and 1)1 are always to be understood as restricted to well formed strin s& . !rovided that the resultin strin is itself well-formed& The +antasy $ule 8ow a s!ecial feature of this system is that it has no a9iomsOonly rules& If you think back to the !revious formal systems we1ve seen. you let the system ive an answer& That is. you should be a fi ure out what conce!t the tilde 41h15 re!resents.)nd then. or a theorem?.a 4$5 gg. and y is its outcome& The ne(t ste! is to Mump out of the fantas).

in which the strin . there can be fantasies within fantasies.aa It is im!ortant to understand that only the last line is a everythin else is in the fantasy& $ecursion and the +antasy $ule )s you mi ht uess from the recursion terminolo y -!ush.g9)a 8otice the resemblance of this strin to the sentence !rinted above To si nal the entry into. so would hh. res!ectively& Thus. you know you are -!ushin . whenever you see a left square bracket.oinin !o! fantasy rule enuine theorem.ect lan ua e5. V The fantasy shows that.a !ush !remise se!aration se!aration . the fantasy rule can be used recursively—thus. one uses the square brackets 1U1 and 1V1. 8 g8. and the ne9t line will contain the fantasy1s premise& 3henever you see a ri ht square bracket. should reveal to you the intended inter!retation of the symbol 11& ?ere is another derivation usin the fantasy rule. and the preceding line was the outcome& It is hel!ful 4thou h not necessary5 to indent those lines of a derivation which take !lace in fantasies& ?ere is an illustration of the fantasy rule. g. If .back out. hhh.this sentence of En lish 4the metalan ua e5 into the formal notation 4the ob. here— !ush into fantasy !remise outcome 4by double tilde rule5 !o! out of fantasy V gg. our first theorem of the Pro!ositional 7alculus.8a . and emer ence from. were a theorem. is taken as a !remise& 4It so ha!!ens that . U g. you know you are -!o!!in . is not a theorem. U . thrice-nested . but that is of no im!ort= we are merely inquirin .into a fantasy.a& This.8ag8. be one& 3e now -squee<e.and -!o!-.hh. -3hat if it were?-5 3e make the followin fantasy. a fantasy.

by re!etition of the same idea.H-EGE. thou h you are still one level away from the to!& Similarly.8a V g8g. and then lift it out into the real world as a theorem&5 To show how carry-over works.FAE. but also to all the actors in the movie. and the inner fantasy twice.world than you had been. to anyone inside multi!ly nested movies2 43arnin . reach real world2 fantasy rule 8ote that I1ve indented the outer fantasy once. re ain outer fantasy fantasy rule !o! out of outer fantasy. 7). you are in a -realer. any theorem from the -reality level hi her can be brou ht in and used& It is as if a -8o Smokin . you feel for a moment as if you had reached the real world. then 8 equivalently.. and so on& This means that there are all sorts of -levels of reality-. U .8aa V g. the intended inter!retation for g.8a is -if .ust as in nested stories or movies& 3hen you !o! out of a movie-within-a-movie. then ) is too-& To be s!ecific. you could write anythin as the first line of a fantasy. im!lies 8-& . but you are still one level away from the to!& 8ow a -8o Smokin . g. and to show how the fantasy rule can be used recursively.oinin !o! out of inner fantasy.g8g. theorems inside fantasies cannot be e(!orted to the e(terior2 If it weren1t for this fact.. we !resent the followin derivation. the theorem g9)a which ets !roduced can be thou ht of as a re!resentation inside the system of the statement about the system -If 9 is a theorem. .fantasies. into inner fantasy .si n inside a movie theater does not a!!ly to the characters in the movie—there is no carry-over from the real world into the fantasy world. to em!hasi<e the nature of these nested -levels of reality-& Ene to look at the fantasy rule is to say that an observation made a(out the system is inserted into the system& 8amely. Inside a fantasy. . -.si n in a theater a!!lied not only to a movie oers. U 8 . and. there is a carry-over from the real world into the fantasies= there is even carry-over from a fantasy to fantasies inside it& This is formali<ed by the followin rule. in movies& 0ut in the Pro!ositional 7alculus.8aaa !ush !remise of outer fantasy !ush a ain !remise of inner fantasy carry-over of . when you !o! out of a fantasy-within-a-fantasy. There is no carry-over in the reverse direction.

The Con"erse of the +antasy $ule 8ow Aewis 7arroll1s :ialo ue was all about -if-then. and this mind is not 0uddha& 8ow let us look at each of the theorems so far derived. so one ets around it by usin two different ways of e(!ressin . and reveal the -meanin s..h.statements& In !articular.FAE E' :ET)7?/E8T. !rovided that the 11strin it a theorem. which means that the inter!retation of g9)a is -either 9 or )Oor both-& The only symbols we have not inter!reted are the atoms& )n atom has no sin le inter!retation—it may be inter!reted by any sentence of En lish 4it must continue to be inter!reted by the same sentence if it occurs multi!ly within a strin or derivation5& Thus. for e(am!le. whereas in a formal system. If 9 and g9)a are both theorems. such anarchic freedom is not tolerated& The symbol 1 1 re!resents the word 1or1 41vel1 is a Aatin word for 1or15& The 1or1 that is meant is the so-called inclusi#e 1or1. )chilles had a lot of trouble in !ersuadin the Tortoise to acce!t the second clause of an -if-thenstatement. then it is not the case that this mind is not 0uddha& 8ote how I rendered the double ne ation& It is awkward to re!eat a ne ation in any natural lan ua e. as well as its first clause& The ne(t rule allows you to infer the second -clause.a could be inter!reted by the com!ound sentence This mind is 0uddha. the symbol 1)1 is meant to be actin isomor!hically to the normal.is also a theorem& .of a 11-strin .a& If we kee! the same inter!retation for . and inter!ret them& The first one was g. and that its first -clause. then ) is a theorem& Incidentally. and the fantasy rule is often called the -:eduction Theorem-& The Intended Inter!retation of the Symbols 3e mi ht as well let the cat out of the ba at this !oint. the well-formed strin g. accordin to taste and style. you have the freedom to insert !arentheses or to leave them out.hh. this rule is often called -/odus Ponens-. If this mind is 0uddha.state itself was acce!ted. everyday word 1and1& The symbol 1h1 re!resents the word 1not1—it is a formal sort of ne ation& The an le brackets 1g1 and 1a1 are rou!ers—their function bein very similar to that of !arentheses in ordinary al ebra& The main difference is that in al ebra.of the rest of the symbols of our new system& In case it is not yet a!!arent. even when the -if-then. we have the followin inter!retation.

FAE. If ) can be derived when 9 is assumed to be a theorem then g 9)a is a theorem& 7).FAE. carefully avoidin all falsities. thou htlessly.g8g. then g9)a is a theorem& SEP). then our theorem reads as follows. then this fla( wei hs three !ounds and this mind is 0uddha& The third theorem was g.one level hi her can be brou ht in and used& . then ) is a theorem& .FAE. any theorem from the -reality. then. includin the three new ones& JEI8I86 . If g9)a is a theorem. The strin 1hh1 can be deleted from any theorem& It can also be inserted into any theorem. says somethin absolutely trivial and self-evident& 4Sometimes they are so self-evident that they sound vacuous and—!arado(ically enou h—confusin or even wron 25 This may not be very im!ressive. Inside a fantasy. then both 9 and ) are theorems& :EF0AE-TIA:E . .ust as a !erson who is concerned with stayin dry will ste! carefully from one ste!!in -stone creek to the ne(t.8ag8.aa& If we let 8 be inter!reted by the sentence -This fla( wei hs three !ounds-. but .H-EGE.)TIE8 . thinkin about the meaning of the strin s& It is all done mechanically.sentence.FAE E' :ET)7?/E8T. If 9 and g9)a are both theorems. when inter!reted. !rovided that the result strin is itself well-formed& ')8T)SH .FAE. .ust remember there are !lenty of falsities out there which could have been !roduced—yet they weren1t& This system—the Pro!ositional 7alculus—ste!s neatly from truth to truth. then this mind is 0uddha and this fla( wei hs three !ounds& Hou !robably have noticed that each theorem. even stu!idly& $ounding 0ut the List of $ules 3e have not yet stated all the rules of the Pro!ositional 7alculus& The com!lete set of rules is listed below. followin the layout of ste!!in -stones no matter I twisted and tricky it mi ht be& 3hat is im!ressive is that—in the Pro!ositional 7alculus—the whole thin is done !urely t)pographicall)& There is nobody down -in there-.. If this mind is 0uddha.8aaa& This one oes into the followin nested -ifthen.FAE. If this mind is 0uddha and this fla( wei hs three !ounds. if this fla( wei hs three !ounds.ne ation& The second theorem we derived was gg . ri idly. If 9 and ) are theorems.

let us look at some very short . then the moonli ht is !enetratin the waves of the lake&. gh9h)a and hg 9)a are interchan eable& S3IT7?E. If an e(!ression of one form occurs as either a theorem or !art of a theorem. by a wistful 9en master rememberin a familiar lake which he can visuali<e mentally but cannot see& 8ow han on to your seat.EE . g9)a and gh9)a are interchan eable& 4The Switcheroo rule is named after M& q& Switcheroo..in fore oin rules.FAE.FAE.6)81S .)PESITIGE .7E8T.which mi ht be s!oken.ustify them to yourself better than my e(am!les—which is why I only ive a cou!le& The contra!ositive rule e(!resses e(!licitly a way of turnin around conditional statements which we carry out unconsciously& 'or instance. the followin is meant. which. I su!!ose.h8a. g9)a and gh)h9a are interchan eable :E /E. then you are far from the 3ay /eans the same thin as If you are close to the 3ay. and 8 symboli<es -the wind is movin -. accordin to /or an1s law. then the com!ound sentence is symboli<ed by gh.8a& whose inter!retation would be -It is not true that either the fla or the wind is movin -& )nd no one could deny that it is a 9ensible conclusion to draw& 'or the Switcheroo rule. the other form may be substituted. and the resultin strin will also be a theorem& It must be ke!t in mind that the symbols _(1 and _y1 always stand for well-formed strin s of the system& 3ustifying the $ules 0efore we see these rules used inside derivations. but it is the best the Pro!ositional 7alculus has to offer& . the -9entenceIf you are studyin it. symboli<es -the fla is movin -. consider the sentence -Either a cloud is han in over the mountain. for the Switcheroo rule tells us that this is interchan eable with the thou ht -If a cloud is not han in over the mountain.ustifications for them& Hou can !robably . then you are not studyin it& :e /or an1s rule can be illustrated by our familiar sentence -The fla is not movin and the wind is not movin -& If .FAE. is interchan eable with hg . or the moonli ht is !enetratin the waves of the lake.This may not be enli htenment. an )lbanian railroad en ineer who worked in lo ic on the sidin &5 0y -interchan eable.

a g. are seen to be -universally true semisentences-. because you can very easily ima ine stickin any sentence in for . it !roduces theorems which. 'or instance. gh. is at least Semi-Inter!retations It is natural. the resultin sentence will be true& )nd that is the key idea of the Pro!ositional 7alculus. to inter!ret everythin but the atoms& I call this semi-inter!retin & 'or e(am!le.—and the form of the semiinter!reted theorem assures you that however you make your choice. the inter!reted theorem. take the theorem g. I will cut off your heads= and if you do not say a word. the above semisentence still sounds true.h. says.hh. sayin -If you say a word. the semiinter!retation of <. and see what we et. the final result will be a true statement& Gantō%s A8ow we can do a more advanced e(ercise. by which is meant that no matter how you com!lete the inter!retation.h.a.a. is not a sentence. or this mind is not 0uddha Ence a ain. -I have two monks who have been here for many years& 6o and e(amine them&.a old theorem contra!ositive double-tilde switcheroo This new theorem. ghhh. Either this mind is 0uddha. let us a!!ly these rules to a !revious theorem.. when inter!reted.& :es!ite the fact that . I will also cut off your heads&-" .hh. based on a 9en kRan called -6antR1s )(-& ?ere is how it be an& Ene day Tokusan told his student 6antR.laying Around 'ith the System 8ow. thou h !erha!s less than mind bo true& lin . when semi-inter!reted. when one reads theorems of the Pro!ositional 7alculus out loud.a.> would be .~. or not .h. g.6antR !icked u! an a( and went to the hut where the two monks were meditatin & ?e raised the a(.

aa gh. -Hou are true 9en students&.a8a U h. gh8hh.h.a V gh8hg. -but tell me. after all& The rest of the incident is here related.8agh.oinin :e /or an !o! once fantasy rule contra!ositive !ush !remise 4also outcome5 !o! fantasy rule switcheroo detachment 4lines BB and "$5 !o! out The !ower of the Pro!ositional 7alculus is shown in this e(am!le& 3hy.a 8 V !ush 6antR1s a(iom se!aration contra!ositive se!aration contra!ositive !ush a ain !remise carry-over of line C detachment carry-over of line D detachment 4lines * and ""5 . in but two do<en ste!s.a V h8 gh8h. the rule last invoked was -detachment-&&&5 It mi ht seem su!erfluous to continue the kRan now. we have deduced M.?e returned to Tokusan and related the incident& -I see your side well. 0oth monks continued their meditation as if he had not s!oken& 6antR dro!!ed the a( and said.If you say a word I will cut off this kRan. V gh. -but they should not be admitted under Tokusan&-B .8agh.. how is their side?.a hh. I shall dro! my resolve to cut the kRan off= it is a true 9en kRan.8aa& 3hat if this a( threat were an a(iom? ?ere is a fantasy to answer that question& 4"5 U 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 4*5 4#5 4"+5 4""5 4"B5 4"%5 4"C5 4"L5 4"D5 4"$5 4"*5 4"#5 4B+5 4B"5 4BB5 4B%5 4BC5 gg. and if you do not say a word.-TR<an may admit them.hh.8aa g. and -I will cut off your heads.a gh.a h.by 8& Then 6antR1s a( threat is symboli<ed by the strin gg.h.by . since we know what must ensue&&& ?owever.Tokusan a reed.h. that the heads will be cut off2 4Eminously.8a gh8hh.a gh.h. I will also cut off this kRan—because I want you to translate some of it into our notation& Aet us symboli<e -you say a word. gh.8a gh8h.hh.a g.re!lied 6antR..

but also regular.of the symbols& Ene can look at this issue from two very different !oints of view. could they all be !roduced by one set of ty!o ra!hical rules? It is quite relevant here to brin u! the question of a decision !rocedure& That is. that would tell us that the set of theorems of the Pro!ositional 7alculus is not only r&e&. or 1if-then1= and so on& Fnless you are like the Tortoise. look a ain at the rules of the system& Hou will find that each rule makes a symbol act e(actly as the word it re!resents ou ht to be used& 'or instance.and -im!rudent. they are all -cut from the same cloth-& Hou mi ht consider whether the same could be said about 9en kRans. and this throws a new kind of li ht onto the core truths of the universe. they are not only fundamental. when inter!reted as indicated. thou htful way to !roceed& 3mprudence. 3e will only @8E3 that all theorems come out true under the intended inter!retation if we mana e to P. since what it tells us is absolutely trivial& En the other hand. we have only presumed that all theorems. which mi ht be called the -!rudent. the Pro!ositional 7alculus mi ht seem to be a waste of time. you will reco ni<e in each rule a codification of a !attern you use in your own thou ht !atterns& So if you trust your own thou ht !atterns. does there e(ist any mechanical method to tell nontheorems from theorems? If so.ust another way of askin whether the intended inter!retations 41and1 for 1 1. then you ?)GE to believe that all theorems come out true2 That1s the way I see it& I don1t need any . En the contrary& It is E0GIEFS that all theorems will come out true& If you doubt me. the .EGE it& That is the cautious. are true statements& 0ut do we know that that is the case? 7ould we !rove it to be? This is .:o you see my side well? ?ow is the 9en side? Is There a ecision .rocedure for Theorems7 The Pro!ositional 7alculus ives us a set of rules for !roducin statements which would be true in all conceivable worlds& That is why all of its theorems sound so sim!le-minded= it seems that they have absolutely no content2 Aooked at this way. but also recursive& It turns out that there is an interestin decision !rocedure—the method of truth tables& It would take us a bit afield to !resent it here= you can find it in almost any standard book on lo ic& )nd what about 9en kRans? 7ould there conceivably be a mechanical decision !rocedure which distin uishes enuine 9en kRans from other thin s? o >e Kno' the System Is Consistent7 F! till now. etc&5 merit bein called the -!assive meanin s. !ersonifyin their holders as -Prudenceand -Im!rudence-& &rudence.!oints I will now !resent those two sides as I see them.oinin rule makes the symbol _1 act as 1and1 ou ht to act= the rule of detachment makes 1 1 act as it ou ht to. it does it by s!ecifyin the form of statements that are universally true. if it is to stand for 1im!lies1. they can be !roduced by one set of ty!o ra!hical rules& To !ut it another way.

or that 9 and h9 can never both be theorems& 3mprudence. :oesn1t that bother you? &rudence.E contradictory& 3mprudence. etc& 3mprudence. or that " equals B. )ll ri ht= let1s su!!ose it ha!!ened& 3hy would it bother you? Er let me !ut it another way& Su!!ose that in !layin with the /IF-system. I came u! with a theorem (. and there is no defense e(ce!t loudly . I1m not sure that there is any faulty rule. you reali<e that the only conceivable inter!retation for 1h1 is 1not1—and likewise. Ef course—in fact both MI and MI& are theorems& 3mprudence.further !roof& If you think that some theorem comes out false. In other words. also followin the rules. you reach rock bottom. Hour ar uments are forceful&&& Het I would still like to see a P. Hou want a !roof& I uess that means that you want to be more convinced that the Pro!ositional 7alculus is consistent than you are convinced of your own sanity& )ny !roof I could think of would involve mental o!erations of a reater com!le(ity than anythin in the Pro!ositional 7alculus itself& So what would it !rove? Hour desire for a !roof of consistency of the Pro!ositional 7alculus makes me think of someone who is learnin En lish and insists on bein iven a dictionary which defines all the sim!le words in terms of com!licated ones&&& The Carroll ialogue Again This little debate shows the difficulty of tryin to use lo ic and reasonin to defend themselves& )t some !oint. Precisely& 3mprudence. The rules themselves& 3hen you look at them. so I can1t !oint one out to you& Still. whereas two strin s 9 and h9 in the Pro!ositional 7alculus ). 3ell. Ef course not& Hour e(am!le is ridiculous.EE' that all theorems come out true. the only conceivable inter!retation for 11 is 1and1. come u! with a theorem—say 9& /eanwhile I. because MI and MI& are 8ET contradictory. followin the rules. and I would wind u! in a total tan le& &rudence. and you came u! with 9& 7an you force yourself to conceive of that? &rudence. come u! with another theorem —it ha!!ens to be h9& 7an1t you force yourself to conceive of that? 3mprudence. you are convinced that the rules ca!ture the meanin s of those words? &rudence. I can ima ine the followin kind of scenario& Hou. yes—!rovided you wish to inter!ret 1h1 as 1not1& 0ut what would lead you to think that 1h1 should be inter!reted as 1not1? &rudence. then I would also have to consider whether my modes of analy<in the entire question are also wron . or that the moon is made of reen cheese? I for one am not !re!ared even to consider whether such basic in redients of my thou ht !rocesses are wron — because if I entertained that notion. then !resumably you think that some rule must be wron & Show me which one& &rudence. )nd yet you are still willin to entertain the thou ht that both 9 and h9 could be theorems? 3hy not also entertain the notion that hed eho s are fro s.

you will et a recursive !attern of lon er and strin s&5 Shortcuts and eri"ed $ules 3hen carryin out derivations in the Pro!ositional 7alculus. one can ive a !roof of a !roof.a had been derived earlier. then !eo!le do sto! to think a bit about what they really mean by that quasi-sacred word -!roven-& )n e(cellent e(ercise for you at this !oint would be to o back 7arroll :ialo ue.a& The derived theorem is treated as a -theorem schema-— a mold for other theorems& This turns out to be a !erfect valid !rocedure. then surely you have 2& Tortoise. If you have ggABa2a. which are not strictly !art of the system 'or instance. no matter how many layers of bo(es you !ack your e in. 3hatever )chilles considers a rule of inference.shoutin . but it is not a rule of the Pro!ositional 7alculus as we !resented it& It is. It is !art of the knowled e which we have a(out the system& That this rule kee!s you within the s!ace of theorems needs !roof. you can ima ine some cataclysm which could break the e & 0ut that doesn1t mean that you1ll never risk trans!ortin your e & Similarly. ggggABa2agABaa2a.h. the Tortoise immediately flattens into a mere strin of the system& If you use or letters A. and the -!rovenresult will be seen not to be correct after all& 0ut that doesn1t mean that mathematicians and lo icians are constantly worryin that the whole edifice of mathematics mi ht be wron & En the other hand. don1t you? 4?int. Eh2 Hou mean. if the strin g8h8a were needed at some !oint. you can1t o on defendin your !atterns of reasonin forever& There comes a !oint where faith takes over& ) system of reasonin can be com!ared to an e & )n e has a shell which !rotects its insides& If you want to shi! an e somewhere. one can never ive an ultimate. we are u! a ainst the issue which Aewis 7arroll so shar!ly set forth in his :ialo ue. you don1t rely on the shell& Hou !ack the e in some sort of container. absolute !roof that a !roof in some system is correct& Ef course. rather. a deri#ed rule. you may !ut the e inside several nested bo(es& ?owever. . and you also have gABa. acce!ted on faith& Ene can always ima ine that some unsus!ected subtlety will invalidate every sin le level of !roof down to the bottom. or !roofs enerated by com!uters. and 2. chosen accordin to how rou h you e(!ect the e 1s voya e to be& To be e(tra careful. when unorthodo( !roofs are !ro!osed. or a !roof of a !roof of a !roof—but the validity of the outermost system always remains an un!roven assum!tion. and code the various sta es of the debate into our notation—be innin with the ori inal bone of contention. since they know that its derivation is an e(act !arallel to that of g. -I know I1m ri ht2. of course —but such a !roof is not like a derivation inside the system& It is a !roof in the ordinary. thou h. B. or e(tremely len thy !roofs. in that it always leads you to new theorems. )chilles.Ence a ain. many !eo!le would !roceed as if g8h8a had been derived. and g. one quickly invents various ty!es of shortcut.h.

metatheorems are Theorems 4!roven results5 concernin theorems 4derivable strin s5&5 In the Pro!ositional 7alculus. and it would be le itimate to look for shortcuts and derive them as theorems-that is. without our even intendin it2 )nd we will see what kinds of effects this !roduces& 0ut for our study of the Pro!ositional 7alculus. theorems of the formali<ed metatheory—which could then be used to s!eed u! the derivations of theorems of the Pro!ositional 7alculus& This is an interestin idea. gh9h)a and hg9)a are interchan eable& If this were a rule of the system. too? That way. and results in it can be called -metatheorems-—Theorems about theorems& 4Incidentally. someone will eventually want to make shortcuts in the to! level& It mi ht even be su ested that a theory of reasonin could be identical to its own metatheory. one . and thinkin a(out the system would be . or derived rules of inference& 'or instance. within one sin le. there is an alternative way out& 3hy not formali<e the metatheory.inside itself& 3e will find that there are theories which can -think about themselves-& In fact. and so on& It is clear that no matter how many levels you formali<e.ust like a rule of inference. since derived rules are derived informally—outside the system& 8ow formal systems were !ro!osed as a way to e(hibit every ste! of a !roof e(!licitly. it could s!eed u! many derivations considerably& 0ut if we pro#e that it is correct. derived rules 4metatheorems5 would be theorems of a lar er formal system. outside the system. there is a drawback to usin such shortcuts& +ormali:ing /igher Le"els En the other hand. you have lost the formality of the system. if it were worked out carefully& Then. from then on? There is no reason to doubt the correctness of this !articular derived rule& 0ut once you start admittin derived rules as !art of your !rocedure in the Pro!ositional 7alculus. you mi ht as well never have created it at all& Therefore. note the !eculiar ca!itali<ation in the !hrase -Theorems about theorems-& It is a consequence of our convention.intuitive sense—a chain of reasonin carried out in the I-mode& The theory about the Pro!ositional 7alculus is a -metatheory-.um!s ahead to think of metametatheories. one could discover many metatheorems. we will stick with the sim!lest ideas—no mi(in of levels& .ust one way of workin in the system2 0ut it is not that easy& Even if a system can -think about itself-. all levels would colla!se into one. we will soon see a system in which this ha!!ens com!letely accidentally. there is a :e /or an1s . !erceive it differently from the way it !erceives itself& So there still is a metatheory—a view from outside—even for a theory which can -think about itself. isn1t that ood enou h? 7an1t we use it .ule. it still is not outside itself& Hou. ri id framework. so that any mathematician could check another1s work mechanically& 0ut if you are willin to ste! outside of that framework at the dro! of a hat. but as soon as it is su ested. it mi ht seem.

either . but one should not equate its rules with the rules of human thou ht& ) proof is somethin informal.-5 is a theorem. or not . but also very sim!le& If—and this is usually the case—it ha!!ens that a formal derivation is e(tremely len thy com!ared with the corres!ondin -natural.ust why= the derivation is sim!le in that each of its myriad ste!s is considered so trivial that it is beyond re!roach. a(ioms or a(iom schemata and so on& 4Incidentally. the lan ua e of the formal system and its metalan ua e 4En lish5& $eflections on the Strengths and >ea. !recise conce!ts& 0ut the sim!licity and !recision of the Pro!ositional 7alculus are e(actly the kinds of features which make it a!!ealin to mathematicians& There are two reasons for this& 4"5 It can be studied for its own !ro!erties.!roof.ust too bad& It is the !rice one !ays for makin each ste! so sim!le& 3hat often ha!!ens is that a derivation and a !roof are -sim!le. where the Pro!ositional 7alculus is incor!orated lock. em!loyin different symbols.nesses of the System Hou have now seen one e(am!le of a system with a !ur!ose—to re!resent !art of the architecture of lo ical thou ht& The conce!ts which this handles are very few in number.'allacies can result if you fail to distin uish carefully between workin in the system 4the /-mode5 and thinkin about the system 4the I-mode5& 'or e(am!le. since g. neither one of the latter !air is a theorem& In eneral.roofs #s! eri"ations The Pro!ositional 7alculus is very much like reasonin in some ways. stock and barrel into a much lar er and dee!er system in which so!histicated numbertheoretical reasonin can be done& . written in a human lan ua e. it is a dan erous !ractice to assume that symbols can be sli!!ed back and forth between different levels—here. or a(iom schemata&5 The study of ways to carry out !ro!ositional reasonin in ele ant formal systems is an a!!ealin branch of !ure mathematics& 4B5 The Pro!ositional 7alculus can easily be e(tended to include other fundamental as!ects of reasonin & Some of this will be shown in the ne(t 7ha!ter. and they are very sim!le. e(actly as eometry studies sim!le. it mi ht seem !erfectly reasonable to assume that. that is .in com!lementary senses of the word& The !roof is sim!le in that each ste! sounds ri ht-. or h. even thou h one may not know . must be a theorem& 0ut this is dead wron . ri id sha!es& Gariants can be made on it. and. or in other words a !roduct of normal thou ht. one may wonder if they can be defended lo ically& That is really what formali<ation is for& ) deri#ation is an artificial counter!art of a !roof. and . rules of inference.h. the version of the Pro!ositional 7alculus here !resented is related to one invented by 6& 6ent<en in the early "#%+1s& The other versions in which only one rule of inference is used—detachment usually—and in which there are several a(ioms. thou h they may -feel ri ht-.a 4whose semi-inter!retation is -either . and its !ur!ose is to reach the same oal but via a lo ical structure whose methods are not only all e(!licit. for human consum!tion& )ll sorts of com!le( features of thou ht may be used in !roofs.

h. in systems based on the Pro!ositional 7alculus. the Pro!ositional 7alculus should be thou ht of as !art of a eneral method for synthesi<in artificial !roof-like structures& It does not. let us make a derivation in which a very !eculiar strin is taken as a !remise in a fantasy. however. we can loosely take the theorem to say that -'rom a contradiction. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 4*5 4#5 4"+5 4""5 4"B5 4"%5 4"C5 U g.ust mani!ulates strin s ty!o ra!hically— and ty!o ra!hically. have much fle(ibility or enerality& It is intended only for use in connection with mathematical conce!ts—which are themselves quite ri id& )s a rather interestin e(am!le of this. human lan ua e—and in the case of derivations. V gh8hh. a8a 8ow this theorem has a very stran e semi-inter!retation.h.a& )t least its semi-inter!retation is !eculiar& The Pro!ositional 7alculus.ust of such trivial ste!s it is su!!osedly error-free& Each ty!e of sim!licity. . however.h. anythin follows-2 Thus. and not .since the whole derivation consists . does not think about semi-inter!retations= it .a gh. it is their astronomical si<e. hh. which makes them almost im!ossible to ras!& Thus. g. it is the com!le(ity of the underlyin system on which they rest—namely. there is really nothin !eculiar about this strin & ?ere is a fantasy with this strin as its !remise. U h8 .a . brin s alon a characteristic ty!e of com!le(ity& In the case of !roofs. to ether im!ly 8 Since 8 is inter!retable by any statement. contradictions cannot be contained= they infect the whole system like an instantaneous lobal cancer& .8a 8 !ush !remise se!aration se!aration !ush !remise carry-over line % double-tilde !o! fantasy contra!ositive detachment 4Aines C.""5 !o! fantasy V gg. however.h.

yes— but not seriously& Indeed. and many others like them.g8. -3ell.to equal +. I uess that shows that I believe everythin now2. contradiction is a ma. which tries to make the symbol for -if-then. dee!er theory about infinite series& ) more relevant e(am!le is the contradiction ri ht now confrontin us—namely the discre!ancy between the way we really think. i.8ag8. and that would block the derivation of the gg. all show that there need be no relationshi! at all between the first and second clauses of an if-then statement for it to be !rovable within the Pro!ositional 7alculus& In !rotest. to . the discovery and re!air of a contradiction would stren then it& This mi ht take time and a number of false starts.ather than weakenin mathematics. to reason about it.oke.aa gg. and much creative effort has one into tryin to !atch u! the Pro!ositional 7alculus so that it would not act so stu!idly and infle(ibly& Ene attem!t. you would !robably be in to question the beliefs or modes of reasonin which you felt had led to the contradictory thou hts& In other words. it1s very unlikely that your whole mentality would break down& Instead.!uts certain restrictions on the conte(ts in which the rules of inference can be a!!lied& Intuitively.a8a gg. and !erha!s other values& Eut of such controversial findin s came a fuller. a8a .aa They. and try to re!air them& Ene of the least likely thin s for you to do would be to throw u! your arms and cry.reflect enuine causality.or source of clarification and !ro ress in all domains of life—and mathematics is no e(ce!tion& 3hen in times !ast. to the e(tent you could.% involves -relevant im!lication-. and the way the Pro!ositional 7alculus imitates us& This has been a source of discomfort for many lo icians. in the /iddle ) es.um! out of it. !ut forth in the book Entailment by )& .aa g. and to amend it& . or at least connect meanin s& 7onsider the followin theorems of the Pro!ositional 7alculus. it says that -somethin can only be derived from somethin else if they have to do with each other-& 'or e(am!le.)s a . a contradiction in mathematics was found.The /andling of Contradictions This does not sound much like human thou ht& If you found a contradiction in your own thou hts. -relevant im!lication. g.& )nderson and 8& 0elna!. line "+ in the derivation iven above would not be allowed in such a system. mathematicians would immediately seek to !in!oint the system res!onsible for it.h.h. ".g8h. but in the end it would yield fruit& 'or instance. the value of the infinite series " Y " ^ " Y " ^ " -&&& was hotly dis!uted& It was -!roven. you would ste! out of the systems inside you which you felt were res!onsible for the contradiction.

then the Pro!ositional 7alculus does all that one could ho!e./ore radical attem!ts abandon com!letely the quest for com!leteness or consistency. and not of its subsystem which is the Pro!ositional 7alculus& 73G5=E DF& -7rab 7anon-. and if one is sure that the lar er system contains no contradictions 4and we will be5. but !urely to study human thou ht !rocesses& :es!ite its quirks. one can be sure that it will be the fault of the lar er system. () '! 8! Escher XBIJG/ . and try to mimic human reasonin with all its inconsistencies& Such research no lon er has as its oal to !rovide a solid under!innin for mathematics. it !rovides valid !ro!ositional inferences—all that can be made& So if ever an incom!leteness or an inconsistency is uncovered. the Pro!ositional 7alculus has some features to recommend itself& If one embeds it into a lar er system 4as we will do ne(t 7ha!ter5.

well. in this case& 0ut s!eakin of taste. Incidentally. don1t you think? Tortoise. but you are Pole-lutin our !ark with your ma<urkas&. you know& Tortoise. but in the time-honored tradition of my s!ecies. sir. Tell me. the :utch contributions are of markedly inferior taste. when we walk forwards. wanders up e9citedl). smack in the eye2 3ere it in my nature. Eh. reach skyward and mana e to ta! him on the knee.ust idly loafin about the !ark when u! lumbers this iant fellow from 3arsaw—a colossal bear of a man— !layin a lute& ?e was three meters tall. really? I uess there1s nothin better for you than walkin & Tortoise. I was .0ut wow2 he had no sense of humor—not a bit. -Pardon me. it1s all the same to me& *chilles. appearing from out of nowhere. /r& )& *chilles. don1t you !lay the uitar? *chilles. pointing to a rather prominent (lack e)e!/ 8ra(. /& 7& Escher. what1s it like to be your a e? Is it true that one has no worries at all? *chilles. if I1m a day& I mosey on u! to the cha!. the fool& 0ut I myself wouldn1t touch a uitar with a ten-foot !ole2 -uddenl). you1re lookin in very fine fettle these days. I disa ree. Eh. I would crab u! a storm. in a allery the other day. sayin . I must say& *chilles. Thank you very much& Tortoise. I backed off& )fter all. and I fully a!!reciate the beauty and in enuity with which he made one sin le theme mesh with itself oin both backwards and forwards& 0ut I am afraid I will always feel 0ach is su!erior to Escher& *chilles. 8ot at all& ?ere. ?allo2 ?ulloo2 3hat1s u!? 3hat1s new? Hou see this bum!.e gusti(us non est disputandum& Tortoise. 6ood day. one has no frets& Tortoise. same to you& Tortoise. That echoes my thou hts& Tortoise.Crab Canon *chilles and the Tortoise happen upon each other in the park one da) while strolling! Tortoise. To be !recise. you are such a !hilistine& In this area. we move backwards& It1s in our enes. the 8ra(. That1s my ood friend& ?e often !lays. )nd it1s a !erfect day for a walk& I think I1ll be walkin home soon& *chilles. 'iddle& It makes a bi difference. Say. you know. turnin round and round& That reminds me—I1ve always . So nice to run into you& *chilles. I finally saw that 7rab 7anon by your favorite artist. care for one of my ci ars? *chilles. 3hy. I don1t know& 0ut one thin for certain is that I don1t worry about ar uments of taste& . this lum!? 6iven to me by a rum!& ?o2 )nd on such a fine day& Hou see. not a wit—and PE32—he lets loose and belts me one. Eh.

you know& It1s in our enes. or the 7rab?.for the life of a 7rab2 T)T)2 . oh my2 I must lo!e alon on my merry way—so off I o on such a fine day& Sin -ho2. That1s my ood friend& ?e often !lays the fool& 0ut I myself wouldn1t touch a ten-foot Pole with a uitar2 *chilles. such segments of . Say.N* segment cra(%canonicalO(ut moreo#er its (ase se"uence codes for the . it1s all the same to me& Tortoise. a palindrome. I don1t know& 0ut one thin for certain is that I don1t worry about ar uments of taste& .wondered. after all& 3hen we walk backwards. which is a sentence that reads the same (ackwards and forwards! 3n molecular (iolog). what1s it like to be your a e? Is it true that one has no worries at all? Tortoise. To be !recise. the) read this wa): &&& TTTTTTTTT76)))))))))&&& &&& )))))))67TTTTTTTTTT&&& Notice that the) are the same. well.N* are called "palindromes "Oa slight misnomer.Ele2 *nd he disappears as suddenl) as he arri#ed!/ Tortoise. turning round and round! >hen the two .ere is a short section one of the 8ra('s Genes. 'iddle& It makes a bi difference. Eh. -3hich came first—the 7rab. onl) one goes forwards while the other goes (ackwards This is the defining propert) of the form called "cra( canon" in music! 3t is reminiscent of. we move forwards& )h me. Tell me. don1t you !lay the uitar? Tortoise. you know& *chilles. -3hich came last the 6ene.N* strands are unra#eled and laid out side () side. though a little different from.ialogue's structure! +ook carefull)A . since "cra( canon" would (e more accurate! Not onl) is this . or the 6ene?.isputandum non est de gusti(us! 73G5=E DH! . one has no frets& *chilles.That is to say.I1m always turnin thin s round and round.

So nice to run into you& Tortoise. care for one of my ci ars? Tortoise. 6ood day. in a concert other day. and I fully a!!reciate the beauty and in enuity with which he made one sin le theme mesh with itself oin both backwards and forwards& 0ut I1m afraid I will always feel Escher is su!erior to 0ach& Tortoise. the :utch contributions are of markedly inferior taste. you1re lookin in very fine fettle these days. /r& T& . same to you& *chilles. I disa ree. 3hy. That echoes my thou hts& *chilles. )nd it1s a !erfect day for a walk& I think I1ll be walkin home soon& Tortoise. really? I uess there1s nothin better for you than walkin & *chilles. you are such a !hilistine& In this area.onald B)rd's program "-'5T"Y Tortoise.*chilles. Eh. J& S& 0ach. I must say& 73G5=E DH! 7rab 7anon from the /usical Efferin () ?! -! Bach! U'usic printed () . 8ot at all& ?ere. don1t you think? *chilles. I finally heard that 8ra( 8anon by your favorite com!oser. Thank you very much& *chilles. Eh. in this case& 0ut s!eakin of taste. Incidentally.

T 3e1ll be in by citin some ty!ical sentences belon in to number theory= then we will try to find a set of basic notions in terms of which all our sentences can be re!hrased& Those notions will then be iven individual symbols& Incidentally.C/A. noticed this25 )lso. but not on another& To see the self-reference.will refer only to !ro!erties of !ositive inte ers and <ero 4and sets of such inte ers5& These numbers are called the natural num(ers& 8e ative numbers !lay no role in this theory& Thus the word -number-. when used. one has to look at the form. the author. too. of the :ialo ue& 6>del1s construction de!ends on describin the form.TE$ 4III Ty!ogra!hical . when I.EE ET)/PAES E' indirect self-reference are found in the 7rab 7anon& )chilles and the Tortoise both describe artistic creations they know—and.umber Theory The 8ra( 8anon and Indirect Self-$eference T?. has the form of a crab canon& This would be understandin it on one level. has the same !ro!erty& Ef course. it should be stated at the outset that the term -number theory. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 L is !rime& B is not a square& "$B# is a sum of two cubes& 8o sum of two !ositive cubes is itself a cube& There are infinitely many !rime numbers& D is even& . one could read the :ialo ue and understand it and somehow fail to notice that it. as well as the content. of strin s of the formal system we shall define in this 7ha!ter T)pographical Num(er Theor) 4T8T5& The une(!ected twist is that. the 7rab describes a biolo ical structure and that. quite accidentally. will mean e(clusively a natural number& )nd it is im!ortant—vital—for you to kee! se!arate in your mind the formal system 4T8T5 and the rather ill-defined but comfortable old branch of mathematics that is number theory itself= this I shall call -8-& Some ty!ical sentences of 8—number theory—are. because of the subtle ma!!in which 6>del discovered. those creations ha!!en to have the same structure as the :ialo ue they1re in& 4Ima ine my sur!rise. the form of strin s can be described in the formal system itself& Aet us acquaint ourselves with this stran e system with the ca!acity for wra!!in around& >hat >e >ant to Be Able to E-!ress in T. as well as the content. too.

or -cubeor -!ositive-—but those notions are really not !rimitive& Primeness. both reater than ". equals "$B#& 4C15 'or all numbers b and c. not equal to +. both reater than ". for all numbers b there e(ists a number b. the sentence -a is reater than b. such that a equals b !lus c& . ". for instance. such that b equals c times d& 4D15 There e(ists a number e such that B times e equals D& This analysis has otten us a lon ways towards the basic elements of lan ua e of number theory& It is clear that a few !hrases rea!!ear over a over. then. such that b times b equals B& 4%15 There e(ist numbers b and c such that b times b times b. B. reater than +. !lus c times c times c. there e(ists a number b. which can be further reduced& In fact.8ow it may seem that we will need a symbol for each notion such as -!rime. there is no number a such that a times a times a equals b times b times b !lus c times c times c& 4L15 'or each number a. in terms of what seem to be more elementary notions& 4"15 There do not e(ist numbers a and b.reater than-. reater than a. such that L equals a times b& 4B15 There does not e(ist a number b. which in turn has to do with multi!lication& 7ubeness as well is defined in terms of multi!lication& Aet us re!hrase the sentences. & & /ost of these will be ranted individual symbols& )n e(ce!tion is . has to do with the factors which a number has. with the !ro!erty that there do not e(ist numbers c and d. such that reater than equals times !lus +.becomes there e(ists a number c.

Ef course the symbol . which will result in a sort of -austere. three. <ero. tackin on any number of !rimes& 48ote. d. for instance. or variable. etc& The symbol S has an inter!retation—-the successor of-& ?ence.ust as we had of atoms in the Pro!ositional 7alculus& 3e will use a similar method for makin more variables. we will also introduce a !arenthesi<in requirement 4we are now slowly sli!!in into the rules which define well-formed strin s of T8T5& To write -b !lus c. d.1 -—read -!rime-—is not to be confused with !rime numbers25 'or instance. . the inter!retation of SS? is literally -the successor of the successor of <ero-& Strin s of this form are called numerals! ? S? SS? SSS? 4ariables and Terms 7learly. two. numbers& 'or that. and e. e d1 c11 b111 a1111 are all #aria(les& In a way it is a lu(ury to use the first five letters of the al!habet when we could et away with . uniform way of ivin a com!ound symbol to each natural number—very much as we did in the !q-system& ?ere is notation for natural numbers. one. we will use the ordinary symbols 1^1 and 1j1& ?owever. b. c. I will actually dro! b.version of T8T—austere in the sense that it is a little harder to deci!her com!le( formulas& 0ut for now we1ll be lu(urious& 8ow what about addition and multi!lication? Gery sim!le. we need a way of referrin to uns!ecified. we will have a very sim!le. c. e& 0ut five will not be enou h& 3e need an unlimited su!!ly of them..umerals 3e will not have a distinct symbol for each natural number& Instead.and -b times c-.ust a and the !rime& Aater on. we will use the letters a. we use the strin s .

and they retain their inter!retations& The role of atoms will be !layed by strin s which. the strin --..because it is conventional to do so& ) formula is no more and no less than a strin of T8T&5 Incidentally. thus.in a formal treatment of eometry.4b^c5 4bjc5 There is no la(ness about such !arentheses= to violate the convention is to !roduce a nonwell-formed formula& 4-'ormula-? I use the term instead of -strin . The 1and1 in the !hrase -" and " make B.ro!ositional Symbols )ll the symbols of the Pro!ositional 7alculus e(ce!t the letters used makin atoms 4 . 4S?^4SS?^SSS?55 44S?^SS?5^SSS?5 The ne(t notion we1ll symboli<e is e"uals& That is very sim!le. at least in the conte(t of additions& Similar remarks o for the strin SSS?& Atoms and . one may blur the distinction between the familiar meanin and the strictly rule.overned behavior of the formal symbol& In discussin eometry.is not the number %. and $5 will be used in T8T. B !lus % equals C. there is no such distinction= hence mental effort is needed not to confuse a symbol with all of the associations it is laden with& )s I said earlier. are statements of equality. unless one is very conscious and careful. they unite !recisely two numbers. if you wish to translate -" !lus B !lus %-. If " equals +. such as S?XSS? or 4S?jS?5 8ow.ust another word for 1!lus1. you have to decide which of the followin two e(!ressions you want. with reference to the !q-system. I distin uished between the everyday word and the formal term by ca!itali<in the formal term. a PEI8T was the union of two ordinary !oints& ?ere. we have the equi!ment to do a fair amount of translation of sim!le sentences into the notation of T8T. never three or more& ?ence. 4SS?^SSS?5XSSSS? h4SS?^SS?5XSSS? gS?X??XS?a The first of these strin s is an atom= the rest are com!ound formulas 43arnin . easy le ibility& The disadvanta e is very much like the disadvanta e of usin the words -!oint. and must be re!resented by 1^1 4and the requisite !arentheses5&5 . in elli!tical eometry. 8.and -line. we use 1 X 1& The advanta e of takin over the standard symbol used in 8—nonformal number theory—is obvious. then + equals ". when inter!reted. but it acts isomor!hically to %. addition and multi!lication are always to be thou ht of as (inar) o!erations —that is. B !lus B is not equal to %.is .

you et the sentence There e(ists a number b such that b !lus " equals B& 7learly this is true& In the second instance. such as -she is clumsy-& It is neither true nor false= it is waitin for you to !ut it into a conte(t& 0ecause it is neither true nor false. or sentence. even if written with c instead of b. and the second one is a uni#ersal assertion& They would mean the same thin . no natural number has that !ro!erty& )nd that is !recisely what is e(!ressed by . 4bjb5XSS? ~Ǝb. and the variable b is called a free #aria(le& Ene way of chan in an o!en formula into a closed formula.4c^S?5XSS? "c. Ǝc. b !lus " equals B& 7learly this is false& 3e now introduce symbols for both of these "uantifiers& These sentences are translated into T8T-notation as follows. Ǝ b.4c^S?5XSS? ) variable which is under the dominion of a quantifier is called a "uantified #aria(le& The followin two formulas illustrate the difference between free variables and quantified variables.+ree 4ariables and 8uantifiers )ll the well-formed formulas above have the !ro!erty that their inter!retations are sentences which are either true or false& There are. well-formed formulas which do not have that !ro!erty. however. there is way to assi n a truth value to the statement& It is like an out-of-conte(t statement with a !ronoun.4b^S?5XSS? 41"1 stands for 1all1&5 It is very im!ortant to note that these statements are no lon er about uns!ecified numbers= the first one is an assertion of e(istence. or the !hrase -for all numbers b-& In the first instance.4b^S?5XSS? 41Ǝ1 stands for 1e(ists1&5 "b. you et the sentence 'or all numbers b. such as this one 4b^S?5XSS? Its inter!retation is -b !lus " equals B-& Since b is uns!ecified. is by !refi(in it with a "uantifierOeither the !hrase -there e(ists a number b such that&&& -.4bjb5XSS? 4o!en5 4closed= a sentence of T8T5 The first one e(!resses a propert) which mi ht be !ossessed by some natural number& Ef course. such a formula is called open.

"c.ect is an out-of-conte(t !ronoun5& 'or instance.4b^c5X4c^b5 is an o!en formula.ect-would be an anomaly-runs backwards and forwards simultaneously-im!rovised a si(-!art fu ue on demandare nonarithmetical !redicates& They e(!ress properties which s!ecific entities mi ht or mi ht not !ossess& Ene could as well stick on a -dummy sub. and a strin where the variable is "uantified. 4S?^S?5Xb is like sayin -" !lus " equals so-and-so-& This is a !redicate in the variable b& It e(!resses a !ro!erty which the number b mi ht have& If one were to substitute various numerals for b. the commutativity of addition& En the other hand. and conversely of fi urin out the meanin of wellformed formulas& 'or this reason we return to the si( sam!le sentences iven at the be innin . since b is free& It e(!resses a !ro!erty which uns!ecified number b mi ht or mi ht not have—namely of commutin with all numbers c& Translating 0ur Sam!le Sentences This com!letes the vocabulary with which we will e(!ress all number-theoretical statements2 It takes considerable !ractice to et the han of e(!ressin com!licated statements of 8 in this notation. "b. "c. which e(!resses a truth or falsit)& The En lish translation of a formula with at least one free variable—an o!en formula—is called a predicate& It is a sentence without a sub. don1t think that the translations iven below are unique—far from it& There are many—infinitely many— ways to e(!ress each one& .as its sub.ect-. and work their translations into T8T& 0y the way. such as -so-and-so-& ) strin with free variables is like a !redicate with -so-and-so.ect 4or a sentence whose sub.4b^c5X4c^b5 The above formula is a sentence re!resentin . which e(!resses a propert). one would et a succession of forms most of which would e(!ress falsehoods& ?ere is another e(am!le of difference between o!en formulas and sentences.ect& 'or instance. of course. -is a sentence without a sub.the second one& It is very crucial to understand this difference between a strin with a free #aria(le.

since we know multi!lication is commutative mi ht easily have written Ǝe.h4bjb5 XSS? The first way says.strin -!--q--. not structural !ro!erties of formulas&5 3e can dis!ense with sentence B. once a ain. knowin that equality is a symmetrical relation.was a theorem& The equivalence lies in our minds. we almost automatically think about inter!retations. as humans. while the second way says. and it is by no means obvious that theoremhood of any one of them is tied to theoremhood of any of the others& 4Similarly. since.This one will involve two e(istential quantifiers.are quite different strin s. to us. we find an ambi uity& 3hat if we had chosen to write it this way? "b.SSSSSS?X4SS?je5 8ow these three translations of -D is even. as follows. one after the other. -'or all numbers b. ~Ǝb. they are distinct strin s& Aet us !roceed to sentence %. -It is not the case that there e(ists a number b with the !ro!erty that b1s square is B-.4SS?je5XSSSSSS? 8ote the necessity of the quantifier= it sim!ly would not do to write 4SS?je5XSSSSSS? alone& This strin 1s inter!retation is of course neither true nor false= it e(!resses a !ro!erty which the number e mi ht have& It is curious that.Ence a ain. . the fact that --!-q--. it is not the case that b1s square is B&. almost immediately. Ǝe.4bjb5XSS? ?owever.was a theorem had very little to do with the fact that its -equivalent. Ǝe. -B is not a square-. we mi ht have chosen to write the sides of the equation in the o!!osite order.4ejSS?5XSSSSSS? instead& Er. -"$B# is a sum of two cubes&. they are conce!tually equivalent—but to T8T. -D is even-& This we re!hrased in to of more !rimitive notions as -There e(ists a number e such that B times e equals D-& This one is easy.Aet us be in with the last one.

since the smallest value which either b or c can take on is <ero& ?ence the ri ht-hand side re!resents a sum of two !ositive cubes& Incidentally.SSSSSSS&SSSS?X444bjb5jb5^44cjc5jc55 There are alternatives alore& . as follows. even thou h the desired !hrase runs -There do not e(ist numbers b and c such that&&&-&5 Thus we et.Ǝc. ~Ǝb.oinin two quantifiers& 8ow that we have translated -$ is a sum of two !ositive cubes-. e(ce!t that we have to add in the !roviso of the cubes bein !ositive& 3e can do this with a trick. but their successors. etc& ?owever.Ǝc. we are cubin not b and c. Ǝb.SSSSSSS?X444SbjSb5jSb5^44ScjSc5-Sc55 Hou see. Ǝb.everse the order of the quantifiers= switch the sides of the equation= chan e the variables to d and e= reverse the addition= write the multi!lications differently= etc&. notice that the !hrase -there e(ist numbers b and c such thatS&&-. not for . you should not ne ate each quantifier.Ǝc.SSSSSSS?X444SbjSb@jSb5^44ScjSc5jSc55 b BCFI of them Tric. -8o sum of two !ositive cubes is itself a cube-& Su!!ose that we wished merely to state that $ is not a sum of two !ositive cubes& The easiest way to do this is by negating the formula which asserts that $ is a sum of two !ositive cubes& This will be .444SSSSSSSSSS?jSSSSSSSSSS?5&SSSSSSSSSS?5^ 44SSSSSSSSS?jSSSSSSSSS?5jSSSSSSSSS?55X444bjb5jb5^44cjc5jc55 and Ǝb.Ǝb. I !refer the followin two translations of the sentence.s of the Trade . does not involve the symbol 1 n1 which stands for _and1& That symbol is used for connectin entire well-formed strin s.Ǝc. which must be !ositive. !refi( variables with the symbol S.ust like the !recedin sentence involvin "$B#.Ǝc.444SSSSSSSSSSSS?&SSSSSSSSSSSS?5&SSSSSSSSSSSS?5^ 44S?jS?5jS?55X444bjb5jb5^44cjc5jc55 :o you see why? 8ow let us tackle the related sentence C. when translated. we wish to ne ate it& That sim!ly involves !refi(in the whole thin by a sin le tilde& 48ote.

4d^Se5X4SSbjSSc5 . -c !lus B. Ǝb. Ǝb. that whole statement is denied. as follows.Ǝc. both reater than ". and a. -There do not e(ist numbers a and b such that L equals a !lus B. resultin in an assertion that L is !rime& If we wanted to assert that d !lus e !lus ". times b !lus B-& This is another trick—since a and b are restricted to natural number values. we are in !ossession of an open formula. it would be an assertion that two natural numbers do e(ist. ~~Ǝa.44aja5ja5X444SbjSb5jSb5 ^44Sc-Sc5-Sc55 )n equally ood translation would be this. since a is still free& This formula e(!resses a !ro!erty which a number a mi ht or mi ht not have—and it is our !ur!ose to assert that all numbers do have that !ro!erty& That is sim!le—. our translation is e(tremely concise. is !rime. this is an adequate way to say the same thin & 8ow . and the formula would become. ~~Ǝa.8ow our ori inal oal was to assert this !ro!erty not of the number of all cubes& Therefore.could be translated into 4b ^ SS?5. Ǝa1. -L is !rime-? 3e had reworded it in this way -There do not e(ist numbers a and b.instead of c. Ǝc. the most economical way would be to re!lace the numeral for L by the strin 4d+Se5. have a !roduct equal to L& 3ith the tilde in front. which is the translation of -a cubed-. let us re!lace the numeral SSSSSSS? by the 44aja5ja5. Ǝa-. which.Ǝc. such equals a times b-& 3e can sli htly modify it. we could use a1 instead of b. Ǝb.44aja5ja5X444SbjSb5jSb5^44Sc-Sc5-Sc55 )t this sta e.Ǝc. rather than L. SSb& Aikewise. Ǝc.SSSSS?X4SSbjSSc5 3ithout the initial tilde.Ǝb. but there is a shorter way to write it—namely.44aja5ja5 X444Sa1jSa15jSa15 ^44Sa%%jSa%%5jSa%%55 3hat about sentence ".hƎb.b !lus B.can be written SSc& 8ow. when au mented by B.ust !refi( the whole thin with a universal quantifier "a.44aja5ja5X444SbjSb5jSb5^44ScjSc5jSc55 In austere T8T.

h"c.u::les for =ou This com!letes the e(ercise of translatin all si( ty!ical number-theoretical sentences& ?owever. but . one whose inter!retation is neither a true nor a false sentence. no matter what d is& The way to do that is to universally quantify over the variable d. we will have a formula which asserts that. d and e& 8otice that the number re!resented by the strin 4 d+Se5 is necessarily reater than d.4d^Se5X4SSbjSSc5 3ell. or four false and two true&5 .4d^Se5X4SSbjSSc5 That1s the translation of sentence L2 Translation .hƎb.Ǝe.Ǝc. it does not necessarily make you an e(!ert in the notation of T8T& There are still some tricky issues to be mastered& The followin si( well-formed formulas will test your understandin of T8T notation& 3hat do they mean? 3hich ones are true 4under inter!retation. an o!en formula. since one has added to d an uns!ecified but definitely !ositive amount& Therefore. and do the same&5 h"c.Ǝc. fi ure out what addin a sin le quantifier or a tilde does= then move leftwards. if we e(istentially quantify over the variable e. Ǝb.h"c. Either four of them are true and two false. Ǝb.Ence a ain. the way to tackle this e(ercise is to move leftwards& 'irst.hƎb.h4SS?jb5Xc 4Second hint.h4SS?jb5Xc hƎb."c.ust an assertion about two uns!ecified numbers. of course5. all we have left to do now is to assert that this !ro!erty actually obtains.4SS?jb5Xc Ǝb.hƎb.4SS?jb5Xc "c.4SS?jb5Xc Ǝb. addin another quantifier or tilde= then move leftwards a ain. translate the atom= ne(t. "d. There e(ists a number which is reater than d and which is !rime& Ǝe.4SS?jb5Xc "c. and which ones are false? 4?int.

and 1u' to stand for other kinds of T8T-strin s& 8eedless to say. but are not in themselves well-formed& The smallest well-formed formulas are the atoms= then there are ways of com!oundin atoms& /any of these rules are recursive len thenin rules. none of these five symbols is itself a symbol of T8T& 8F/E.ules of 'ormation for well-formed formulas This is !rovided below& There are some !reliminary sta es. and 1 s1. that could do the same thin —but ty!o ra!hically2 The boundary se!aratin the set of true statements from the set of false statements 4as written in the T8T-notation5 is anythin but strai ht= it is a boundary with many treacherous curves 4recall 'i & "*5. a boundary of which mathematicians have delineated stretches. #aria(les. and terms& Those three classes of strin s are in redients of well-formed formulas. you will a!!reciate the subtlety that any system would have to have.)AS& ? is a numeral& ) numeral !receded by S is also a numeral& E9amples: ? S? SS? SSS? SSSS? SSSSS? . here and there. but no content& )nd this system would be like a sieve throu h which could !ass only desi ns with a s!ecial style—the -style of truth-& If you yourself have one throu h the si( formulas above./o' to istinguish True from +alse7 )t this . workin over hundreds of years& Just think what a cou! it would be to have a ty!o ra!hical method which was uaranteed to !lace any formula on the !ro!er side of the border2 The $ules of >ell-+ormedness It is useful to have a table of . definin numerals. 1t'. I use 191 and 1)1 to stand for well-formed formulas.uncture. it is worthwhile !ausin for breath and contem!latin what it would mean to have a formal system that could sift out the true ones from the false ones& This system would treat all these strin s—which look like statements—as desi ns havin form. in that they take as in!ut an item of a iven class and !roduce a lon er item of the class& In this table. and have se!arated the true from the false by thinkin about meanin .

then u is free in it& Thus there are four free variables in the last e(am!le& 8E6)TIE8S& ) well-formed formula !receded by a tilde is well-formed& E9amples. b Sa 4b^S?5 444S?^S?5^S?5^e5 The above rules tell how to make parts of well-formed formulas= the remainin rules tell how to make complete well-formed formulas& )TE/S& If s and t are terms.hƎb. g?X?h?X?a gbXbhƎc. ? b SSa1 4S?j4SS?^c55 S4Saj4SbjSc55 TE. "b./S may be divided into two cate ories. then so are sPt/ and sZt/! E9amples.4b^b5Xca The quantification status of a variable doesn1t chan e here& MF)8TI'I7)TIE8S& If u is a variable. a b% c.cXba gS?X?"c. hS?X? hƎb. S?X? 4SS?^SS?5XSSSS? S4b^c5X44cjd5je5 If an atom contains a variable u.4b^b5XS? hg?X?S?X?a hbXS? The "uantification status of a variable 4which says whether the variable is free or quantified5 does not chan e under ne ation& 7E/PEF8:S& If ( and y are well-formed formulas.I)0AES& a is a variable& If we1re not bein austere. g (ya& E9amples.gbXbhƎc. g (ya.9& E9amples. so are b.4b^b5Xc hƎc.hƎb. c. then s Q t is an atom& E9amples. 4"5 :E'I8ITE terms& These contain no variables& E9amples.ScXd .9 and "u. ? 4S?^S?5 SS44SS?jSS?5^4S?jS?55 4B5 I8:E'I8ITE terms& These contain variables& E9amples. Ǝu. g (ya. and 9 is a well-formed formula in which u is free then the followin strin s are well-formed formulas. d and e& ) variable followed by a !rime is also a variable& E9amples. then the followin are all well-formed formulas. and !rovided that no variable which is free in one is quantified in the other./S& )ll numerals and variables are terms& ) term !receded by S is also a term& If s and t are terms.G).d-1 e-TE.cXba "c.

EPE8 'E./FA)S 4SE8TE87ES5 This com!letes the table of . we are still left with the !roblem of makin T8T into the ambitious system which we have described& Success would . because 4B5 3e take as a(ioms all true statements of number theory 4as written in T8T-notation5& 3hat a sim!le !rescri!tion2 Fnfortunately it is as em!ty as instantaneous reaction says it is& Part 4B5 is. and the last one into an o!en formed formula& )ll natural numbers are equal to C& There is no natural number which equals its own square& :ifferent natural numbers have different successors& If " equals +. com!ared to this one./FA)S contain at least one free variable& E9amples. a few !ractice e(ercises for you. hcXc bXb g"b.dX? Ǝc.ules of 'ormation for the well-formed formulas of T8T& A +e' More Translation E-ercises )nd now.onty!ogra!hical System This concludes the e(!osition of the notation of T8T= however. to test your understandin of the notation of T8T& Try to translate the first four of the followin 8-sentences into T8T-sentences.bXbhcXca contain no free variables& E9amples. !articular inter!retations are no more .bXbhcXca 7AESE: 'E.g"b.ustified than the -horse-a!!le ha!!y. 4"5 :o not have any rules of inference= they are unnecessary.inter!retations were for the !q-system1s symbols& Someone mi ht su est the followin way of constructin T8T. S?X? h"d.ustify the inter!retations which we iven to the various symbols& Fntil we have done that. however. of course. then every number is odd& b is a !ower of B& The last one you may find a little tricky& 0ut it is nothin . b is a !ower of "+& Stran ely. this one takes reat cleverness to render in our notation& I would caution you to try it only if you are willin to s!end hours and hours on it—and if you know quite a bit of number theory2 A . not a ty!o ra!hical descri!tion of strin s& The whole !ur!ose of T8T is to fi ure out if and how it is !ossible to—characteri<e the true strin s ty!o ra!hically& .

"a. "a. which is laden with connotation& 3e will re!lace it with the undefined term dMinn.eano . "a. "a. the inter!retation of )(iom "—-9ero is not the successor of any natural number-—is one of five famous !ro!erties of natural numbers first e(!licitly reco ni<ed by the mathematician and lo ician 6iuse!!e Peano. Peano was followin the !ath of Euclid in this way. all of the rules of the &ropositional 8alculus are taken o#er into T8T& Therefore one theorem of T8T will be this one. gS?X?hS?X?a which can be derived in the same way as gP-Pa was derived& 0efore we ive more rules. )(iom ". as was !romised.ostulates 0y the way. let us ive the five a9ioms of T8T. Genie."b. and in !articular with its relation to addition& The +i"e .hSaX? )(iom B. use a1 instead of b&5 )ll of them are very sim!le to understand& )(iom " states a s!ecial fact about the number += )(ioms B and % are concerned with the nature of addition= )(ioms C and L are concerned with the nature of multi!lication.inns& There are two other undefined terms.is the one which Peano was attem!tin to define. a word which comes fresh and free of connotations to our mind& Then Peano1s five !ostulates !lace five restrictions on d.The +i"e A-ioms and +irst $ules of T. and thus it would be ood to show Peano1s five !ostulates& Since the notion of -natural number.T Thus we will follow a more difficult route than the su estion above= we will have a(ioms and rules of inference& 'irstly."b.4aj?5X? )(iom L.4a^?5Xa )(iom %. "a. we will not use the familiar term -natural number-.4a^Sb5XS4a^b5 )(iom C. in "**#& In settin out his !ostulates. he made no attem!t to formali<e the !rinci!les of reasonin . . but tried to ive a small set of !ro!erties of natural numbers from which everythin else could be derived by reasonin & Peano1s attem!t mi ht thus be considered -semiformal-& Peano1s work had a si nificant influence.4ajSb5X44ajb5^a5 4In the austere versions.

we should name the set of all d. etc& Peano ho!ed to have !inned down the essence of natural numbers in his five !ostulates& /athematicians enerally rant that he succeeded. 4"5 6enie is a d. and each d.inns et T& In li ht of the lam!s of the +ittle . -?ow is a true statement about natural numbers to be distin uished from a false one?. but that does not lessen the im!ortance of the question. it would be nice if we could e(tract the strin hS?X? from the first a(iom& To do this we would need a rule which !ermits us to dro! a universal quantifier.9 is a theorem. if we wish& ?ere is such a rule.inns& )nd !resumably everybody would a ree that no d. and -meta. mathematicians turned to totally formal systems. by one and the same term& 4=estriction. everybody1s ima e would include an infinite number of distinct d. . archenemy of 6eor 7antor.inns have different metas& 4L5 If 6enie has T.)t answer this question.inn coincides with its own meta. the two ima es would have com!letely isomor!hic structures& 'or e(am!le. and so are any strin s made from 9 by re!lacin u.FAE E' SPE7I'I7)TIE8.armonic +a()rinth. and at the same time to chan e the internal strut of the strin which remains.inn& 4C5 :ifferent d.T5 S!ecification and Generali:ation 8ow we come to the new rules of T8T& /any of these rules will allow us to reach in and chan e the internal structure of the atoms of T8T& In that sense they deal with more -microsco!ic.inn& 4B5 Every d.!ro!erties of strin s than the rules of the Pro!ositional 7alculus.e' $ules of T. then all d.inn5& 4%5 6enie is not the meta of any d. wherever it occurs.inn has a meta 4which is also a d. then so is 9. or its meta1s meta. The term which re!laces u must not contain any variable that is quantified in 9&5 .inn-.were so stron that if two different !eo!le formed ima es in their minds of the conce!ts. which treat atoms as indivisible units& 'or e(am!le.inn relays T to its meta. because all of his !ostulates are incor!orated in T8T in one way or another& . Su!!ose u is a variable which occurs inside strin 9& If the strin "u. -6od made the natural numbers= all the rest is the work of man&Hou may reco ni<e Peano1s fifth !ostulate as the !rinci!le of mathematical induction—another term for a hereditary ar ument& Peano ho!ed that his five restrictions on the conce!ts -6enie-. as T8T& ?owever. you will see the influence of Peano in T8T. -d.and meta& I will let you fi ure out for yourself what usual conce!t each of them is su!!osed to re!resent& The five Peano !ostulates.inns -6E:-& This harks back to a celebrated statement by the 6erman mathematician and lo ician Aeo!old @ronecker.

FAE E' 6E8E. "a. the followin strin s could also be derived from )(iom ". by s!ecification. are interchan eable anywhere inside any theorem& 'or e(am!le. . let us a!!ly this rule to )(iom ". enerali<ation is a!!lied after several intermediate ste!s have transformed the o!en formula in various ways& ?ere is the e(act statement of the rule. "c. in Euclid1s !roof about the infinitude of !rimes& )lready we can see how the symbolmani!ulatin rules are startin to a!!ro(imate the kind of reasonin which a mathematician uses& The E-istential 8uantifier These !ast two rules told how to take off universal quantifiers and !ut them back on= the ne(t two rules tell how to handle e(istential quantifiers& .9 is a theorem& 4=estriction.7?)86E. hSaX? hS?X? a(iom " s!ecification 8otice that the rule of s!ecification will allow some formulas which contain free variables 4i&e&.The rule of s!ecification allows the desired strin to be e(tracted )(iom "& It is a oneste! derivation. for e(am!le. which allows us to !ut back the universal quantifier on theorems which contain variables that became free as a result of usa e of s!ecification& )ctin on the lower strin . and vice versa& Fsually. Su!!ose u is a variable& Then the strin s "u. the rule of generali@ation. . this enerali<ation is the same enerali<ation as was mentioned in 7ha!ter II. Su!!ose 9 is a theorem in which u. hSaX? hS4c^SS?5X? There is another rule.hS4c^SS?5X? 6enerali<ation undoes the action of s!ecification.FAE E' I8TE. o!en formulas5 to become theorems& 'or e(am!le. a variable.h and ~Ǝu. 8o enerali<ation is allowed in a fantasy on any variable which a!!eared free in the fantasy1s !remise&5 The need for restrictions on these two rules will shortly be demonstrated e(!licitly& Incidentally.)AI9)TIE8. enerali<ation would ive. occurs free& Then "u.

"a. the followin derivations yield theorems which are !retty fundamental. accordin to rules so far iven.FAES E' EMF)AITH. $ules of Equality and Successorshi! 3e have iven rules for mani!ulatin quantifiers. then so is r X t& .to -There e(ists a !rime-& The name of this rule is self-e(!lanatory.EP S. of the sentence -9ero is not the successor of any natural number-& Therefore it is ood that they can be turned into each other with ease& The ne(t rule is. then Sr X St is a theorem& :. If Sr X St is a theorem.4a^Sb5XS4a^b5 "b. and the corres!ondin e(istential quantifier must be !laced in front& Aet us a!!ly the rule to—as usual—)(iom ".hSaXb e(istence Hou mi ht now try to shunt symbols. "a. If r X t is a theorem. or all5 of the a!!earances of the term may be re!laced by a variable which otherwise does not occur in the theorem.SaX? a(iom " interchan e 0y the way. r. If r X s and s X t are theorems. even more intuitive& It corres!onds to the very sim!le kind of inference we make when we o from -B is !rime. t all stand for arbitrary terms& .)8SITIGITH.FAES E' SF77ESSE. "b. ."a. you mi ht notice that both these strin s are !erfectly natural renditions.H. Su!!ose a term 4which may contain variables as lon as they are free5 a!!ears once. in T8T.4S?^Sb5XS4S?^b5 a(iom % s!ecification 4S? for a5 . 4"5 4B5 "a. or multi!ly. s.hSaX? hƎa.hSaX? a(iom " Ǝb. If r X s is a theorem.S?IP. then r X t is a theorem& 8ow we are equi!!ed with rules that can ive us a fantastic variety of theorems& 'or e(am!le. ):: S. then so is s X r& T. SH//ET. to !roduce the theorem ~"b: Ǝa:Sa=b. in a theorem& Then any 4or several. if anythin .FAE E' ETISTE87E. but so far none for symbols 1X1 and 1S1& 3e rectify that situation now& In what follows.

4a^Sb5XS4a^b5 "b."%5 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 4*5 4#5 4"+5 4""5 4"B5 4"% 4"C5 "a.4ajSb5X44ajb5^a5 "b.4S?jSb5X44S?jb5^S?5 4S?jS?5X44S?j?5^S?5 "a.4a^?5Xa "a."+5 add S transitivity 4lines D.4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 4S?^S?5XS4S?^?5 "a."b.aXa&&& 3hat is wron with it? 7an you fi( it u!? 4"5 4B5 4%5 "a.of "a.aX4a^?5 "a."B5 transitivity 4lines %."b. what about the followin -derivation.4a^?5Xa 4S?^?5XS? S4S?^?5XSS? 4S?^S?5XSS? [ [ [ [ s!ecification 4? for b5 a(iom B s!ecification 4S? for a5 add S transitivity 4lines %. -?ow can we make a derivation for the strin ?X??It seems that the obvious route to o would be first to derive the strin "a.4aj?5X? 4S?j?5X? 44S?j?5^?5X? S44S?j?5^?5XS? 44S?j?5^S?5XS? 4S?jS?5XS? Illegal Shortcuts 8ow here is an interestin question. this latter ty!e of knowled e is invaluable in uidin the route of a derivation& . and then to use s!ecification& So. and not one1s knowled e of the !assive meanin s of the symbols& Ef course. that one should not .44S?j?5^Sb5XS44S?j?5^b5 44S?j?5^S?5XS44S?j?5^?5 "a.aXa.um! too fast in mani!ulatin symbols 4such as 1X15 which are familiar& Ene must follow the rules.D5 [ a(iom L s!ecification 4S? for a5 s!ecification 4? for b5 a(iom % s!ecification 44S?j?5 for a5 s!ecification 4? for b5 a(iom B s!ecification 44S?j?5 for a5 a(iom C s!ecification 4S? for a5 transitivity 4lines *.aXa a(iom B symmetry transitivity 4lines B.4a^?5Xa 44S?j?5^?5X4S?j?5 "a."5 I ave this mini-e(ercise to !oint out one sim!le fact.

one of the restrictions is violated& Aook at the disastrous results they !roduce. 4?^?5X? 4?^S?5XS? 4?^SS?5XSS? 4?^SSS?5XSSS? 4?^SSSS?5XSSSS? .>hy S!ecification and Generali:ation Are $estricted 8ow let us see why there are restrictions necessary on both s!ecification and enerali<ation& ?ere are two derivations& In each of them.bXSa Ǝb. and then derive that strin as a theorem& Something Is Missing 8ow if you e(!eriment around for a while with the rules and a(ioms of T8T so far !resented.aXa SaXSa Ǝb. translate 4if you have not already done so5 Peano1s fourth !ostulate into T8T-notation. you will find that you can !roduce the followin p)ramidal famil) of theorems 4a set of strin s all cast from an identical mold. SS?.bXSb !revious theorem s!ecification e(istence enerali<ation s!ecification 4>rong25 So now you can see why those restrictions are needed& ?ere is a sim!le !u<<le.aX? SaX? V gaX?SaX?a "a.*5 This is the first disaster& The other one is via faulty s!ecification& 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 "a. Ǝb. S?.bXSa "a. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 4*5 4#5 4"+5 U aX? "a. differin from one another only in that the numerals ?. and s have been stuffed in5.gaX?SaX?a g?X?S?X?a ?X? S?X? !ush !remise enerali<ation 4>rong25 s!ecification !o! fantasy rule enerali<ation s!ecification !revious theorem detachment 4lines #.

however.etc& )s a matter of fact. let alone !rove them& The equi!ment sim!ly was not there. ) system is -incom!lete if all the strin s in a !yramidal family are theorems. is not a theorem& Hou mi ht think that is not all that stran e.comes from the fact that the totality of natural numbers is sometimes denoted by 11&5 ?ere is the e(act definition. then so is the universally quantified strin which summari<es them& The !roblem with this rule is that it cannot be used in the / -mode& Enly !eo!le who are thinkin a(out the system can ever know that an infinite set of strin s are all theorems& Thus this is not a rule that can be stuck inside any formal system& -Incom!lete Systems and &ndecidable Strings So we find ourselves in a stran e situation. "a.of theorems. which e(!resses a !ro!erty of addition in general. the !q-system had no !retensions about what it ou ht to be able to do= and in fact there was no way to e9press eneral statements about addition in its symbolism.4?^a5Xa Het with the rules so far iven. If all the strin s in a !yramidal family are theorems. each of the theorems in this family can be derived from the one directly above it. in only a cou!le of lines& Thus it is a sort of -cascade. the e(!ressive ca!ability is far stron er. each one tri erin the ne(t& 4These theorems are very reminiscent of the !q-theorems. where the middle and ri ht-hand rou!s of hy!hens rew simultaneously&5 8ow there is one strin which we can easily write down. but the universally quantified summari<in strin is not a theorem& . and we have corres!ondin ly hi her e(!ectations of T8T than of the !q-system& If the strin above is not a theorem.FAE E' )AA. and it did not even occur to us to think that the system was defective& ?ere. in which we can ty!o ra!hically !roduce theorems about the addition of any specific numbers. but even a sim!le strin as the one above. this strin eludes !roduction& Try to !roduce it yourself if you don1t believe me& Hou may think that we should immediately remedy the situation with the followin 4P. then we will have ood reason to consider T8T to be defective& )s a matter of fact.EPESE:5 . and which summari<es the !assive meanin of them all. since we were in !recisely that situation with the !qsystem& ?owever. taken to ether& That universally quantified summari@ing string is this. there is a name for systems with this kind of defect-they are called -incomplete& 4The !refi( 11-1ome a1.

ca!able of only one meanin & .4?^a5Xa It doesn1t . to yield non-Euclidean eometry& If you think back to eometry. usa e of the symbol 1^1 tends to make us think that every theorem with a !lus si n in it ou ht to say somethin known and familiar and -sensible.tended. is iven the name of - .on-Euclidean T.udices us in certain ways& 'or instance.u(ta!ose this -si(th a(iom. then we would say that it was decidable& )lthou h it may sound like a mystical term. because there is a way of inter!retin the symbols so that everythin comes out all ri ht& -Inconsistency Is . and there is room for different e9tensions of the notions& The !oints and lines of Euclidean eometry !rovide one kind of e(tension of the notions of -!ointand -line-= the PEI8Ts and AI8Es of non-Euclidean eometry. in the sense of not havin two theorems of the form 9 and -9& ?owever. there is nothin mystical about undecidability within a iven system& It is only a si n that the system could be e(tended& 'or e(am!le. Euclid1s fifth !ostulate is undecidable& It has to be added as an e(tra !ostulate of eometry. within absolute eometry. for two millennia.ot the Same as Inconsistency This kind of inconsistency.ibe with what we believe about addition& 0ut it is one !ossible e(tension of T8T.with the !yramidal family of theorems shown above.and -line.about the known and familiar o!eration we call -addition-& Therefore it would run a ainst the rain to !ro!ose addin the followin -si(th a(iom-.and -line-. another& ?owever.4?^a@Xa —is also a nontheorem of T8T& This means that the ori inal strin is undecida(le within the s)stem& If one or the other were a theorem. involvin T8T& 3e have ado!ted a notation which !re. to yield Euclidean eometry= or conversely. the ne ation of the above summari<in strin — ~"a. it is not a true inconsistency. to make !eo!le believe that those words were necessarily univalent. and 4B5 a sin le theorem which seems to assert that not all numbers have it. as we have so far formulated T8T& The system which uses this as its si(th a(iom is a consistent system. its ne ation can be added. you will !robably be bothered by a seemin inconsistency between the family and the new a(iom& 0ut this kind of inconsistency is not so dama in as the other kind 4where 9 and -9 are both theorems5& In fact. created by the o!!osition of 4"5 a !yramidal family of theorems which collectively assert that all natural numbers have some !ro!erty.Incidentally. you will remember why this curious thin ha!!ens& It is because the four !ostulates of absolute eometry sim!ly do not !in down the meanin s of the terms -!oint. ~"a.T 3e are now faced with a similar situation. when you . usin the !re-flavored words -!oint.

inn-. as so far !resented.inn& This was scoffed at by the 6enie.4a^Sb5XS4a^b5 "b. but instead o on to try to re!air the -incom!leteness of T8T& The Last $ule The !roblem with the -. we will not follow this e(tension now. if we added the -si(th a(iom. or would some of them still mean what we want them to mean? I will let you think about that& 3e will encounter a similar question in 7ha!ter TIG.!assive meanin s. and discuss the matter then& In any case. unsus!ected numbers—let us not call them -natural-.inconsistenc)& )n -inconsistent system is more like the at-the-outset-distasteful-but-inthe-end-acce!table non-Euclidean eometry& In order to form a mental model of what is oin on. as in the children1s ame of -Tele!hone-& The other thin left to show is that 6enie starts the cascadin messa e—that is. to establish that the first line of the !yramid is a theorem& Then you know that 6E: will et the messa e2 In the !articular !yramid we were lookin at.was that it required knowin that all lines of an infinite !yramidal family are theorems—too much for a finite bein & 0ut su!!ose that each line of the !yramid can be derived from its !redecessor in a patterned way& Then there would be a finite reason accountin for the fact that all the strin s in the !yramid are theorems& The trick then. do not fully !in down the inter!retations for the symbols of T8T& There is still room for variation in one1s mental model of the notions they stand for& Each of the various !ossible e(tensions would !in down some of the notions further= but in different ways& 3hich symbols would be in to take on -distasteful."b. there is a !attern. facts about them cannot be re!resented in the !yramidal family& 4This is a little bit like )chilles1 conce!tion of 6E:—as a sort of -su!erd.inn !asses a messa e to its meta. and may hel! you to ima ine su!ernatural numbers&5 3hat this tells us is that the a(ioms and rules of T8T. a bein reater than any of the d. you have to ima ine that there are some -e(tra-.ule of )ll. but supernatural numbers—which have no numerals& Therefore. is to find the pattern that causes the cascade.4?^Sb5XS4?^b5 4?^Sb5XS4?^b5 U 4?^b5Xb S4?^b5XSb 4?^Sb5XS4?^b5 4?^Sb5XSb V a(iom % s!ecification s!ecification !ush !remise add S carry over line % transitivity !o! The !remise is 4?^b5Xb= the outcome is 4?^Sb5XSb& .iven above? 3ould all of the symbols become tainted. and show that !attern is a theorem in itself& That is like !rovin that each d. ca!tured by lines C-# of the derivation below& 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 4*5 4#5 "a. but it is a reasonable ima e.

we need a little notation& Aet us abbreviate a well-formed formula in which the variable a is free by the followin notation. but that is irrelevant&5 Then the notation SkSaIab will stand for that strin but with every occurrence of a re!laced by Sa& Aikewise. Skub is also a theorem& This is about as close as we can come to !uttin Peano1s fifth !ostulate into T8T& 8ow let us use it to show that "a. Su!!ose u is a variable. to deduce what we wanted& "b.4?^a5Xa is indeed a theorem in T8T& Emer in from the fantasy in our derivation above. we can a!!ly the rule of induction. with each a!!earance of a re!laced by ?& ) s!ecific e(am!le would be to let Skab stand for the strin in question.4?^a5Xa is no lon er an undecidable strin of T8T& A Long eri"ation 8ow I wish to !resent one lon er derivation in T8T. Sk?Iab would stand for the same strin . and Skub is a well-formed formula in which u occurs free& If both "u. we can a!!ly the fantasy rule. which we have& Therefore.FAE E' I8:F7TIE8. Skab 4There may be other free variables. to ive us 4"+5 4""5 g4?^b5Xb4?^Sb5XSba "b. and Sk?Iab would re!resent 4?^?5X?& 43arnin .The first line of the !yramid is also a theorem= it follows directly from )(iom B& )ll we need now is a rule which lets us deduce that the strin which summari<es the entire !yramid is itself a theorem& Such a rule will he a formali<ed statement of the fifth Peano !ostulate& To e(!ress that rule. . fact of number theory& . if sim!le. and also because it !roves a si nificant. then "u. too. 4 ?^a5Xa& Then SkSaIab would re!resent the strin 4?^Sa5XSa.g Skub SkSuIuba and Sk?Iub are theorems.4?^b5Xb S!ecification and enerali<ation will allow us to chan e the variable from b to a= thus "a. so that you ca what one is like.g4?^b5Xb4?^Sb5XSba fantasy rule enerali<ation This is the first of the two in!ut theorems required by the induction The other requirement is the first line of the !yramid. This notation is not !art of T8T= it is for our convenience in talkin a(out T8T&5 3ith this new notation. we can state the last rule of T8T quite !recisely.

4Sd^Sb5XS4Sd^b5 4L5 4Sd^Sc5XS4Sd^c5 D5 S4Sd^c5X4Sd^Sc5 4$5 U 4*5 "d.4d^SSc5X4Sd^Sc5a [ 4"#5 4d^S?5XS4d^?5 4B+5 "a.4d^SSc5X4Sd^Sc5a 4"*5 "c.4d^S?5X4Sd^?5 [ 4B*5 "c.4d^Sb5XS4d^b5 s!ecification 4line "5 s!ecification s!ecification 4line "5 .B$5 US can be sli!!ed back and forth in an additionV [ [ [ [ [ 4B#5 "b.4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 "d.4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 4#5 4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 4"+5 S4d^Sc5XS4Sd^c5 4""5 4d^SSc5XS4d^Sc5 4"B5 4d^SSc5XS4Sd^c5 4"%5 S4Sd^c5X4Sd^Sc5 4"C5 4d^SSc5X4Sd^Sc5 4"L5 "d.4d^Sb5XS4d^b5 4%5 4d^SSc5XS4d^Sc5 4C5 "b."d."b.4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5"d.BL5 enerali<ation induction 4lines "*.4a^Sb5XS4a^b5 4B5 "b.4"5 "a.B5 s!ecification 4line B+5 symmetry transitivity 4lines B%.g"d.4c^Sb5XS4c^b5 4%+5 4c^Sd5XS4c^d5 4%"5 "b.4a^?5Xa 4B"5 4d^?5Xd 4BB5 S4d^?5XSd 4B%5 4d^S?5XSd 4BC5 4Sd^?5XSd 4BL5 SdX4Sd^?5 4BD5 4d^S?5X4Sd^?5 4B$5 "d.4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 [ [ [ [ [ [ [ [ a(iom % s!ecification s!ecification s!ecification 4line "5 s!ecification symmetry !ush !remise s!ecification add S carry over % transitivity carry over D transitivity enerali<ation !o! fantasy rule enerali<ation s!ecification 4line B5 a(iom " s!ecification add S transitivity 4lines "#.4d^SSc5X4Sd^Sc5 4"D5 V 4"$5 g"d.

4c^d5X4d^c5 "c.4c^d5X4d^c5 "c. like a !iece of music.4c^d5X4d^c5 4%*5 4c^d5X4d^c5 4%#5 S4c^d5XS4d^c5 4C+5 4c^Sd5XS4c^d5 4C"5 4c^Sd5XS4d^c5 4CB5 S4d^c5X4d^Sc5 4C%5 4c^Sd5X4d^Sc5 4CC5 4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 4CL5 4c^Sd5X4Sd^c5 4CD5 "c.4c^Sd5X4Sd^c5 4C$5 V 4C*5 g"e. it has its own natural -rhythm-& It is not .4c^d5X4d^c5 induction 4lines C#.4c^?5X4?^c5 U? commutes with every c&V 4LD5 "d. every d commutes with every c&V Tension and $esolution in T.4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 4%L5 4d^Sc5X4Sd^c5 4%D5 U 4%$5 "c.g"c.4c^Sd5X4Sd^c5a 4C#5 "d.4?^a5Xa 4LB5 4?^c5Xc 4L%5 cX4?^c5 4LC5 4c^?5X4?^c5 4LL5 "c.LL5 [ [ [ [ s!ecification 4line B+5 !revious theorem s!ecification symmetry transitivity 4lines L+."c.T T8T has !roven the commutativity of addition& Even if you do not follow this derivation in detail.L%5 enerali<ation UTherefore. it is im!ortant to reali<e that.ust a random walk that ha!!ens to have landed on the desired last .4%B5 4d^Sc5XS4d^c5 4%%5 S4d^c5X4d^Sc5 4%C5 "d.4c^Sd5X4Sd^c5a s!ecification symmetry s!ecification 4line B*5 s!ecification !ush !remise s!ecification add S carry over %+ transitivity carry over %% transitivity carry over %L transitivity enerali<ation !o! fantasy rule enerali<ation UIf d commutes with every c. then Sd does too&V [ 4L+5 4c^?5Xc 4L"5 "a.

but it would !robably have doubled the len th of the book& 8ow after this theorem. without resolvin & )rrival at line B* would confirm the reader1s intuition and ive him a momentary feelin of satisfaction while at the same time stren thenin his drive to !ro ress towards what he !resumes is the true oal& 8ow line C# is a critically im!ortant tension-increaser.4!erha!s a stran e meta!hor to a!!ly to somethin called -T8T-5& It is of the same stren th as the system of &rincipia 'athematica= in T8T one can now !rove every theorem which you would find in a standard treatise on number theory& Ef course. it is so enormously unwieldy as to be. and the distributivity of multi!lication over addition& These would ive a !owerful base to work from& )s it is now formulated. the natural direction to o would be to !rove the associativity of addition. the only way to o is towards rela(ation of the formal system& Etherwise. but also of informal !roofs& The mathematician1s sense of tension is intimately related to his sense of beauty. a conte(t which enables new rules of . which are resolved by Aine LD& This is ty!ical of the structure not only of formal derivations. and count all the squares in it&&& 8o= after total formali<ation. because of -almost-therefeelin which it induces& It would be e(tremely unsatisfactory to leave off there2 'rom there on. T8T has reached -critical mass.ust when it had made the mode of resolution a!!arent& Hou don1t want to imagine the endin —you want to hear the endin & Aikewise here. no one would claim that derivin theorems in T8T is the best way to do number theory& )nybody who felt that way would fall in the same class of !eo!le as those who think that the best way to know what "+++ ( "+++ is. however. there seems to be no reflection of these tensions& In other words. where you resolve momentarily. useless& Thus. it is im!ortant to embed T8T within a wider conte(t. somethin like the halfway !oint in an **BB ty!e of !iece. for all !ractical !ur!oses. it is almost !redictable how thin s must o& 0ut you wouldn1t want a !iece of music to quit on you . that in T8T itself. we have to carry thin s throu h& Aine LL is inevitable. the commutativity and associativity of multi!lication. -naturalness. and ettin a sense of where it is oin as he sees each new line& This would set u! an inner tension. very much like the tension in a !iece of music caused by chord !ro ressions that let know what the tonality is.to show some of the -!hrasin .line& I have inserted -breathin marks. and sets u! all the final tensions. oal and sub oal. T8T doesn1t formali<e the notions of tension and resolution. and is what makes mathematics worthwhile doin & 8otice. even if not in the tonic key& Such im!ortant intermediate sta es are often called -lemmas-& It is easy to ima ine a reader startin at line " of this derivation i norant of where it is to end u!.of this derivation& Aine B* in !articular is a turnin !oint in the derivation. is to draw a "+++ by "+++ rid.and -inevitabilityany more than a !iece of music is a book about harmony and rhythm& 7ould one devise a much fancier ty!o ra!hical system which is aware of the tensions and oals inside derivations? +ormal $easoning "s1 Informal $easoning I would have !referred to show how to derive Euclid1s Theorem 4the infinitude of !rimes5 in T8T.

if we don1t. in a !urely mechanical way& )s it turns out. none of these s!eedin u! tricks would make T8T any more powerful= they would sim!ly make it more usa(le& The sim!le fact is that we have !ut into T8T every mode of thou ht that number theorists rely on& Embeddin it in ever lar er conte(ts will not enlar e the s!ace of theorems= it will . is a cause either for re.umber Theorists Go out of Business Su!!ose that you didn1t have advance knowled e that T8T will turn out to be incom!lete.ust mi ht be sli htly -off -& 'urthermore. those informal !rocesses which we have tried to ca!ture in the formal rules of the system. e(!ected that it is com!lete—that is. de!endin on your !oint of view. but it ets more and more conceivable that our thou hts mi ht lead us astray. that each rule embodies a reasonin !rinci!le which we believe in. are themselves inconsistent2 It is of course not the kind of thin we e(!ect. with sufficient time. if not-T is true. you could make a decision !rocedure for all of number theory& The method would be easy.of T8T1s consistency as Im!rudence did in re ard to the Pro!ositional 7alculus namely. the more com!le( the sub. or for mournin & /ilbert%s .inference to be derived.is actually a coherent construct? Perha!s our own thou ht !rocesses.ust too many rules of inference and some of them . com!leteness says that 9 is a theorem= and conversely. number theorists would be !ut out of business any question in their field could be resolved. if T8T were com!lete. in the way we did for the /IFsystem and !q-system& Hou must come to 9 or X9 after a while= and whichever one you hit tells you which of S and not-S is true& 4:id you follow this ar ument? It crucially de!ends on your bein able to hold se!arate in your mind the formal system T8T and its informal counter!art 8& /ake sure you understand it&5 Thus. if you want to know if 8statement S is true or false. by pro#ing it to be consistent could make the same o!enin statement on the -obviousness. the metalan ua e& )nd one could o considerably further& ?owever. this is im!ossible. which.rogram The final question which we will take u! in this 7ha!ter is whether should have as much faith in the consistency of T8T as we did consistency of the Pro!ositional 7alculus= and.ect matter . since either S or not-S is true& 8ow be in systematically enumeratin all the theorems of T8T. that every true statement e(!ressible in the T8T—notation is a theorem& In that case. but rather. in !rinci!le. whether !ossible to increase our faith in T8T. then com!leteness says that X9 is a theorem& So either 9 or X9 must be a theorem.oicin . so that derivations can be s!eeded u!& This would require formali<ation of the lan ua e in which rules of inference are e(!ressed—that is. this ar ument still carries wei ht—but not quite so much wei ht as before& There are . how do we know that this mental model we have of some abstract entities called -natural numbers. im!roved version-—look more like doin conventional number theory& .ust make workin in T8T—or in each -new. code it into T8T-sentence 9& 8ow if S is true. and therefore to question the consistency of T8T is to question our own sanity& To some e(tent.

and additionally some kinds of numerical reasonin & 0ut 6>del1s work showed that any effort to !ull the heavy ro!e of T8T1s consistency across the a! by usin the thin ro!e of finitistic methods is doomed to failure& 6>del showed that in order to !ull the heavy ro!e across the a!. as embodied in the Pro!ositional 7alculus.system to show that a system is consistent.methods of reasonin & These would be the thin ro!e& Included amon finitistic methods are all of !ro!ositional reasonin . first a li ht arrow is fired across the a!.ect matter& Prudence1s cry for a proof of consistency has to be taken more seriously in this case& It1s not that we seriously doubt that T8T could be inconsistent but there is a little doubt. then we shall have really accom!lished somethin & 8ow on first si ht one mi ht think there is a thin ro!e& Eur oal is to !rove that T8T has a certain ty!o ra!hical !ro!erty 4consistency5. by usin means which are weaker than its own internal modes of reasonin & This is the ho!e which was held by an im!ortant school of mathematicians and lo icians in the early !art of this century. what will we have accom!lished? If we could mana e to convince ourselves consistency of T8T. then the heavy ro!e !ulled across the a!& If we can use a -li ht. and a !roof would hel! to dis!el that doubt& 0ut what means of !roof would we like to see used? Ence a ain.ust isn1t a stron enou h one& Aess meta!horically. you can1t use a li hter ro!e= there . a limmer of a doubt in our minds. faced with the recurrent question of circularity& If we use all the equi!ment in a !roof a(out our system as we have inserted into it. a flicker.ection2 Think of the way a heavy ro!e is !assed between shi!s 4or so I read when I was a kid5. but by usin a weaker system of reasonin than we will have beaten the circularity ob. we can say. !ullin behind it a thin ro!e& Ence a connection has been established between the two shi!s this way. that no theorems of the form 9 and X9 ever occur& This is similar to tryin to show that /F is not a theorem of the /IFsystem& 0oth are statements about t)pographical !ro!erties of symbol-mani!ulation systems& The visions of a thin ro!e are based on the !resum!tion that facts a(out num(er theor) won't (e needed in !rovin that such a ty!o ra!hical !ro!erty holds& In other words. *n) s)stem that is strong enough to pro#e TNT's consistenc) is at least as strong as TNT itself! )nd so circularity is inevitable& . if !ro!erties of inte ers are not used—or if only a few e(tremely sim!le ones are used—then we could achieve the oal of !rovin T8T consistent. led by :avid ?ilbert& The oal was to !rove the consistency of formali<ations of number theory similar to T8T by em!loyin a very restricted set of !rinci!les of reasonin called -finitistic.ets—and natural numbers are by no means a trivial sub.

?eavens. and whatnot& So one day I1m thinkin to myself.A $u %fferin!" The Tortoise and *chilles ha#e Must (een to hear a lecture on the origins of the Genetic 8ode. s!lendid& Then !erha!s I can finally become enli htened& *chilles. you1re wron & I was doin my best. I still was semi-aware of the words comin into my ears& Ene stran e ima e that floated u! from my lower levels was that 1)1 and 1T1.ect matter of that lecture. . Hou would. I have always had a yen for the yin and yan . it is such a stran e netherworld that those molecular biolo ists are e(!lorin & Tortoise. 8o. only I had a hard time kee!in fancy se!arated from fact& )fter all. I can see you were not !ayin too much attention to the lecture& *chilles. urus. -3hy not 9en too?. and are now drinking some tea at *chilles' home! *chilles. 'ancy that& I wouldn1t have uessed that you were a meditator& *chilles. instead of for cytosine& I1m not sure about 161. :id I never tell you that I am studyin 9en 0uddhism? Tortoise. can loo! back and mani!ulate the :8) which they came from. instead of standin for -adenine.and -thymine-. for that matter& Just think of the infinite re ress T?)T leads to2 Tortoise. about 171 and 161? *chilles. !ossibly even destroyin it& Such stran e loo!s always confuse the dayli hts out of me& They1re eerie. /r& T& Tortoise. I su!!ose 171 could stand for /r& 7rab. I have somethin terrible to confess. ?ow do you mean? *chilles. :es!ite the fascinatin sub.ust down your alley& 0ut me. it1s the last one2 Enli htenment is not for novices like you. I drifted off to slee! a time or two& 0ut in my drowsy state. in a way& Tortoise. with the 3 8hing. always !aired u!. how did you come u!on that? *chilles. 3hat is it. as an antidote& It clears my mind of all those confusin loo!s and incredible com!le(ities which we were hearin about toni ht& Tortoise. sometimes I like to retreat from all this analytic thou ht any meditate a little. Phooey2 3ho believes in that silly kind of stuff? )nyway. it was amusin to ima ine my :8) bein with minuscule co!ies of you—as well as tiny co!ies of myself. )chilles? *chilles. now& Enli htenment is not the first ste! on the road to 9en= if anythin . stood for my name and yours—and double-strands of :8) had tiny co!ies of me and you alon their backbones. I find them quite a!!ealin & *chilles. 3hoa. but I1m sure one could think of somethin & )nyway. which are coded for in :8). 3ell. /olecular biolo y is filled with !eculiar convoluted loo!s which I can1t quite understand.)nd that1s how it all be an& Tortoise. such as the way that folded !roteins. /r& T2 . Eh. you know—the whole Eriental mysticism tri!. of course—they1re .ust as adenine and thymine always are& Isn1t that a stran e symbolic ima e? Tortoise.

?e is my master. let me tell you somethin of the teachin s of my master& I have learned that in 9en. you radually learn to stray from that !ath& The more you stray from the !ath.ust is& I have also learned that a student of 9en is not su!!osed to -attach. a mile away& 0ut how ever did he come to be tan led u! in 9en? Poor fellow2 *chilles. 'or Pete1s sake. and his teachin s descend directly from those of the si(th !atriarch& ?e has tau ht me that reality is one. Ekanisama—the seventh !atriarch& Tortoise. of all !eo!le. then? *chilles. 9en was brou ht to Ja!an. Hou could study with me under my master. That matter has troubled me quite a bit& 0ut I think I have finally worked out an answer& It seems to me that you may be in a!!roachin 9en throu h any !ath you know—even if it is com!letely antithetical to 9en& )s you a!!roach it. I hardly meant somethin so wei hty as is meant in 9en& )ll I meant is that I can !erha!s become enli htened as to what 9en is all about& *chilles. to study it ri orously? *chilles.Tortoise. the -seventh !atriarch-? *chilles. if 9en re. and unchan in = all !lurality. chan e. 0ut tell me.ects intellectual activity.I—the state of -8o-mind-& In this state. 3ould you tell me a little of the history of 9en. and motion are mere illusions of the senses& Tortoise. and maybe you1ll come to a!!reciate it& )s I was sayin . the closer you et to 9en& Tortoise. would et mi(ed u! in this business& *chilles. or de!end on. about five hundred years later. he must not believe in. or S)TE. one seeks enli htenment. ?mm&&& 8ow T?E. nothin 1s im!ossible& *chilles. )n e(cellent idea& 9en is a kind of 0uddhism which was founded by a monk named 0odhidharma. I see we have had a misunderstandin & 0y -enli htenment-. one does not think about the world—one . I1d be only too ha!!y to tell you what I know of 9en& Perha!s you mi ht even be tem!ted to become a student of it. I don1t know the answer to your question& Instead. does it make sense to intellectuali<e about 9en. that1s 9eno. immutable. it all be ins to sound so clear now& .to any ob. 3ho is this Ekanisama. 3haaat? I wouldn1t !ut it that way& If )8HE8E is tan led u!. The si(th !atriarch was 9eno.E1S somethin I could like about 9en& *chilles. eh? I find it stran e that he. like me& Tortoise. I daresay you underestimate the value of 9en& Aisten . 8ow what in the world does that mean? *chilles. 3ell. Sure enou h. it1s&&& 0ut that1s another matter& )nyway. Hou have to know the history of 9en to understand that& Tortoise. Eh. who left India and went to 7hina around the si(th century& 0odhidharma was the first !atriarch& The si(th one was Eno& 4I1ve finally ot it strai ht now25 Tortoise.ust a little more. and it took hold very well there& Since that time it has been one of the !rinci!al reli ions in Ja!an& Tortoise. any absolute—not even this !hiloso!hy of nonattachment& Tortoise. why didn1t you say so? 3ell.ect or thou ht or !erson—which is to say. I had a hunch you1d et attached to it& Tortoise.

3hat is a kRan? *chilles. )ll ri ht& Ene of the alle ed kRans oes like this. 3hat1s the matter? *chilles. sometimes& I uess I1m be innin to et the han of 9en& :o you know any other kRans. ?mm&&& -This mind is 0uddha-? Sometimes I don1t quite understand what these 9en !eo!le are ettin at& *chilles. -This mind is 0uddha&- Tortoise.the question& *chilles. 0y your standards. )chilles? I would like to hear some more& *chilles. and which one is a fraud& Tortoise. /y !leasure& I can tell you a !air of kRans which o to ether Enly&&& Tortoise. I doubt it& ?owever. Hou mi ht !refer the other alle ed kRan then& . Eh. E(actly2 Tortoise. JRshl -unasked. 1/F1 sounds like a handy thin to have around& I1d like to unask a question or two. ) monk asked 0aso. yes& 8ow one day while JRshl and another monk were standin to ether in the monastery. Sounds rather intri uin & 3ould you say that to read and en. a do wandered by& The monk asked JRshl. 3ell. 3hatever that is& So tell me—what did JRshl re!ly? *chilles. /y favorite !ath to 9en is throu h the short. )nd I would like to tell you one—or a few& Perha!s be in with the most famous one of all& /any centuries a o.*chilles. in my o!inion. I would like to hear a kRan or two& *chilles. -3hat is 0uddha?0aso said. a deli ht in kRans comes a million times closer to real 9en than readin volume after about 9en. fascinatin and weird 9en !arables called -kRans-& Tortoise. he does not know which one is enuine. 7ra<y2 3hy don1t you tell them both to me and we can s!eculate to our hearts1 content2 *chilles.ar on& Tortoise. -:oes a do have 0uddha-nature. there was a 9en master named JRshl. JRshl let the other monk know that only by not askin such questions can one know the answer to them& Tortoise. there is one !roblem& )lthou h both are widely told kRans. 1/F1? 3hat is this 1/F1? 3hat about the do ? 3hat about 0uddha-nature? 3hat1s the answer? *chilles. my master has cautioned me that only one of them is enuine& )nd what is more. who lived to be ""# years old& Tortoise.oy kRans is to !ractice 9en? *chilles. ) kRan is a story about 9en masters and their students& Sometimes it is like a riddle= other times like a fable= and other times like nothin you1ve ever heard before& Tortoise. 1/F1& Tortoise. written in heavy !hiloso!hical . but 1/F1 is JRshl1s answer& 0y sayin 1/F1. ) mere youn ster2 *chilles. or not?Tortoise.

8ow. ?ow does it run? *chilles.kRans& Tortoise. That1s a curious thin to do& )nd what is the second sta e? 73G5=E DG! Aa /e<quita. ) monk asked 0aso. I su!!ose it1s all academic. Aike this. but there you are mistaken& /y master has shown us how to do it& Tortoise. you must T. my master believes only one of the two is enuine& Tortoise. since there1s no way to know if a kRan is enuine or !hony& *chilles.Tortoise. I can1t ima ine what led him to such a belief& 0ut anyway. Is that so? ) decision !rocedure for enuineness of kRans? I should very much like to hear about T?)T& *chilles. /y. then—I don1t like it& *chilles. -This mind is not 0uddha&- Tortoise. -3hat is 0uddha?0aso said. folded all around in three dimensions& Tortoise. It is a fairly com!le( ritual.ust -like.)8SA)TE the kRan in question into a !iece of strin . BIHJ/! . /r& T—you1re not su!!osed to . () '! 8! Escher (lack and white chalk. involvin two sta es& In the first sta e. my2 If my shell isn1t reen and not reen2 I like that2 *chilles. Eh. That1s better& 8ow as I was sayin . Gery well.

my master e(!lained to me that shiftin between domains can hel!& It1s like switchin your !oint of view& Thin s sometimes look com!licated from one an le. 8ot e(actly& It is a s!ecial sticky !re!aration which makes the strin hold its sha!e. That is one of the most mysterious thin s I have learned in 9en& There are two ste!s. if you can1t even tell whether a :E6 has 0uddhanature or not. Enly to the uninitiated& 8ow once you have made the messen er. -transcri!tion.)8S7. They are mysterious-lookin & *chilles. I don1t know. but from s!ecial an les.& Tortoise. you can T. which contains only four eometric symbols& This !honetic rendition of the kRan is called the /ESSE86E. That1s what my master has discovered& Tortoise. tell me. Hou be in with the strin entirely strai ht& Then you o to one end and start makin folds of various ty!es. Some ribo? Is that a kind of ritual anointment? *chilles. but if you translate it into a strin it mana es in some way to float to the surface? *chilles. but sim!le from another& ?e ave the e(am!le of an orchard. in which from one direction no order is a!!arent. I see& So !erha!s the enuineness of a kRan is concealed how very dee!ly inside it. you rub your hands in some ribo. and— Tortoise. accordin to the eometric symbols in the messen er& .)8SA)TE the sequence of symbols in the messen er into certain kinds of folds in the strin & It1s as sim!le as that& Tortoise. or not2 If it does. when folded u!& Tortoise. once you have some ribo on your hands. 3hat is it made of? *chilles. and it works e(ceedin ly well& )nyway. 3ell. ?old on2 8ot so fast2 ?ow do you do that? *chilles. Tortoise. and draws for the Tortoise these four figures5. how can you e(!ect to do so for every !ossible folded strin ? *chilles. They are made of he(a ons and !enta ons& ?ere is what they look like 4 picks up a near() napkin. 3hat do the eometric symbols look like? *chilles. that1s easy—all you need to do is determine whether the strin has 0uddhanature.I0I86 a kRan involves writin it in a !honetic al!habet. then the kRan is enuine—if not.*chilles: Eh. Then I would very much like to learn about the technique& 0ut first.and -translation-& T. beautiful re ularity emer es& Hou1ve reordered the same information by chan in your way of lookin at it& Tortoise. how can you turn a kRan 4a sequence of words5 into a folded strin 4a threedimensional ob. the kRan is a fraud& Tortoise: ?mm&&& It sounds as if all you1ve done is transfer the need for a decision !rocedure to another domain& 8ow it1s a decision !rocedure for 0uddha-nature that you need& 3hat ne(t? )fter all.ect5? They are rather different kinds of entities& *chilles. e(actly& 0ut it feels sort of luey.

)chilles& Perha!s those who have learned the lowdown on enli htenment return to their state before enli htenment& I1ve always held that -twice enli htened is unenli htened&. 0ut wouldn1t it be a ood thin if all students of 9en co!ied that most enli htened master of all. 8ot in isolation& Hou take them three at a time. e(ce!t that he also invented the )rt of 9en Strin s& Tortoise. it1s rather doubtful that it stands for you. instead of one at a time& Hou be in at one end of the strin . and co!y him in other ways& Tortoise.ST sta e of enli htenment. Aittle is known of him. Hes—there is a venerated book which lists the -6eometric 7ode-& If you don1t have a co!y of this book. the strin will kee! its folded sha!e. you can1t translate a kRan into a strin & Tortoise. and what you thereby !roduce is the translation of the kRan into a strin & Tortoise. that is *chilles. There is even re!uted to be a kRan which tells how the )rt of 9en Strin s be an& 0ut unfortunately. The !rocedure has a certain ele ance to it& Hou must et some wild-lookin strin s that way& *chilles. In my o!inion. )chilles& /ore likely. I would be fascinated& There is so much for novices like me to absorb2 *chilles. So each of those eometric symbols stands for a different way to curl the strin u!? *chilles. and is no doubt one forever& 3hich may be . the 6reat Tutor? *chilles. let alone the— Tortoise. 6ood ravy2 )s if one level of the stuff weren1t enou h& 0ut then there are luttons of every sort—why not luttons for enli htenment? *chilles. Hou never know. foldin each little se ment of strin until you have e(hausted the messen er& If you have !ro!erly a!!lied some ribo. and one end of the messen er& 3hat to do with the first inch of the strin is determined by the first three eometric symbols& The ne(t three symbols tell you how to fold the second inch of strin & )nd so you inch your way alon the strin and simultaneously alon the messen er.who my master says is the only one ever to attain the Enli htenment 1Hond Enli htenment& Tortoise. all this has lon since been lost in the sands of time.0ut let1s et back to the 6rand Tortue-uh. That1s for sure& The lon er kRans translate into quite bi<arre sha!es& Tortoise. of course. I mean the 6reat Tutor& *chilles. it stands for -/eta-Enli htenment-—-/E-. It came from an ancient master known as -6reat Tutor. 3hat is that? *chilles.ust as well. 'or you? 3hy would it stand for you? Hou haven1t even reached the 'I. Evidently not& 3hat is the ori in of the 6eometric 7ode *chilles. for otherwise there would be imitators who would take on the master1s name. :o you su!!ose that -Enli htenment 1Hond Enli htenment stands for -EHE-? Tortoise.Tortoise. It is an art on which the decision !rocedure for 0uddha-nature is based& I shall tell you about it& Tortoise. I can ima ine& 0ut in order to carry out the translation of the messen er into the strin . you need to know what kind of fold each tri!let of eometric symbols in the messen er stands for& ?ow do you know this? :o you have a dictionary? *chilles. Aet me tell you a kRan about an imitator& .

-3hat is the basic !rinci!le of 9en?Tortoise.3hen the novice turned. I see& 3ell. in a way& ?owever&&& Tortoise. 3hy did 0odhidharma come from India into 7hina? *chilles. 3ell. innocent thou h it sounds. what do you know2 Just when I thou ht 9en was all about JRshl and his shenani ans. 7an you answer . Perha!s 9en is instructive because it is humorous& I would uess that if you took all such stories entirely seriously. -3here can I find some shade from the midday sun?*chilles. -0oy2. 6utei raised his inde( fin er& )t that instant the novice was enli htened& Tortoise.ust one question for me? I would like to know this. Please do& *chilles.9en master 6utei raised his fin er whenever he was asked a question about 9en& ) youn novice be an to imitate him in this way& 3hen 6utei was told about the novice1s imitation. Eho2 Shall I tell you what JRshl said when he was asked that very question? Tortoise.ust not su!!osed to do it that way 1round& It would violate the 7entral :o ma of 9en strin s. 3hat1s wron ? *chilles. actually means. he sent for him and asked him if were true& The novice admitted it was so& 6utei asked him if he understood& In re!ly the novice held u! his inde( fin er& 6utei !rom!tly cut it off& The novice ran from the room. ?ow e(traordinary& I hadn1t the sli htest idea that the central aim of 9en was to find some shade& *chilles. kRan Þ transcription messen er Þ translation folded strin Hou1re not su!!osed to o a ainst the arrows—es!ecially not the second one& . ?e re!lied. you see. /aybe there1s somethin to your Tortoise-9en& Tortoise. which is contained in this !icture 4 picks up a napkin and draws5. Eh. you have inadvertently hit u!on one of the basic questions of all 9en& That question. howlin in !ain& )s he reached the threshold. Ef course= that1s . 6utei called. That kRan is very serious& I don1t know how you ot the idea that it is humorous& Tortoise. no—you1ve misunderstood me entirely& I wasn1t referrin to T?)T question& I meant your question about why 0odhidharma came from India into 7hina& Tortoise. 3ithout knowin it. Hou1re . 3ell.ust what I would have said& E(ce!t that I would have said it in answer to a different question—namely. I had no idea that I was ettin into such dee! waters& 0ut let1s come back to this curious ma!!in & I ather that any kRan can be turned into a folded strin by followin the method you outlined& 8ow what about the reverse !rocess? 7an any folded strin be read in such a way as to yield a kRan? *chilles. now I find out that 6utei is in on the merriment too& ?e seems to have quite a sense of humor& *chilles. -That oak tree in the arden&Tortoise. you would miss the !oint as often as you would et it& *chilles.

my master has said that the 6reat Tutor was able. by . 3ell. what ha!!ens when you o a ainst the arrows in the 7entral :o ma? :oes that mean you be in with a strin and make a kRan? *chilles. 3hy don1t you tell me about the decision !rocedure which allows you to distin uish !hony kRans from the enuine article? *chilles. It only SEE/S to be one? *chilles. Sometimes—but some weirder thin s can ha!!en& Tortoise. Hes. 1Hond Enli htenment? Is there no other way to tell if a strin has 0uddha-nature? *chilles. Tell me. 3hy would you want to do that? Tortoise. 3ell. I1ve never confessed it to anyone before—not even Ekanisama& Tortoise. you et SE/ET?I86. I think I1ll unask the question& Is that all ri ht? *chilles. 3eirder than !roducin kRans? *chilles. 8ot always—sometimes you et nonsense syllables. I actually do o a ainst the arrows& I et sort of an illicit thrill out of it. other times you et un rammatical sentences& 0ut once in a while you et what seems to be a kRan& Tortoise. That1s what I was headin towards& 6iven the kRan. once in a while. Hou don1t say2 )nd is there a corres!ondin way of makin strin s which :E81T have 0uddha-nature? *chilles. Tortoise1s honor& *chilles. it mi ht be fraudulent. 0ut how do you do T?)T? *chilles.Tortoise. does this :o ma have 0uddha-nature. at least? *chilles. So tell me. Eh. I . all of which have 0uddha-nature& Tortoise. I call those strin s which yield a!!arent kRans -well-formed.ust thou ht it mi ht be useful& *chilles. )chilles2 I had no idea you would do somethin so irreverent2 *chilles. 3hy.ust another name for kRans? *chilles. Hou have the stran est taste& Ima ine2 0ein more interested in thin s that :E81T have 0uddha-nature than thin s that :E2 Tortoise. 0ut what if you have not reached the sta e of the Enli htenment. Hes&&& 3hen you untranslate and untranscribe. or non-kRan. I am lad you unasked the question& 0ut—I1ll let you in on a secret& Promise you won1t tell anyone? Tortoise. Just chalk it u! to my unenli htened state& 0ut o on& Tell me how to make a strin which :EES have 0uddha-nature& . of course& *chilles. 3ell. there is& )nd this is where the )rt of 9en Strin s comes in& It is a technique for makin innumerably many strin s. you see& Tortoise. or not? 7ome to think of it. I uess& Tortoise. Hou clearly don1t have the true s!irit of 9en yet& Tortoise. Eh. only ive nonsense& Tortoise. when read out this way.strin s& Tortoise. the first thin is to translate it into the dimensional strin & )ll that1s left is to find out if the strin has 0uddha-nature or not& Tortoise. as the case may be. :o you always et stories. to tell if it had 0uddha-nature or not& Tortoise. but not always a kRan& Some strin s. Isn1t that .ust lancin at a strin .

accordin to what I1ve learned. you are allowed to modify your strin by doin certain basic motions of the hands& 'or instance. every strin you !roduce will have 0uddhanature& Tortoise. it looks . 3hy. by which you can make more com!le( strin fi ures& In !articular. 3hy. and consequently it must corres!ond to a enuine kRan& Tortoise.ules.*chilles.ust made? 3ould it be enuine? *chilles. you nau hty fellow2 *nd with furrowed (row and code (ook in hand. )re you askin me to violate the 7entral :o ma? Eh.ust like makin cat1s-cradles and such strin fi ures2 *chilles. 3hat are the other four le al startin !ositions? *chilles. Terrific& 8ow let1s hear it& *chilles. -3ait until I investi ate&. 3hy. That is truly marvelous& 8ow what about the kRan concealed inside this strin you1ve . Then there are some Strin /ani!ulation . -6o strai ht ahead&. it1s a shame that JRshl never was hired by the '0I& 8ow tell me—what you did. with his flair for investi ations.ules. you must be in by dra!in a loo! of strin over your hands in one of five le al startin !ositions. I could also do. you can reach across like this—and !ull like this—and twist like this& 3ith each o!eration you are chan in the overall confi uration of the strin dra!ed over your hands& Tortoise. Ef course& *chilles. it must& Since I made it accordin to the . until he has nearl) a napkinful!/ :one2 Tortoise.)fter the monk had !roceeded a few ste!s. and be an in one of the five self-evident !ositions. and the old woman ave the same answer& JRshl remarked. 3ell.The ne(t day he went and asked the same question.ules. who said. Each one is a !osition considered to be a SEA'-EGI:E8T manner of !ickin u! a strin & Even novices often !ick u! strin s in those !ositions& )nd these five strin s all have 0uddha-nature& Tortoise. -?e also is a common church. you1ll see that some of these rules make the strin more com!le(= some sim!lify it& 0ut whichever way you o. such as this one&&& 4 &icks up a string and drapes it in a simple loop (etween a finger on each hand!/ Tortoise.ules from the )rt of 9en Strin s. That1s ri ht& 8ow as you watch. she said to herself. a !o!ular tem!le su!!osed to ive wisdom to the one who worshi!s there& The old woman said. ri ht? . :o you know what the kRan is? *chilles. if I followed the . )ll ri ht& ) travelin monk asked an old woman the road to Tai<an. recording each fold () a triplet of geometric s)m(ols of the strange phonetic alpha(et for k[an. -I have investi ated that old woman&- Tortoise. *chilles points along the string inch () inch.oer&Someone told this incident to JRshl. the strin must have 0uddha-nature. as lon as you follow the Strin /ani!ulation .

but I am a little confused on this !oint myself& )t first my master ave the stron est im!ression that 0uddha-nature in a strin was :E'I8E: by startin in one of the five le al !ositions. 0y no means& )ny number of ste!s is fine& Tortoise. any old order will do& Tortoise. and consequently a different kRan& 8ow would I have to !erform the same 8F/0E. no matter in what order? *chilles. I1m . as you did? *chilles. when turned into strin s via the 6eometric 7ode? *chilles. from JRshl1s 1/F1& I wonder&&& *chilles.ust so ha!!ens that once you know how to make strin s 3IT? 0uddha nature. 3ell.and -This mind is not 0uddha-—what do they look like. at least.i ht& Tortoise. 8ow would I have to !erform the o!erations in . then only E8E of them can have 0uddha-nature& It1s a rule of thumb which my master tau ht me& Tortoise. 0ecause of this fundamental !ro!erty of 0uddha-nature= when two well-formed strin s are identical but for a knot at one end. ties a little teen) knot at one end of it. I hate to admit it. and then develo!in the strin accordin to the allowed . he said somethin about somebody-or-other1s -Theorem-& I never ot it strai ht& /aybe I even misheard what he said& 0ut whatever he said. I athered as much.e picks up the string out of which the preceding k[an was "pulled".ust wonderin about those two kRans—I mean the kRan and its un-kRan —the ones which say -This mind is 0uddha. then there are an infinite number of strin s with 0uddha nature—and consequently an infinite number of enuine kRans ?ow do you know there is any strin which 7)81T be made by your . . it !ut some doubt in my mind as to whether this method hits )AA strin s with 0uddha-nature& To the best of my knowled e. I1d be lad to show you& . 8o. Eh. you know& Tortoise. pulling it tight with his thum( forefinger!/ This is it—no 0uddha-nature here& Tortoise.ules of 9en Strin s. for e(am!le—I1ll make a strin which lacks 0uddha-nature && & .*chilles. of ste!s as you did? *chilles.:E. Gery illuminatin & )ll it takes is addin a knot? ?ow do you know that the new strin lacks 0uddha-nature? *chilles. I was . it does& 0ut 0uddha-nature is a !retty elusive thin . you can also make strin s 3IT?EFT 0uddha-nature& That is somethin which my master drilled into me ri ht at the be innin & Tortoise. Ef course.ules& 0ut then later. then I would et a different strin .ust wonderin about somethin & )re there some strin s with 0uddha-nature which you 7)81T reach by followin the .ules? *chilles. 3onderful2 ?ow does it work? *chilles. 3hat is it? Tortoise.ust the same E. Easy& ?ere. yes—back to thin s which lack 0uddha-nature& It .

certainly& ?ere you are& . creates a comple9 string which he proffers wordlessl) to *chilles! *t that moment. which he carefull) folds inch () inch. it1s that one of them has a little knot on its end2 *chilles. 0y JRshl. at tryin to !roduce these two strin s by followin the Strin /ani!ulation . Jee!ers cree!ers2 I1ll have to try out your method myself& I have never seen a strin like this2 Tortoise. )T /EST E8E of such a !air can have 0uddhanature. I have a sort of hankerin to make a strin myself& It would be amusin to see if what I come u! with is well-formed or not& *chilles. 8ow you reali<e that I don1t have the sli htest idea what to do& 3e1ll .e writes down the phonetic transcriptions. I ho!e it is well-formed& *chilles. )ha2 8ow I understand why your master is sus!icious& *chilles. *chilles' face lights up!/ *chilles. following the triplets of s)m(ols written in the strange alpha(et! Then he places the finished strings side () side!/ Hou see. 3hat ha!!ened? . I never carried my thou hts as far as that—but you1re ri ht—it1s !ossible. Hou mean.ules. indeed& 3hy. That could be interestin & ?ere1s a !iece of strin & 4 . Eh .ands it (ack to the Tortoise.ust have to take !otluck with my awkward !roduction. who ties another knot at the same end! Then the Tortoise gi#es a sharp tug. to wonder if either one has 0uddha-nature? Perha!s neither of them has 0uddha-nature—and neither kRan is enuine2 *chilles. and so has my master. Hou do? Tortoise.e passes one to the Tortoise!/ Tortoise. which will follow no rules and will !robably wind u! bein com!letely undeci!herable& 4Grasps the loop (etween his feet and. I uess& 0ut I think you should not ask so many questions about 0uddha-nature& The 9en master /umon always warned his !u!ils of the dan er of too many questions& Tortoise. I see it1s ot a knot at one end& Tortoise. )ccordin to your rule of thumb. here is the difference& Tortoise.ust a moment2 /ay I have it back? I want to do one thin to it& *chilles. but to no avail& 8either one ever turns u!& It1s quite frustratin & Sometimes you be in to wonder&&& Tortoise. 3hy.. you1re ri ht& Tortoise. and then pulls from his pocket a couple of pieces of string. with a few simple manipulations. 0ut that doesn1t tell which one is !hony& I1ve worked. and suddenl) (oth knots disappearA/ *chilles. They are very similar. I do believe there is only one difference between them. )ll ri ht—no more questions& Instead. so you know ri ht away that one of the kRans must be !hony& *chilles.

3ell. you could think of them as bein tra!!ed in a dee!er layer of Tumbolia& Perha!s there are layers and layers of Tumbolia& 0ut that1s neither here nor there& 3hat I would like to know is how my strin sounds. if you turn it back into !honetic symbols& *s he hands it (ack. created a com!le( strin which he !roffered wordlessly to the monk& )t that moment. )ll ri ht& The 6rand Tortue ras!ed the loo! between his feet and. and then 0ET? disa!!eared2 3here did they o? Tortoise. he brou ht to Tortue a !iece of strin .Tortoise. 'rom then on. you tied another one. who !assed it on to theirs& Tortoise. and carefull) Mots down the man) s)m(ol%triplets which correspond to the cur#) in#olutions of the Tortoise's stringR and when he is finished. and asked the same question& In re!ly. of course& That1s the Aaw of :ouble 8odulation& -uddenl). ah&&& you1ve ot a !oint there& 0ut !lease o on2 *chilles. Tumbolia. it does occur to me that burnin the strin would make it quite im!robable for the knots to come back& In such a case. Tum(olia!/ *chilles. the two knots reappear from out of nowhereOthat is to sa). I couldn1t say& ?owever. 0etween his feet? ?ow odd2 *chilles. with a few sim!le mani!ulations. )ma<in & They must lie in a fairly accessible layer of Tumbolia if they can !o! into it and out of it so easily& Er is all of Tumbolia equally inaccessible? Tortoise. the 6rand Tortue ras!ed the loo! between his feet and— Tortoise. I1d rather be twice-enli htened. )ll ri ht& It oes like this. the monk did not bother Tortue& Instead. Muite a yarn& It1s hard to believe it was really hidden inside my strin & . if you be in with a strin dra!ed over your feet& I1ll ski! those borin details& It concludes this way. 0ut instead of untyin it. he made strin after strin by Tortue1s method= and he !assed the method on to his own disci!les. !ersonally& *chilles. the knots pop into o(li#ion!/ *chilles. I always feel so uilty about violatin the 7entral :o ma&&& 4 Takes out his pen and code (ook. the monk was enli htened& Tortoise. 3hy should HEF find that odd? Tortoise. I1m willin if you1re willin & *chilles. he clears his #oice&5 )hem& )re you ready to hear what you have wrou ht? Tortoise.ects had 0uddha-nature or not& To such questions Tortue invariably sat silent& The monk had already asked about a bean. and a moonlit ni ht& Ene day. a lake. by askin whether various ob. Then it tells how to make the 6rand Tortue1s strin . I wanted to et rid of that knot& *chilles. once again. ) certain monk had a habit of !esterin the 6rand Tortue 4the only one who had ever reached the Enli htenment 1Hond Enli htenment5.

3ait . this is HEF. 7ertainly not& *chilles. to say the least& Tortoise. I don1t a ree& I think it1s a handsome name& I still want to know how Tortue1s strin looked& 7an you !ossibly recreate it from the descri!tion iven in the kRan? *chilles. Hes. his feet rest on no limb. I1ll have to use my feet. -3hy did 0odhidharma come to 7hina from India?. and for a few minutes twists and (ends the string in arcane wa)s until he has the finished product &5 3ell. Het it was& )stonishin ly. isn1t that so? I wonder where I saw it before? *chilles. /r& Tortoise& Tortoise 4looking most pleased with himself and pa)ing no attention to *chilles 5. that you may have hit u!on that lon -lost kRan which describes the very ori in of the )rt of 9en Strin s2 Tortoise.to small details like that inside kRans& It1s the s!irit of the whole kRan that counts. Ef course not—it1s the strin which you first handed to me.*chilles.If the man in the tree does not answer. falls and loses his life& 8ow what shall he do? Tortoise. 9en is like a man han in in a tree by his teeth over a !reci!ice& ?is hands ras! no branch. Somethin about your strin is be innin & to trouble me. not -Tutor-& 3hat a droll name2 Tortoise. I know2 3hy. /r& T2 Er is it? Tortoise. I could try&&& Ef course. 0ut that means that the reat master—the only one who ever reached the mystical state of the Enli htenment 1Hond Enli htenment—was named -Tortue-. It1s stran e. Eh. here it is& Edd. too. Er that my strin has 0uddha-nature? *chilles. and take u! molecular biolo y& . :o you su!!ose my kRan is enuine? *chilles.e picks up the k[an and a piece of string. and under the tree another !erson asks him. before you took it back to tie an e(tra knot in it& Tortoise. that would almost be too ood to have 0uddha-nature& *chilles. cra<y thou h it sounds. you seem to have created a well-formed strin ri ht off the bat& Tortoise. Eh. since it1s described in terms of foot motions& That1s !retty unusual& 0ut I think I can mana e it& Aet me ive it a o& 4. not little !arts of it& Say. I1d su!!ose& *chilles. how familiar it looks& Tortoise. strin . I doubt it& Ene shouldn1t -attach. 0ut what did the 6rand Tortue1s strin look like? That1s the main !oint of this kRan. and I1m not sure I like it& Tortoise. @yo en& @yo en said. do you know what I . he fails= and if he does answer. the best way I know to e(!lain it is to quote the words of another old 9en master.ust a moment&&& Tortoise. I1m sorry to hear it& I can1t ima ine what1s troublin you& *chilles.ust reali<ed? I think. 3ell. yes—indeed it is& 'ancy that& I wonder what that im!lies& *chilles. )nd what about Tortue1s strin ? :oes it have 0uddha nature? There are a host of questions to ask2 *chilles. /r& T& There is somethin mi hty funny oin on here. That1s clear= he should ive u! 9en. I would be scared to ask such questions.

com!iled forty-ei ht kRans. I can et some of this cluster of reactions across to you& )nd then. then. in the thirteenth century. /umon livin from ""*% to "BD+ in 7hina. meanin lessness. 'ibonacci from ""*+ to "BL+ in Italy& To those who would look to the /umonkan in ho!es of makin sense of.E I know what 9en is& In a way. verbal thou h they are& kRans are su!!osed to be -tri ers. the 9en attitude is that words and truth are incom!atible. and s!ills over& It mi ht seem. refreshin ." . for the comments and !oems are entirely as o!aque as the kRans which they are su!!osed to clarify& Take this. enticin & 9en has its own s!ecial kind of meanin . the /umonkan may come as a rude shock. stran e thou h it may seem. 9en is intellectual quicksand—anarchy. and clarity& I ho!e that in this 7ha!ter. and !robably I will never cease doin so& To me.TE$ I< Mumon and G#del >hat Is 2en7 I1/ 8ET SF.ate barrier-5& It is interestin to note that the lives of /umon and 'ibonacci coincided almost e(actly. 9en kRans are a central !art of 9en study.ate-5. darkness. it resists. or -understandin -. the kRans. I have stru led with 9en as!ects of life. I also think I can never understand it at all& Ever since my freshman En lish teacher in colle e read JRshl1s /F out loud to our class. that will lead us directly to 6>delian matters& Ene of the basic tenets of 9en 0uddhism is that there is no way to characteri<e what 9en is& 8o matter what verbal s!ace you try to enclose 9en in. for e(am!le. the monk /umon 4-8o. thou h they do not contain enou h information in themselves to im!art enli htenment. followin each with a commentary and a small -!oem-& This work is called -The 6ateless 6ate.which. or at least that no words can ca!ture truth& 2en Master Mumon Possibly in order to !oint this out in an e(treme way. chaos& It is tantali<in and infuriatin & )nd yet it is humorous. I think I understand it very well= but in a way. bri htness. may !ossibly be sufficient to unlock the mechanisms inside one1s mind that lead to enli htenment& 0ut in eneral.C/A. that all efforts to e(!lain 9en are com!lete wastes of time& 0ut that is not the attitude of 9en masters and students& 'or instance.or the /umonkan 4-8o.

() '! 8! Escher lithograph. BIGG/ .73G5=E DJ! Three 3orlds.

consider this.. but why can1t the tail also !ass?- 'umon's 8ommentar): If anyone can o!en one eye at this !oint and say a word of 9en. he can save all sentient bein s under him& 0ut if he cannot say such a word of 9en. /umon1s comments can be taken on more than one level& 'or instance.B . which of those two monks ained and which lost? If any of you has one eye.[an: 6oso said. he will see the failure on the teacher1s !art& ?owever.% . !erha!s meant to show how useless it is to s!end one1s time in chatterin about 9en& ?owever.[an: ) monk asked 8ansen. there is&-3hat is it?. and. -It is not mind. not only that. /umon1s comments are intentionally idiotic. -Hes. not that of the second&- 'umon's 8ommentar): I want to ask you. he should turn back to his tail& 'umon's &oem: If the buffalo runs. I am not discussin ain and loss& 'umon's &oem: 3hen the screen is rolled u! the reat sky o!ens. he will be butchered& That little tail Is a very stran e thin & I think you will have to admit that /umon does not e(actly clear everythin u!& Ene mi ht say that the metalan ua e 4in which /umon writes5 is not very different from the ob. it is not thin s&- . -The state of the first monk is ood.asked the monk& 8ansen re!lied. lowered for meditation.[an: ?R en of Seiryo monastery was about to lecture before dinner when he noticed that the bamboo screen. there is this one. said. -Is there a teachin no master ever tau ht before?8ansen said. his horns and his head and his hoofs all !ass throu h. it is not 0uddha. he will fall into the trench= If he returns. observin the !hysical moment. he is qualified to re!ay the four ratifications. had not been rolled u!& ?e !ointed to it& Two monks arose wordlessly from the audience and rolled it u!& ?R en.ect lan ua e 4the lan ua e of the kRan5& )ccordin to some. Het the sky is not attuned to 9en& It is best to for et the reat sky )nd to retire from every wind& Er then a ain. -3hen a buffalo oes out of his enclosure to the ed e of the abyss.

not makin idiotic statements& 7uriously.73G5=E DC! :ewdro!. do think that 8ansen was really so sure of his answer? Er did the -correctness. however. as well& 7oncernin /umon1s commentary. or is there any? 3hat if 8ansen had said. and thus it is a comment not only on 8ansen1s words.of his answer matter at all? Er does correctness !lay any role in 9en? 3hat is the difference between correctness and truth. there is not any such teachin -? 3ould it have made any difference? 3ould his remark have been immortali<ed in a kRan? . BIDE/! 'umon's 8ommentar): Eld 8ansen ave away his treasure-words& ?e must have been reatly u!set& 'umon's &oem: 8ansen was too kind and lost his treasure& Truly. words have no !ower& Even thou h the mountain becomes the sea. but on its own ineffectiveness& This ty!e of !arado( is quite characteristic of 9en& It is an attem!t to -break the mind of lo ic-& Hou see this !arado( quality in the kRan. () '! 8! Escher me@@otint. -8o. 3ords cannot o!en another1s mind& In this !oem /umon seems to be sayin somethin very central to 9en. the !oem is referential.

BIDC/! ?ere is another kRan which aims to break the mind of lo ic.. -I cannot follow you& I cannot understand you&-I cannot understand myself. () '! 8! Escher wood%engra#ing.said the master. so you cannot train yourself for it&-If there is no mind to train.asked the master& Then :oko said sadly. and said.said the master& .73G5=E DE! )nother 3orld. how can you lie like this?. how can I lie to you?. -There is no mind. -so how could the monks ather? I have no ton ue. -I am seekin the truth& In what state of mind should I train myself. and no truth to find. so how could I call them to ether or teach them?-Eh. why do you have these monks ather before you every day to study 9en and train themselves for this study?-0ut I haven1t an inch of room here. so as to find it?Said the master.C The student :oko came to a 9en master.asked :oko& -0ut if I have no ton ue to talk to others. so you cannot !ut it in any state& There is no truth..

a ma. obviously.by the word -conce!tual-. this one does& )nd most likely. accordin to 9en. can one make the lea! to enli htenment& 0ut what is so bad about lo ic? 3hy does it !revent the lea! to enli htenment? 2en%s Struggle Against ualism To answer that. transcendin dualism& 8ow what is dualism? :ualism is the conce!tual division of the world into cate ories& Is it !ossible to transcend this natural tendency? 0y !refi(in the word -division. it is !erce!tion& )s soon as you !erceive an ob.ust !lain words& The use of words is inherently dualistic. to say the least& )t the core of dualism. one needs to understand somethin about what enli htenment is& Perha!s the most concise summary of enli htenment would be. you i nore the fact& 8ow. where words are so dee!ly abused that one1s mind is !ractically left reelin . you draw a line between it and the rest of the world= you divide the world.[an: Shu<an held out his short staff and said. since each word re!resents. and you thereby miss the 3ay& ?ere is a kRan which demonstrates the stru . you o!!ose its reality& If you do not call it a short staff. I may have made it seem that this is an intellectual or conscious effort. into !arts. artificially. one1s mind does be in to o!erate nonlo ically.ust as much a !erce!tual division of the world into cate ories as it is a conce!tual division& In other words.L . so the theory oes. verbal thinkin & In fact. what do you wish to call this?- le a ainst words. if one takes the kRans seriously& Therefore !erha!s it is wron to say that the enemy of enli htenment is lo ic= rather it is dualistic. -If you call this a short staff. dualism is . a conce!tual cate ory& Therefore.or !art of 9en is the fi ht a ainst reliance on words& To combat the use of words.ect. it is even more basic than that. and !erha!s thereby iven the im!ression that dualism could be overcome sim!ly by su!!ressin thou ht 4as if to su!!ress thinkin actually were sim!le25& 0ut the breakin of the world into cate ories takes !lace far below the u!!er strata of thou ht= in fact. to some e(tent& Enly by ste!!in outside of lo ic. for when one is in a bewildered state. causin bewilderment is its !recise !ur!ose. one of the devices is the kRan. are words—. human !erce!tion is by nature a dualistic !henomenon—which makes the quest for enli htenment an u!hill stru le.If any kRan serves to bewilder.

but formal systems? )nd . you i nore the fact& It cannot be e(!ressed with words and it cannot be e(!ressed without words& 8ow say quickly what it is& 'umon's &oem: ?oldin out the short staff. you o!!ose its reality& If you do not call it a short staff. BIHE/! 'umon's 8ommentar): If you call this a short staff. not to call it a staff is. to i nore that !articular fact. !erha!s. what else is there to rely on. but as we shall soon see. ?e ave an order of life or death& Positive and ne ative interwoven. as well—but certainly not to all truth& . () '! 8! Escher woodcut. a formal system—no matter how !owerful—cannot lead to all truths& The dilemma of mathematicians is. whereas the surface has not even been scratched by such a statement& It could be com!ared to sayin -L is a !rime number-& There is so much more—an infinity of facts—that has been omitted& En the other hand.refers to si( venerated founders of 9en 0uddhism. and EnR is the si(th&5 3hy is callin it a short staff o!!osin its reality? Probably because such a cate ori<ation ives the a!!earance of ca!turin reality. of whom 0odhidharma is the first.73G5=E DI! :ay and 8i ht. Even 0uddhas and !atriarchs cannot esca!e this attack& 4-Patriarchs. indeed.elyin on words to lead you to the truth is like relyin on an incom!lete formal system to lead you to the truth& ) formal system will ive you some truths. minuscule as it may be& Thus words lead to some truth—some falsehood.

how can I know it?8ansen answered. -The more you study. BIGG/! . -7an I study it?8ansen answered.ind. o!en yourself wide as the sky&. nor to thin s unseen& It does not belon to thin s known. once a ain. the further from the 3ay&JRshl asked. or name it& To find yourself on it.USee 'i & L+&V 73G5=E GK! . what else is there to rely on. -3hat is the true 3ay?8ansen answered. -Everyday way is the true 3ay&JRshl asked. -It cannot be e(!ressed with words and it cannot be e(!ressed without words&?ere is 8ansen. -The 3ay does not belon to thin s seen. () '! 8! Escher wood%engra#ing. study it.the dilemma of 9en !eo!le is.D JRshl asked the teacher 8ansen. but words? /umon states the dilemma very clearly. -If I don1t study it. nor to thin s unknown& :o not seek it.

and so on. dualistic thinkin —this is the essence of 9en.. a way of bein without thinkin & The masters of ism are rocks. -The chief monk loses&. 9en oes one further. the essence of ism& This is the Fnmode—not Intelli ent. clams= but it is the fate of hi her animal s!ecies to have to strive for ism. -8o one can call it a wooden shoe&Isan. not as sums of their !arts.# .. your eyes are clouded.ust -Fn-& JRshl was in the Fnmode.o wished to send a monk to o!en a new monastery& ?e told his !u!ils that whoever answered a question most ably would be a!!ointed& Placin a water vase on the round. do you see it?-So lon as you see double. may bristle with !arado(es& Ism) The &n-Mode) and &nmon If words are bad. not /echanical.$ ?yaku. sayin 1I don1t1. -. in maintainin that the world cannot be broken into !arts at all& To divide the world into !arts is to be deluded. and to miss enli htenment& ) master was asked the question.un around the house three times without thinkin of the word 1wolf1&. he asked.This curious statement seems to abound with !arado(& It is a little reminiscent of this surefire cure for hiccu!s.o smiled and said. trees.by a curious monk& -It is ri ht before your eyes. .* Ene day Fnmon said to his disci!les. -This staff of mine has transformed itself into a dra on and has swallowed u! the universe2 Eh.)nd Isan became the master of the new monastery& To su!!ress !erce!tion. without ever bein able to attain it fully& Still. to su!!ress lo ical. and thinkin is bad. what is ood? Ef course. where are the rivers and mountains and the reat earth?- 9en is holism. -3ho can say what this is without callin its name?The chief monk said.said the master& -3hy do I not see it for myself?-0ecause you are thinkin of yourself&-3hat about you. can one see it?-3hen there is neither 1I1 nor 1Hou1. like the only surefire cure for hiccu!s. ti!!ed over the vase with his foot and went out& ?yaku.9en is a !hiloso!hy which seems to have embraced the notion that the road to ultimate truth. the cookin monk. and 1you do1.said the master& -3hen there is neither 1I1 nor 1Hou1. one is occasionally ranted lim!ses of ism& Perha!s the followin kRan offers such a lim!se. and that is why his 1/F1 unasks the question& The Fnmode came naturally to 9en /aster Fnmon. -3hat is the 3ay?. carried to its lo ical e(treme& If holism claims that thin s can only be understood as wholes. verbal. ism& Ism is an anti!hiloso!hy. to ask this is already horribly dualistic. who is the one that wants to see it?. but we are makin no !retense of bein faithful to 9en in discussin 9en—so we can try to answer the question seriously& I have a name for what 9en strives for.

and will remain so& It floats in Tumbolia. there is no system left which has any desire for !erce!tion& 0ut what is that state. for as he says.TR<an answered."+ TR<an said to his monks. very much in the s!irit of 8ansen.) monk ste!!ed forward and asked. . a master!iece of -!ositive and ne ative interwoven. alon hiccu!s that are not bein hiccu!!ed and characters in stories that are bein read&&& That is how I understand 0assui1s messa e& 9en reco ni<es its own limitations. -Hou monks should know there is an even hi her understandin in 0uddhism&.ust as mathematicians have learned to reco ni<e the limitations of the a(iomatic method as a method for attainin truth& This does not mean that 9en has an answer to what lies beyond 9en any more than mathematicians have a clear understandin the forms of valid reasonin which lie outside of formali<ation& Ene of the clearest 9en statements about the borderlines of 9en is iven in the followin stran e kRan.4in the words of /umon5& Ene mi ht ask. -)re those really birds. -3hat the hi her 0uddhism?. now dissolves into the lar er system which once held it& Thou h it is no lon er !resent as a distinct subsystem.)!!arently the master wants to et across the idea that an enli htened state is one where the borderlines between the self and the rest of universe are dissolved& This would truly be the end of dualism.a) and Night 4'i & C#5. and in it he said. -It is not 0uddha&- There is always further to o= enli htenment is not the end-all of 9en& )nd there is no reci!e which tells how to transcend 9en= the only thin one can rely on for sure is that 0uddha is not the way& 9en is a system and cannot be its own metasystem= there is always somethin outside of 9en. or day?. in the !erson of /& 7& Escher& 7onsider . like a 9en kRan. such as *nother >orld 4'i & C*5— !ictures that !lay with reality and unreality the same way as 9en !lays with reality and unreality& Should one take Escher seriously? Should one take 9en seriously? . which was once very much a discernible subsystem of the universe. is tryin to break the mind of lo ic& Escher also deli hts in settin u! contradictory !ictures.Het we all know there is no !oint to such questions& The !icture. or are they really fields? Is it really ni ht. 9en has com!any. its essence somehow still !resent.The snowflake. if not death? ?ow can a live human bein dissolve the borderlines between himself and the outside world? 2en and Tumbolia The 9en monk 0assui wrote a letter to one of his disci!les who was about to die. which cannot be fully understood or described within 9en& Escher and 2en In questionin !erce!tion and !osin absurd answerless riddles. -Hour end which is endless is as a snowflake dissolvin in the !ure air&.

no more moon in the water&- Three >orlds. BIGF/& There is a delicate.ect of a 9en kRan. haiku-like study of reflections in .said the monk& 7anto said. -Pick u! the mountain and brin it to me& Then I will tell you&- . what shall I do?.ewdrop 4'i & C$5= and then there are two tranquil ima es of the moon reflected in still waters. and the sub. she could not attain the fruits of meditation& )t last one moonlit ni ht she was carryin water in an old wooden !ail irded with bamboo& The bamboo broke.73G5=E GB! Puddle."B ) monk asked 6antR."" 7hiyono studied 9en for many years under 0ukko of En aku& Still. she was set free& 7hiyono said.-I do not understand.. an Escher !icture 4'i & CD5. and the bottom fell out of the !ail& )t that moment. -Sit down&. () '! 8! Escher woodcut. -3hen the three worlds threaten me. -8o more water in the !ail.6antR answered. and =ippled -urface 4'i & LB5& The reflected moon is a theme which recurs in various kRans& ?ere is an e(am!le. &uddle 4'i & L"5.

fish. there is the Tempo di 'enuetto from the keyboard Partita no& L.i!!led Surface. the distinctions radually blur. -verbum. not two. which lows with brilliancy—!erha!s a symbol of enli htenment& Ironically. si( notes of equal time value create a rhythmic ambi uity—are they B rou!s of %. meanin -three baskets-. see his 3alt< o!& CB. back where we started2 Is this a reconciliation of the dichotomy of black and white? Er of the trichotomy of birds. but means -word-—not e(actly the most com!atible notion with 9en& En the hand. BIGK/! . or the incredible 7inale of the first Sonata for unaccom!anied violin./emiolia and Escher In <er(um 4'i & "C#5.0F/-. so that in the end there remains not three. -GE. refers to the com!lete te(ts of the ori inal 0uddhist writin s&5 3hat kind of decodin -mechanism. () '! 8! Escher lino%cut. would it take to suck the three baskets out of one character? Perha!s one with two hemis!heres& 73G5=E GF! . or his Etude o!& BL. and fro s? Er si(fold unity made from the o!!osition of the evenness of B an oddness of %? In music.is the only word in the !icture& )nd 9en master TR<an once said. in 6 /inor& )s one lides inward toward the center of <er(um. hemiolia& 7ho!in was a master of hemiolia. I wonder. no& B& In 0ach. o!!ositions are made into unities on several levels& 6oin around we see radual transitions from black birds to white birds to black fish to white fish to black fro s to white fro s to black birds&&& )fter si( ste!s. or % rou!s of B? This ambi uity has a name. -The com!lete Tri!itaka can be e(!ressed in one character&. -verbumnot only is a word.4-Tri!itaka-. but one sin le essence.

and so on& 0oth of these ima es could be re!resented in a concise. as well as the writin table. this brin s forth an ima e of renormali<ed !articles. and every individual is a crystal bead& The reat li ht of -)bsolute 0ein .73G5=E GH! Three S!heres II. every crystal bead reflects not only the li ht from every other crystal in the net—but also every reflection of every reflection throu hout the universe& To my mind. the vertical ones throu h time& )t every crossin of threads is an individual. muons&&& = in every !hoton. the writin table reflects the s!heres on to! of it. () '! 8! Escher lithograph. there are virtual !hotons. yet the hint is enou h& The 0uddhist alle ory of -Indra1s 8et.illuminates and !enetrates every crystal bead= moreover. there are virtual electrons. consider Three -pheres 33 4'i & L%5. every other !art. !ositrons. the s!heres reflect each other. !rotons. and be contained in. thus creatin a virtual cloud of )T81s around each )T8& . and the artist drawin it& The endless connections which all thin s have to each other is only hinted at here. in every electron. neutrons. !ions&&& = in every !ion. there are&&& 0ut then another ima e rises. each one reflected in the minds of many others. BIDJ/! Indra%s . that of !eo!le.et 'inally. the hori<ontal threads runnin throu h s!ace. one for each !erson& Each one would contain calls to many others. who in turn are mirrored in yet others. ele ant way by usin )u mented Transition 8etworks& In the case of !articles. the drawin of them. there would be one network for each cate ory of !article= in the case of !eo!le.tells of an endless net of threads throu hout the universe. neutrinos. in which every !art of the world seems to contain.

7allin one would create calls on others. is it& This is the barrier of 9en& If you !ass throu h it.ectivity naturally become one& It is like a dumb man who has had a dream& ?e knows about it but he cannot tell it& 3hen he enters this condition his e o-shell is crushed and he can shake the heaven and move the earth& ?e is like a reat warrior with a shar! sword& If a 0uddha stands in his way. the o!!osite of e(istence& If you really want to !ass this barrier. -3hat is 1/F1?. Just concentrate your whole ener y into this /F. it is a resoundin show this. is like a tan lin host& Hou may ask -3hat is a barrier of a !atriarch?. until it bottomed out& Mumon on M& Aet us conclude this brief e(cursion into 9en by returnin comment on JRshl1s /F. your sub. or not? The answer to this question is not an evasive /F= rather. and this !rocess mi ht cascade arbitrarily far. and do not allow any discontinuation& 3hen you enter this /F and there is no discontinuation—your attainment will be as a candle burnin and illuminatin the whole universe& +rom Mumon to the M&-!u::le 'rom the ethereal hei hts of JRshl1s /F. filled with this question."% to /umon& ?ere is his To reali<e 9en one has to !ass throu h the barrier of the !atriarchs& Enli htenment always comes after the road of thinkin is blocked& If you do not !ass the barrier of the !atriarchs or if your thinkin road is not blocked. he will kill him= and he will be free in his way of birth and death& ?e can enter any world as if it were his own !lay round& I will tell you how to do this with this kRan. you must work throu h every bone in your body. whatever you think. you should feel like drinkin a hot iron ball that you can neither swallow nor s!it out& Then your !revious lesser knowled e disa!!ears& )s a fruit ri!enin in season. throu h every !ore of your skin. you will see JRshl face to face& Then you can work hand in hand with the whole line of !atriarchs& Is this not a !leasant thin to do? If you want to !ass this barrier.and carry it day and ni ht& :o not believe it is the common ne ative symbol meanin nothin & It is not nothin ness. we now descend to the !rivate lowlinesses of ?ofstadter1s M&&&& I know that you have already concentrated your whole ener y into this M& 4when you read 7ha!ter "5& So now I wish to answer the question which was !osed there. he will cut him down= if a !atriarch offers him any obstacle. we will take advanta e of dualistic. whatever you do.This one word.ectivity and ob. ?as M& theorem-nature. lo ical thinkin & 8E& In order to . 1/F1.

it seems that no matter how much len thenin and shortenin is involved. we can never work in such a way that all I1s are eliminated& Aet us call the number of I1s in any strin the I-count of that strin & 8ote that the I-count of the a(iom /I is "& 3e can do more than show that the I-count can1t be +—we can show that the I-count can never be any multi!le of %& To be in with. who said. SH/0EAS. and how it chan ed mathematicians1 view of their own disci!line& 'or your ease of reference. here is a reca!itulation of the /IF-system. then. the /F-!u<<le is merely a !u<<le about natural numbers in ty!o ra!hical dis uise& If we could only find a way to transfer it to the domain of number theory. -If any of you has one eye. I. never creates a multi!le of % from scratch& It can only create one when it be an with one& The same holds for rule II. in short. so is M99& III& In any theorem.FAES. you will soon notice that it seems never to be +& In other words. it diminishes the I-count by e(actly %& )fter an a!!lication of this rule. 4"5 that the /F-!u<<le has de!th lar ely because it involves the inter!lay of len thenin and shortenin rules= 4B5 that ho!e nevertheless e(ists for crackin the !roblem by em!loyin a tool which is in some sense of adequate de!th to handle matters of that com!le(ity. /. F )TIE/. I& If 9I is a theorem. which doubles the I-count& The .0ut why should it matter to have one eye? If you try countin the number of I1s contained in theorems. so is 9I&& II& If M9 is a theorem. /I . he will see the failure on the teacher1s !art&.ule III. the theory of numbers& 3e did not analy<e the /F-!u<<le in those terms very carefully in 7ha!ter I= we shall do so now& )nd we will see how the second observation 4when enerali<ed beyond the insi nificant /IF-system5 is one of the most fruitful reali<ations of all mathematics. III can be re!laced by && IG& && can be dro!!ed from any theorem& Mumon Sho's &s /o' to Sol"e the M&-!u::le )ccordin to the observations above.3e made two crucial observations in 7ha!ter I. the I-count of the out!ut mi ht conceivably be a multi!le of %—but only if the I-count of the in!ut was also& . we mi ht be able to solve it& Aet us !onder the words of /umon. notice that rules I and IG leave the I-count totally undisturbed& Therefore we need only think about rules II and III& )s far as rule III is concerned.

this !roblem was !la ued by the crossfire of len thenin and shortenin rules& 9ero became the oal= I-counts could increase 4rule II5.reason is that if % divides Bn. by 6>del. too—is that I-count can never become any multi!le of %& In !articular. I will use /IFsystem& 3e be in by considerin the notation of the /IF-system& 3e ma! each symbol onto a new symbol.umbering the MI&-System 8ot all !roblems of the the ty!e which the /F-!u<<le symboli<es are so easy to solve as this one& 0ut we have seen that at least one such !u<<le could be embedded within. then—because % does not divide B—it must divide n 4a sim!le fact from the theory of numbers5& 8either rule II nor rule III can create a multi!le of % from scratch& 0ut this is the key to the /F-!u<<le2 ?ere is what we know. even as a !u<<le about I-counts. number theory& 3e are oin to see that there is a way to embed all !roblems about any formal system. with enou h switchin back and forth between the rules. 4"5 The I-count be ins at " 4not a multi!le of %5= 4B5 Two of the rules do not affect the I-count at all= 4%5 4%5 The two remainin rules which do affect the I-count do so in such a way as never to create a multi!le of % unless iven one initially& The conclusion—and a ty!ically hereditary one it is. M& is not a theorem of the '35%s)stem! 8otice that. we mi ht eventually hit +& 8ow. M ÜÞ% I ÜÞ" &ÜÞ + The corres!ondence was chosen arbitrarily= the only rhyme or reason is that each symbol looks a little like the one it is ma!!ed onto& Each number is called the 6>del number of the corres!ondin letter& 8ow I am sure you can uess what the 6>del number of a multiletter strin will be. and solved within. we mi ht have thou ht that. . we know that this is im!ossible& G#del-. thanks to a sim!le number-theoretical ar ument. could decrease 4rule III5& Fntil we analy<ed the situation. of a s!ecial kind of isomor!hism& To illustrate it. in number theory& This can ha!!en thanks to the discovery. + is a forbidden value of the I-count& ?ence.

such as the followin one. ). ). could be thou ht of as havin been enerated by a similar set of ty!o ra!hical rules& Het the ri ht-hand column has a dual nature& Aet me e(!lain what this means& Seeing Things Both Ty!ogra!hically and Arithmetically 3e could say of the fifth strin 41%+"+15 that it was made from the fourth. ) number whose remainder when divided by "+ is ". written simultaneously in both notations.FAE Ia. can be multi!lied by "+& 8ow we could have stuck with a !urely ty!o ra!hical rule. too.FAE Ib. .IT?/ETI7)A . ) number whose decimal e(!ansion ends on the ri ht in 1"1 can be multi!lied by "+& 3e can eliminate the reference to the symbols in the decimal e(!ansion by arithmetically describin the ri htmost di it. 4"5 MI 4B5 MII 4%5 MIIII 4C5 M&I 4L5 M&I& 4D5 M&I&&I& 4$5 M&II& —— —— —— —— —— —— —— a(iom rule B rule B rule % rule " rule B rule C —— —— —— —— —— —— —— %" %"" %"""" %+" %+"+ %+"++"+ %+""+ The left-hand column is obtained by a!!lyin our four familiar ty!o ra!hical rules& The ri ht-hand column.M& Ü Þ %+ MII& Ü Þ %""+ etc& It is easy& 7learly this ma!!in between notations is an information-!reservin transformation= it is like !layin the same melody on two different instruments& Aet us now take a look at a ty!ical derivation in the /IF-system. by a!!endin a 1+1 on the ri ht= on the other hand we could equally well view the transition as caused by an arithmetical o!eration—multi!lication by "+. multi!lication by "+ and !uttin a 1+1 on the ri ht are indistin uishable o!erations& 3e can take advanta e of this to write an arithmetical rule which corres!onds to ty!o ra!hical rule I. to be e(act& 3hen natural numbers are written in the decimal system.IT?/ETI7)A .

once you see it—and o!enin onto a vast new world 0efore we .FAE %. 6oin from line % to line C& ?ere. n X "+. ) solution is iven below& In the rules. it can be viewed either as a series of ty!o ra!hical o!erations chan in one !attern of symbols into another. someone introduced him the ma!!in between stories and strin s& 3hat a revelation2 The discovery of 6>del-numberin has been likened to the discovery.FAE ". m X %+& . and n is any natural number which is less than "+m& . or as a series of arithmetical o!erations chan in one ma nitude into another& 0ut there are !owerful reasons for bein more interested in the arithmetical version& Ste!!in out of one !urely ty!o ra!hical system into another isomor!hic ty!o ra!hical system is not a very e(citin thin to do= whereas ste!!in clear out of the ty!o ra!hical domain into an isomor!hic !art of number theory has some kind of une(!lored !otential& It is as if somebody had known musical scores all his life. thou h. m X B.FAE B. m and n are ". 6oin from line " to line B. and k is %& . 6oin from line C to line L& ?ere. by :escartes. then we can make "+ W 4"+m ^ "5 E9ample. all of a sudden. new world2 Then a ain. by a!!endin 1+1 to the ri ht of that 1"1& They would have the same effect& This is why the ri ht-hand column has a -dual nature-. then we can make k W "+m^" ^ n& E9ample. If we have made % W "+m ^ n. m and k are arbitrary natural numbers. If we have made k W "+m^B ^ n then we can make k W "+m ^ n E(am!le. If we have made "+m ^ ". it is as if somebody had been familiar with strin fi ures all his life. someone introduced him to the ma!!in between sounds a musical scores& 3hat a rich. 6oin from line D to line $& ?ere. let us !ostulate that. but !urely visually—and then. of the isomor!hism between curves in a !lane and equations in two variables= incredibly sim!le.FAE C. then we can make "+m W 4% W "+m ^ n5 ^ n& E9ample.)P?I7)A . If we have made k W "+m^% ^ """ W "+m ^ n.THPE6. where both m and n equal "& . 'rom any theorem whose ri htmost symbol is 1"1 a new theorem can be made. 3e can make %"& . and k X %+"& Aet us not for et our a(iom2 3ithout it we can o nowhere& Therefore.FAE I. but !urely as strin fi ures devoid of meanin —and then. all of a sudden.um! to conclusions. !erha!s you would like to see a more com!lete renderin of this hi her level of the isomor!hism& It is a very ood e(ercise& The idea is to ive an arithmetical rule whose action is indistin uishable from that of each ty!o ra!hical rule of the /IF-system.

then this rule can be re!resented equally well by an arithmetical counter!art which involves arithmetical o!erations with !owers of "+ as well as additions. and so forth& /ore briefly. a corres!ondin set of natural numbers will be enerated by re!eated a!!lications of arithmetical rules& These produci(le num(ers !lay the same role inside number theory as theorems do inside any formal system& Ef course. chan ed. you will discover that the rules are based on nothin more !rofound than the idea that shiftin di its to left and ri ht in decimal re!resentations of inte ers is related to multi!lications and divisions by !owers of "+& This sim!le observation finds its enerali<ation in the followin 7E8T. nX"+. kX%5 rule " 4mX%+5 rule B 4mX%. nX""5 rule % 4mX". %+"++"+. nX". and so forth could be called /IF-produci(le numbers—an un ainly name. 4"5 4B5 4%5 4C5 4L5 4D5 4$5 %" %"" %"""" %+" %+"+ %+"++"+ %+""+ iven rule B 4mX". Ty!o ra!hical rules for mani!ulatin numerals are actually arithmetical rules for o!eratin on num(ers& This sim!le observation is at the heart of 6>del1s method.8ow the ri ht-hand column can be seen as a full-fled ed arithmetic !rocess. in a new arithmetical system which we mi ht call the HBK%s)stem. de!endin on which rules are ado!ted& -Producible numbers. we can strai htaway form a set of arithmetical rules which com!lete the 6>del isomor!hism& The u!shot is that we can transfer the study of any formal system—in fact the study of all formal systems—into number theory& MI&-. %""".EPESITIE8. nX"+5 rule C 4mXB. and it will have an absolutely shatterin effect& It tells us that once we have a 6>del numberin for any formal system.roducible . which mi ht be shortened to . nX"5 rule B 4mXB. If there is a ty!o ra!hical rule which tells how certain di its are to be shifted.umbers Just as any set of ty!o ra!hical rules enerates a set of theorems. subtractions. dro!!ed. or inserted in any number re!resented decimally. different numbers will be !roducible.)A P. such numbers as %". so that the 6>del numbers o u! and down& If you look carefully at what is oin on. kX%+"5 8otice once a ain that the len thenin and shortenin rules are ever with us in this -%"+system-= they have merely been trans!osed into the domain of numbers.are only !roducible relati#e to a s)stem of arithmetical rules& 'or e(am!le.

does& The set of !roducible numbers of any system is a recursi#el) enumera(le set& 3hat about its com!lement—the set of non!roducible numbers? Is that set always recursively enumerable? :o numbers which are non!roducible share some common arithmetical feature? This is the sort of issue which arises when you trans!ose the study of formal systems into number theory& 'or each system which is arithmeti<ed. a strin of T8T which s!eaks about the /F-!u<<le& Aet us . of course. one can ask. in somewhat the same way as we fi ured out how to translate other numbertheoretical sentences into T8T-notation& I should immediately caution the reader that such a translation. that the means with which to answer any question about any formal system lies within .its rules. thou h it does e(ist. was !ut in its quintessential form in the !revious 7ha!ter& T8T seemed. or M-numbers. with some hard work. to have ca!tured all valid mathematical thinkin !rocesses in one sin le. we have rules tellin how to make more !roducible numbers& Thus. it would have to reside in the usual kind of ste!-by-ste! reasonin as it a!!lies to natural numbers& )nd that. it can be found= and the numeral SSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS? can be substituted for every b& This will result in a /E8strous strin of T8T. in much the same way that the list of 'ibonacci numbers. I !ointed out in 7ha!ter GIII that even such a sim!le arithmetical !redicate as .b is a !ower of "+. via 6>del-numberin & If we were to 6>del-number the !q-system and then -arithmeti<e. com!act system& Ans'ering 8uestions about .ust a sin le formal system—T8T? It seems !lausible& Take. for instance./IF-num(ers. -7an we characteri<e !roducible numbers in a sim!le way?. this question.These are difficult questions of number theory& :e!endin on the system which has been arithmeti<ed.into T8Tnotation. such questions mi ht !rove too hard for us to resolve& 0ut if there is any ho!e for solvin such !roblems. symboli<in the fact that those numbers are the ones that result when you transcribe the /IF-system into number theory. is immensely com!le(& If you recall.is very tricky to code into T8T-notation—and the !redicate -b is a /IF-number.-7an we characteri<e non!roducible numbers in a recursively enumerable way?. we could fi ure out how to translate the sentence -%+ is a /IF-number.is a lot more com!licated than that2 Still. Is M& a theorem of the /IF-system? 'indin the answer is equivalent to determinin whether %+ is a /IF number or not& 0ecause it is a statement of number theory. we could call the !roducible numbers -!q-numbers-—and so on& 8ote that the !roducible numbers 4in any iven system5 are defined by a recursive method.umbers by Consulting T. we should e(!ect that. to all a!!earances.roducible .T 7ould it be. the class of numbers known to be !roducible is constantly e(tendin itself. iven numbers which are known to be !roducible. therefore.

!arentheses. so /F/E8 can be taken in 4at least5 two entirely different ways& This state of affairs comes about because of two facts. we know that this statement is tied 4via isomor!hism5 to the statement M& is a theorem of the /IF-system& So we can le itimately quote this latter as the second !assive meanin of /F/E8& It may seem very stran e because. 'act "& Statements such as -M& is a theorem. T8T is now ca!able of s!eakin -in code. it can& Just as a sin le musical line may serve as both harmony and melody in a sin le !iece= .ust as a sin le sentence may be an accurate structural descri!tion of a !icture by Escher. In order to ain some benefit from this !eculiar transformation of the ori inal question.may be inter!reted as both a name and a melody= . of a section of :8).therefore call that strin -/F/E8-& Throu h /F/E8 and strin s like it. and the reformulation of the question is likely to be far harder than the ori inal& Ene mi ht even say that lookin at M& via /F/E8 is an intentionally idiotic way of doin thin s& ?owever. of a !iece by 0ach.ust as -0)7?. it has the one which was iven before. and a sim!le formal system 4the /IF-system5 by a com!licated one 4T8T5& It isn1t likely that the answer will be any more forthcomin even thou h the question has been resha!ed& In fact. /F/E8 has two different !assive meanin s& 'irstly. Is /F/E8 a theorem of T8T? )ll we have done is re!lace one relatively short strin 4 M&5 by another 4the monstrous /F/E85. this is an intri uin !oint.can be coded into number theory via 6>del1s isomor!hism& 'act B& Statements of number theory can be translated into T8T& .about the /IF-system& The ual . and of the dialo ue in which the sentence is embedded. T8T has a full com!lement of both len thenin and shortenin rules. and so forth—symbols of T8T& ?ow can it !ossibly e(!ress any statement with other than arithmetical content? The fact is. %+ is a /IF-number& 0ut secondly. we would have to seek the answer to a new question. /F/E8 contains nothin but !lus si ns. /F/E8 can be looked at on more than one level& In fact. after all.ature of M&M0.

a coded messa e.T Ef course thin s do not sto! here& 3e have only be un reali<in the. that meanin is an automatic by!roduct of our reco nition of any isomor!hism= therefore there are at least two !assive meanin s of /F/E8—maybe more2 The Boomerang5 G#del-. %+ is a /IF-number& This is a statement of number theory. by 'act B.It could be said that /F/E8 is. we have in a sense broken a code in which messa es about the /IF-system are written in strin s of T8T& 6>del1s isomor!hism is a new information-revealer.ust as the deci!herments of ancient scri!ts were information-revealers& :ecoded by this new and less familiar mechanism.umbering T. and messa es written in less familiar codes& If the meanin of a messa e is to be revealed it must be !ulled out of the code by some sort of mechanism. otten by inter!retin each si n the conventional way& 0ut in discoverin 6>del-numberin and the whole isomor!hism built u!on it. /F/E8 bears the messa e. /F/E8 bears the messa e M& is a theorem of the /IF-system& The moral of the story is one we have heard before. does not e(!ress anythin on its own—it requires knowled e of the code& 0ut in reality there is no such thin as an uncoded messa e& There are only messa es written in more familiar codes. unlike an uncoded messa e.ected here that a coded messa e. it ceases a!!earin like a code= one for ets that there is a decodin mechanism& The messa e is identified with its meanin & ?ere we have a case where the identification of messa e and meanin is so stron that it is hard for us to conceive of an alternate meanin residin in the same symbols& 8amely. the messa e becomes trans!arent as water& 3hen a code is familiar enou h. that to conceive of certain strin s of T8T as statements about the /IF-system is quite difficult& 0ut 6>del1s isomor!hism com!els us to reco ni<e this second level of meanin in certain strin s of T8T& :ecoded in the more familiar way. . we are so !re. .ust symbols of T8T& Codes and Im!licit Meaning 8ow it could be ob.udiced by the symbols of T8T towards seein number-theoretical meanin 4and only number-theoretical meanin 5 in strin s of T8T. where the symbols of the code are. by 'act ". !otential of 6>del1s isomor!hism& The natural trick would be to turn T8T1s ca!ability of mirrorin other . or isomor!hism& It may be difficult to discover the method by which the decodin should be done= but once that method has been discovered.

in 7ha!ter TIG& 8ow we can rewrite any strin or rule of T8T in the new arb& ?ere. -)m(ol &&&&& &&&&& &&&&& &&&&& . DBD. we will have to 6>del-number T8T itself. and as his 6oblet 6 turned a ainst itself.ra!h.of D-B-D two dots. c. as the Tortoise turned the 7rab1s !hono ra!hs a ainst themselves.of the sequence D-"-D 1 D -im!lies. h S a X + 7onveniently.formal systems back on itself. &&&&& !unc& &&&&& ? S X ^ 8odon DDD "B% """ ""B B%D %DB %B% B"B B"% %"B %"% BDB "D% "D" D"D D%% BB% %%% DBD D%D D"" 'nemonic ?ustification 8umber of the 0east for the /ysterious 9ero successorshi!.""". two si(es s!ecial number. for instance. is )(iom " in the two notations. in destroyin itself& In order to do this. as on 0ell system 4C"". #""5 b Each symbol of T8T is matched u! with a tri!let com!osed of the di its ". .le ibility& ?ere is the .of the sequence "-D-" 11 is a . in the new notation. &&&&& 4 &&&&& 5 &&&&& g &&&&& a &&&&& U &&&&& V &&&&& a &&&&& ' &&&&&  &&&&&  &&&&&  &&&&& ~ &&&&& Ǝ &&&&& " &&&&& . ". B. and then -arithmeti<e. d."B%. we could make the followin corres!ondence.D%D.BB%. turned sideways "^"XB BW%XD ends in B ends in % ends in B these three pairs ends in % form a pattern ends in B ends in % o!!osite to " 4DBD5 "D% is !rime 11 is a .% and %.ra!h.DDD " a . the old below the new.its rules of inference& The 6>del-numberin is easy to do& 'or instance.BDB. settin them off for -easy. %. %. and D.ra!h. in some sense & B ^ B is not % 1Ǝ1 looks like 1%1 o!!osite to a= also a . .ust as we did the /IF-system. which you will find out about in 7ha!ter TGI& I will e(!lain the bottom entry. or codon for short& 8otice that I have iven no codon for b.BDB. -!unctuation-. in a manner chosen for mnemonic value& I shall call each such tri!let of di its a Gödel codon. B. or e= we are usin austere T8T& There is a hidden motivation for this.ule of :etachment. the standard convention of !uttin in a comma every third di it ha!!ens to coincide with our colons. visual resemblance.

%B%.DDD.%DB. so each rule is a condensed way of describin a messy arithmetical o!eration& Therefore. !ickin out well-formed formulas in this notation is !ickin out a s!ecial class of integers.BDB."D%.D%D.DDD."""."B%.""B. you would think of this as a ty!o ra!hical o!eration—but at the same time.DDD."B%.is a sequence of hi hly convoluted number-theoretical transformations."D%.DDD.%DB BDB. the !recedin derivation of the theorem -%DB. they are all still ty!o ra!hical rules& 0ut wait2 )ccordin to the 7entral Pro!osition.%DB. here is an entire derivation taken from last 7ha!ter.DDD."B%.""B.BDB.""B.rule to -Insert 1"B%1 -.%DB.DBD.%DB.%B%.%B%.DDD.""B."B%."B%. because all of the rules are alread) arithmetical2 T.umbers5 A $ecursi"ely Enumerable Set of .%B%.%B% s!ecification " a 1 .."B%. which have an arithmetical definition too& 8ow what about -arithmeti<in .BDB a(iom B " a .""B.""B. in a sense. which can be carried out ty!o ra!hically& Just as a!!endin a 1+1 on the end is e(actly the same as multi!lyin by "+."B%.""B. a T8Tnum(er& Some of the arithmetical rules take an old T8T-number and increase it in a !articular way."B%.%B%.%B% a(iom % " a . which is.DDD. called a produci(le number.T-.DDD."B%."B%.""B.%B%.""".D%D.DDD.BDB. . each of which acts on one or more in!ut numbers.%B%."B%. since that is the ty!o ra!hical o!eration which it now le itimi<es& This new notation has a !retty stran e feel to it& Hou lose all sense of meanin = but if you had been brou ht u! on it.FAE. If 9 and B"B9D%%)B"% are both theorems."B%. a ty!o ra!hical rule is really equivalent to an arithmetical rule& Insertin and movin di its in decimally re!resented numbers is an arithmetical o!eration."B%.BDB. distin uish well-formed formulas from ill-formed ones& 8aturally."B%. as before.%B% s!ecification 4 S ? ^ S ? 5 X S 4 S ? ^ ? 5 DBD.""B.DDD. since it is so visual."D%.DDD."" "."B%.""".DDD.""". 4 S ? ^ S a 1 5 X S 4 S ? ^ a 1 5 %DB.""B."B%.""". to be more s!ecific.all the rules of inference? )s matters stand.BDB."""."D%."B%. to yield a new T8T-number= some take an old T8T-number a and decrease it= other rules take two T8T-numbers.umbers Aooked at this way.DDD. 4 a ^ ? 5 X a %DB.BDB. then ) is a theorem& 'inally."B%.D%D.%DB.%DB."D%.""B.""".DDD transitivity 4 S ? ^ S ? 5 X S S ? 8otice that I chan ed the name of the -)dd S. and yields an out!ut number. o!erate on each of them some odd way. " a 1 .DDD.DDD.BDB. at a lance.BDB. iven in austere T8T and also transcribed into the new notation. "B%."B%. DBD."B%.%B%.DDD s!ecification 4 S ? ^ ? 5 X S ? "B%. or.D%D.DDD insert 1"B%1 S 4 S ? ^ ? 5 X S S ? %DB. you could read strin s it this notation as easily as you do T8T& Hou would be able to look and.BDB&"D%.BDB."B%. 4 a ^ S a 1 5 X S 4 a ^ a 1 5 DBD."B%.DDD. we do not even need to look for equivalent arithmetical rules.

DDD S1s. the metalan ua e in which we."B%.um!in children or bouncin balls= but a side effect of !roducin sounds—and an unavoidable one—is that they wra! .%B%. """. . the !redicate a is a T8T-number& 'or e(am!le.DDD is not a T8T-number& 8ow it occurs to us that this new number-theoretical !redicate is e9pressi(le by some strin of T8T with one free variable.""". on the outside.DDD is a T8T-number. while on the other hand. !resumably "B%.""B. we know from the !recedin derivation that %DB.DDD. there ou ht to be no doubt on your !art that it is quite analo ous here& There is a new number-theoretical !redicate brou ht into bein by this -6>deli<ation. S?X? is not a theorem of T8T& T. incidentally& If you followed how it was done for the /IF-system.ust as inevitable a feature of T8T as are the vibrations induced in a record !layer when it !lays a record& It seems as if vibrations should come from the outside world—for instance."B%.DDD is not a T8T-number& 0ut because of the isomor!hism which links T8T-numbers to theorems of T8T. we have fi#e initial T8T-numbers—one for each 4austere a(iom.DDD. is at least !artially imitated inside T8T itself& )nd this is not an accidental feature of T8T= it ha!!ens because the architecture of any formal system can be mirrored inside 8 4number theory5& It is . which is. there would be a second-level meanin of this strin . of course& )rithmeti<ed T8T is actually e(tremely similar to the arithmeti<ed /IF-system.DDD.""".T Tries to S'allo' Itself This une(!ected double-entendre demonstrates that T8T contains strin s which talk about other strin s of T8T& In other words.ust one known T8T-number. much too lon to write out—we would have a T8T-strin which.and then combine the results into a new T8T-number and so on and so forth& )nd instead of startin with . that strin would say "B%.DDD—a numeral which would contain e(actly "B%. only there are more rules and a(ioms.DDD.of T8T. say a& 3e could !ut a tilde in front.ust like /F/E8. from ."""."B%.DDD."B%.""". is ca!able of bein inter!reted on two levels& In the first !lace.DDD. and that strin would e(!ress the com!lementary notion a is not a T8T-number& 8ow if we re!laced all the occurrences of  in this second strin by the T8T-numeral for "B%. can s!eak about T8T. and to write out arithmetical equivalents e(!licitly would be a bi bother—and quite unenli htenin .

ust interestin to lance ahead. T8T Þ 8 Þ meta-T8T In words.That is a tricky matter& 3e want to find a strin of T8T—which we1ll call 161—which is about itself. -6iven a record !layer. a bit su!erficially. how do you actually fi ure out what to !ut on the record?. at the consequences findin a self-referential !iece of T8T& 3ho knows? It mi ht blow u!2 In a sense it does& 3e focus down on the obvious question.s about Itself in Code This much is intri uin yet it is only half the story& The rest of the story involves an intensification of the self-reference& 3e are now at the sta e where the Tortoise was when he reali<ed that a record could be made which would make the !hono ra!h !layin it break—but now the quest is. 6 may e(!ress a falsity& Aike /F.ust like /F/E8 it is susce!tible to bein construed in 4at least5 two different ways& The im!ortant thin is that each !assive meanin is valid and useful and doesn1t cast doubt on the other !assive meanin in any way& 4The fact that a !hono ra!h !layin a record can induce vibrations in itself and in the record does not diminish in any way the fact that those vibrations are musical sounds25 G%s E-istence Is >hat Causes T. rather than rely on 61s o!inion about itself& )fter all. will be develo!ed in 7ha!ters TIII and TIG= for now it is . 6 may be a . and de!ictin it in a two-ste! dia ram.T%s Incom!leteness The in enious method of creatin 6. and some im!ortant conce!ts relatin to T8T. in the sense that one of its !assive meanin s is a sentence about 6& !articular the !assive meanin will turn out to be -6 is not a theorem of T8T&I should quickly add that 6 also has a !assive meanin which is a sta tement of num(er theor)= . Is 6 a theorem of T8T. a strin of T8T has an inter!retation in 8= and a statement of 8 may have a second meanin as a statement about T8T& G5 A String >hich Tal. or not? Aet us be sure to form our own o!inion on this matter. 6 may not understand itself any better than a 9en master understands himself& Aike /F/E8.ogma of 'athematical +ogic.around and shake the very mechanism which !roduces them& It is no accident= it is a side effect which cannot be hel!ed& It is in the nature of record !layers& )nd it is in the nature of any formali<ation of number theory that its metalan ua e is embedded within it& 3e can di nify this observation by callin it the 8entral .

too—which allows us to summari<e our findin s this way.elyin on our assum!tion that T8T never has falsities for theorems. it would e(!ress a truth. -6 is not a theorem of T8T-. we shouldn1t lose track of the fact that 6 has an arithmetical inter!retation. and therefore that T8T never has falsities for theorems& In other words. Hou lose your own 0uddha-nature& . for that strin s!oke not about itself. but also that the strin fails to be a theorem of T8T& )nd thus. namely. -I am not a theorem 4of T8T5&h6. ) strin of T8T has been found= it e(!resses. -/y ne ation is a theorem 4of T8T5&It is h6 which is !arallel to the Tortoise1s strin . however. a statement about certain arithmetical !ro!erties of natural numbers= moreover. we1d have to concede that 6 e(!resses a truth& ?ere is a situation in which T8T doesn1t live u! to our e(!ectations—we have found a strin which e(!resses a true statement yet the strin is not a theorem& )nd in our ama<ement. in his concise !oem on JRshl1s /F. anythin which is a theorem of T8T e(!resses a truth& So if 6 were a theorem. with a lesser !roblem& @nowin that 6 is not a theorem. ?as a do 0uddha-nature? This is the most serious question of all& If you say yes or no. unambi uously. T8T says neither yes nor no& Is the Tortoise1s strin in the 'u :ffering the analo ue of 6? 8ot quite& The analo ue of the Tortoise1s strin is h6& 3hy is this so? 3ell. 6 would have to be a falsity& . let us think a moment about what h6 says& It must say the o!!osite of what 6 says& 6 says.nontheorem& 3e don1t need to believe every !ossible strin of T8T—only its theorems& 8ow let us use our !ower of reasonin to clarify the issue as best we can at this !oint& 3e will make our usual assum!tion. that T8T incor!orates valid methods of reasonin . by reasonin outside the system we can determine not only that the statement is a true one. however you want to look at it5& Mumon /as the Last >ord /umon !enetrated into the /ystery of the Fndecidable anyone. but about the strin which the Tortoise first !roffered to )chilles—which had an e(tra knot on it 4or one too few. -6 is not a theorem-& The full force of its self-reference hits us& 0y bein a theorem. if we ask T8T whether the statement is true. we1d be forced to conclude that 6 is not a theorem& This is all ri ht= it leaves us. so h6 must say -6 is a theorem-& 3e could re!hrase both 6 and h6 this way. 6.

A$T II ..

and yet I can1t quite !lace it& *chilles. Eh. had been readin in his co!y of the class te(t *rithmetica by :io!hantus. /r& T? Tortoise.Prelude *chilles and the Tortoise ha#e come to the residence of their friend the 8ra(. the *nteater! The introductions ha#ing (een made. and pulls out the gift/! Two records2 ?ow e(citin 2 0ut there1s no label& Fh-oh—is this another of your -s!ecials-.oy it& *chilles hands the 8ra( an elegantl) wrapped present. of course. I1m not sure&&& It sounds stran ely familiar. 3e1ll soon find out& 8ompletes the unwrapping. and came across a !a e containin the equation aB^bBXcB . then resumes!/ ?ave you heard of 'ermat1s infamous -Aast Theorem-? *nteater. I must hear about it& *chilles. the only one of its kind in the entire world& In fact. Surely& 0est wishes. Gery well. That1s most kind of you& 0ut you shouldn1t have& Tortoise. then& 4&auses for a moment to sip his tea. /y records derive from some !iece of mathematics? ?ow curious2 3ell. when 0ach !layed it& 8ra(. 3hen 0ach !layed it? 3hat do you mean. /ay I? Eh. /r& 7rab. /r& 7rab& I ho!e you en. to which your records owe their e(istence? 8ra(. I wonder what it could be& 8ra(. when /r& T tells you what these records in fact are& Tortoise. )chilles& *chilles. you o ahead and tell him. s"uare and #er) thin! The 8ra( (egins unwrapping it!/ *nteater. /r& 7rab& 8ra(. the four of them settle down to tea! Tortoise. to make the ac"uaintance of one of his friends. you are oin to be fabulously e(cited. 3e have brou ht alon a little somethin for you. Eh. Just a token of our esteem& )chilles. e(actly? *chilles. it1s never even been heard before—e(ce!t. would you like to ive it to /r& 7? *chilles. If you mean a !hono ra!h-breaker. and clears his #oice&5 )hem& 3ould you be interested in hearin about the remarkable new result in mathematics. not this time& 0ut it is in fact a customrecorded item. now that you1ve !rovoked my interest. a lawyer by vocation but a mathematician by avocation. boy2 I1d better consult my notes. then& &ulls out a small filing card. It1s a very sim!le idea& Pierre de 'ermat.

73G5=E GD! />bius Stri! II. () '! 8! Escher woodcut. BIJH/! .

that satisfy 'ermat1s equation? I1m es!ecially curious about the value of n& *chilles. thus showin that the ske!tics had ood intuition2 8ra(. ?as someone at last mana ed to resolve this celebrated question? *chilles.rather than a -Theorem. Indeed2 In fact. has been somewhat tarnished by ske!tics who think he never really found the !roof he claimed to have found—or else to refute the claim. the Theorem has been !roven for many s!ecific values of n—in !articular. c. horrors2 I1m most embarrassed2 7an you believe this? I left the values at home on a truly colossal !iece of !a!er& Fnfortunately it was too hu e to brin alon & I wish I had them here to show to you& If it1s of any hel! to you. b. which satisfy the equation& Fntil very recently. b. some three hundred years a o. all n u! to "BL. and as usual. by a wi<ardly stroke& ?e has not only found a P.EE' of 'ermat1s Theorem 4thus . every attem!t in either direction had met with failure& To be sure.ecture. which.ustifyin its name as well as vindicatin 'ermat= also a 7EF8TE. b. either to !rove 'ermat1s claim. and then wrote in the mar in the followin notorious comment. Eh. this mar in is too small to contain& Ever since that day.it1s never been iven a !ro!er !roof? *chilles. a set of four inte ers a. what a shame that you don1t have them here& 0ut there reason to doubt what you have told us& . mathematicians have been vainly tryin to do one of two thin s.?e immediately reali<ed that this equation has infinitely many solutions a. b. but tradition has ke!t it this way& 8ra(. The equation an^bnXcn has solutions in !ositive inte ers a. Shouldn1t it be called a -7on. c. you1re ri ht. c which satisfy the equation5= but there are no solutions for n a B& I have discovered a truly marvelous !roof of this statement. /r& Tortoise has done so. 0ut !lease don1t leave us in sus!ense& 3hat ma ical inte er they. which. I do remember one thin —the value of n is the only !ositive inte er which does not occur anywhere in the continued fraction for m& 8ra(. and thereby vindicate 'ermat1s re!utation. and n only when n X B 4and then there are infinitely many tri!lets a. Eh my racious2 That is a revolutionary discovery& *nteater. unfortunately.+++& *nteater. c. althou h very hi h. Strictly s!eakin . and n. Eh. with n a B. by findin a countere(am!le.ET)/PAE.

The name tells it all. /r& Tortoise1s double-barreled result has created a breakthrou h in the field of acoustico-retrieval2 *nteater. that sounds ne(t to im!ossible2 *chilles. I am dyin to hear about it. or what this all has to do with my new records& . Thank you& 0ut what I feel is more im!ortant than the result itself is the !ractical use to which my result immediately led& 8ra(. it is the retrieval of acoustic information from e(tremely com!le( sources& ) ty!ical task of acoustico-retrieval is to reconstruct the sound which a rock made on !lummetin into a lake from the ri!!les which s!read out over the lake1s surface& 8ra(. 3hat is acoustico-retrieval? *chilles.ust told us how to find it& 3ell. /r& T. on the occasion of your e!och-makin discovery2 Tortoise.73G5=E GG! &ierre de 7ermat! *nteater. )nyway. when it reconstructs the sound made in the vocal cords of another !erson from the vibrations transmitted by the eardrum to the fibers in the cochlea& 8ra(. 3hy. !lease acce!t my hearty felicitations. I see& 0ut I still don1t see where number theory enters the !icture. Hou1re not the only one with that belief. but in fact it is quite im!ossible to make a blanket statement about when or how some branch—or even some individual Theorem—of !ure mathematics will have im!ortant re!ercussions outside of mathematics& It is quite un!redictable—and this case is a !erfect e(am!le of that !henomenon& *chilles. who needs to see n written out decimally? )chilles has . since I always thou ht number theory was the Mueen of /athematics—the !urest branch of mathematics—the one branch of mathematics which has 8E a!!lications2 Tortoise. 8ot so& It is actually quite similar to what one1s brain does.

with n a B& Tortoise. /r& T was able to carry out the acoustico-retrieval which he had so lon dreamed of& )nd /r& 7rab1s !resent here re!resents a !al!able reali<ation of all this abstract work& 8ra(. 3ho would have thou ht2 *chilles.)chilles. all I needed to do was to use those numbers as a blue!rint for constructin my !roof that there were no solutions to the equation& . !rovided that EIT?E. you see.ust how this equation arises. but I have to. 3ell. ?ow could that be? Tortoise. :on1t tell me it1s a recordin of 0ach !layin his own works for har!sichord2 *chilles. which took !lace over two hundred years a o. 'antastic2 Tortoise. I had shown that the structural layout of any !roof of 'ermat1s Aast Theorem—if one e(isted—could be described by an ele ant formula. so the one led directly to the other& 8ra(. set about workin at both ends of the !roblem. there arise many questions which have to do with the number of solutions of certain :io!hantine equations& 8ow /r& T has been for years tryin to find a way of reconstructin the sounds of 0ach !layin his har!sichord.ust what it is2 This is a set of two records of Johann Sebastian 0ach !layin all of his >ell%Tempered 8la#ier& Each . one forever2 )chilles. . I1m sorry. a !roof that there are 8E solutions2. such a solution E. )s a result of this unantici!atedly rich mathematical success. It turned out that acoustico-retrieval theory !redicts that 0ach sounds can be retrieved from the motion of all the molecules in the atmos!here. from calculations involvin the motions of all the molecules in the atmos!here at the !resent time& )nteater. it so ha!!ened. to my sur!rise it turned out to be the 'ermat equation& )n amusin accidental relationshi! between form and content& So when I found the countere(am!le. -!rovided that there e(ists EIT?E. which. for that is indeed . )ma<in 2 *nteater.)nd therefore. simultaneously& )s it turns out. when you think about it& I can1t ima ine why no one had ever found the result before& *chilles. and came to the reali<ation that the whole thin hin ed on the number of solutions to the equation an^bnXcn in !ositive inte ers. of course. 3ell. I could e(!lain. de!ended on the values of the solution to a certain equation& 3hen I found this second equation. there e(ists at least one solution to the equation— 8ra(. but I1m sure it would bore you& *chilles. /r& T. in the mathematics of acoustico-retrieval. Thus think the naPve&&& 0ut /r& T has devoted many years to this !roblem.emarkably sim!le. Surely that is im!ossible2 They are irretrievably one. the discovery of the countere(am!le was the key in redient to findin the !roof. in careful fashion. I was about to say.

yes. well do I remember those lon . I know . 3ell. we must absolutely !ut one of these !riceless records on. or CIC? 3ill it have three voices. bindin them to ether very stron ly& Tortoise. or five—or four? )nd then. I do ho!e so& *nteater. s!ecially illuminated by a teacher of mine who ha!!ens also to be an unusually fine calli ra!her& Tortoise. I would very much en. with this delicious tea which you have !re!ared& The 8ra( slides one of the records out of its Macket. each record contains BC !reludes and fu ues—one in each ma.oin with itself in ever-increasin ly com!le( levels of weird. and draws out two large #olumes!/ 8ra(. 3ould any of you like to follow alon in the score? I ha!!en to have a unique edition of the >ell%Tempered 8la#ier. )nd there is somethin very dramatic about the few moments of silent sus!ense han in between !relude and fu ue—that moment where the the theme of the fu ue is about to rin out. days when I thrilled to each new !relude and fu ue.one days of my youth. in the highest imagina(le fidelit)! :ne e#en hearsOor is it one's imagination$Othe soft sounds of Bach singing to himself as he pla)s!!!/ 8ra(. I always wonder what the fu ue1s tem!o will be. there is always some subtle relation between the two& Even if the !relude and fu ue do not have a common melodic sub. and for me that fleetin interlude of silence is very e(citin = it1s a time when I try to second. ?ere you are.uess old 0ach& 'or e(am!le. alle ro. )h. in sin le tones. ?ave you ever noticed how in these !ieces the !relude always sets the mood !erfectly for the followin fu ue? 8ra(. Hou have already thanked us !lentifully. and puts it on! The sound of an incredi(l) masterful harpsichordist fills the room. filled with e(citement of their novelty and beauty and the many une(!ected sur!rises which they conceal& *chilles.or and minor key& 8ra(. )nd now? Is that thrill all one? . /r& Tortoise& I1ve never really otten to know all the beautiful illustrations in this edition& Perha!s your ift will !rovide the needed im!etus for me to do so& Tortoise.record contains one of the two volumes of the >ell%Tempered 8la#ier= that is to say. and then to . immediately2 )nd how can I ever thank the two of you? Tortoise. or ada io? 3ill it be in DI*. e(quisite harmony& *chilles.oy that& The 8ra( goes to his elegant glass%enclosed wooden (ookcase.ect. Hes& )lthou h it may be hard to !ut it into words.ust what you mean& There are so many !reludes and fu ues which I haven1t yet otten to know. there is nevertheless always some intan ible abstract quality which underlies both of them. opens the doors. the first voice starts&&& Such an e(quisite moment& 8ra(.

. but I don1t have the !ower to summon it u! at will= I have to wait for chance circumstance to tri er it& *chilles. Eh. That is intri uin & The thrill has remained dormant somewhere inside you. )chilles& Somehow the e(citement transmits itself.in which one can !erceive the bubbles& *chilles. I seem to have discovered two somewhat analo ous modes in which I can listen to a fu ue& The modes are these. Eh. Just so& 3ell. in the structure of my brain.ust when you thou ht it was finally dead& It . In which there are circular bands havin bubble-like distortions which. Eccurrences of the theme which you had overlooked? 8ra(. de!endin on the direction that you a!!roach them from& There1s no way to see them simultaneously as concave )8: conve(— somehow one1s brain doesn1t allow that& There are two mutually e(clusive -modes. in some unknown way. out of nowhere& 0ut there are also ama<in modulations which it is marvelous to listen to over and over a ain. thank you& Aet me come at the question from an an le& )re you familiar with the !rint called 8u(e with 'agic =i((ons.ust a novice at fu ue-listenin . but by yourself. as thrills always will be& 0ut in that familiarity there is also a kind of de!th. so to s!eak. but as I am . I1d certainly like to offer my own mea er knowled e. Eh. without tryin to disentan le one from another& I have tried out both of these modes.ust takes the ri ht kind of tri erin from the outside& *chilles. of someone to whom it is a totally new e(!erience—someone such as you. each one of them shuts out the other& It1s sim!ly not in my !ower to follow . by /& 7& Escher? Tortoise. I was wonderin if !erha!s one of you seasoned fu ue-listeners mi ht hel! me in learnin &&& Tortoise. I remember that !icture& Those little bubbles always seem to fli! back and forth between bein concave and conve(. or where it seems to come rushin u! from the de!ths. if it mi ht !rove of some assistance& *chilles. you aren1t able to fish it u! out of your subconscious& 8ra(. either to follow one individual voice at a time. I have a question about fu ues which I feel a little embarrass about askin . as soon as you1ve decided that they are bum!s. seem to turn it dents—and vice versa? *chilles. or to listen to the total effect of all of them to ether. which has its own com!ensations& 'or instance. much to my frustration. and. after I have been throu h the first flush of infatuation with the >ell Tempered 8la#ierOalthou h it also makes me sad that this sta e could not last forever and ever& 8ra(. I am very lad to hear that there is somethin to look forward to.8ra(. and I can feel thrilled a ain& *chilles. It1s been su!!lanted by familiarity. really? Such as what? 8ra(. E(actly& The !otential of relivin the thrill is -coded-. Such as hearin it throu h the ears. Perha!s—es!ecially when it is inverted and hidden amon several other voices. E(actly& 8ra(. you needn1t fear that your infatuation will totally die& Ene of the nice thin s about that sort of youthful thrill is that it can always resuscitated. and wonder how old 0ach dreamt them u!& *chilles. I find that there are always new sur!rises which I hadn1t noticed before& *chilles.

all based on one sin le theme.ibbons. since you feel that the essence of the fu ue is flittin about you. Just as when you look at the ma ic bands. not at all. () '! 8! Escher lithograph. Hes& I was . but I to find myself shiftin back and forth from one mode to the other without e(ertin any conscious control over which mode should he dominant& I don1t know if our other com!anions here have also e(!erienced anythin similar& 8ra(. eh? *chilles. ine(!erienced listener. that each of their voices is a !iece of music in itself= and thus a fu ue mi ht be thou ht of as a collection of several distinct !ieces of music. BIGC5& the !aths of individual voices and at the same time to hear the whole effect& I find that I fli! back and forth between one mode and the other.73G5=E GJ! 7ube with /a ic . 'u ues have that interestin !ro!erty. /ost definitely& It1s quite a tantali<in !henomenon. because you can1t quite make yourself function both ways at once& *nteater. )chilles& I can only s!eak for myself. and you can1t quite ras! all of it. and all !layed simultaneously& )nd it . who couldn1t even be in to ras! the dee!er modes of !erce!tion which e(ist beyond his ken? Tortoise. 8o. more or less s!ontaneously and involuntarily& *nteater.ust wonderin &&& does my descri!tion of these two modes of fu uelistenin brand me unmistakably as a naPve.

e#er)one tipping his head this wa) and that in pu@@lement! 7inall) it has made the rounds. and you will2 The prelude ends! There is a moment of silenceR and!!! U*TT*88*V . I have never seen that illustration before& 3hy don1t you !ass it 1round? The Tortoise passes the (ook around! Each of the foursome looks at it in a characteristic wa)Othis one from afar. this dichotomy between hearin a fu ue as a whole. I will ain any more insi ht into the question. is a !articular e(am!le of a very eneral dichotomy. and that is the sense in which I meant that it is inde!endent& 0ut you are quite ri ht in !ointin out that each of these individually meanin ful lines fuses with the others in a hi hly nonrandom way. which does not feel forced in any way& 8ow. otherwise when they were !ut to ether one would . yet that can1t be literally true& There has to be some coordination between them. as a whole. you would find that it seemed to make sense all by itself& It could stand alone. ) better way to state it mi ht be this. and hearin its com!onent voices. Eh. Hou say that the !arts are -inde!endent-. I wonder how that could be& I uess it has to do with alternatin between !erceivin somethin as a whole. and came across this ma nificent illustration facin the first !a e of the fu ue& 8ra(. look at this2 I . and yet which when taken to ether forms a whole. who peers at it rather intentl)!/ *chilles.ust about over& I wonder if. really? Hou mean that my two -modes. my. to manufacture several different lines. to make a raceful totality& The art of writin a beautiful fu ue lies !recisely in this ability. I uess the !relude is . Eh. each one of which ives the illusion of havin been written for its own beauty. if you listened to each on its own.ust turned the !a e while followin the music. all of which harmoni<e& *chilles. 3ell. and !erceivin it as a collection of !arts& 0ut the only !lace I have ever run into that dichotomy is in listenin to fu ues& Tortoise. )bsolutely& *chilles. or as the sum of its !arts?Tortoise. and returns to the Tortoise. or as a collection of inde!endent !arts. in situations other than fu ue-listenin ? *nteater.ust have an unsystematic clashin of tones—and that is as far from the truth as could be& *nteater. -3hat is the ri ht way to listen to a fu ue. Aisten carefully.is u! to the listener 4or his subconscious5 to decide whether it should be !erceived as a unit. which a!!lies to many kinds of structures built u! from lower levels& *chilles. as I listen to this fu ue. that one from close up.may have some eneral ty!e of a!!licability.

we all know that we human bein s are com!osed of an enormous number of cells 4around twenty-five trillion5. who looks at us on lower levels than we think of ourselves& 3e read about :8) and . and !roduce the other& Ene way in which this a! enters )rtificial Intelli ence is well illustrated by the !ro ress in knowled e about how to !ro ram a com!uter to !lay ood chess& It used to be thou ht—in the "#L+1s and on into the "#D+1s—that the trick to makin a machine !lay well was to make the machine look further ahead into the branchin network of !ossible sequences of !lay than any chess . a com!uter.enetic en ineerin . a do .or !roblems of )rtificial Intelli ence research is to fi ure out how to brid e the a! between these two descri!tions= how to construe a system which can acce!t one level of descri!tion.and si! our coffee& 3e seem to have reconciled these two inconceivably different !ictures of ourselves sim!ly by disconnectin them from each other& 3e have almost no way to relate a microsco!ic descri!tion of ourselves to that which we feel ourselves to be. and therefore that everythin we do could in !rinci!le be described in terms of cells& Er it could even be described on the level of molecules& /ost of us acce!t this in a rather matter-of-fact way= we o to the doctor. they both have the !ro!erty that they can be understood on different levels& 3e are all familiar with this kind of thin = and yet in some cases it confuses us.of our minds& Seldom do we have to fli! back and forth between these two conce!ts of ourselves.ing and Chess S. and hence it is !ossible to store se!arate re!resentations of ourselves in quite se!arate -com!artments. but at sets of flickerin dots on a flat surface& 3e know it.TE$ < Le"els of escri!tion) and Com!uter Systems Le"els of escri!tion 6n:EA1S ST. while in others we handle it without any difficulty at all& 'or e(am!le. and a 0ach fu ue. but that does not confuse us& 3e can . but it is the furthest thin from our mind& 3e have these two wildly o!!osin re!resentations of what is on the screen. and !ay attention to the other—which is what all of us do& 3hich one is -more real-? It de!ends on whether you1re a human.ust shut one out.I86 6. we know that we are actually lookin not at a woman.ill Ene of the ma. or a television set& Chun. wonderin -?ow can these two totally different thin s be the same me?Er take a sequence of ima es on a television screen which shows Shirley /acAaine lau hin & 3hen we watch that sequence.C/A.

and sur!ass human e(!erts& In fact. as this oal radually became attained.ust -smells. master-level !layers have built u! hi her levels of or ani<ation in the way they see the board= consequently. and takes them immediately& 7om!uter chess !ro rams which rely on lookin ahead have not been tau ht to think on a hi her level= the strate y has . !rinted !a es.the !romisin !aths. but to a novice1s eyes. his results im!ly that chess masters !erceive the distribution of !ieces in chunks& There is a hi her-level descri!tion of the board than the strai htforward -white !awn on @L. and so forth. the level of com!uter chess did not have any sudden s!urt. or !aintin s& . to them. not at all the same& The clincher was to do the same e(!eriment but with !ieces randomly assi ned to the squares on the board. e9plicit pruning would involve thinkin of a move. ho!in to crush all ty!es of o!!osition& 0ut it has not worked& Perha!s someday. as less ifted !eo!le mi ht do= rather. black rook on MD. are never brou ht to mind& Similarly.ty!e of descri!tion. a look-ahead !ro ram with enou h brute force will indeed overcome the best human !layers—but that will be a small intellectual ain. he . television screens. decidin not to !ursue e(aminin it any further& The distinction can a!!ly . a master usually e(amines only a handful of !ossible moves2 The trick is that his mode of !erceivin the board is like a filter. com!ared with the novice1s !loddin reconstruction of the !osition. he literally does not see (ad mo#es when he looks at a chess situation—no more than chess amateurs see ille al moves when they look at a chess situation& )nyone who has !layed even a little chess has or ani<ed his !erce!tion so that dia onal rook-moves. forward ca!tures by !awns. a human e(!ert can quite soundly and confidently trounce the best chess !ro rams of this day& The reason for this had actually been in !rint for many years& In the "#C+1s. which left the ame strate ically almost the same. and after su!erficial e(amination. certain ty!es of situation recur— certain !atterns—and it is to those hi h-level !atterns that the master is sensitive& ?e thinks on a different le#el from the novice= his set of conce!ts is different& 8early everyone is sur!rised to find out that in actual !lay.ust as well to other intellectual activities—for instance. after both of them had had five-second lances at the board& ?i hly revealin was the fact that masters1 mistakes involved !lacin whole groups of !ieces in the wron !lace. bad moves are as unlikely to come to mind as ille al moves are. and the master somehow !roduces such a mental ima e of the board& This was !roven by the hi h s!eed with which a master could re!roduce an actual !osition taken from a ame.ust been to use brute force look-ahead. a master rarely looks ahead any further than a novice does—and moreover. com!ared to the revelation that intelli ence de!ends crucially on the ability to create hi h-level descri!tions of com!le( such as chess boards. the :utch !sycholo ist )driaan de 6root made studies of how chess novices and chess masters !erceive a chess situation& Put in their starkest terms. to most !eo!le& This mi ht be called implicit pruning of the iant branchin tree of !ossibilities& 0y contrast. instead of co!ied from actual ames& The masters were found to be sim!ly no better than the novices in reconstructin such random boards& The conclusion is that in normal chess !lay.master can& ?owever. doin mathematics& ) ifted mathematician doesn1t usually think u! and try out all sorts of false !athways to the desired theorem.

Similar Le"els Fsually. for love. the different descri!tions a sin le system are usually so conce!tually distant from each other that. this is by far the im!ortant view& )t the hi hest level. and can easily et totally lost& Fndoubtedly this ha!!ens when we think about our !sycholo y—for instance. is when a sin le system admits of two or more descri!tions on different levels which nevertheless resem(le each other in some way& Then we find it hard to avoid mi(in levels when we think about the system. not really. and where all the levels are conce!tually quite close to one another& I am referrin to com!uter systems& 3hen a com!uter !ro ram is runnin . thou h.ust maintained in se!arate mental com!artments& 3hat is confusin . however. when we try to understand !eo!le1s motivations for various actions& There are many levels in the human mental structure—certainly it is a system which we do not understand very well yet& 0ut there are hundreds of rival theories which tell why !eo!le act the way they do. the descri!tion is reatly chunked and takes on a com!letely different feel. etc&. this makes for much levelmi(in and most certainly for hundreds of wron theories& 'or instance. for I am not oin to talk about elementary !articles— but it is the lowest level which we wish to think about& . they summari<e in ca!sule form a number of thin s which on lower levels are seen as se!arate& 4See 'i & L$&5 8ow before thin s become too abstract. for !ower. it can be viewed on a number of levels& En each level. there is no !roblem in maintainin them both= they are . I sim!ly wish to say that our confusion about who we are is certainly related to the fact that we consist of a lar e set of levels. we are not required to hold more than one level of understandin of a situation in our minds at once& /oreover. etc&—without knowin where these drives come from in the human mental structure& 3ithout belaborin the !oint. be innin with a very quick skim of what a com!uter system is like on the lowest level& The lowest level? 3ell. for fame. and like the chunked descri!tion of the ima e on the screen. des!ite the fact that many of the same conce!ts a!!ear on the lowest and hi hest levels& The chunks on the hi h-level descri!tion are like the chess e(!ert1s chunks. and we use overla!!in lan ua e to describe ourselves on all of those levels& Com!uter Systems There is another !lace where many levels of descri!tion coe(ist for a system. as was mentioned earlier. the descri!tion can be so com!licated that it is like the dot-descri!tion of a television !icture& 'or some !ur!oses. each theory based on some underlyin assum!tions about how far down in this set of levels various kinds of !sycholo ical -forces. the descri!tion is iven in the lan ua e of com!uter science.are found& Since at this time we use !retty much the same kind of lan ua e for all mental levels. which makes all the descri!tions similar in some ways to each other—yet there are e(tremely im!ortant differences between the views one ets on the different levels& )t the lowest level. we talk of -drives-—for se(. let us !ass on to the concrete facts about com!uters.

one ma) wish to ignore the chunk's internal structure or to take it into account! )t the conce!tual rock-bottom of a com!uter. they may re!resent thirty-si( dots on a television screen& )nd other times. but it has the !ossibly misleadin effect of makin !eo!le think that a com!uter. of course.and -+-&&& The third is the usual convention& It is !erfectly fine. is storin numbers& This is not true& ) set of thirty-si( bits does not have to be thou ht of as a number any more than two bits has to be thou ht of as the !rice of an ice cream cone& Just as money can do various thin s de!endin on how you use it. dee! down. a bit is . those thirty-si( bits will indeed re!resent a number in binary notation& Ether times. let us say there are DL. !lay more than one role—like a note in a canon& .and -E-.and -down-. a central !rocessin unit 47PF5. or -". they may re!resent a few letters of te(t& ?ow a word in memory is to be thou ht of de!ends entirely on the role that this word !lays in the !ro ram which uses it& It may. and some in!ut-out!ut 4IIE5 devices& Aet us first describe the memory& It is divided u! into distinct !hysical !ieces. bein B to the "Dth !ower5& ) word is further divided into what we shall consider the atoms of com!uter science-bits& The number of bits in a ty!ical word mi ht be around thirty-si(& Physically.73G5=E GC! The idea of "chunking": a group of items is repercei#ed as a single "chunk"! The chunk's (oundar) is a little like a cell mem(rane or a national (order: it esta(lishes a separate identit) for the cluster within! *ccording to conte9t. we find a memory. called words& 'or the sake of concreteness.L%D words of memory 4a ty!ical number. or -T. to be sure. so a word in memory can serve many functions& Sometimes.ust a ma netic -switch.that can be in either of two !ositions& %%% a word of HJ (its %%% Hou could call the two !ositions -u!.

the 7PF will !ick u! the very ne(t word and inter!ret it as an instruction& In other words.!art of an instruction is the numerical address of some word4s5 in memory& There are no restrictions on the !ointer.$I. but also the !ro ram to act on the data& There e(ists a limited re!ertoire of o!erations which can be carried out by the central !rocessin unit—the 7PF—and !art of a word.sequentially. instruction. to a re ister& 4In this case.at itself. inter!retin word after word as an instruction& 0ut this sequential order can be broken by such instructions as the 3&M. the remainin bits constitute a pointer to some other word 4or words5 in memory& Every word in memory has a distinct location. but rather. so that when it is e(ecuted. like a house on a street= and its location is called its address& /emory may have one -street-. so an instruction may even -!oint. and others& . or many -streets-—they are called -!a es-& So a iven word is addressed by its !a e number 4if memory is !a ed5 to ether with its !osition within the !a e& ?ence the -!ointer. like a mailman. as letters& 4In this case. they tell which other words in memory are to be acted u!on& In other words. but as a strin of letters&5 3&M. registers&5 Then the 7PF e(ecutes that instruction& 8ow the instruction may call for any of a number of ty!es of o!erations to be carried out& Ty!ical ones include. and co!ies it electronically into a s!ecial word belon in to the 7PF itself& 43ords in the 7PF are usually not called -words-. A the word !ointed to in the instruction. the 7PF is bein told to inter!ret that !articular word as its ne(t instruction&5 Fnless the instruction e(!licitly dictates otherwise.Instructions and ata There is one inter!retation of a word which I haven1t yet mentioned. the word is obviously inter!reted not as a number. usually its first several bits—is inter!retable as the name of the instruction-ty!e which is to be carried 3hat do the rest of the bits in a word-inter!reted-as-instruction stand for? /ost often. to the word !ointed to in the instruction& 4In this case.T the word !ointed to in the instruction. that is as an instruction& The words of memory contain not only data to be acted on. the word !ointed to is obviously inter!reted as number&5 . the 7PF assumes that it should move down the -street. it causes a chan e in itself to be made& ?ow does the com!uter know what instruction to e(ecute at any iven time? This is ke!t track of in the 7PF& The 7PF has a s!ecial !ointer which !oints at 4i&e&. stores the address of5 the ne(t word which is to be inter!reted as an instruction& The 7PF fetches that word from memory.

the hardware is built to -understand- . 1)1.ust the key idea that !ro rams could be written on a different level at all2 Just think about it. we can liken the difference between machine lan ua e and assembly lan ua e to the difference between !ainfully s!ecifyin each nucleotide. connectin wires to each other. than that of machine lan ua e—namely. or 1T15& There is a tremendous savin of labor in this very sim!le -chunkin . so that the !ro!er o!erations were -hard-wired.the individual machine lan ua e instructions.when you want an instruction which adds one number to another. the ty!es of o!erations which e(ist constitute a finite re!ertoire which cannot be e(tended& Thus all !ro rams. and what it is like to try to ras! what is oin on in a !ro ram if you have access only to its machine lan ua e descri!tion& It must be mentioned. must be made out of com!ounds of these ty!es of instructions& Aookin at a !ro ram written in machine lan ua e is va uely com!arable to lookin at a :8) molecule atom by atom& If you lance back to 'i & C". Assembly Language This is a very brief sketch of machine language& In this lan ua e. atom by atom. done in the ori inal T8Tnotation.rograms That Translate . so that instead of writin the sequence of bits -+"+"""+++. atom by atom. which is much easier to understand& Er. that com!uter !ro rammin was ori inally done on an even lower level. no matter how lar e and com!le(. the ste! is rather entle& In essence.in& This is so ama<in ly !rimitive by modern standards that it is !ainful even to ima ine& Het undoubtedly the !eo!le who first did it e(!erienced as much e(hilaration as the !ioneers of modern com!uters ever do&&& 3e now wish to move to a hi her level of the hierarchy of levels of descri!tion of !ro rams& This is the assem(l) language level& There is not a i antic s!read between assembly lan ua e and machine lan ua e= indeed. althou h conce!tually not much has been chan ed& . showin the nucleotide sequence of a :8) molecule—and then if you consider that each nucleotide contains two do<en atoms or so—and if you ima ine tryin to write the :8). however. a !ro ram in assembly lan ua e is very much like a machine lan ua e !ro ram made le ible to humans& Hou mi ht com!are the machine lan ua e version of a !ro ram to a T8T-derivation done in the obscure 6>del-numbered notation.Machine Language #s. if !ossible. and s!ecifyin a nucleotide by sim!ly ivin its name 4i&e&. 161.o!eration. you can refer to the word in memory by a name& Therefore.rograms Perha!s the central !oint about assembly lan ua e is not its differences from machine lan ua e. but . you sim!ly write A . and then instead of ivin the address in binary re!resentation. for a small virus 4not to mention a human bein 25—then you will et a feelin for what it is like to write a com!le( !ro ram in machine lan ua e. which are not that enormous. 171. and the assembly lan ua e version to the isomor!hic T8T-derivation. oin back to the :8) ima e. there is a one-to-one corres!ondence between assembly lan ua e instructions and machine lan ua e instructions& The idea of assembly lan ua e is to -chunk.

instruction-. and then to call them by name& This would build the chunkin o!eration ri ht into . translated5. not necessarily all conti uous in memory& Such a com!onent could be re!resented in a hi her-level lan ua e by a sin le item—a chunk& )side from standard chunks—the newly discovered com!onents out of which all al orithms can be built—!eo!le reali<ed that almost all !ro rams contain even lar er chunks—su!erchunks. certain fundamental !atterns which cro!!ed u! naturally when human bein s tried to formulate al orithms—e(act descri!tions of !rocesses they wanted carried out& In other words. de!endin on the kinds of hi h-level tasks the !ro ram is su!!osed to carry out& 3e discussed su!erchunks in 7ha!ter G.and -!rocedures-& It was clear that a most !owerful addition to any !ro rammin lan ua e would be the ability to define new hi her-level entities in terms of !reviously known ones. instead of in chemicals& 3hat can a cell do with a !iece of !a!er? 3hat can a com!uter do with an assembly lan ua e !ro ram? )nd here is the vital !oint. in machine lan ua e. its machine lan ua e equivalent is run& 0ut this is a matter of terminolo y& 3hich level !ro ram is runnin ? Hou can never o wron if you say that the machine lan ua e !ro ram is runnin . they reali<ed that there were a number of characteristic structures which ke!t rea!!earin in !ro ram after !ro ram& There seemed to be. and other convenient abbreviations which a !ro rammer can remember easily. al orithms seemed to have certain hi her-level com!onents. callin them by their usual names. a translation program& This !ro ram. someone can write. -. -subroutines. or assembly lan ua e& Ty!ically. in terms of which they could be much more easily and esthetically s!ecified than in the very restricted machine lan ua e.machine lan ua e !ro rams—sequences of bits—but not letters and decimal numbers& 3hat ha!!ens when hardware is fed a !ro ram in assembly lan ua e? It is as if you tried to et a cell to acce!t a !iece of !a!er with the nucleotide sequence written out in letters of the al!habet. instead of sayin .ust as in chess.i ht now. called an assem(ler. in the early "#L+1s. so to s!eak& These su!erchunks differ from !ro ram to !ro ram. for hardware is always involved when any !ro ram runs—but it is also quite reasonable to think of the runnin !ro ram in terms of assembly lan ua e& 'or instance. decimal numbers. a hi h-level al orithm com!onent consists not of one or two machine lan ua e instructions. you mi ht very well say. acce!ts mnemonic instruction names. it is runOor rather. the 7PF is e(ecutin a 3&M. the 7PF is e(ecutin a 1"""+"++++1 instruction-& ) !ianist who !lays the notes 6-E-0 E-6-0 is also !layin an ar!e io in the chord of E minor& There is no reason to be reluctant about describin thin s from a hi her-level !oint of view& So one can think of the assembly lan ua e !ro ram runnin concurrently with the machine lan ua e !ro ram& 3e have two modes of describin what the 7PF is doin & /igher-Le"el Languages) Com!ilers) and Inter!reters The ne(t level of the hierarchy carries much further the e(tremely !owerful idea of usin the com!uter itself to translate !ro rams from a hi h level into lower levels& )fter !eo!le had !ro rammed in assembly lan ua e for a number of years. -. but of a whole collection of them. .i ht now. and carries out the conversion into the monotonous but critical bit-sequences& )fter the assembly lan ua e !ro ram has been assem(led 4i&e&.

and test it out as he oes alon & Thus.oyed reat !o!ularity with workers in )rtificial Intelli ence& There is one interestin difference between the way inter!reters work and com!ilers work& ) com!iler takes in!ut 4a finished )l ol !ro ram.than that between assembly lan ua e and machine lan ua e& . each with its own name. then forwards a ain.ust as if it had been a built-in feature of the lan ua e& Ef course. each .olts into action. each usable anywhere inside the !ro ram. but it is far more -scrambled. there is still a ty!e of ma!!in from )l ol into machine lan ua e. the inter!reter tries to !rocess it& This means that the inter!reter . -understandin . and certain 4machine lan ua e5 instructions inside it et e(ecuted& Precisely which ones et e(ecuted de!ends on the AISP statement itself. and e(ecutin it are intertwined. the com!iler has done its duty& The out!ut is then iven to the com!uter to run& 0y contrast. the o!erations of readin a new line. which was invented by John /c7arthy around the time )l ol was invented& Subsequently.the lan ua e& Instead of there bein a determinate re!ertoire of instructions out of which all !ro rams had to be e(!licitly assembled. so that the new line of AISP may cause control to move around in a com!le( way—forwards. on a machine lan ua e level. interpreters were invented& Aike com!ilers. of course& There are many 3&M. etc& Thus. they read one line and1 e(ecute it immediately& This has the advanta e that a user need not have written a com!lete !ro ram to use an inter!reter& ?e may invent his !ro ram line by line. but it ives some inklin of the ty!es of -unscramblin that have to be carried out in translatin from a hi h-level lan ua e to a lower-level lan ua e&5 In the mid-"#L+1s. the inter!reter is constantly runnin while the !ro rammer ty!es in one AISP statement after another. an )l ol !ro ram is to its machine lan ua e translation as a word !roblem in an elementary al ebra te(t is to the equation it translates into& 4)ctually. but that would not be e(!licitly visible to the hi h-level !ro rammer= it would be im!licit& The new lan ua es based on these ideas were called compiler languages& Ene of the earliest and most ele ant was called -)l ol-. in an inter!reter. ettin from a word !roblem to an equation is far more com!le(. e(!anded a little more& Each time a new line of AISP is ty!ed in. . for -)l orithmic Aan ua e-& Fnlike the case with assembly lan ua e. backwards. the !ro rammer could construct his own modules. there is no ettin away from the fact that down below. AISP has en.ou hly s!eakin . then e(ecuted.it. they occur simultaneously& ?ere is the idea. everythin would still be com!osed of the same old machine lan ua e instructions. instructions inside the inter!reter. but instead of translatin all the statements first and then e(ecutin the machine code. for instance5 and !roduces out!ut 4a lon sequence of machine lan ua e instructions5& )t this !oint. inter!reters translate from hi hlevel lan ua es into machine lan ua e. successful !ro rams called compilers were written whose function was to carry out the translation from com!iler lan ua es to machine lan ua e& )lso. and each one ets e(ecuted then and there& 0ut this doesn1t mean that each statement ets first translated. there is no strai htforward one-to-one corres!ondence between statements in )l ol and machine lan ua e instructions& To be sure. an inter!reter is to a com!iler as a simultaneous inter!reter is to a translator of a written s!eech& Ene of the most im!ortant and fascinatin of all com!uter lan ua es is AISP 4standin for -Aist Processin -5. for then an inter!reter would be nothin but a line-by-line com!iler& Instead.

since the) are themsel#es programs.AISP statement ets converted into a -!athway. from which !oint on his vocabulary and fluency can row by lea!s and bounds. since he can use lan ua e to acquire new lan ua e& Le"els on >hich to escribe $unning . bein itself a !ro ram. full-blown com!iler had been com!iled& This !rocess is affectionately known as -bootstra!!in -—for obvious reasons 4at least if your native lan ua e is En lish it is obvious5& It is not so different from the attainment by a child of a critical level of fluency in his native lan ua e. the) are originall) written in a language also! The wa#) lines indicate that a compiler can (e written in assem(l) language.inside the inter!reter. you et a different ima e of the relation between a !ro ram written in a hi her-level lan ua e and the machine which is e(ecutin it& Bootstra!!ing Ef course a com!iler. and the act of followin that !athway achieves the desired effect& Sometimes it is hel!ful to think of the AISP statements as mere !ieces of data which are fed sequentially to a constantly runnin machine lan ua e !ro ram 4the AISP inter!reter5& 3hen you think of thin s this way. then that minimal com!iler could translate bi er com!ilers into machine lan ua e—which in turn could translate yet bi er com!ilers. until the final. the resultin !ro ram is machine- . rather than machine lan ua e. when a com!iler lan ua e !ro ram is translated into machine lan ua e.rograms 7om!iler lan ua es ty!ically do not reflect the structure of the machines which will run !ro rams written in them& This is one of their chief advanta es over the hi hly s!eciali<ed assembly and machine lan ua es& Ef course. once a certain minimal core of a com!iler had been written. !eo!le reali<ed that a !artially written com!iler could be used to com!ile e(tensions of itself& In other words. and an assem(ler in machine language! 8ow as so!histication increased. thus takin full advanta e of the already accom!lished first ste! u! from machine lan ua e& ) summary of these rather tricky conce!ts is !resented in 'i ure L*& 73G5=E GE! *ssem(lers and compilers are (oth translators into machine language! This is indicated () the solid lines! 'oreo#er. has to be written in some lan ua e& The first com!ilers were written in assembly lan ua e.

de!endent& Therefore one can describe a !ro ram which is bein e(ecuted in a machineinde!endent way or a machine-de!endent way& It is like referrin to a !ara ra!h in a book by its sub. -E(ecution of the !ro ram sto!!ed when the :IG 4divide5 instruction was hit7om!iler Aan ua e Aevel.4e& &. a mutation5. the s!ecification is often iven on a lower level than that in which the !ro rammer wrote the !ro ram& ?ere are three !arallel descri!tions of a !ro ram rindin to a halt. or its !a e number and !osition on the !a e 4!ublisher-de!endent5& )s lon as a !ro ram is runnin correctly. some systems—often the so-called -microcom!uters-—come with machine lan ua e instructions which are even more rudimentary than the instruction to add a number in memory to a number in a re ister& It is u! to the user to decide what kinds of ordinary machine-level instructions he would like to be able to !ro ram in= he -micro!ro ramsthese instructions in terms of the -micro-instructions. the machine is instructed to divide by <ero at some sta e.instructions which he has desi ned may be burned into the circuitry and become hard-wired. -E(ecution of the !ro ram sto!!ed durin e(!ression 14) ^ 05I91 evaluation of the al ebraic Ene of the reatest !roblems for systems !ro rammers 4the !eo!le who write com!ilers. assemblers. for instance. althou h they need not be& Thus micro!ro rammin allows the user to ste! a little below the conventional machine lan ua e level& Ene of the consequences is that a com!uter of one manufacturer can be hard-wired 4via . descri!tions of the !roblem& It is an interestin reversal that when somethin oes wron in a enetic -!ro ram. -E(ecution of the !ro ram sto!!ed in location """++"+"+"""+""")ssembly Aan ua e Aevel. inter!reters.which are available& Then the -hi her-level machine lan ua e. the -bu .ect matter 4!ublisher-inde!endent5.is manifest only to !eo!le on a hi h level—namely on the !henoty!e level. because of their multilevel traceability& Micro!rogramming and 0!erating Systems In modern com!uter systems. /achine Aan ua e Aevel.!rovide hi h-level. by tellin where in the !ro ram the questionable event occurred& ?owever. it will come to a halt and let the user know of this !roblem. not the enoty!e level& )ctually. rather than low-level. modern biolo y uses mutations as one of its !rinci!al windows onto enetic !rocesses. it hardly matters how you describe it or think of its functionin & It is when somethin oes wron that it is im!ortant to be able to think on different levels& If. and other !ro rams to be used by many !eo!le5 is to fi ure out how to write error-detectin routines in such a way that the messa es which they feed to the user whose !ro ram has a -bu . there are several other levels of the hierarchy& 'or instance.

!ersonto-!erson. then the o!eratin system is the !ro ram that shifts attention from one to the other in some orderly fashion& The com!le(ities of o!eratin systems are formidable indeed. !articularly in com!arison to the erstwhile miracle of a -bare.tele!hone& 8ow so!histicated o!eratin systems carry out similar traffic-handlin and level-switchin o!erations with res!ect to users and their !ro rams& It is virtually certain that there are somewhat !arallel thin s which take !lace in the brain. but many different calls can be handled simultaneously& Hou can add a !refi( and dial into different areas& Hou can call direct. handlin of many stimuli at the same time= decisions of what should have !riority over what and for how lon = instantaneous -interru!ts. or the status of the rest of the air traffic around the destination—this is all left to em!loyees on different levels of the airline1s hierarchy.to the same 7PF at once. it is when somethin oes wron —such as his ba a e not arrivin —that the !assen er is made aware of the confusin system of levels underneath him& . and the !assen er sim!ly ets from one !lace to another& ?ere a ain. directin the out!ut to the !ro!er channels at the !ro!er time.rotecting the System The many levels in a com!le( com!uter system have the combined effect of -cushionin the user. callin a translator. electronic com!utation2 7onsider now a modern tele!hone system& Hou have a choice of other tele!hones to connect to& 8ot only that. which fits between the machine lan ua e !ro ram and whatever hi her level the user is !ro rammin in& The o!eratin system is itself a !ro ram which has the functions of shieldin the bare machine from access by users 4thus !rotectin the system5. etc& The list is ama<in . throu h the o!erator.the other com!uter& Then there is the level of the operating s)stem. on a conference call& Hou can have a call rerouted or traced& Hou can et a busy si nal& Hou can et a siren-like si nal that says that the number you dialed isn1t -wellformed-. and I shall only hint at them by the followin analo y& 7onsider the first tele!hone system& )le(ander 6raham 0ell could !hone his assistant in the ne(t room. manufacturer& The micro!ro rammed com!uter is said to be -emulatin . by credit card. collect. electronic transmission of a voice2 8ow that is like a bare com!uter minus o!eratin system. !reventin him from havin to think about the many lower-level oin s-on which are most likely totally irrelevant to him anyway& ) !assen er in an air!lane does not usually want to be aware of the levels of fuel in the tanks. or how many chicken dinners are to be served.micro!ro rammin 5 so as to have the same machine lan ua e instruction set as a com!uter of the same. or even another. runnin the translated !ro ram.caused by emer encies or other une(!ected occurrences= and so on& Cushioning the &ser and . or the wind s!eeds. when you think of how much fle(ibility there is. or that you have taken too in lon in dialin & Hou can install a local switchboard so that a rou! of !hones are all locally connected—etc&. and !assin control to the ne(t user& If there are several users -talkin . and also of insulatin the !ro rammer from the many e(tremely intricate and messy !roblems of readin the !ro ram.

what it is su!!osed to do& It is also necessary that it should do neither more nor less than it is e(!licitly instructed to do& If there is. a semicolon5& This small esture towards fle(ibility has its own little !itfall. without the sli htest chance of ambi uity. and !roceed under that erroneous assum!tion& Then a lon series of error messa es will !e!!er the rest of the !ro ram.what the !ro rammer wants or means. the translatin !ro ram will inter!ret that semicolon as si nalin the end of the comment. than are lower-level constructs such as those in machine lan ua e& 0ut in this drive towards ease of communication. u!on hearin one !hrase of 'rench in the En lish. but because of its lack of insi ht. then it is quite conceivable that the !ro rammer could try to communicate his task and be totally misunderstood& So it is im!ortant that the hi h-level !ro ram.SI/GT& Eften. a !ro ram whose !ur!ose is to . the !rinted equivalent of cou hin 4i&e&. while comfortable for the human. the com!iler tries to continue. you reali<e that it is to carry out very definite and !recise tasks. woe to the !ro rammer& The com!iler will balk and !rint a ri idly unsym!athetic error messa e. and havoc will ensue& If a !rocedure named I. in the cushion underneath the !ro rammer. we cou h in the middle of sentences. the hi h-level constructs in com!iler lan ua es are closer to the conce!ts which humans naturally think in. and the ei hteenth time it is miss!elled as I. mostly& 3ith !ro rammin lan ua es.has been quite ne lected& That is the fact that interhuman communication is far less ri idly constrained than human-machine communication& 'or instance. be an tryin to inter!ret all the remainin En lish as 'rench& 7om!ilers often et lost in such !athetic ways& 8'est la #ie! Perha!s this sounds condemnatory of com!uters. we coin !hrases and distort meanin s—but our messa e still ets throu h. then it is necessary that it should understand. sayin that it has never heard of I.Are Com!uters Su!er-+le-ible or Su!er-$igid7 Ene of the ma.SI/GT. we often !roduce meanin less sentence fra ments as we search for the best way to e(!ress somethin .uess. C0MME.synta(. it has enerally been the rule that there is a very strict synta( which has to be obeyed one hundred !er cent of the time= there are no ambi uous words or constructions& Interestin ly. which are too com!le( for !eo!le to do& If the com!uter is to be reliable.T5. if a semicolon 4or whatever key word is used for terminatin a comment5 is used inside a comment. a nonessential or irrelevant comment5 is allowed.or oals of the drive to hi her levels has always been to make as natural as !ossible the task of communicatin to the com!uter what you want it to do& 7ertainly.SIG/T has been defined and then called seventeen times in the !ro ram. we use ambi uous descri!tions and -im!ro!er. it may very well su!!ose that somethin entirely different was meant. when such an error is detected by a com!iler. but it is not meant to be& In some sense. it has not understood what the !ro rammer meant& In fact. thin s had to be that way& 3hen you sto! to think what most !eo!le use com!uters for. still should be unambi uous and !recise& . but only !rovided it is si naled in advance by a key word 4e& &. we interru!t each other. and then terminated by another key word 4e& &.ussian inter!reter. because the com!iler—not the !ro rammer — ot confused& Ima ine the chaos that would result if a simultaneous En lish-. ironically. one as!ect of -naturalness.

if the user is aware of all the fle(ibilities !ro rammed into the translator for his convenience. try to make sense of ambi uous descri!tions. knowin that he is actually o!eratin within the ri id rules of the lan ua e. try to second. the -cushion. there would seem to be two alternatives. althou h it may allow him much more freedom than early versions of the lan ua e.Second-Guessing the . ask questions when thin s are unclear. and therefore. the lan ua e is still usable for communicatin !ro rams !recisely. etc& The ho!e is that one can walk the ti htro!e between reliability and fle(ibility& AI Ad"ances Are Language Ad"ances It is strikin how ti ht the connection is between !ro ress in com!uter science 4!articularly )rtificial Intelli ence5 and the develo!ment of new lan ua es& ) clear trend has emer ed in the last decade. then he knows the bounds which he cannot overste!. then trans ressions of that ty!e are no lon er true trans ressions. so such a lan ua e is unsuitable for !ur!oses where com!uters are used mainly for their s!eed and reliability& 8ow there is actually a third alternative.or areas of research in )rtificial Intelli ence today is called automatic programming. because they have been included inside the rules2 If a !ro rammer is aware that he may make certain ty!es of miss!ellin . the trend to consolidate new ty!es of discoveries in new . because the !ro rammer can !redict how the com!uter will inter!ret the !ro rams he writes in the lan ua e& In the second case. then he may use this feature of the lan ua e deliberately.lan ua es of that ty!e. which is concerned with the develo!ment of yet hi her-level lan ua es—lan ua es whose translators are so!histicated& in that they can do at least some of the followin im!ressive thin s. but there are so many of them and they interact with each other in such a com!le( way that he cannot tell how his !ro rams will be inter!reted& This may well a!!ly to the !erson who wrote the translatin !ro ram= he certainly knows its insides as well as anyone could—but he still may not be able to antici!ate how it will react to a iven ty!e of unusual construction& Ene of the ma. 4"5 the user is aware of the built-in fle(ibilities of the lan ua e and its translator= 4B5 the user is unaware of them& In the first case. to him. which did not incor!orate -automatic com!ensation for human error-& 3ith -rubbery.rogrammer 8ow it is !ossible to devise a !ro rammin lan ua e—and a !ro ram which translates it into the lower levels—which allows some sorts of im!recision& Ene way of !uttin it would be to say that a translator for such a !ro rammin lan ua e tries to make sense of thin s which are done -outside of the rules of the lan ua e-& 0ut if a lan ua e allows certain -trans ressions-. correct some mis!rints or rammatical errors.uess the user by havin a !rimitive user model. enerali<e from e(am!les.has hidden features which may do thin s that are un!redictable 4from the vanta e !oint of a user who doesn1t know the inner workin s of the translator5& This may result in ross misinter!retations of !ro rams. use En lish itself. the translator still a!!ears ri id and infle(ible. des!ite a!!earances& In other words. 4%5 the user is aware of the built-in fle(ibilities of the lan ua e and its translator.

!icture of )I is shown in 'i ure L#. I do not think that. are quite distinct in feelin & This shows how a notational system can !lay a si nificant role in sha!in the final !roduct& ) -stratified. each new layer buildin on and e(tendin the fle(ibilities of the layer below& 3hat they will be like we can hardly dream of now&&& .of all !ossible !ro rams is so hu e that no one can have a sense of what is !ossible& Each hi her-level lan ua e is naturally suited for e(!lorin certain re ions of -!ro ram s!ace-= thus the !ro rammer. and it re!resents a vision of )I shared by nearly all )I workers& )lthou h I a ree with the idea that )I must be stratified in some such way. and a entle shove. but the lan ua e makes it easy for him to do certain kinds of thin s& Pro(imity to a conce!t. with machine com!onents such as transistors on the bottom. intelli ent !ro rams can he reached& 0etween the machine lan ua e level and the level where true intelli ence will be reached.in one key but are awkward in another& So you are channeled by your choice of key& In some ways. I am convinced there will lie !erha!s another do<en 4or even several do<en25 layers. even enharmonic keys. is channeled into those areas of !ro ram s!ace& ?e is not forced by the lan ua e into writin !ro rams of any !articular ty!e. and -intelli ent !ro rams. by usin that lan ua e.on the to!& The !icture is taken from the book *rtificial 3ntelligence by Patrick ?enry 3inston. with so few layers.lan ua es& Ene key for the understandin and creation of intelli ence lies in the constant develo!ment and refinement of the lan ua es in terms of which !rocesses for symbol mani!ulation are describable& Today.or discovery—and that is the reason for the drive towards lan ua es of ever hi her levels& Pro rammin in different lan ua es is like com!osin !ieces in different keys. each key will have its own s!ecial emotional aura& )lso. but it would require a su!reme effort for a human= and the resultin !ro ram would be so lon that it would e(ceed the ras! of humans& It is not that each hi her level e(tends the !otential of the com!uter= the full !otential of the com!uter already e(ists in its machine lan ua e instruction set& It is that the new conce!ts in a hi h-level lan ua e su est directions and !ers!ectives by their very nature& The -s!ace. certain kinds of fi urations -lie in the hand. !articularly if you work at the keyboard& If you have learned or written !ieces in many keys. there are !robably three or four do<en e(!erimental lan ua es which have been develo!ed e(clusively for )rtificial Intelli ence research& It is im!ortant to reali<e that any !ro ram which can be written in one of these lan ua es is in !rinci!le !ro rammable in lower-level lan ua es. such as 7-shar! and :-flat. are often all that is needed for a ma.

. on a sin le terminal& )lthou h my friends1 naPvetK mi ht seem rather e(treme. )rtificial Intelli ence =eading.know all about -yourself.only of horse racin and bookies—not o!eratin systems and terminals and s!ecial control characters& 0ut to my friends. by ty!in a s!ecial -control. 'ass!: *ddison%>esle).character which would o directly to the o!eratin system.to them in En lish2 Their question was not unlike askin a !erson.. both P).H is a rather infamous !ro ram which simulates a !aranoid in an e(tremely rudimentary way. so that one is spared the agon) of seeing e#er)thing onl) on the lowest le#el! . -3hy are you makin so few red blood cells today?.H knew nothin of this.! >inston.is so familiar from interaction with !eo!le that it was natural to e(tend it to the com!uter—after all. it was intelli ent enou h that it could -talk.H& Ene of my friends !ushed the control character& In a flash. amor!hous entity that res!onded to them when they ty!ed& )nd so it made !erfect sense when one of them blithely ty!ed.The idea that P). in En lish.on a terminal& P).73G5=E GI! To create intelligent programs. onl) the top one (eing sufficientl) chunked that it is comprehensi(le to us! U*dapted from &! . by s!ittin out canned !hrases in En lish chosen from a wide re!ertoire= its !lausibility is due to its ability to tell which of its stock !hrases mi ht sound reasonable in res!onse to En lish sentences ty!ed to it by a human& )t one !oint...H could know nothin about the o!eratin system it was runnin under was not clear to my friends& The idea that -you..ust -the com!uter-—a mysterious. BICC/V The ..H1s words on the screen& P).H and the o!eratin system were . remote. some internal data about the o!eratin system1s status overwrote some of P).H was takin very lon to re!ly—and I e(!lained to my friends that this was !robably because of the heavy load on the time-sharin system& I told them they could find out how many users were lo ed on.. and would be unseen by P).. the res!onse time ot very slu ish—P).H. -3hy are you overty!in what1s on the screen?.aranoid and the 0!erating System The similarity of all levels in a com!uter system can lead to some stran e level-mi(in e(!eriences& I once watched a cou!le of friends—both com!uter novices—!layin with the !ro ram -P).Peo!le do not know about that level —the -o!eratin system level-—of their bodies& The main cause of this level-confusion was that communication with all levels of the com!uter system was takin !lace on a sin le screen.escriptions of a single process on different le#els will sound #er( different from each other. even e(!erienced com!uter !eo!le often . it is a !ro ram with -knowled e. one needs to (uild up a series of le#els of hardware and software.

we cannot rewire our . -re!ro ram.our minds so that we o!erate in new conce!tual frameworks& The ama<in fle(ibility of our minds seems nearly irreconcilable with the notion that our brains must be made out of fi(ed-rule hardware. and hardware as -anythin else-& ) !iano is hardware. but a tele!hone number is software& 1The distinction is a useful one. to have the system itself sort out the levels—to inter!ret commands accordin to what -makes sense-& Fnfortunately.and -hardware. you mi ht e(!ect that it would be equally trivial to chan e from one font to another—say from roman to italics& Het there may be only a sin le font available on the screen. and the difference is second nature to us& 3e are used to the ri idity of our !hysiolo y. on some com!uters there are marvelous te(t-editin systems which allow !ieces of te(t to be -!oured.make similar errors when several levels of a com!le( system are all !resent at once on the same screen& They for et -who.as!ects. cure ourselves of diseases. as well as !erfect knowled e of the !ro rammer1s overall intent—both of which would require more artificial intelli ence than e(ists at the !resent time& The Border bet'een Soft'are and /ard'are Ene can also be confused by the fle(ibility of some levels and the ri idity of others& 'or instance. or that it does not fi( itself when it breaks&&& The trouble is that somewhere. however. !ractically as liquids can be !oured from one vessel into another& ) thin !a e can turn into a wide !a e.they are talkin to. the fact that we cannot. or row hair of any color—to mention . or vice versa& 3ith such !ower. therefore. such inter!retation would require the system to have a lot of common sense. althou h it would have made !erfect sense on another level& It mi ht seem desirable. all this fle(ibility has to -bottom out-. or even a finite re!ertoire of them—ty!efaces should be user-s!ecifiable2 0ut once that de ree of fle(ibility has been attained. at will. to use the !hrase from 7ha!ter G& There must be a hardware level which underlies it all. or that it cannot acce!t !a!er of all sha!es and si<es. and ty!e somethin which makes no sense at that level. and there may be so much fle(ibility on levels above it that few users feel the hardware limitations—but it is inevitably there& 3hat is this !roverbial distinction between software and hardware? It is the distinction between !ro rams and machines—between lon com!licated sequences of instructions. so that such chan es are im!ossible& Er it may be feasible on the screen but not !rintable by the !rinter—or the other way around& )fter dealin with com!uters for a lon time. then one may be annoyed that the !rinter cannot !rint in different colors of ink.from one format into another. but !rinted music is software& ) tele!hone set is hardware. and which is infle(ible& It may lie dee!ly hidden. and thinks that everythin should be !ro rammable. which cannot be re!ro rammed& 3e cannot make our neurons fire faster or slower. one ets s!oiled.ust a cou!le of sim!le e(am!les& 3e can. no !rinter should be so ri id as to have only one character set. but not always so clearcut& 3e humans also have -software. and the !hysical machines which carry them out& I like to think of software as -anythin which you could send over the tele!hone lines-.

namely. and whose -softwareis the weather& @ee!in track of the motions of all of the molecules simultaneously would be a very low-level way of -understandin . the system whose 1hardware. a drou ht—are . we can control how we think& 0ut there are clearly as!ects of thou ht which are beyond our control& 3e cannot make ourselves smarter by an act of will= we cannot learn a new lan ua e as fast as we want= we cannot make ourselves think faster than we do= we cannot make ourselves think about several thin s at once= and so on& This is a kind of !rimordial self-knowled e which is so obvious that it is hard to see it at all= it is like bein conscious that the air is there& 3e never really bother to think about what mi ht cause these -defects.If so. weather !henomena& Eur chunked view of the weather is based on very hi hlevel !henomena. but no matter5. we cannot make any choices about the hardware—and yet.is the earth1s atmos!here 4not very hard. com!licated !ro ram on the machine lan ua e level& Ebviously it is way beyond human com!rehension& 0ut we still have our own !eculiarly human ways of lookin at. thunderstorms. the . cumulo-nimbus clouds. but which. trade winds.et stream. for e(am!le. are there very small local -ministorms-. whi!!in u! some dust in a swirlin column a few feet wide. then true hi h-level weather !henomena would be lobal. -)re there intermediate level weather !henomena which have so far esca!ed human !erce!tion. rain. and describin . !arts of vaster. such as.of our minds. somethin like the small whirlwinds which one occasionally sees. the or ani<ation of our brains& To su est ways of reconcilin the software of mind with the hardware of brain is a main oal of this book& Intermediate Le"els and the >eather 3e have seen that in com!uter systems. at most? Is a local ust of wind an intermediate-level chunk which !lays a role in creatin hi her-level weather !henomena? Er is there .he weather. -7ould it be that the weather !henomena which we !erceive on our scale—a tornado. cold fronts. slower !henomena?. if !erceived.ust intermediatelevel !henomena. !ressures.brains. such as assembly lan ua e? 'or instance. in terms of any one of which the o!eration of a runnin !ro ram can be described& Thus there is not merely a sin le low level and a sin le hi h level—there are all de rees of lowness and hi hness& Is the e(istence of intermediate levels a eneral feature of systems which have low and hi h levels? 7onsider. inversion layers. could ive reater insi ht into why the weather is as it is?- . we cannot redesi n the interior of a neuron. fo . there are a number of rather shar!ly defined strata. and so on& )ll of these !henomena involve astronomical numbers of molecules. hurricanes. and their time scale would be eolo ical& The Ice ) e would be a hi h-level weather event& The second question is. snow. somehow behavin in concert so that lar e-scale trends emer e& This is a little like lookin at the weather in a com!iler lan ua e& Is there somethin analo ous to lookin at the weather in an intermediate-level lan ua e. seasons.ust no !ractical way of combinin knowled e of such kinds of !henomena to create a more com!rehensive e(!lanation of the weather? Two other questions come to my mind& The first is. rather like lookin at a hu e.

an atom is seen as made of a nucleus whose !ositive char e ca!tures a number of electrons in -orbits-. as in any other disci!line.which fly off when the nucleus is s!lit? It is !erha!s not meanin ful to try to ive an answer to such a question& En the level of !article !hysics.ect& Some systems studied in !hysics offer a contrast to the relatively strai htforward atom& Such systems involve e(tremely stron interactions. but it is not all that far-fetched& 3e need only look to the hardest of the hard sciences—!hysics—to find !eculiar e(am!les of systems which are e(!lained in terms of interactin -!arts. can be !ulled out and made visible& ?owever. so that we still see the !arts inside the system& 'or e(am!le.form 4the form they have when outside a nucleus5& )nd in fact a nucleus acts in many ways as a sin le !article. or are they . each of which maintains its own !rivate identity throu hout the interaction but by becomin sli htly different from how it is when outside of the system. the !layers chan e identity when they become !art of the lar er system. so that in a minor way.ust -s!arks. even thou h they are not visible while on the inside. the interaction between quarks is so stron that not only can they not be seen inside the !roton and neutron. the difference between storin the !otential to make -s!arks. such as !i-mesons and amma rays.s This last su estion may sound fanciful.which are themselves invisible& In !hysics. . the !arts retain their identities durin the interaction. as a result of which the !arts are swallowed u! into the lar er system. but also other !articles.+rom Tornadoes to 8uar. in which their individuality is lost& Still—and this is im!ortant—some !rocesses are oin on in their brains which are evoked by the team-conte(t. there are more !atholo ical cases& such as the !roton and neutron seen as systems themselves& Each of them has been hy!othesi<ed to be constituted from a trio of -quarks-—hy!othetical !articles which can be combined in twos or threes to make many known fundamental !articles& ?owever. contributes to the cohesive behavior of the whole system& The systems studied in !hysics are usually of this ty!e& 'or instance. des!ite their bein internal to a com!osite ob. the team& This kind of system is called a nearl) decomposa(le s)stem 4the term comes from ?& )& Simon1s article -The )rchitecture of 7om!le(ity-= see the 0iblio ra!hy5& Such a system consists of weakly interactin modules. which is usually described as bein -a collection of !rotons and neutrons-& 0ut the forces which !ull the com!onent !articles to ether are so stron that the com!onent !articles do not survive in anythin like their -free. a system is a rou! of interactin !arts& In most systems that we know. and which would not o on otherwise. rather than as a collection of interactin !articles& 3hen a nucleus is s!lit. are commonly !roduced& )re all those different !articles !hysically !resent inside a nucleus before it is s!lit. and lose some or all of their individuality& )n e(am!le of this is the nucleus of an atom. when a team of football !layers assembles. or bound states& The bound electrons are very much like free electrons.and storin actual sub!articles is not so clear& ) nucleus is thus one systems whose -!arts-. the individual !layers retain their se!arateness—they do not melt into some com!osite entity. !rotons and neutrons are often released. but they cannot even be !ulled out at all2 Thus.

and fortunately& one does not have to know all about quarks to understand many thin s about the !articles which they may com!ose& Thus. the 7oo!er !air itself. a nuclear !hysicist can !roceed with theories of nuclei that are based on !rotons and neutrons. the electrons and !honons which make u! the !olarons. two o!!ositely s!innin !olarons will be in to attract each other. and consequently it can sli! freely throu h a metal as if the metal were a vacuum& If you convert the mathematical descri!tion of such a metal from one whose !rimitive units are !olarons into one whose !rimitive units are 7oo!er !airs& you et a considerably sim!lified set of equations& This mathematical sim!licity is the !hysicist1s way of knowin that -chunkin . if anythin . !hysically& Ene of the stran est and most dramatic consequences of this way of describin !articles is the e(!lanation it !rovides for the famous !henomenon of superconducti#it). by recursively com!ounded interactions with virtual !articles& ) renormali<ed !article can be seen either as this com!le( mathematical construct. this !airin comes about !recisely because electrons—the bare cores of the !aired !olarons— re!el each other electrically& In contrast to the electrons. which are e(!lained by an understandin of the levels below& (Sealing-off( Similarly. quantitatively. etc& etc& 3e can look at each level and !erceive !henomena there. by usin the -quark model-& Su!erconducti"ity5 A (. their own e(istence may !erha!s never be inde!endently established& ?ere we have the antithesis of a -nearly decom!osable system-—it is a system which. and can actually become bound to ether in in a certain way& Fnder the !ro!er conditions& all the current-carryin !olarons will et !aired u!. within the electrons. each 7oo!er !air feels neither attracted to nor re!elled by another 7oo!er !air. or as the sin le lum! which it is. is -nearly indecom!osable-& Het what is curious is that a quark-based theory of !rotons and neutrons 4and other !articles5 has considerable e(!lanatory !ower. formin 8ooper pairs& Ironically.althou h quarks hel! to ive a theoretical understandin of certain !ro!erties of !rotons and neutrons. resistance-free flow of electrons in certain solids. the two o!!ositelys!innin !olarons which com!ose it. the virtual !hotons and !ositrons. and then. at e(tremely low tem!eratures& It turns out that electrons in solids are renormali<ed by their interactions with stran e quanta of vibration called phonons 4themselves renormali<ed as well25& These renormali<ed electrons are called polarons& 7alculation shows that at very low tem!eratures. in that many e(!erimental results concernin the !articles which quarks su!!osedly com!ose can be accounted for quite well.into 7oo!er !airs is the natural way to look at su!erconductivity& ?ere we have several levels of !article. and i nore quark theories and their rivals& The nuclear !hysicist has a chunked !icture of !rotons and neutrons—a descri!tion derived from lower-level theories but which does not require .arado-( of $enormali:ation In 7ha!ter G we discussed how renormali<ed !articles emer e from their bare cores.

within which behavior is e(!ected to fall. there is almost no leaka e from one level to a distant level& That is why !eo!le can have intuitive understandin s of other !eo!le without necessarily understandin the quark model. in usin chunked hi h-level models. the chemical bond. such models are very realistic and successful& The Trade-off bet'een Chun. the !hysiolo y of the various or ans of the human body. -7om!uters can only do what you tell them to do&. thereby sealin off the dama ed com!artment from nei hborin com!artments& )lthou h there is always some -leaka e. or a biolo ist to i nore chemistry totally. and water be ins !ourin in. and so on& In short. so that a chemist cannot afford to i nore lower-level !hysics totally. and tries to use them to account for the ways that cells interact& The !oint is clear& Each level is.from the levels below it& This is another of Simon1s vivid terms. an atomic !hysicist has a chunked !icture of an atomic nucleus derived from nuclear theory& Then a chemist has a chunked !icture of the electrons and their orbits. but of course such models only ive us !robabilistic estimates of how other !eo!le feel. and s!ecifies !robabilities of its fallin in different !arts of that s!ace& (Com!uters Can 0nly o >hat =ou Tell Them to o( 8ow these ideas can be a!!lied as well to com!uter !ro rams as to com!osite !hysical systems& There is an old saw which says. climb the nearest fla !ole& 49en masters mi ht well do the latter25 ) chunked model defines a -s!ace. we tell it with the e(!ectation at they will do somethin such as lau h. we sacrifice determinism for sim!licity& :es!ite not bein sure how !eo!le will react to a . it usually does not have e(act !redictive !ower& That is. say. the trouble can be !revented from s!readin . who has an intuition for how small molecules han to ether. the nature of electron orbits. so that if one !art is dama ed. in some sense. theories which can be taken over in a chunked way by the molecular biolo ist.between the hierarchical levels of science.This is ri ht in one sense. you don1t know in advance the consequences of what you tell a com!uter to do= therefore its behavior can be as bafflin and sur!risin and un!redictable to you as that of a !erson& Hou enerally know in . the structure of !roteins. the or anelles in a cell. -sealed off.understandin the lower-level theories& Aikewise. the structure of nuclei. but whose technical e(!ertise is in the field of e(tremely lar e molecules and how they interact& Then the cell biolo ist has a chunked !icture of the units which the molecular biolo ist !ores over. we save ourselves from the im!ossible task of seein !eo!le as collections of quarks 4or whatever is at the lowest level5 by usin chunked models. but it misses the !oint. and builds theories of small molecules. recallin the way in which a submarine is built in com!artments. or the com!le( interactions amon or ans& )ll that a !erson needs is a chunked model of how the hi hest level acts= and as we all know. will react to what we say or do.ing and eterminism There is. or not lau h—rather than. however. the methods of intercellular communication.oke. by closin the doors. !erha!s one si nificant ne ative feature of a chunked model.

!ressure. is so !revalent and so connected with the notion that -com!uters cannot think. where the e(act an le with which a ball strikes each !ost is crucial in determinin the rest of its descendin !athway& ) com!uter is an elaborate combination of these two ty!es of system& It contains subunits such as wires. you are s!ared conscious awareness of the di estive !rocesses it tri ers& In any case. you wouldn1t have written the !ro ram& There is another sense in which this old saw is rusty& This involves the fact that as you !ro ram in ever hi her-level lan ua es.that we shall return to it in later 7ha!ters when our level of so!histication is reater& T'o Ty!es of System There is an im!ortant division between two ty!es of system built u! from many !arts& There are those systems in which the behavior of some !arts tends to cancel out the behavior of other !arts. from a macrosco!ic !oint of view. because most anythin will yield similar hi h-level behavior& )n e(am!le of this kind of system is a container of as. the out!ut would also chan e drastically& .ust as when you eat a sandwich. you have a chunked model of the !ro ram1s behavior= but if you1d known the rest. a very !recise. such as a !rinter. you know less and less !recisely what you1ve told the com!uter to do2 Aayers and layers of translation may se!arate the -front end. since it de!ends on statistical effects in which billions of random effects cancel each other out. chunked law which resembles the laws overnin ases in containers. enerally. and volume& Then there are systems where the effect of a sin le low-level event may et magnified into an enormous hi h-level consequence& Such a system is a !inball machine.advance the s!ace in which the out!ut will fall. but you don1t know details of where it will fall& 'or instance. where all the molecules bum! and ban a ainst each other in very com!le( microsco!ic ways= but the total outcome. your statements may resemble declaratives and su estions more than they resemble im!eratives or commands& )nd all the internal rumblin !rovoked by the in!ut of a hi h-level statement is invisible to you. you mi ht write a !ro ram to calculate the first million di its of m& Hour !ro ram will s!ew forth di its of m much faster than you can—but there is no !arado( in the fact that the com!uter outracin its !ro rammer& Hou know in advance the s!ace in which the out!ut will lie—namely the s!ace of di its between + and #—which is to say. the value of every sin le bit in the !ro ram !lays a critical role in the out!ut that ets !rinted& If any bit were chan ed. with the result that it does not matter too much what ha!!ens on the low level.. yieldin a !redictable overall behavior& ) com!uter also contains macrosco!ic subunits. stable system with a certain tem!erature. which behave in a hi hly !redictable fashion.of a com!le( !ro ram from the actual machine lan ua e instructions& )t the level you think and !ro ram. in the case of most com!uter !ro rams. whose behavior is com!letely determined by delicate !atterns of currents& 3hat the !rinter !rints is not by any means created by a myriad of cancelin microsco!ic effects& In fact.first !ro!ounded by Aady Aovelace in her famous memoir. is a very calm. this notion that -com!uters can only do what they are told to do. . they conduct electricity accordin to Ehm1s law.

the res!onse time all of a sudden shot u!. which.subsystems only—that is. if you wish= in that sense it is inde!endent of the lower level& It is im!ortant to reali<e that the hi h-level law cannot be stated in the vocabulary of the low-level descri!tion& -Pressure. where c is a constant—is a law which de!ends on. of course. the other kind of system which !lays a very lar e role in our lives is a system that has variable behavior which de!ends on some internal microsco!ic !arameters—often a very lar e number of them. ettin so slow that you mi ht as well lo off and o home and wait until later& Jokin ly I said. on clocks to tell the time correctly. the microsco!ic and macrosco!ic descri!tions of a as use entirely different terms& The former requires the s!ecification of the !osition and velocity of every sin le com!onent molecule= the latter requires only the s!ecification of three new quantities. but at about thirty-five users or so. on the sun to shine. because they are !illars of stability& 3e can rely on walls not to fall down.ust find the !lace in the o!eratin system where the number 1%L1 is stored. and involves !robabilistic estimates of landin in different re ions of that s!ace& ) container of as. obeys !recise. as I already !ointed out.Systems which are made u! of -reliable. that there is no such !lace& where. does the critical number—%L users—come from? The answer is. if they were to discover this law& E!i!henomena In drawin this 7ha!ter to a close. !ressure.and -tem!erature. I would like to relate a story about a com!le( system& I was talkin one day with two systems !ro rammers for the com!uter I was usin & They mentioned that the o!eratin system seemed to be able to handle u! to about thirty-five users with reat comfort. 3t is a #isi(le conse"uence of the o#erall s)stem organi@ationOan -epiphenomenon"& . subsystems whose behavior can be reliably !redicted from chunked descri!tions—!lay inestimably im!ortant roles in our daily lives. yet is inde!endent of. in that they deal with the as as a whole. and volume. is a reliable system because of many cancelin effects. so that it is not ama<in that we should have found this law& 0ut creatures which knew ases only as theoretical mathematical constructs would have to have an ability to synthesi<e new conce!ts. it is law which allows you to i nore the lower level com!letely. tem!erature. moreover—which we cannot directly observe& Eur chunked model of such a system is necessarily in terms of the -s!ace.Everyone lau hed& The !oint is. the lower-level !henomena& Aess !arado(ically. this law can be derived from the laws overnin the molecular level= in that sense it de!ends on the lower level& En the other hand. deterministic laws of !hysics& Such laws are chunked laws. then.are new terms which e(!erience with the low level alone cannot convey& 3e humans !erceive tem!erature and !ressure directly= that is how we are built. the first two of which do not even have microsco!ic counter!arts& The sim!le mathematical relationshi! which elates these three !arameters— p< X cT. and so on& 7hunked models of such systems are virtually entirely deterministic& Ef course.of o!eration. that1s sim!le to fi(—. and i nore its constituents& 'urthermore. on sidewalks to o where they went yesterday. and chan e it to 1D+12. -3ell.

there is ullibility& ?ow ullible are you? Is your ullibility located in some . must one o all the way down to the level of nerve cells? . a renormali<ed electron.in your brain? 7ould a neurosur eon reach in and !erform some delicate o!eration to lower your ullibility. a nucleus. a neutron. or a quark? Is consciousness an e!i!henomenon? To understand the mind. but it is not stored in his body anywhere& It is s!read around amon all the cells of his body and only manifests itself in the act of the s!rint itself& E!i!henomena abound& In the ame of -6o-.off of brain and trans!lanted into other systems? Er is it im!ossible to unravel thinkin !rocesses into neat and modular subsystems? Is the brain more like an atom.Similarly. that makes him be able to run "++ yards in #&% seconds?. otherwise leavin you alone? If you believe this. where we discuss the brain. you are !retty ullible. -3here is the 1#&%1 stored.ullibility center. and should !erha!s consider such an o!eration& Mind #s& Brain In comin 7ha!ters. there is the feature that -two eyes live-& It is not built into the rules. we shall e(amine whether the brain1s to! level—the mind—can be understood without understandin the lower levels on which it both de!ends and does not de!end& )re there laws of thinkin which are -sealed offfrom the lower laws that overn the microsco!ic activity in the cells of the brain? 7an mind be -skimmed. a million factors all interactin when he runs& The time is quite re!roducible. you mi ht ask about a s!rinter. but it is a consequence of the rules& In the human brain. what his reaction time is.Ebviously. it is not stored anywhere& ?is time is a result of how he is built.

.

I know what is oin on here& Each of you has seen letters which com!ose. not -. but each one of them is com!osed out of smaller co!ies of the word -. not -?EAIS/-2 8ra(.is the messa e of this !icture. there are indeed three -?EAIS/-1s. there is indeed one -. and that much is certain& *nteater. but -/F. !lain as day& ?ow you see anythin else is beyond me& *nteater. but it is com!osed out of smaller co!ies of the word -?EAIS/-& 8ow this is all fine and ood. I don1t know. Hou are ri ht about the two !ieces. and what I see is . but the answer to the question is starin us all in the face. but my eyesi ht is e(tremely clear& Please look a ain. I don1t know. but the answer to the question is starin us all in the face. hidden in the !icture& It is sim!ly one word—but what an im!ortant one. )nother deluded one2 8ot -?EAIS/-. of the same word& 3hy the letters are of different si<es in the two !arts. !lain as day& ?ow you see anythin else is beyond me& *chilles. -. but my eyesi ht is e(tremely ood& Please look a ain. -. 8ow hold on a minute& Hou must be seein thin s& It1s !lain as day that the messa e of this !icture is -?EAIS/-. but I know what I see. I know the rest of you won1t believe this. 8ow hold on a minute& Hou must be seein thin s& It1s !lain as day that the messa e of this !icture is -/F-. I know the rest of you won1t believe this. in lar er letters. hidden in the !icture& It is sim!ly one word—but what an im!ortant one. Hou are ri ht about the two !ieces. hidden in the !icture& It is sim!ly one word—but what an im!ortant one.E:F7TIE8IS/-& )nd in com!lementary fashion. and then see if the !icture doesn1t say what I said it says& *chilles. -/F-2 8ra(. and what I see is .E:F7TIE8IS/-2 8ra(. what ood is it to ar ue about . but in your silly squabble. but you are wron in your identification of what they are& The !iece on the left is entirely com!osed of many co!ies of one word. I know the rest of you won1t believe this.E:F7TIE8IS/-.& Ant "u!ue & then.. the two of you have actually missed the forest for the trees& Hou see.?EAIS/-. I be your !ardon. :on1t you see that the !icture is com!osed of two !ieces. but you are wron in your identification of what they are& The !iece on the left is entirely com!osed of three co!ies of one word. and that each of them is a sin le letter? 8ra(. but I know what I see.E:F7TIE8IS/-. -?EAIS/-2 *chilles. and then tell me if the the !icture doesn1t say what I said it says2 *nteater. I be your !ardon. in smaller letters. -?EAIS/-= and the !iece on the ri ht is com!osed of many co!ies. one () one. but the answer to the question is starin us all in the face. or are com!osed of.E:F7TIE8IS/-= and the !iece on the ri ht is com!osed of one sin le co!y. in the ri ht-hand !iece.E:F7TIE8IS/-. other letters& In the left-hand !iece. of the same word& 3hy the letters are of different si<es in the two !arts.E:F7TIE8IS/-2 *chilles. the four #oices of the fugue chime in!/ *chilles. not -.

now that I understand the controversy. when iven to a question. the question seems to be. ?EAIS/ is the most natural thin in the world to ras!& It1s sim!ly the belief that -the whole is reater than the sum of its !arts-& 8o one in his ri ht mind could re.or -. . -/F-2 ?ust as he sa)s this. which are that one or the other must be chosen& 0y unaskin the question. e9actl) one octa#e (elow the first entr)!/ . /r& Tortoise? It makes me very uneasy& Surely you must somehow be ca!able of hel!in strai hten out this mess? Tortoise.is ri ht. it reveals a wider truth. Eh. by tellin me the meanin of these stran e e(!ressions.E:F7TIE8IS/-& 8ra(. for instance. but I have no idea of what you mean by the stran e e(!ression -transcendin the question-& *nteater. )chilles. or via reductionism?. I re.is as silly as a cow1s moo& I1ll have none of this 9en wishywashiness& 8ra(. how to understand a brain reductionistically& )ny reductionistic e(!lanation of a brain will inevitably fall far short of e(!lainin where the consciousness e(!erienced by a brain arises from& *nteater. I re.here re. the fourth #oice in the fugue (eing pla)ed enters. when the !ro!er way to understand the matter is to transcend the question. )chilles. but the answer to the question is starin us all in the face.idiculous2 Hour -/F.ect holism& *nteater. 8ra(. dear2 3e1re ettin nowhere fast& 3hy have you stayed so stran ely silent. if you will first obli e me. how a holistic descri!tion of an ant colony sheds any more li ht on it than is shed by a descri!tion of the ants inside it.ect reductionism& I challen e you to tell me. and the nature of their 1sum1-& 8o one in her left brain could re.E:F7TIE8IS/ is the most natural thin in the world to ras!& It1s sim!ly the belief that -a whole can be understood com!letely if you understand its !arts. Eh.and -. by answerin -/F-.ect reductionism& 8ra(. and their roles. . that there is a lar er conte(t into which both holistic and reductionistic e(!lanations fit& *nteater. -Should the world be understood via holism. for instance.is as silly as a kitten1s mew& I1ll have none of this 9en washy-wishiness& *chilles.ects the !remises of the question. no2 The last thin which I wanted to do was to !rovoke another ar ument& )nyway. I will be lad to indul e both of you. I now see the !icture as you have described it.ect holism& I challen e you to tell me.will hel! reatly& Hou see. -?EAIS/. F8)S@S the question& ?ere.whether -?EAIS/.)nd the answer of -/F.E:F7TIE8IS/. )bsurd2 Hour -/F. I now see the !icture as you have described it. I know the rest of you won1t believe this.is an ancient 9en answer which. hidden in the !icture& It is sim!ly one word—but what an im!ortant one. -/F. and their interrelationshi!s& )ny holistic e(!lanation of an ant colony will inevitably fall far short of e(!lainin where the consciousness e(!erienced by an ant colony arises from& *chilles. I believe that my e(!lanation of -/F. but I have no idea of what you mean by the stran e e(!ression -/F-& *chilles.

I can ima ine2 The !rofession of anteater would seem to be synonymous with bein an e(!ert on ant colonies2 *nteater. one must have the faculty of s!eech? *nteater. uhh—removin the defective !art of the colony& These o!erations are sometimes quite involved. Is )unt ?illary your aunt. I am a little confused& 8ra(. for once& Tortoise. well.ect& Tortoise. )chilles —an octave lower 4fi uratively s!eakin 5& 0ut for now I doubt that we can settle the dis!ute in the abstract& I would like to see both the holistic and reductionistic !oints of view laid out more e(!licitly= then there may be more of a basis for a decision& I would very much like to hear a reductionistic descri!tion of an ant colony.e(ists in this !icture on a dee!er level than you ima ine. I uess I should feel !leased to have seen as far as /r& Tortoise. I be your !ardon. Perha!s -/F. 0ut of course it does2 Hou have merely re!eated my own ori inal observation& Tortoise. and of course years of study are required before one can !erform them& *chilles. my !rofession has led me quite a lon way into the understandin of ant colonies& *chilles.of an ant colony? *nteater. I am a colony sur eon& I s!eciali<e in correctin nervous disorders of the colony by the technique of sur ical removal& *chilles. Eh.ust one of her many endearin quirks& 8ra(. colonies which have to ro!e for words in everyday situations& It can be quite tra ic& I attem!t to remedy the situation by. you have seen no further than I myself saw& Eh. even stran ers& It1s . she1s not really anybody1s aunt& *nteater. :r& )nteater& 7ould you tell us more about ant colonies. before one can suffer from s!eech im!airment. from a reductionistic !oint of view? *nteater. would be able to resolve this dilemma—but a!!arently. and then tell me if the !icture doesn1t say what I said it says& *chilles. 0ut the !oor dear insists that everybody should call her that.*chilles. 6ladly& )s /r& 7rab mentioned to you. but my eyesi ht is e(tremely fine& Please look a ain. he is by !rofession somethin of an e(!ert on that sub. that you weren1t here last week. 0ut—isn1t it true that. I see& 0ut what do you mean by -nervous disorders.is not my !rofession= it is my s!ecies& 0y !rofession. /r& T. when :r& )nteater and )unt ?illary were my house uests& I should have thou ht of havin you over then& *chilles.i ht& *chilles. who always see the most dee!ly into thin s. It1s too bad. for instance& 8ra(. I be your !ardon& -)nteater. I am sure that we have much to learn from you. Perha!s :r& )nteater will tell you somethin of his e(!eriences in that re ard& )fter all. . for once you have let me down& I was sure that you. Eh. )chilles. /ost of my clients suffer from some sort of s!eech im!airment& Hou know. no. Eh. )unt ?illary is quite eccentric. but such a merry old soul& It1s a shame I didn1t have you over to meet her last week& . /r& 7rab? 8ra(. Since ant colonies don1t have that faculty. Hes.

?ow is it !ossible that— Tortoise.ust occurred in this 0ach fu ue& *chilles. with very little delay between entries& *chilles. some trails contain information in coded form& If you know the system. ?ow is it !ossible that— Tortoise. She1s certainly one of the best-educated ant colonies I have ever had the ood fortune to know& The two of us have s!ent many a lon evenin in conversation on the widest ran e of to!ics& *chilles. Probably the rest of you were too en rossed in the discussion to notice the lovely stretto which . ?ow is it !ossible that— *chilles. )ctually. 3ell. you can read what they1re sayin . I antici!ate how they will continue 4and . 3ell. Pardon me. I thou ht anteaters were devourers of ants. I1m sorry= I thou ht you knew the term& It is where one theme re!eatedly enters in one voice after another.oy watchin trails develo!& )s they are formin . ?ow is it !ossible that— 8ra(.am& *nteater. not colonies—and that is ood for both !arties. soon I1ll know all of these thin s and will be able to !ick them out myself. I find it hard to ima ine myself shoutin somethin out loud in the middle of the forest. Silly fellow2 That1s not the way it ha!!ens& )nt colonies don1t converse out loud. and the colony& *chilles. I can va uely see how it mi ht be !ossible for a limited and re ulated amount of ant consum!tion to im!rove the overall health of a colony—but what is far more !er!le(in is all this talk about havin conversations with ant colonies& That1s im!ossible& )n ant colony is sim!ly a bunch of individual ants runnin around at random lookin for food and makin a nest& *nteater. not !atrons of antintellectualism2 *nteater. )chilles& In fact. ant colonies. without their havin to be !ointed out& Tortoise. —havin its branches !runed can do a tree any ood? *nteater. 3ithout any trouble at all& That1s how )unt ?illary and I have conversations for hours& I take a stick and draw trails in the moist round. . seen as wholes.ust )8TS that I eat.emarkable& )nd can you communicate back to them? *nteater. —havin its ants eaten can do an ant colony any ood? 8ra(. a new trail starts ettin formed somewhere& I reatly en. with their own qualities. Hou could !ut it that way if you want to insist on seein the trees but missin the forest.*nteater. me. and hearin an ant colony answer back& *nteater.ust like a book& *chilles. yes—usually strai ht throu h the kitchen sink and into my !each . of course the two are not mutually inconsistent& I am on the best of terms with ant colonies& It1s . Eh. at times includin the mastery of lan ua e& *chilles. my friends& I am sorry to have interru!ted& :r& )nteater was tryin to e(!lain how eatin ants is !erfectly consistent with bein a friend of an ant colony& *chilles. Eh. and watch the ants follow my trails& Presently. —havin a forest fire can do a forest any ood? *nteater. but in writin & Hou know how ants form trails leadin them hither and thither? *chilles. 3hat is a stretto? Tortoise. —havin a haircut can do )chilles any ood? Tortoise. are quite well-defined units. If I listen to enou h fu ues.

and with that freedom. I know what )unt ?illary is thinkin . but you fail to reco ni<e one thin & )chilles—the re ularity of statistics& *chilles. you have really quite un!redictable motion on the !art of any sin le ant—and yet. within those limits they are still free. and I in turn make my re!ly& *chilles. to sustain any activity—such as trail-buildin —for any len th of time& 8ow my very ha<y understandin of the o!eration of brains leads me to believe that . )h. Eh. to !ick u! small items. that ant-system. can amount to anythin coherent—es!ecially somethin so coherent as the brain behavior necessary for conversin & 8ra(. ?ow is that? *nteater. 0ut even so. no.ust enou h to kee! them from wanderin off com!letely at random& 0y this minimal communication they can remind each other that they are not alone but are coo!eratin with teammates& It takes a lar e number of ants. E(actly. even thou h ants as individuals wander about in what seems a random way. There must be some ama<in ly smart ants in that colony. which can emer e from that chaos& *chilles. clearly not& 3ith brain cells. which they are in& It would never occur to them. 3ell then. I know what you mean& In fact. ants . I see your !oint com!letely& Enly&&& ants are a horse of another color& I mean. It seems to me that the ants are free only within certain constraints& 'or e(am!le. to brush a ainst each other.ust act at random. com!letely randomly. and they . to work on trails. if )unt ?illary can entertain you for hours with witty banter& Tortoise. so here you must not take an ant for the colony& Hou see. all reinforcin each other this way. where does the ability to converse come from? It must reside somewhere inside the colony2 I don1t understand how the ants can all be unintelli ent. the trail itself seems to remain well-defined and stable& 7ertainly that must mean that the individual ants are not . I1ll say that& *nteater. I don1t see at all how their behavior. Eh. runnin about incoherently without any re ard for the thou ht mechanisms of a hi her-level bein which :r& )nteater asserts they are merely com!onents of& *nteater. all the ants in )unt ?illary are as dumb as can be& They couldn1t converse to save their little thora(es2 *chilles. 'or e(am!le. It seems to me that the situation is not unlike the com!osition of a human brain out of neurons& 7ertainly no one would insist that individual brain cells have to be intelli ent bein s on their own. in order to e(!lain the fact that a !erson can have an intelli ent conversation& *chilles. . chancin now and then u!on a morsel of food&&& They are free to do what they want to do. in the sense that you can de!end on them to !erform certain kinds of tasks in certain ways& *chilles. they are free to wander.more often I am wron than ri ht5& 3hen the trail is com!leted. )chilles& There is some de ree of communication amon the ants. and so on& 0ut they never ste! out of that small world.ust roam about at will. for they don1t have the mentality to ima ine anythin of the kind& Thus the ants are very reliable com!onents. I think you are still havin some difficulty reali<in the difference in levels here& Just as you would never confuse an individual tree with a forest.ust runnin about totally at random& *nteater. involvin lar e numbers of ants. there are nevertheless overall trends. ant trails are a !erfect e(am!le of such a !henomenon& There. seen as a whole.

and tem!erature& 8ow that1s a far cry from the ability to understand the world.somethin similar !ertains to the firin of neurons& Isn1t it true. that it takes a rou! of neurons firin in order to make another neuron fire? 8ra(. either it will fi<<le out after a brief s!utterin start— *chilles. I knew there was somethin !arallel oin on in the two very different systems& 8ow I understand it much better& It seems that rou! !henomena which have coherence—trail-buildin . as you sketch it. /r& 7rab. but that still is a lon way from the ability to converse& )fter all.is brou ht into bein which works on a sin le !ro. or food. !ressure. it can ive rise to very com!le( consequences on a lar er scale& *chilles. or to talk about it2 *nteater.ect mi ht be trailmakin .ect& That !ro. in an ant colony. brin in more and more ants into the !icture& In the latter case. I think that I1/ in control of what I think—but the way you !ut it turns it all inside out. one of two thin s can ha!!en. 8ormally. volume. Hou1ll come to understand much better as we o alon & 0ut :r& )nteater—what do you make of this similarity? *nteater. an artificial notion !roduced by my distorted !ers!ective& In other words. by a few ants in some locale. in sha!es stran er then the dash of a nat-hun ry swallow= every twist. you can1t even be in to understand the activities of the colony unless you o throu h several layers of structure& . e(ce!t the full as itself& En the other hand. or it mi ht involve nestkee!in & :es!ite the e(treme sim!licity of this scheme on a small scale. That hi hli hts a very interestin difference between the e(!lanation of the behavior of an ant colony and the e(!lanation of the behavior of as inside a container& Ene can e(!lain the behavior of the as sim!ly by calculatin the statistical !ro!erties of the motions of its molecules& There is no need to discuss any hi her elements of structure than molecules. for e(am!le& Each neuron receives si nals from neurons attached to its in!ut lines. which may in turn fire—and on down the line it oes& The neural flash swoo!s relentlessly in its )chillean !ath. and at worst. then that neuron will fire and send its own out!ut !ulse rushin off to other neurons. order also emer es from chaos when molecules of a as bounce a ainst each other randomly—yet all that results there is an amor!hous mass with but three !arameters to characteri<e it. until sensory in!ut messa es interfere& *chilles.am . every turn foreordained by the neural structure in )chilles1 brain. for e(am!le—will take !lace only when a certain threshold number of ants et involved& If an effort is initiated.atherin . !erha!s at random. if anythin & Tortoise. and the thin will snowball. I can ras! the eneral idea of order emer in from chaos. you make me feel like I don1t know who or what—I am. so that it sounds as thou h -I. :efinitely& Take the neurons in )chilles1 brain. and if the sum total of in!uts at any moment e(ceeds a critical threshold. E(actly& The other thin that can ha!!en is that a critical mass of ants is !resent. 3hen there aren1t enou h ants to kee! the thin rollin ? *nteater. and natural law& It makes what I consider my SEA' sound at best like a by-!roduct of an or anism overned by natural law. a whole -team.ust what comes out of all this neural structure.

and individual ants develo! s!eciali<ations& Fsually an ant1s s!eciali<ation chan es as the ant a es& )nd of course it is also de!endent on the ant1s caste& )t any one moment. it is rather the workers who are to be lorified& It is they who do most of the chores. how dis raceful2 3hy. as I . so it seems to me to be a !retty fruitless question to worry over& /ore reasonable would be the !ro!osition of ma!!in your brain onto an ant colony&&& 0ut let us not et sidetracked& Aet :r& )nteater continue with his most illuminatin descri!tion of castes and their role in the hi her levels of or ani<ation& *nteater.um! takes you from the lowest level— molecules—to the hi hest level—the full as& There are no intermediate levels of or ani<ation& 8ow how do intermediate levels of or ani<ed activity arise in an ant colony? *nteater. huntin . over a lon !eriod of time. Gery well& There are all sorts of tasks which must be accom!lished in a colony. 3ell. and then— *chilles. and less heavily in others? *nteater. the u!kee! of the nest. and nursin of the youn & It is even they who do most of the fi htin & *chilles. If you were an ant? ?ow could you be an ant? There is no way to ma! your brain onto an ant brain. It has to do with the e(istence of several different varieties of ants inside any colony& *chilles. there evolves. Eh. ?mm&&& I hardly think that could be ri ht. 0ah& That is an absurd state of affairs& Soldiers who won1t fi ht2 *nteater.*chilles. there are males. since it is of crucial im!ortance in understandin how a colony thinks& In fact. I see what you mean& In a as. about colonies you are ri ht.aws. :r& )nteater? *nteater. who can sna! with their stron .are hardly ade!t at fi htin at all& They are slow. Eh.ust a random thin ? Er is there a reason why ants of one ty!e mi ht be more heavily concentrated in certain areas. un ainly ants with iant heads. a very delicate distribution of castes inside a colony& )nd it is this distribution which allows the colony to have the com!le(ity which underlies the ability to converse with me& *chilles. )chilles& )n ant colony is quite communistic internally. I1d !ut some disci!line in their ranks2 I1d knock some sense into those fatheads2 Tortoise. there are ants of all ty!es !resent& Ef course.ust la<y fatheads& *chilles.atherin . so why would its soldiers fi ht a ainst communism? Er am I ri ht. or s!eciali<ation. if I were an ant. in any small area of a colony. . )nd of course there are soldiers—6lorious 'i hters ) ainst 7ommunism2 8ra(. yes& I think I have heard about that& They are called -castes-. but are hardly to be lorified& )s in a true communistic state. such as food. That1s correct& )side from the queen. Is the density of a iven caste. aren1t they? *nteater. Hes. the so-called -soldiers. one caste may be be very s!arse in some !laces and very dense in others& 8ra(. they really aren1t soldiers at all& It1s the workers who are soldiers= the soldiers are . I1m lad you brou ht that u!. one .ust said. It would seem to me that the constant motion of ants to and fro would com!letely !revent the !ossibility of a very delicate distribution& )ny delicate . who do !ractically nothin towards. /r& 7rab= they are indeed based on somewhat communistic !rinci!les& 0ut about soldiers )chilles is somewhat naPve& In fact.

u!on sniffin my odor.ust too microsco!ic a level. and it is !recisely the motion inside the colony which u!dates the caste distribution. all the foolish ants. they form little -teams-. That1s clear& *nteater.distribution would be quickly destroyed by all the random motions of ants. due to the random bombardment from all sides& *nteater. no& I must reiterate that. it is . In an ant colony& the situation is quite the contrary& In fact. 0ut that1s understandable. which stick to ether to !erform a chore& )s I mentioned earlier. ?ow can you refer to the distribution of different ty!es of ants inside a colony as a -!iece of knowled e-? *nteater. and the reason they don1t fall a!art is that there really is somethin for them to do& *chilles.ust e(actly the to-in and fro-in of ants inside the colony which ada!ts the caste distribution to varyin situations. 3ell. since you1re a dreaded enemy of the colony& *nteater.to the colony& *chilles. you1re bound to miss some lar e-scale features& Hou1ve ot to find the !ro!er hi h-level framework in which to describe the caste distribution—only then will it make sense how the caste distribution can encode many !ieces of knowled e& *chilles. arrive to !ay a visit to )unt ?illary. 8ow there1s a vital !oint& It requires some elaboration& Hou see. how :E you find the !ro!er-si<ed units in which to describe the !resent state of the colony. it must constantly be chan in so as to reflect. Eh. the real-world situation with which the colony is dealin . an anteater.ust as any delicate !attern amon molecules in a as would not survive for an instant. the caste distribution cannot remain as one sin le ri id !attern= rather. small rou!s of ants are constantly formin and unformin & Those which actually e(ist for a while are the teams. 7ould you ive an e(am!le? *nteater. so as to kee! it in line with the !resent circumstances facin the colony& Tortoise. I1m quite feared by all the individual ants in the colony—but that1s another matter entirely& In any case. of course. what it comes down to is how you choose to describe the caste distribution& If you continue to think in terms of the lower levels—individual ants—then you miss the forest for the trees& That1s . )ll ri ht& Aet1s be in at the bottom& 3hen ants need to et somethin done. )nd that sort of thin is the u!datin which I s!oke of& The new distribution reflects my !resence& Ene can describe the chan e from old state to new as havin added a -!iece of knowled e. in some manner. and when you think microsco!ically. far from bein an enemy of the colony. I am )unt ?illary1s favorite com!anion& )nd )unt ?illary is my favorite aunt& I rant you. then? *nteater. 6ladly& 3hen I. that they be in runnin around com!letely differently from the way they were before I arrived& *chilles. . Earlier you said that a rou! will stick to ether if its si<e e(ceeds a certain threshold& 8ow you1re sayin that a rou! will stick to ether if there is somethin for it to do& . you see that the ants1 action in res!onse to my arrival com!letely chan es the internal distribution of ants& *chilles. o into a !anic—which means. and thereby !reserves the delicate caste distribution& Hou see.

hi h and dry. It sounds like a wave. the delicate caste distribution !lays a crucial role& It is what determines the motion of si nals throu h the colony. in food. )nd I su!!ose that a si nal loses its coherency . one would be inclined to characteri<e the si nals1 behavior as bein oriented towards fillin a need. since the ants themselves com!ose it& Tortoise. and also how lon a si nal will remain stable. there is no awareness on its !art that it should head off in any !articular direction& 0ut here. It comes from their function& The effect of si nals is to trans!ort ants of various s!eciali<ations to a!!ro!riate !arts of the colony& So the ty!ical story of a si nal is thus.atherin . then it mi rates for some distance throu h the colony. carryin sand dollars and seaweed from afar. if there is an inconsequential amount of food somewhere which ets discovered by some wanderin ant who then attem!ts to communicate its enthusiasm to other ants. but teams on lower levels& Eventually you reach the lowestlevel teams—which is to say. or it is 8ET& I don1t see how you can have it both ways& *nteater. the number of ants who res!ond will be !ro!ortional to the si<e of the food sam!le—and an inconsequential amount will not attract enou h ants to sur!ass the threshold& 3hich is e(actly what I meant by sayin there is nothin to do—too little food ou ht to be i nored& *chilles. and to call it -!ur!oseful-& 0ut you can look at it otherwise& *chilles. Eh. 8aturally? It1s not so obvious to /E that a si nal should always o .ust where it is needed& )nd even if it oes in the ri ht direction. there is no analo ous carrier substance in the case of a si nal. Aet me e(!lain my way of seein thin s. and leavin them strewn. leavin them on their own& *chilles.are one of the levels of structure fallin somewhere in between the sin le-ant level and the colony level& *nteater. since the team does indeed de!osit somethin which it has carried from a distance. I see& I assume that these -teams.*nteater. wait& Either the behavior IS !ur!oseful. In a way that1s analo ous. 8aturally& *chilles. but whereas the water in the wave rolls back to the sea. ants& *chilles. 3hy do si nals deserve their su estive name? *nteater.ust at some s!ot in the colony where ants of that ty!e were needed in the first !lace& *nteater. which I call a -si nal-—and all the hi her levels of structure are based on si nals& In fact. and where it will -dissolve-& . how does it fi ure out where to decom!ose? ?ow does it know it has arrived? *nteater. it comes into e(istence by e(ceedin the threshold needed for survival. on the shore& *nteater. since they involve e(!lainin the e(istence of !ur!oseful behavior—or what seems to be !ur!oseful behavior—on the !art of si nals& 'rom the descri!tion. and then see if you a ree& Ence a si nal is formed. They are equivalent statements& 'or instance. Those are e(tremely im!ortant matters. and at some !oint it more or less disinte rates into its individual members. Precisely& There e(ists a s!ecial kind of team. si nals—and below them. all the hi her entities are collections of si nals actin in concert& There are teams on hi her levels whose members are not ants.

in search of nothin in !articular. 7ertainly& 0ut the colony would not last lon .ust res!onded to a messa e which was written in the lan ua e of the caste distribution& 8ow from this !ers!ective. invisible on lower levels& Hou lose e(!lanatory !ower unless you take that hi her level into account& *nteater.ust as bubbles in boilin water are natural res!onses to an e(ternal heat source& I don1t su!!ose you see -meanin .ected to the ri ors of evolution for billions of years& ) few mechanisms were selected for. and most were selected a ainst& The end result was a set of mechanisms which make ant colonies work as we have been describin & If you could watch the whole !rocess in a movie—runnin a billion or so times faster than life. or nursin . the team has . I see your side= but I believe you see thin s too narrowly& 8ra(.and -!ur!ose-. I do see that& *nteater. I think so& )ctually. and you can for et about any -hi her-level laws-& The same oes for ant colonies and their teams& 0y lookin at thin s from the vast !ers!ective of evolution. . or whatever& The si nal will remain lued to ether as lon as the local needs are different from what it can su!!ly= but if it 7)8 contribute. 3hat would ha!!en if the caste distribution were entirely random? 3ould si nals still band and disband? *nteater. but— *nteater. )nd do you see how this way of lookin at thin s requires attributin no sense of !ur!ose to the si nal? *chilles. leavin . either by direct contact or by e(chan e of scents. to determine the !ro!er direction& 0ut from the 7EAE8H1S !oint of view. it disinte rates. 8ow that1s /H !oint& 8o matter how bi a bubble is. the ants which com!ose it interact. no lookin ahead= nor is any search required. and that meanin is a holistic as!ect. with ants of the local nei hborhoods which it !asses throu h& The contacts and scents !rovide information about local matters of ur ency. due to the meanin lessness of the caste distribution& 8ra(. eh? *nteater. I1m be innin to see thin s from two different vanta e !oints& 'rom an ant1s-eye !oint of view. )nt colonies have been sub. 8o. until it finds that it feels like sto!!in & Its teammates usually a ree. . ?ow so? *nteater. and at that moment the team unloads itself by crumblin a!art. So everythin de!ends on the caste distribution.*chilles. in the bubbles in boilin water—or do you? 8ra(.ust meanderin around the colony. of course—the emer ence of various mechanisms would be seen as natural res!onses to e(ternal !ressures. it looks very much like !ur!oseful activity& 8ra(. Precisely the !oint I wanted to make& 7olonies survive because their caste distribution has meanin . such as nest-buildin . s!illin a fresh team of usable ants onto the scene& :o you see now how the caste distribution acts as an overall uide of the teams inside the colony? *chilles.ust its members but none of its coherency& 8o !lannin is required. you can drain the whole colony of meanin and !ur!ose& They become su!erfluous notions& .i ht& Aet1s say a si nal is movin alon & )s it oes. a si nal has 8E !ur!ose& The ty!ical ant in a si nal is . it owes its e(istence to !rocesses on the molecular level.

criss-crossin . —are oin at once& 8ra(. from its creation until its dissolution. the vocabulary of teleolo y comes back. 8ot for me. I have as much difficulty as anyone else in seein thin s on such a randiose time scale. I1d like some. —to track a sin le voice— *nteater. so I find it much easier to chan e !oints of view& 3hen I do so. with some effort I can always remember the other !oint of view if necessary. to ether formin an orderly !attern. Gery ood& *chilles. Three? *chilles. :o you su!!ose one could se!arate out the different visual -voices. thank you& *chilles. — in a musical fu ue— *nteater.to !ass throu h each other. Perha!s you could answer this. si nals . ) fu ue. )chilles& 0y the way. the /E)8I86 of the caste distribution and the PF. ?mm&&& 3hat a stran e ima e that con.ust !art of the back round !o!ulation& *nteater.of such an -ant fu ue-? I know how hard it is for me— Tortoise. I could do with another cu!. It is better than theoretically !ossible= in fact it ha!!ens routinely2 *chilles. )s a matter of fact. )chilles& 0ut its unlikely that anyone could draw such a !icture in a convincin way *chilles. )chilles& Hou see. some black.ures u! in my mind& I can . Hes—that1s it2 )n ant fu ue2 8ra(. 8ot at all& 'our cu!s of tea— Tortoise. !erha!s? *chilles. /r& 7rab— *chilles. all that talk of boilin water made me think of tea& 3ho would like some more? *chilles. —if it isn1t too much trouble& *chilles. 3hy. each one unaware that the other one is also a si nal= each one treatin the other as if it were . did you tell me that you talked with )unt ?illary? It now seems that you would deny that she can talk or think at all& *nteater. )n interestin ima e. the individuals in a si nal sometimes break off and et re!laced by others of the same caste.*chilles. —when all of them— 8ra(. always consist of the same set of ants? *nteater. too. for ettin about evolution and seein thin s in the here and now. but also when I think about my own brain and other brains& ?owever. I am not bein inconsistent. That1s too bad& Tortoise. :r& )nteater.ust ima ine ants movin in four different directions. some white. Evolution certainly works some miracles& Hou never know the ne(t trick it will !ull out of its sleeve& 'or instance. That1s an interestin thou ht. if there are a few in the area& /ost often. and drain all these systems of meanin . almost like—like— Tortoise.PESE'FA8ESS of si nals& This not only ha!!ens when I think of ant colonies. :r& )nteater& :oes a si nal. too& 8ra(. —comin ri ht u!2 *nteater. it wouldn1t sur!rise me one bit if it were theoretically !ossible for two or more -si nals. /r& 7& 8ra(. then.

0ut what about those intermediate levels of structure? Hou were sayin that the caste distribution should best be !ictured not in terms of ants or si nals. Hes. we are comin to all that& I !refer to ive teams of a sufficiently hi h level the name of -symbols-& /ind you.are )7TIGE SF0SHSTE/S of a com!le( system. whose members were other teams. and are doin so in res!onse to the internal needs of the colony—which in turn reflect the e(ternal situation which the colony is faced with& Therefore the caste distribution. this sense of the word has some si nificant differences from the usual sense& /y -symbols. as you said. I can see that the si nals are constantly affectin the caste distribution throu hout the colony. and they are com!osed of lower-level active subsystems&&& They are therefore . and so on until you come down to the ant level& )nd you said that that was the key to understandin how it was !ossible to describe the caste distribution as encodin !ieces of information about the world& *nteater. but in terms of teams whose members were other teams.73G5=E JB! ")nt 'u ue-. BIGH/! arrive at their disinte ration !oints with nary an ant in common with their startin lineu!& 8ra(. () '! 8! Escher woodcut. :r& )nteater. ets continually u!dated in a way which ultimately reflects the outer world& *chilles.

as lon as you kee! in mind the fact that words and letters are P)SSIGE. but I1m not sure I understand why it is so vital to stress the difference between active and !assive entities& *nteater. delineatin the e(act counter!art is not in itself crucial. which are meanin -carryin entities. Hes. actually derives from the meanin which is carried by . for the !ur!oses of our discussion. even if we don1t know e(actly how to define it ri ht now& I would only question one !oint. at bottom. you reach a level whose elements have e(act counter!arts in other systems of equal intellectual stren th—such as ant colonies& Tortoise. e(ternal to the system. I would tend to a ree& 0ut don1t you think that. desirable thou h it mi ht be? It seems to me that the main idea is that such a corres!ondence does e(ist. and therefore couldn1t set u! the ma! in its lorious detail& 0ut—and correct me if I1m wron . /r& 7rab& Thank you for brin in out that subtle !oint& *chilles. but not onto the brain of a mere ant& *chilles. which you raised. such as a !attern of neural firin s& 8ra(. I a!!reciate the com!liment& 0ut how would such a ma!!in be carried out? 'or instance. which in themselves carry no meanin & This ives a ood idea of the difference between symbols and si nals& In fact it is a useful analo y. 3hat does a symbol do that a si nal couldn1t do? *nteater. are com!osed of letters. /r& 7rab—I would surmise that the brain counter!art to an ant colony1s si nal is the firin of a neuron= or !erha!s it is a lar erscale event. such as letters of the al!habet or musical notes.ust had no idea that ant colonies had such an abstract structure& *nteater. . I1ll do so. symbols and si nals are )7TIGE& *chilles. this is rather com!licated. That is why it would be reasonable to think of ma!!in your brain.in any reasonable sense of the word& )ny system which has a mastery of lan ua e has essentially the same underlyin sets of levels& *chilles. )chilles. Eh.quite different from P)SSIGE symbols. for instance. :r& )nteater.ust a cotton-!ickin minute& )re you insinuatin that my brain consists of. Hour inter!retation may very well be more accurate than mine. isn1t it? I . Eh. Eh. It is somethin like the difference between words and letters& 3ords. onto an ant colony. I but dabble in brains. which sit there immobile. are not com!osed of ants& 0ut when you o u! a level or two in a brain. 8ow . and that concerns the level at which one can have faith that the corres!ondence be ins& Hou seemed to think that a SI68)A mi ht have a direct counter!art in a brain= whereas I feel that it is only at the level of your )7TIGE SH/0EAS and above that it is likely that a corres!ondence must e(ist& *nteater. such as a word on a !a e. waitin for an active system to !rocess them& *chilles. The reason is that the meanin which you attribute to any !assive symbol. hardly& Hou took me a little too literally& The lowest level may be utterly different& Indeed.ust a bunch of ants runnin around? *nteater. what in my brain corres!onds to the low level teams which you call si nals? *nteater. the brains of anteaters. it1s quite remarkable& 0ut all these layers of structure are necessary for the stora e of the kinds of knowled e which enable an or anism to be -intelli ent.

Perha!s I can make it a little clearer by an analo y& Ima ine you have before you a 7harles :ickens novel& *chilles. but the counter!art is the -brain state-& There. :r& )nteater& It seems that. were it not for them. indeed. and so forth& *chilles. in that it ives you the most intuitive !icture of the ant colony. has none? *nteater. althou h certainly less than an ant-by-ant descri!tion. ) descri!tion on that level would fall somewhere in between the low-level and symbol-level descri!tions& It would contain a reat deal of information about what is actually oin on in s!ecific locations throu hout the colony. I1m sure no ant would embrace your theory with ea erness& *nteater.corres!ondin active symbols in your brain& So that the meanin of !assive symbols can only be !ro!erly understood when it is related to the meanin of active symbols& *chilles. in order to ras! the whole structure. 3hat about a descri!tion on the level of si nals. and all the interconnections. in a brain there is no such thin as a caste distribution. which is characteri<ed by its caste distribution& 8ra(. It is interestin to me to com!are the merits of the descri!tions at various levels& The hi hest-level descri!tion seems to carry the most e(!lanatory !ower. the colony wouldn1t e(ist. The &ickwick &apers—will that do? . you have to describe it omittin any mention of its fundamental buildin blocks& *nteater. or teams? *nteater. )ll ri ht& 0ut what is it that endows a SH/0EA—an active one. and the su!!ly of various castes here and there& This e(tra com!lication is the !rice you !ay for the ri ht to summari<e& *chilles.and -brain state. but somethin equivalent —a brain—can e(ist. in a medium. des!ite a!!earances. I never met an ant with a hi h-level !oint of view& 8ra(. and call them . since teams consist of clum!s of ants& ) team-by-team descri!tion is like a summary of an ant-by-ant descri!tion& ?owever. under what conditions. and the threshold for firin of each neuron& *nteater. 3ell. 3hat a counterintuitive !icture you !aint. at least from a hi h-level !oint of view. and other similar items& ) very detailed descri!tion. a descri!tion on a hi h level would involve s!ecifyin which symbols could be tri ered by which combinations of other symbols. Gery well= let1s lum! -caste distribution. to be sure—with meanin . if what you say is true. which is a !erfectly ood entity in its own ri ht.under a common headin . althou h stran ely enou h. 0ut you see. Ef course. ant-free& So. you describe the states of all the neurons.ust the -state-& 8ow the state can be described on a low level or on a hi h level& ) low-level descri!tion of the state of an ant colony would involve !ainfully s!ecifyin the location of each ant. you have to add e(tra thin s which were not !resent in the ant-by-ant descri!tion—such as the relationshi!s between teams. when you say that a SI68)A. it does not do so in isolation& It is floatin about. yieldin !ractically no lobal insi ht as to 3?H it is in that state& En the other hand. it leaves out seemin ly the most im!ortant feature—the ants& *nteater. the ants are dis!ensable& *chilles. It all has to do with the way that symbols can cause other symbols to be tri ered& 3hen one symbol becomes active. its a e and caste. the ants are not the most im!ortant feature& )dmittedly.

as I watched. and !arts of the real world& If you wanted to describe the book. but not the messa e& *chilles. all the way down to ants& . one after another.*nteater. E(cellently2 )nd now ima ine tryin the followin ame. the 1h1-conce!t. that one day you were watchin )unt ?illary when I arrived to !ay a call& Hou could watch as carefully as you wanted. :o you mean I couldn1t establish a ma!!in between si nals and thin s in the real world? *nteater. That sounds like what ha!!ened when the four of us all found different levels to read in the /F-!icture—or at least T?. so that the entire &ickwick &apers makes sense when you read it letter by letter& *chilles. E(actly& They are the 1t1-conce!t. ?ere. 3ell. I have to think of three definite conce!ts. -Eh. therefore. )nd yet.ust coincidence? Tortoise. and active symbols instead of !assive words—but the idea carries over& *chilles. 3hat an astonishin coincidence that there should be such a resemblance between that stran e !icture which I chanced u!on in the >ell%Tempered 8la#ier.The &ickwick &apers into an indescribably borin ni htmare& It would be an e(ercise in meanin lessness. there are active si nals instead of !assive letters. 3ell. ?mm&&& Hou mean that every time I hit a word such as -the-. no matter what conce!t I associated with each letter& *nteater. So there you are& Hou would omit all mention of the buildin blocks. I would see several dormant symbols bein awakened. readin the hi her level instead of the lower level. it sounds like that would turn the e(!erience of -readin . I1m sure that1s accurate& *nteater. those conce!ts are as they were the !recedin time& *chilles. for instance. with no room for variation? *nteater. you would make no mention of the letter level& *chilles. E(actly& There is no natural ma!!in from the individual letters into the real world& The natural ma!!in occurs on a hi her level between words. )ll ri ht—but what about ant colonies? *nteater. those which translate into the thou ht. you must find a way of ma!!in letters onto ideas. and the 1e1-conce!t—and every time. and the trend of our conversation& *chilles. even thou h the book e(ists thanks to them& They are the medium. :o you think it1s . I ho!e you can ras! now how the thou hts in )unt ?illary emer e from the mani!ulation of symbols com!osed of si nals com!osed of teams com!osed of lower-level teams. Ef course not2 I1d describe the !lot and the characters. and so forth& *nteater. Hou would find that you could not do it in such a way that the tri erin of new si nals would make any sense& 8or could you succeed on any lower level—for e(am!le the ant level& Enly on the symbol level do the tri erin !atterns make sense& Ima ine.EE of us did && & Tortoise. Ef course& *nteater. and yet you would !robably !erceive nothin more than a rearran ement of ants& *chilles. here1s that charmin :r& )nteater a ain—how !leasant2-—or words to that effect& *chilles.

however& *nteater. always on the symbol level? *nteater. I have never seen nor read any brain either. and have no awareness of the lower levels. That1s too com!licated for me& I have trouble enou h . and they are themselves !art of the very brain state which they symboli<e& 'or consciousness requires a lar e de ree of self-consciousness& . and only see the to!most level? *nteater. .who can be said to mani!ulate her symbols= and you are similar. such as the si nal levels& *chilles. one reads the to! level of an ant colony as easily as you yourself read the . the full system is res!onsible for how its symbols tri er each other. 3hat about your E38 brain? )ren1t you aware of your own thou hts? Isn1t that the essence of consciousness? 3hat else are you doin but readin your own brain directly at the symbol level? *chilles. That1s quite a stran e characteri<ation of the notion of who I am& I1m not sure I can fully understand it. with conscious systems& They !erceive themselves on the symbol level only. but I will ive it some thou ht& Tortoise. !artially varyin system which is the a ent& Ene can ive a name to the full system& 'or e(am!le. In a way—but it is also one which is quite familiar to you. That1s the way it is. if the symbols are themselves active? 3ho is the a ent? *nteater./F.*chilles. but the activities which they follow are nevertheless not absolutely free& The activities of all symbols are strictly determined by the state of the full system in which they reside& Therefore.in the /F!icture& *chilles. I never thou ht of it that way& Hou mean that I by!ass all the lower levels. there are active symbols which are constantly u!datin themselves so that they reflect the overall state of the brain itself. /aybe not= but ant colonies are no different from brains in many res!ects& *chilles. )chilles& *chilles.eally? That must be an ama<in e(!erience& *nteater. This ets back to the question which you earlier raised about !ur!ose& Hou1re ri ht that symbols themselves are active. :oes it follow that in a brain. It would be quite interestin to follow the symbols in your brain as you do that thinkin about the symbols in your brain& *chilles. )unt ?illary is the -who. 7ertainly& In any conscious system there are symbols which re!resent the brain state. the state of the system ets slowly transformed. 'amiliar to me? 3hat do you mean? I have never looked at an ant colony on anythin but the ant level& *nteater. Ene only learns throu h lon !ractice& 0ut when one is at my sta e. and so it is quite reasonable to s!eak of the full system as the -a ent-& )s the symbols o!erate. I can ima ine what it must be like to !erceive it at the si nal level= but what in the world can it be like to !erceive an ant colony at the symbol level? *nteater.ust tryin to !icture how it is !ossible to look at an ant colony and read it on the symbol level& I can certainly ima ine !erceivin it at the ant level= and with a little trouble. )chilles& *chilles. 3hy do you call it -symbol mani!ulation-? 3ho does the mani!ulatin . or u!dated& 0ut there are many features which remain over time& It is this !artially constant.

)lthou h we have been havin a lively discussion.ust a moment. That is a weird notion& It means that althou h there is frantic activity occurrin in my brain at all times. but the messa e of this !icture is starin us all in the face. Isn1t an or an !oint what ha!!ens when a !iece of music slows down sli htly.*chilles. by readin only the symbol level& It1s too bad that the to! level doesn1t contain all the information about the bottom level. so that by readin the to!. and saw only the to!& I wonder if I1m missin all sorts of meanin on lower levels of my brain as well.E:F7TIE8IS/-& *chilles. 8o. no—that can1t be2 Aet me see& 4 +ooks #er) carefull)&5 I know the rest of you won1t believe this. I don1t see any way to do so. )chilles& *nteater. which bears no relation whatever to the lower levels2 8ra(. one also learns what the bottom level says& 0ut I uess it would be naPve to ho!e that the to! level encodes anythin from the bottom level—it !robably doesn1t !ercolate u!& The /F-!icture is the most strikin !ossible e(am!le of that. towards the end of this fu ue& . -/F-2 3hat do you know2 It is the same as the to! level2 )nd none of us sus!ected it in the least& 8ra(. Hou1re ri ht—I by!assed the lower levels. comes an or an !oint& *chilles. and then resumes at normal s!eed after a short silence? Tortoise. Eh. settles for a moment or two on a sin le note or chord. you1re thinkin of a -fermata-—a sort of musical semicolon& :id you notice there was one of those in the !relude? *chilles. Aet me take a look& 4&eers closel) at the '5%picture&5 I think there1s yet another level. S!eak for yourself. there are a cou!le of them comin u!. 3e would never have noticed it if it hadn1t been for you./F-. like a mantra—but what an im!ortant one. I have still mana ed to listen with a ood fraction of an ear to this very lon and com!le( four-voice fu ue& It is e(traordinarily beautiful& Tortoise. which all of us missed2 Tortoise. I wonder if the coincidence of the hi hest and lowest levels ha!!ened by chance? Er was it a !ur!oseful act carried out by some creator? 8ra(. you have another chance comin u! to hear a fermata—in fact. in . 0ut !recisely that sort of thin :I: ha!!en when you read -/F-. to inspect it more closel)&5 ?mm&&& There1s somethin stran e about the smallest letters in this !icture= they1re very wi ly&&& *nteater.and -. :r& )nteater& *chilles. It certainly is& )nd now. That1s absolutely true& 4&icks up the '5%picture. hidden in its de!ths& It is sim!ly one word. ?ow could one ever decide that? Tortoise. I uess I must have missed it& Tortoise. there. without ever havin learned the letters of the al!habet& I can1t ima ine anythin as weird as that really ha!!enin & 8ra(. re!eated over and over a ain. without !erceivin the lower levels -?EAIS/. the to!most level says only . I am only ca!able of re isterin that activity in one way—on the symbol level= and I am com!letely insensitive to the lower levels& It is like bein able to read a :ickens novel by direct visual !erce!tion. since we have no idea why that !articular !icture is in the 7rab1s edition of the >ell%Tempered 8la#ier& *nteater. 3ell.

Perha!s you were so wra!!ed u! in what you were sayin that you were com!letely unaware of it& )h. 6ee2 *nteater.ibe with the communistic nature of ant colonies which you earlier described to us? It sounds quite inconsistent. Eh. 0ut do tell me. won1t you? Tortoise. the little bu s didn1t have the sli htest inklin of what they were collectively tellin me. It . and you1ll hear it& *nteater. and was very ha!!y to have someone to talk to that day& So she ratefully told me to hel! myself to the . There occurred an incident one day when I visited with )unt ?illary which reminds me of your su estion of observin the symbols in )chilles1 brain as they create thou hts which are about themselves& 8ra(. If you like& *chilles. in fact—that you missed it& 8ra(.uiciest ants I could find& 4She1s always been most enerous with her ants&5 *chilles. -?el! yourself to any of the ants which look a!!eti<in &*chilles. 6ee2 That is an ama<in wra!around& They were com!letely unconscious of what they were !artici!atin in& Their acts could be seen as !art of a !attern on a hi her level.ust ha!!ened that I had been watchin the symbols which were carryin out her thou hts. her estate is quite e(!ansive& She lives rather sum!tuously. if it was so blatant? Tortoise. the symbols which they were !art of were the ones which had e(!ressed the thou ht. but fortunately for me. 6ee2 *nteater. So I hel!ed myself to a few of the fattest ants which had been !arts of the hi her-level symbols which I had been readin & S!ecifically. what a !ity—a su!reme irony. she owns a rather lar e !iece of !ro!erty& It used to belon to someone else.uicy-lookin ants& *chilles. because in them were some !articularly . 6ee2 *nteater. what a !ity—a su!reme irony. 3ell. in fact—that they missed it& 8ra(. Fnfortunately for them.*chilles. what is an or an !oint? Tortoise. while the other voices continue their own inde!endent lines& This or an !oint is on the note of 6& Aisten carefully. on the symbol level& *chilles. I had never heard one before. :o tell us about it& *nteater. but that is rather a sad story& In any case. to me. )unt ?illary had been feelin very lonely. )n or an !oint is the sustainin of a sin le note by one of the voices in a !oly!honic !iece 4often the lowest voice5. ood& Hou1ll !oint them out in advance. com!ared to many other colonies& *chilles. /r& T—that was a lovely or an !oint& *nteater. does )unt ?illary live in an anthill? *nteater. to !reach communism and to live in a fancy estate& . but of course they were com!letely unaware of that& )h. ?ow does that . but that one was so cons!icuous that no one could miss it& Gery effective& *chilles. 3hat? ?as the or an !oint already occurred? ?ow can I not have noticed it. Hou are ri ht. Tell me.

you have utterly missed the bi !icture& In reality. )s I turned the !a e .ust a few bunches of letters& Aet1s see—there are various numbers of the letters 1J1. even to their own individual detriment at times& 8ow this is sim!ly a built-in as!ect of )unt ?illary1s structure. )h&&& -J& S& 0)7?-& Eh2 I understand now& It1s 0ach1s name2 . 1a1. /ay I see it? 8ra(. bein somewhat squeamish creatures& )unt ?illary is also somewhat squeamish= she ets rather antsy whenever she starts to think about ants at all& So she avoids thinkin about them whenever !ossible& I truly doubt that she knows anythin about the communistic society which is built into her very structure& She herself is a staunch believer in libertarianism—you know. )chilles—what do you make of it? *chilles. )lso. The communism is on the ant level& In an ant colony all ants work for the common ood. that she should live in a rather sum!tuous manor& 73G5=E JF! U. without any re!etitions& 'irst they et smaller. )ha2 It1s . laisse<-faire and all that& So it makes !erfect sense. certainly& *nteater. :o they s!ell anythin ? *chilles. See for yourself& &asses the score o#er to the 8ra(!/ 8ra(. by concentratin on details. 1r1. she may not even be aware of this internal communism& /ost human bein s are not aware of anythin about their neurons= in fact they !robably are quite content not to know anythin about their brains.ust now. and 1t1& It1s stran e. while followin alon in this lovely edition of the 3ell-Tem!ered 7lavier. I see it as a set of u!!er-case letters which row as you move to the ri ht& Tortoise. 1m1. how the first three letters row. I will& Tortoise. 1e1. 1)1. then they et bi er& ?ere. I will. 1S1.*nteater. I noticed that the first of the two fermatas is comin u! soon —so you mi ht listen for it. there1s a most curious !icture facin this !a e& 8ra(. but for all I know. 3hy. to me at least. this rou! of letters is 1f1. 101. Aet me see& ?mm& 3ell. 171. and then the last three letters shrink a ain& *nteater. )nother one? 3hat ne(t? Tortoise. )chilles& *chilles.rawing () the author!V Tortoise. 1?1. Eh.

to return to our !revious to!ic. no& The ants mana ed to survive.Tortoise. So did I& *chilles. what is the very sad story which you alluded to. ho!in a ainst ho!e that somehow 'ermant would rea!!ear&&& 4 &ulls out a handkerchief and wipes his e)es!/ *chilles. the ants which had been com!onents of J& S& '& slowly re rou!ed. )ctually. every last one of them. shrinkin as they move to the ri ht. Eh. and he was a mathematiciant by vocation. but a musiciant by avocation& *chilles. and&&& s!ellin out&&& the name of&&& -lows down slightl). there was no or ani<ation left& The caste distribution was utterly destroyed. all went down the drain in a matter of minutes& It was tra ic& *chilles. and built u! a new or ani<ation& )nd thus was )unt ?illary born& 8ra(. you1ve ot 'ermat on the brain. :o you mean that all the ants drowned. to !ut !oor 'ermant to ether a ain& I faithfully !ut out su ar and cheese. a very hot summer day. somethin very stran e then be an to take !lace. concernin the former owner of )unt ?illary1s !ro!erty? *nteater. Stran e that you should see it that way& I see it as a set of lower-case letters. )chilles—don1t feel bad& I1m sure you won1t miss 'u ue1s Aast 'ermata 4which is comin u! quite soon5& 0ut. he met with a most untimely demise& Ene day. ?ow very versantile of him2 *nteater. and thorou hly drenched J& S '& Since the storm came utterly without warnin . beyond reconstitution& ?owever. :r& )nteater. . the ants ot com!letely disoriented and confused& The intricate or ani<ation which had been so finely built u! over decades. he was out soakin u! the warmth. and the ants themselves had no ability to reconstruct what had once before been such a finely tuned or ani<ation& They were as hel!less as the !ieces of ?um!ty :um!ty in !uttin themselves back to ether a ain& I myself tried. especiall) drawing out the last few words! Then there is a (rief silence! -uddenl) he resumes as if nothing unusual had happened!/ —-fermat-& *chilles. There. :o you mean everybody heard it but me? I1m be innin to feel stu!id& Tortoise. over the ne(t few months. by crawlin onto various sticks and lo s which floated above the ra in torrents& 0ut when the waters receded and left the ants back on their home rounds. )t the hei ht of his creative !owers. ?ow valiant of you2 I never knew )nteaters had such bi hearts& *nteater. Hou were ri ht. 0ut it was all to no avail& ?e was one.ust heard a charmin little fermata in the fu ue& 8ra(. which obviously would s!ell the end of !oor J& S& '& *nteater. The former owner was an e(traordinary individual. when a freak thundershower—the kind that hits only once every hundred years or so—a!!eared from out of the blue. there.emarkable2 )unt ?illary is com!osed of the very same ants as 'ermant was? . one of the most creative ant colonies who ever lived& ?is name was Johant Sebastiant 'ermant. like all the kin 1s horses and all the kin 1s men. I do believe& Hou see 'ermat1s Aast Theorem everywhere& *nteater. /r& Tortoise—I .

often several distinct ways to rearran e a rou! of !arts to form a -sum-& )nd )unt ?illary was . and then wrote in the mar in the followin notorious comment.ust a new -sum. S!eakin of sums. then resumes!/ ?ave you heard of 'ourmi1s infamous -3ell-Tested 7on. althou h I confess to bein a total i noramus in the field& *chilles.ust that !articular @I8: of sum& Tortoise.*nteater. b. had been readin in his co!y of the classic te(t *rithmetica by :i of )ntus. in )unt ?illary? *nteater. I am reminded of J& S& '& a ain. she has only a rather banal taste in music. c which satisfy the equation5= but there are no solutions for n a B& I have discovered a truly marvelous !roof of this statement. is so small that it would be well-ni h invisible if written in the mar in& .ecture-? *chilles& I1m not sure&&& It sounds stran ely familiar. and been re!laced& 0ut there are still many holdovers from the J& S& '&-days& 8ra(. The equation na^nbXnc has solutions in !ositive inte ers a. is remarkably dullwitted in anythin that has even the remotest connection with mathematics& )lso. and come u! with a new theorem& *nteater. I1ve never heard of such a !henomenon. and yet I can1t quite !lace it& *nteater. he made some rather remarkable contributions to number theory& )unt ?illary. then& &auses for a moment to sip his tea. Gery well. after all. where occasionally one will be able to take a!art a theorem into its com!onent symbols. *nteater. I am reminded of number theory. It1s a very sim!le idea& Aierre de 'ourmi. mind you . b.of the old !arts& 8ot /E. on the other hand. and came across a !a e containin the equation Ba^BbXBc ?e immediately reali<ed that this equation has infinitely many solutions a& b. c. which. for number theory is one of the domains in which he e(celled& In fact. a mathematiciant by vocation but lawyer by avocation. ori inally she was. unfortunately. If I don1t say so myself& I sus!ect /r& T is . 8ot a one& They have nothin in common& )nd there is no reason they should. S!eakin of number theory. c.ust settin u! one of his elaborate s!oofs& I know him !retty well by now& *nteater.E than the sum. from time to time. and n only when n X B 4and then there are infinitely many tri!lets a. some of the older ants have died. yes& 0y now. )nd can1t you reco ni<e some of J& S& '&1s old traits comin to the fore. I am very fond of number theory& 7ould you !ossibly relate to us somethin of the nature of Sebastiant1s contributions. 3ell. rearran e them in a new order. as I see it& There are. whereas Sebastiant was e(tremely ifted in music& *chilles. 8or have I heard of it—and I am rather well versed in the field.

by findin a countere(am!le.rather than a -7on. The Insect Societies 8am(ridge. has been somewhat tarnished by ske!tics who think he never really found the !roof he claimed to have found—or else to refute the claim. sayin that he !robably never worked it out at all. BICB/. althou h very hi h.uring emigrations arm) ants sometimes create li#ing (ridges of their own (odies! 3n this photograph of such a (ridge de 7ourmi +ierre/. the workers of an Eciton burchelli colon) can (e seen linking their legs and.E D%& . his reatest work is shrouded in mystery. but merely blustered about it& . mathematiciants have been vainly tryin to do one of two thin s. but tradition has ke!t it this way& Tortoise. until Johant Sebastiant 'ermant came u!on the scene& It was he who found the !roof that cleared 'ourmi1s name& It now oes under the name -Johant Sebastiant1s 3ell-Tested 7on. Strictly s!eakin . for he never reached the !oint of !ublishin it& Some believe that he had it all in his mind= others are more unkind. along the top of the (ridge. Trichatelura manni. every attem!t in either direction had met with failure& To be sure. either to !rove 'ourmi1s claim.ecture-& *chilles. with n a B. 'ass!: . is seen crossing the (ridge in the center! U7rom E! :! >ilson. some three hundred days a o. hooking their tarsal claws together to form irregular s)stems of chains! * s)m(iotic sil#erfish. b. that is. a set of four inte ers a. all n u! to "BL.ar#ard 5ni#ersit) &ress. the 7on. which satisfy the equation& Fntil very recently. which.ecture-. Shouldn1t it be called a -Theorem. ?e had reat ifts for com!osition& Fnfortunately. you1re ri ht. and thereby vindicate 'ourmi1s re!utation.'I6F.+++& 0ut no one had succeeded in !rovin it for )AA n—no one. 3hat sort of music did Sebastiant do? *nteater. and n. if it1s finally been iven a !ro!er !roof? *nteater. c. p! JFV Ever since that year.ecture has been verified for many s!ecific values of n—in !articular.

which he wrote in the mar in of his co!y of 0u(tehude1s Preludes and 'u ues for Er an& The last words which he wrote before his tra ic demise were. S!eakin of fu ues. I have com!osed a truly marvelous fu ue& In it. 8ot to mention com!osin one2 *nteater. I know the rest of you won1t believe this. what have we here? Eh.rawing () the authorV 8ra(. this mar in is too narrow to contain it& )nd the unreali<ed master!iece sim!ly oes by the name. 3ell. this fu ue which we have been listenin to is nearly over& Towards the end. and the !ower of BC themes= I came u! with a fu ue with the !ower of BC voices& Fnfortunately. that is unbearably tra ic& Tortoise.ects. one in each of the ma. It was to be a iant !relude and fu ue= the fu ue was to have twenty-four voices. written in small letters that first row and then shrink back to their ori inal si<e& 0ut that doesn1t make any sense. it1s . what have we here? ) new illustration-how a!!ealin 2 -hows it to the 8ra(&5 73G5=E JD! U. because it1s not a word& Eh me. I see. written in lar e letters that first shrink and then row back to their ori inal si<e& 0ut that doesn1t make any sense. oh my2 &asses it to the *nteater!/ *nteater.*chilles.written twice. It would certainly be hard to listen to a twenty-four-voice fu ue as a whole2 8ra(. Eh.E:F7T?EAIS/-. what have we here? Eh. 3ell. I have added to ether the !ower of BC keys. with the letters continually shrinkin as they !roceed from left to ri ht& =eturns it to the Tortoise!/ . and to involve twenty-four distinct sub. -'ermant1s Aast 'u ue-& *chilles. It1s -?EAIS/IE8IS/-. 0ut all that we know of it is Sebastiant1s descri!tion of it. I see. because it1s not a word& Eh my. there occurs a stran e new twist on its theme& 7lips the page in the >ell%Tempered 8la#ier!/ 3ell..or and minor keys& *chilles. but in fact this !icture consists of the word -?EAIS/. oh me2 &asses it to *chilles!/ *chilles. 3hat was the nature of this ma num o!us? *nteater.

/r& Tortoise& 'inally.Tortoise.E:F7TIE8IS/. but in fact this !icture consists of the word -. I know the rest of you won1t believe this. I think I am be innin to ras! the art of listenin to fu ues& . with the letters continually rowin as they !roceed from left to ri ht& *chilles.written once. )t last—I heard the new twist on the theme this time2 I am so lad that you !ointed it out to me.

and witnessed bi<arre variations on the theme.ers!ecti"es on Thought IT 3)S E8AH with the advent of com!uters that !eo!le actually tried to create -thinkin machines. arose as a result of an isomor!hism which ma!s ty!o ra!hical symbols onto numbers. we will try to unite some insi hts leaned from attem!ts at com!uter intelli ence with some of the facts learned from in enious e(!eriments on livin animal brains. in the last twenty years or so. we have develo!ed formal systems which re!resent domains of mathematical reality in their symbolisms& To what e(tent is it reasonable to use such formal systems as models for how the brain mi ht mani!ulate ideas? 3e saw. brain researchers have found out much about the small-scale and lar e-scale hardware of the brain& This a!!roach has not yet been able to shed much li ht on how the brain mani!ulates conce!ts. *nt 7ugue= now we develo! the ideas more dee!ly& Intensionality and E-tensionality Thou ht must de!end on representing realit) in the hardware of the (rain& In the !recedin 7ha!ters. o!erations. we have acquired. in the !q-system and then in other more com!licated systems. a new kind of !ers!ective on what thou ht is. in a limited sense of the term. from the rather strict nature of all the formal systems we have seen. the va aries and vicissitudes of human thou ht were hinted at by the newfound ability to e(!eriment with alien.Cha!ter <I Brains and Thoughts . whereas on !a!er. rather than !assive ty!o ra!hical symbols& In the brain. and what it is not& /eanwhile. of thou ht& Pro rams were devised whose -thinkin .e' . but we have somethin even better.was to human thinkin as a slinky fli!!in end over end down a staircase is to human locomotion& )ll of a sudden the idiosyncrasies. active elements which can store information and transmit it and receive it from other active elements& Thus we have acti#e symbols. and relations= and strin s of ty!o ra!hical symbols onto statements& 8ow in the brain we don1t have ty!o ra!hical symbols. the rules are mi(ed ri ht in with the symbols themselves. . as well as with results from research on human thou ht !rocesses done by co nitive !sycholo ists& The sta e has been set by the &relude. then. how meanin . and the rules are in our heads& It is im!ortant not to et the idea. but it ives us some ideas about the biolo ical mechanisms on which thou ht mani!ulation rests& In the comin two 7ha!ters. yet hand-tailored forms of thou ht—or a!!ro(imations of thou ht& )s a result. the symbols are static entities. the weaknesses and !owers. that the isomor!hism between symbols and real thin s is a ri id.

without bein anchored down to s!ecific. and overturned. the notion -fifty. and this is because thinkin involves the manufacture and mani!ulation of com!le( descri!tions. and in the end you -see it all in your mind1s eye-& Then she tells you that it1s all been an )!ril 'ool1s . -Eh—it1s that number2In your mind. which means that descri!tions can -float. -Eh—you1re that !erson28ot all descri!tions of a !erson need be attached to some central symbol for that !erson. makin you e(claim.one-to-one ma!!in . not one—and so on& This -calculus of descri!tions. careened a ainst a bank. and she narrowly esca!ed death& Hou con. unconnected& )t some !oint durin the evenin you may stumble across a to!ic of conversation which leads to the revelation that they desi nate the same !erson. and the memory will stay with you for a lon . lon time& Aater. 44SSSSSSS?jSSSSSSS?5^4S?jS?55 44SSSSS?jSSSSS?5^4SSSSS?jSSSSS?55 That these both re!resent the same number is not a !riori clear& Hou can mani!ulate each e(!ression inde!endently.is at the heart of thinkin & It is said to be intentional and not e(tensional.can be e(!ressed in different symbolic ways= for e(am!le. which should have been wi!ed out when you learned it was all untrue& 'antasy and fact intermin le very closely in our minds.ects& The intensionality of thou ht is connected to its fle(ibility= it ives us the ability to ima ine hy!othetical worlds.oke. like the strin s which link a marionette and the hand uidin it& In T8T. The !erson whose book I sent to a friend in Poland a while back& The stran er who started talkin with me and my friends toni ht in this coffee house& That they both re!resent the same !erson is not a !riori clear& 0oth descri!tions may sit in your mind. which et !ro ressively more vivid as she adds details. and so on& Su!!ose a friend who has borrowed your car tele!hones you to say that your car skidded off a wet mountain road. and both she and the car are fine2 In many ways that is irrelevant& The story and the ima es lose nothin of their vividness. and at some !oint stumble cross a theorem which makes you e(claim. you may even think of her as an unsafe driver because of the stren th of the first im!ression.ure u! a series of ima es in your mind. you can also have different mental descri!tions for a sin le !erson= for e(am!le. which need in no way be tied down to real events or thin s& . known ob. which stores the !erson1s name& :escri!tions can be manufactured and mani!ulated in themselves& 3e can invent none(istent !eo!le by makin descri!tions of them= we can mer e two descri!tions when we find they re!resent a sin le entity= we can s!lit one descri!tion into two when we find it re!resents two thin s. to amal amate different descri!tions or cho! one descri!tion into se!arate !ieces.

or neurons 4see 'i & DL5.are made& 73G5=E JG! -chematic drawing of a neuron! U*dapted 7rom . The /achinery of the 0rain New York: 'cGraw%.! >ooldridge. and therefore we will not discuss them&5 Each neuron !ossesses a number of syna!ses 4-entry !orts-5 and one a(on 4-out!ut channel-5& The in!ut and out!ut are electrochemical flows. outnumberin the neurons by about ten to one are the lial cells.ill. movin ions& In between the entry !orts of a neuron and its out!ut channel is its cell body. or lia& 6lia are believed to !lay more of a su!!ortin role to the neurons1 starrin role. p! J!V .) fle(ible. BIJH/. where -decisions. that is. intensional re!resentation of the world is what thinkin is all about& 8ow how can a !hysiolo ical system such as the brain su!!ort such a system? The Brain%s (Ants( The most im!ortant cells in the brain are nerve cells. of which there are about ten billion& 47uriously.

here is one fact which com!licates the issue. it is known that lan ua e is !rimarily handled in one of the two cerebral . between human brains and brains of less intelli ent s!ecies& 3e will not describe any of the brain1s subor ans in detail because. many neurons must be involved& )nd therefore one mi ht uess that lar er structures. in terms of anatomy. the sin le out!ut !ulse s!lits u! as it moves down the bifurcatin a(on. ergo am5& 8ow althou h the manner of makin the decision sounds very sim!le. or -si nals-? 3hat about -symbols-? 3e make the followin observation. since the a(on branches alon which they travel may be of different len ths and have different resistivities& The im!ortant thin . only the rou hest ma!!in can at this time be made between such lar e-scale subor ans and the activities. it needs a short recovery time before firin a ain= characteristically this is measured in milliseconds. to release ions down its a(on. whether or not to fire—that is. des!ite the com!le(ity of its in!ut. which handle conce!ts on a hi her level& This is undoubtedly true. which cancel out !ositive in!uts comin from somewhere else& In any case. so at a neuron may fire u! to about a thousand times !er second& Larger Structures in the Brain 8ow we have described the brain1s -ants-& 3hat about -teams-. or not firin & This is a very small amount of information& 7ertainly for lar e amounts of information to be carried or !rocessed. a !ulse of ions streaks down the on towards its terminal end& 0efore the ions reach the end. but the most naPve assum!tion—that there is a fi(ed rou! of neurons for each different conce!t—is almost certainly false& There are many anatomical !ortions of the brain which can be distin uished from each other. as it turns out. or cerebral corte(& The amount of cerebral corte( is the ma.has become -they-—and they may reach their destinations at se!arate times. the hy!othalamus 4see 'i & DD5& The cerebrum is the lar est !art of the human brain. is that they all be an as one sin le !ulse. movin away from the cell body& )fter a neuron fires. they may encounter a bifurcation—or several& In such cases.4from the Aatin 8ogito.The ty!e of decision which a neuron faces—and this can take !lace u! to a thousand times !er second—is this. mental or !hysical. such as the cerebrum. yes= otherwise. no& Some of the in!uts can be ne ative in!uts. would e(ist. thou h. which eventually will cross over into the entry !orts of one or more other neurons. therefore I sum. -I think. it is sim!le addition which rules the lowest level of the mind& To !ara!hrase :escartes1 famous remark. com!osed from many neurons. which means that u! to B++. there may be as many as B++. if the sum all in!uts e(ceeds a certain threshold. and by the time it has reached the end.+++ se!arate summands may be involved in determinin the neuron1s ne(t ion& Ence the decision has been made. the cerebellum. which they are res!onsible for& 'or instance.or distin uishin feature.+++ se!arate entry !orts to a neuron. thus causin them to make the same sort of decision& The decision is made in a very sim!le manner. a sin le neuron can res!ond only in a very !rimitive way—by firin . -it. and is divided into a left hemis!here and a ri ht hemis!here& The outer few millimeters of each cerebral hemis!here are coated with a layered -bark-. however.

p! GK! V hemis!heres—in fact. usually the left hemis!here& )lso. in the thousands& Ene very interestin thin is that we may !oint to a !articular individual cell in a !articular earthworm. The 7onscious 0rain. updated ed! New York: <intage. nor as anyone else does& 0ut we all have the same anatomical divisions in our brains& ?ow far does this identity of brains e(tend? :oes it o to the neural level? Hes. then how are two brains different from each other? ?ow is my brain different from yours? 7ertainly you do not think e(actly as I do. The number of nerve cells in an animal like a worm would be measured. for instance& The followin quote is from the neuro!hysiolo ist.73G5=E JJ! The human (rain. BIJJ/. seen from the left side! 3t is strange that the #isual area is in the (ack of the head! U7rom -te#en =ose. the corres!ondin cell in another earthworm of the same s!ecies&" . the cerebellum is the !lace where trains of im!ulses are sent off to muscles to control motor activity& 0ut how these areas carry out their functions is still lar ely a mystery& Ma!!ings bet'een Brains 8ow an e(tremely im!ortant question comes u! here& If thinkin does take !lace in the brain. :avid ?ubel. and then identify the same cell. if you look at animals on a low enou h level of the thinkin -hierarchy—the lowly earthworm. s!eakin at a conference on communication with e(traterrestrial intelli ence. I su!!ose.

the corte( a!!eared to be equi!otential. but somehow they always mana ed to traverse the ma<e& So far as memory was concerned. and. s!ecific ho!es. or to s!ecific !hysical subsystems of the brain? This will be a central question to which we will often return in this 7ha!ter and the ne(t& Locali:ation of Brain . Steven .ose describes Aashley1s trials and tribulations this way. to entire successions of events recalled from some earlier time of life. can knowled e and other as!ects of mental life likewise be traced to s!ecific locations inside the brain. to do so. first trained rats to run ma<es. in a series of e(!eriments be innin around "#B+ and runnin for many years. could we find various structures that could be identified as codin for s!ecific thin s I know.or subor ans of the brain& 3hat s this im!ly about how individual mental differences are re!resented in !hysical brain? If we looked at my neurons1 interconnections. and. such as a childhood birthday !arty& The set of locations which could tri er such s!ecific . and then removed various cortical re ions& ?e allowed the animals to recover and tested the retention of the ma<e-runnin skills& To his sur!rise it was not !ossible to find a !articular re ion corres!ondin to the ability to remember the way throu h a ma<e& Instead all the rats which had had corte( re ions removed suffered some kind of im!airment.ust one human2 Het considerable !hysical similarity can be detected between different human brains when they are com!ared on a scale lar er than a sin le neuron but smaller than the ma. the neurolo ist @arl Aashley. with all re ions of equal !ossible utility& Indeed. likes and dislikes I harbor? If mental e(!eriences can be attributed to the brain. and then usin small electrical !ulses to stimulate the neuron or neurons to which the electrodes been attached& These !ulses were similar to the !ulses which come other neurons& 3hat Penfield found was that stimulation of certain neurons would reliably create s!ecific ima es or sensations in the !atient& These artificially !rovoked im!ressions ran ed from stran e but indefinable fears to bu<<es and colors.rocesses5 An Enigma In an attem!t to answer this question. in the late "#C+1s& The neurosur eon 3ilder Penfield was e(aminin the reactions of !atients whose brains had been o!erated on. ho!. which a!!eared in "#L+. by insertin electrodes into various !arts of their e(!osed brains. most im!ressively of all. tried to discover where in its brain a rat stores its knowled e about ma<e runnin & In his book The 8onscious Brain. fears. and they would lim!.Earthworms have isomor!hic brains2 Ene could say. Aashley was attem!tin to identify the locus of memory within the corte(. that the only conclusion was that memory was not !ossible at all& B 7uriously. and the e(tent of the im!airment was rou hly !ro!ortional to the amount of corte( taken off& . evidence for the o!!osite !oint of view was bein develo!ed in 7anada at rou hly the same time that Aashley was doin his last work. that is. or sta er. roll. -There is only one earthworm&0ut such one-to-one ma!!ability between individuals1 brains disa!!ears very soon as you ascend in the thinkin -hierarchy and the number of neurons increases—confirmin one1s sus!icions that there is not .emovin corte( dama ed the motor and sensory ca!acities of the animals. s!ecific beliefs I have. Aashley concluded rather loomily in is last !a!er -In Search of the En ram-.

and -off-center-& The on%center neurons are those whose firin rate increases whenever. !assin throu h the -relay station.ust cause them to be routed around the dama ed area& In this sense any call is !otentially nonlocali<able& Het any call . followin their connections towards the rear of the head. for it is selected at the time the call is !laced. but over and over a ain in different areas of the corte(—a strate y !erha!s develo!ed in evolution as security a ainst !ossible loss of corte( in fi hts. startin with the neurons in the retina. but can be tri ered from local s!ots& This theory is based on the notion of modern tele!hone networks.eniculate neurons which are tri ered only by s!ecific stimuli fallin on s!ecific areas of the retina& In that sense. and de!ends on the situation all over the whole country& :estroyin any local !art of the network would not block calls= it would . at the very back of the brain& 'irst of all.events was e(tremely small—basically centered u!on a sin le neuron& 8ow these results of Penfield dramatically o!!ose the conclusions of Aashley. at ?arvard& They have ma!!ed out visual !athways in the brains of cats. the neuron will slow down in firin 4and vice versa5& Fniform illumination will leave both ty!es of retinal neuron unaffected= they will continue to fire at cruisin s!eed& 'rom the retina. the eneral eniculate is disa!!ointin = it seems to be only a -relay station-. the contrast sensitivity seems to be . it will do so only !rovided that the surroundin !art of the retina is less illuminated& So this means that there are two ty!es of neuron. it is remarkable that there e(ist well defined neural !athways. in the small circular retinal area to which they are sensitive. or in e(!eriments conducted by neuro!hysiolo ists& )nother e(!lanation would be that memories can be reconstructed from dynamic !rocesses s!read over the whole brain. it may either fire faster or slow down and even sto! firin & ?owever. the way they act is this& Each retinal neuron is normally firin at a -cruisin s!eed-& 3hen its !ortion of the retina is struck by li ht. after all& 3hat can one make of this? Ene !ossible e(!lanation could be that memories are coded locally. in li ht of Aashley1s results& 0ut more remarkable are the !ro!erties of the neurons located at different sta es alon the !athway& It turns out that retinal neurons are !rimarily contrast sensors& /ore s!ecifically. where the routin of a lon -distance call is not !redictable in advance. -on-center-. si nals from these neurons !roceed via the o!tic nerve to the lateral eniculate. located somewhere towards the middle of the brain& There.ust connects u! two s!ecific !oints= in this sense any call is locali<able& S!ecificity in 4isual . and endin u! in the visual corte(.of the lateral eniculate. since they seem to im!ly that local areas are res!onsible for s!ecific memories. one can find a direct ma!!in of the retinal surface in the sense that there are lateral. and not a further !rocessor 4althou h to ive it its due. the center is bri ht but the outskirts are dark= the off%center neurons are those which fire faster when there is darkness in the center and bri htness in the outer rin & If an on-center !attern is shown to an off-center neuron.rocessing Some of the most interestin and si nificant work on locali<ation of brain !rocesses has been done in the last fifteen years by :avid ?ubel and Torsten 3iesel.

areas of corte( at the back of their brains where visual !rocessin is done. or even -ton ues.)per%comple9 cells res!ond to corners. it is not obvious what alternative theory seems reasonable& Ene !ossibility is that lar er neural networks are e(cited collectively by sufficiently com!le( visual stimuli& Ef course. they res!ond to !oint-like li ht or dark s!ots with contrastin surrounds. one conce!t-—for e(am!le. sim!le. and "# of the corte(& These areas are still universal. des!ite the fact that the neurons there are not arran ed on a two-dimensional surface in the form of the retina. there are so many further une(!lained sta es of vision that we should not be disa!!ointed but !leased by the fact that—to some e(tent—we have fi ured out this one sta e2 'rom the lateral eniculate.rained.mi ht emer e from -si nal-. neural-level isomor!hism which e(ists between earthworm brains& It is quite interestin that there is also an isomor!hism between the visual !rocessin a!!aratus of cat. the trail ets lost—a tantali<in ly unfinished story& 3e will return to this story shortly. your randmother came into view& This somewhat humorous e(am!le of a -su!erhy!ercom!le( cell. the . usually receive in!ut from a hundred or more other cells. but in a three-dimensional block& So two dimensions et ma!!ed onto three.rained isomor!hism between all human brains which e(ists on a lar e anatomical scale. bars. the visual corte( breaks u! into three subre ions. and hy!er-com!le(& Sim!le cells act very much like retinal cells or lateral eniculate cells.of which is somewhere between coarse and fine& ?ere is how that isomor!hism works& 'irst of all.is not taken very seriously& ?owever. in each of them.movin in s!ecific directions 4a ain see 'i & D$5& These latter cells are so hi hly s!eciali<ed at they are sometimes called -hi her-order hy!er-com!le( cells-& A (Grandmother Cell(7 0ecause of the discovery of cells in the visual corte( which can be tri ered by stimuli of ever-increasin com!le(ity. which is not yet fully a!!reciated& In any case. all three s!ecies have -dedicated. and they detect li ht or dark bars oriented at s!ecific an les on the retina 4see 'i & D$5& . and try to fill in some of it& Earlier I mentioned the coarse. in !articular re ions of the retina& 8omple9 cells. the si nals !roceed back to the visual corte(& ?ere. the tri erin of these lar er multineuron units would somehow have to come from inte ration of si nals emanatin from the many hy!er com!le( cells& ?ow this mi ht be done. monkey. and only if.enhanced in the lateral eniculate5& The retinal ima e is coded a strai htforward way in the firin !atterns of the neurons in the lateral eniculate.randmother cell. called areas "*. in the sense that they can be located in the brain of any normal individual in any of the three ties& 3ithin each area you can o still further.or ani<ation of the visual corte(& Per!endicular to the surface of . by contrast. the visual corte(& Secondly.rain. com!le(. nobody knows& Just when we seem to be a!!roachin the threshold where -symbol. reachin the -columnar. and human. some !eo!le have wondered if thin s are not leadin in the direction of -one cell.which would fire if. yet the formation is !reserved. however. an isomor!hism& There is !robably some dee! meanin to the chan e in the dimensionality of the re!resentation. and the very fine. some new ty!es of !rocessin occur& The cells of the visual corte( are divided into three cate ories. you would have a .

almost all connections move alon the radial.73G5=E JC! =esponses to patterns () certain sample neurons! a/ This edge%detecting neuron looks for #ertical edges with light on the left and dark on the right! The first column shows how the orientation of an edge is rele#ant to this neuron! The second column shows how the position of the edge within the field is irrele#ant. visual neurons are arran ed in -columns-—that is. while the sim!le and com!le( ones are found mostly in area "$&5 It a!!ears that we run out of isomor!hisms at this level of detail& 'rom here down to the individual neuron level. and not between columns& )nd each column ma!s onto a small. each individual cat. for this particular neuron! (/ -howing how a h)per comple9 cell responds more selecti#el): here. movin radially inwards towards the inner brain. there are layers in which sim!le neurons tend to be found. monkey. so that one can1t find -the same column-& 'inally. onl) when the descending tongue is in the middle of the field! c/ The responses of a h)pothetical "grandmother cell" to #arious random stimuliR the reader ma) enMo) pondering how an "octopus cell" would respond to the same stimuli! the corte(. or man has a com!letely unique !attern—somewhat like a fin er!rint or a si nature& Ene minor but !erha!s tellin difference between visual !rocessin in cats1 brains and monkeys1 brains has to do with the sta e at which information from the two eyes is inte rated to yield a sin le combined hi her-level si nal& It turns out that it takes !lace . columnar direction. s!ecific retinal re ion& The number of columns is not same in each individual. within a column. and other layers in which com!le( neurons tend to be found& 4The hy!ercom!le( neurons tend to be found in areas "* and "# !redominately.

which is entirely dedicated to a clear software !ur!ose—the !rocessin of visual information—yet all of the !rocessin so far discovered is still quite low-level& 8othin a!!roachin reco nition of ob.ects has been locali<ed in the visual corte(& This means that no one knows where or how the out!ut from com!le( and hy!ercom!le( cells ets transformed into conscious reco nition of sha!es.ect bein looked at is im!licitly identified by its -si nature. as mentioned above& It is evident that this will not be found in some ross anatomical division of the brain. at the thin end of the -funnel-. and involves relatively little o!tical !rocessin & En the other hand. so dee!ly reliant on the corte(. which ives each se!arate eye1s si nal a sli htly lon er time to et !rocessed by itself& This is not too sur!risin . and then suddenly a human fi ure will . a human1s visual system. but not from other cattle& Probably its entire visual system is -hard-wired. all of which fire when 6ranny comes into view& )nd for each different reco ni<able ob.in our brains& 0ut is such funnelin necessary? Perha!s an ob.um! out at you& Presumably the si nature ets im!rinted on the visual corte( in the first fraction of a second—but the !icture is only understood after a few seconds& This is but one e(am!le of what is actually . rooms.before birth. the collected res!onses of sim!le.of many low-level neural res!onses into fewer and fewer hi her-level ones. a 'rench !ost-im!ressionist. faces. or some kind of multineuron network. !oses the followin !roblem& Su!!ose you are lookin at a scene& It re isters its si nature on your visual corte(= but then how do you et from that si nature to a verbal descri!tion of the scene? 'or instance. the !aintin s of Edouard Guillard. involvin networks which can be e(cited in different manners. however.eural Modules ) !u<<lin thin about the discoveries so far made about the or ani<ation the brain is that few direct corres!ondences have been found between lar e-scale hardware and hi h-level software& The visual corte(.in the visual corte(—that is. since one would e(!ect that hi her a s!ecies lies in the intelli ence hierarchy. and hy!ercom!le( cells& Perha!s the brain does not need any further reco ni<er for a !articular form& This theory.ect. and so on& Peo!le have looked for evidence of the -funnelin . there would be a unique network and a funnelin !rocess that would focus down onto that network& There are more com!licated alternatives alon similar lines. !ictures. often take a few seconds of scrutiny. culminatin in somethin such as the !roverbial randmother cell. which seems to be born with as much !ower of visual discrimination as it will ever have& It will shy away from !eo!le or do s.sli htly later in the monkey than in the cat. for instance. instead of in a fi(ed manner& Such networks would be the -symbols. is a lar e-scale !iece of hardware. say a few do<en. but rather in a more microsco!ic analysis& Ene !ossible alternative to the the randmother cell mi ht be a fi(ed set of neurons. the more com!le( will the !roblems which its visual system will be called u!on to handle= and therefore si nals ou ht to !ass throu h more and more early !rocessin before receivin a final -label-& This is quite dramatically confirmed by observations of the visual abilities of a newborn calf. com!le(. takes several years to reach maturity& +unneling into .

which takes !lace not when the li ht rays hit your retina. for you could internally use the formation that it is 6ranny without verbali<in it& It would be very unwieldy to handle all of the information in the entire visual corte(.So a funnelin !rocess must take !lace at some !oint after the rece!tion of the visual si nature and before the words are uttered& Ene could claim that this funnelin is not !art of the !erce!tion of 6ranny. whose end result is to tri er some s!ecific modules of neurons.ect—for e(am!le. or modules may overla! !hysically= both of these effects would tend to obscure any division of neurons into . such as the e(!eriments by Aashley. coherent.of neurons. after some !art of your intelli ence has had a chance to act on the retinal si nals& The crystalli<ation meta!hor yields a !retty ima e derived from statistical mechanics. and some evidence.a common !henomenon—a sensation of somethin -crystalli<in . your randmother. and so on& )ll these scenes !roduce e(tremely different si natures on the visual corte(= yet all of them could !rom!t you to say -?ello. but chunks. of a myriad microsco!ic and uncorrelated activities in a medium.of the ty!e su ested earlier& ) !roblem with this theory—at least if it is taken naPvely—is that it would su est that one should be able to locate such modules somewhere within the brain& This has not yet been done. !oints a ainst locali<ation& ?owever. since you don1t care about where shadows fall or how many buttons there are on her blouse. each of which is associated with the conce!ts—the chunks—in the scene& Modules >hich Mediate Thought . fully linked structure& If one thinks of the early neural activities as inde!endent.in your mind at the moment of reco nition. wearin a hat or not. the myriad small events will have !erformed a com!lete structural revam!in of their medium from the bottom u!. who may be smilin or frownin .has been created on the visual corte(& There must be some funnelin . likewise it seems ridiculous to !ostulate that !erce!tion has taken !lace when a iant dot-like -si nature. 6ranny&. but sometime later.ust !art of verbali<ation& 0ut it seems quite unnatural to !artition the !rocess that way. slowly !roducin local re ions of coherence which s!read and enlar e= in the end. etc& )nother difficulty with a non-funnelin theory is to e(!lain how there can be different inter!retations for a sin le si nature—for e(am!le. from side or front. when much of it could be thrown away.rocesses Thus we are led to the conclusion that for each conce!t there is a fairly well-defined module which can be tri ered—a module that consists of a small rou! of neurons—a -neural com!le(. it is still too early to tell& There may be many co!ies of each module s!read around. in a bri ht arden or a dark train station. chan in it from a chaotic assembly of inde!endent elements into one lar e. but . the Escher !icture 8on#e9 and 8onca#e 4'i & B%5& Just as it seems obvious to us that we do not merely !erceive dots on a television screen. and of the end result of their many inde!endent firin s as the tri erin of a well-defined lar e -module. seen from near or far. then the word -crystalli<ation.seems quite a!t& )nother ar ument for funnelin is based on the fact that there are a myriad distinct scenes which can cause you to feel you have !erceived the same ob.

as does knowled e that a brain is built out of neurons and lia? )s you mi ht uess from readin the )nt 'u ue. multineuron units—call them what you will. neural networks. arden rakes. such as the midbrain. :o they e(tend into the lower re ions of the brain. !henomena—but this is somethin which we will discuss later There are many questions that come to mind concernin these hy!othesi<ed neural com!le(es& 'or instance. my feelin is that it would o a lon way towards ivin us an understandin of the !henomenon of consciousness& The crucial ste! that needs to be taken is from a low-level-neuron-by-neuron-descri!tion of the state of a brain. snowflakes. neural !ackets. like cobras1 heads= !erha!s they are like s!iderwebs= or !erha!s they are circuits in which si nals travel round and round in sha!es stran er than the dash of a nat-hun ry swallow& There is no tellin & It is even !ossible that these modules are software. whether they come in the form of !ancakes. rather than hardware. to revert to the su estive terminolo y of the *nt 7ugue. neural modules. a randmother module—tell us? 3ould this ive us any insi ht into the !henomenon of our own consciousness? Er would it still leave us as much in the dark about what consciousness is. to a hi h-level-module-by-module-descri!tion of the same state of the same brain& Er. or awake 4activated5& )n active symbol is one which has been tri ered—that is.-!ackets-& Perha!s the com!le(es are like very thin !ancakes !acked in layers which occasionally !ass throu h each other= !erha!s they are like lon snakes which curl around each other. the hy!othalamus. or even ri!!les on lakes—as symbols& ) descri!tion of a brain state in terms of symbols was alluded to in the :ialo ue& 3hat would such a descri!tion be like? 3hat kinds of conce!ts is it reasonable to think actually mi ht be -symboli<ed-? 3hat kinds of interrelations would symbols have? )nd what insi hts would this whole !icture !rovide into consciousness? The first thin to em!hasi<e is that symbols can be either dormant. the most im!ortant question of all is this. 3hat would the e(istence of modules—for instance. one in which a threshold number of neurons have been caused to fire by stimuli comin from outside& Since a symbol can be tri ered in many different ways. we want to shift the descri!tion of the brain state from the si nal level to the symbol level& Acti"e Symbols Aet us from now on refer to these hy!othetical neural com!le(es. it can act in many different ways . etc&? 7an a sin le neuron belon to more than one such com!le(? To how many such com!le(es can a sin le neuron belon ? 0y how many neurons can such com!le(es overla!? )re these com!le(es !retty much the same for everybody? )re corres!ondin ones found in corres!ondin !laces in different !eo!le1s brains? :o they overla! in the same way in everybody1s brain? Philoso!hically. here and there flattenin out. rattlesnakes.

and we ho!e that we can et alon on !urely a hi h level& In other words. the isomor!hism is infinitely more com!le(. -It sends out messa es. or the biolo y of cells is sealed off from the laws of quarks& 0ut what is the advanta e of this hi h-level !icture? 3hy is it better to say. and intensional& Incidentally. of information that a sin le . or tri er. other symbols&.Ef course these messa es would be carried as streams of nerve im!ulses. 8 are all active-= rather. a waterfall.ect in the real world& In his book The 3nsect -ocieties. characteri<in some as!ects of the symbol1s internal workin s& It is an interestin question whether in each symbol there are certain core neurons. we should.of the symbol& It is tem!tin to assume that each time you think of. It is better because symbols s)m(oli@e thin s.&&&. and concentrate e(clusively on symbols& So a hi h-level descri!tion of what makes a symbol active. we would have to su!!ly in addition a set of !arameters for each active symbol. the tri erin of some symbol by other symbols bears a relation to events in the real world—or in an ima inary world& Symbols are related to each other by the messa es which they can send back and forth. versatile. amon individual could not !ass to another&% rou!s. -Symbols ) and 0 tri ered symbol 7. and has no way of selectively selectin a si nal now in one direction. say. it is not clear that this must be so& 8ow what does a symbol do. for it re!resents a low-level way of lookin at thin s. we mi ht refer to it as the -invariant core. but reliably occurrin & ?owever. which invariably fire when the symbol is activated& If such a core set of neurons e(ists. delicate. and neurons don1t& Symbols are the hardware reali<ations of conce!ts& 3hereas a rou! of neurons tri erin another neuron corres!onds to no outer event. E& E& 3ilson makes a similar !oint about how messa es !ro!a ate around inside ant colonies. meanin arises here for the same reason as it did in the !q-system—isomor!hism= only here. 0.0ut this no lon er interests us& The hi h-level descri!tion should eliminate all reference to neurons.than to say. but as a variable entity& Therefore it would not suffice to describe a brain state by sayin -Symbols ).when awakened& This su ests that we should think of a symbol not as a fi(ed entity. when awakened? ) low-level descri!tion would say. we ho!e that thou ht !rocesses can be thou ht of as bein sealed off from neural events in the same way that the behavior of a clock is sealed off from the laws of quantum mechanics. would be. the requirement that symbols should be able to !ass so!histicated messa es to and fro is !robably sufficient to e(clude neurons themselves from !layin the role of symbols& Since a neuron has only a sin le way of sendin information out of itself. now in another. whose !ur!ose is to try to awaken. some fi(ed neural !rocess is re!eated. by neurons—but to the e(tent that we can avoid such !hraseolo y. U/ass communicationV is defined as the transfer. -/any of its neurons fire&. as distin uished from dormant. in such a way that their tri erin !atterns are very much like the lar e-scale events which do ha!!en in our world. without doubt embellished in different ways de!endin on the conte(t. subtle. or si nals. or could ha!!en in a world similar to ours& In essence. it sim!ly does not have the kind of selective tri erin !ower which a symbol must have to act like an ob. -8eurons "*% throu h D"B e(cited neuron $L and caused it to fire-? This question was answered in the *nt 7ugue.

that between cate ories and individuals. 3ould there be a symbol for the eneral notion of waterfalls. the !ast-tense suffi( --ed-.and -tokens-&5 It mi ht seem at first si ht that a iven symbol would inherently be either a symbol for a class or a symbol for an instance—but that is an oversim!lification& )ctually. 3ould there be a symbol for an entire story? Er for a melody? Er a . or with which you associate a !ro!er name& )nd the re!resentation in the brain of a more com!le( idea. burnin 5 . etc& Such com!le( ideas are not sin le brush strokes& It seems reasonable to think that the brush strokes of lan ua e are also brush strokes of thou ht.of symbols. and therefore that symbols re!resent conce!ts of about this si<e& Thus a symbol would be rou hly somethin for which you know a word or stock !hrase. the brain as an ant colony2 The ne(t question—and an e(tremely im!ortant one it is.It is not such a bad ima e. the flavor of a city. in my fire!lace. the !ro!er noun -8ia ara 'alls-. sometimes a little shorter& 'or instance. there are questions like this. would be re!resented by concurrent or sequential activation of various symbols? Aet us consider the issue of the si<e of conce!ts re!resented by symbols& /ost thou hts e(!ressed in sentences are made u! out of basic. the noun -waterfall-. and lon er idiomatic !hrases are all close to atomic& These are ty!ical elementary brush strokes which we use in !aintin !ortraits of more com!le( conce!ts. such as !hrases or sentences. 4"5 a !ublication 4B5 a news!a!er 4%5 The San 'rancisco 7hronicle 4C5 the /ay "* edition of the 7hronicle 4L5 my co!y of the /ay "* edition of the 7hronicle 4D5 my co!y of the /ay "* edition of the 7hronicle as it was when I first !icked it u! 4as contrasted with my co!y as it was a few days later. most symbols may !lay either role. the verb -to catch u! with-. de!endin on the conte(t of their activation& 'or e(am!le. too—concerns the nature and -si<e. rou hly—sometimes a little lon er. look at the list below. would be a very com!licated sequence of activations of various symbols by other symbols& Classes and Instances There is a eneral distinction concernin thinkin . and that lar er ideas.oke? Er is it more likely that there would only be symbols for conce!ts rou hly the si<e of words. quasi-atomic com!onents which we do not usually analy<e further& These are of word si<e. such as a !roblem in a love affair. or would there be different symbols for various s!ecific waterfalls? Er would both of these alternatives be reali<ed? )bout the -si<e. or classes and instances& 4Two other terms sometimes used are -ty!es.of the conce!ts which are re!resented in the brain by sin le symbols& )bout the nature of symbols there are questions like this. the nature of consciousness. such as the !lot of a movie.

a fresh new instance symbol for that !articular movie= but in the absence of more information. that it lasted between one and three hours. activation would contain more detailed internal neural firin !atterns. and that a dee!er. the new instance symbol will have to lean rather heavily on your !ree(istin class symbol for -movie-& Fnconsciously.activation of a symbol mi ht re!resent a class.ust modes of activation of the latter& The S!litting-off of Instances from Classes En the other hand. lines B to L all !lay both roles& Thus. you would et the very com!le( symbol which re!resents a s!ecific news!a!er burnin in my fire!lace& )nd very other !ossible manifestation of every other !iece of !rinted matter would be re!resented internally by some manner of activatin the sin le symbol for -!ublication-& That seems much too heavy a burden to !lace on to sin le symbol -!ublication-& Ene must conclude. there is the erm of a whole class of similar events& This idea that there is enerality in the s!ecific is of far-reachin im!ortance& 8ow it is natural to ask.?ere. or more com!le(. the bottom some very humble !articular thin located in s!ace and time& ?owever. de!endin which !arts of it are activated? The latter theory seems a!!ealin = one mi ht think that a -li ht. The most s!ecific event can serve as a eneral e(am!le of a class of events& Everyone knows that s!ecific events have a vividness which im!rints them so stron ly on the memory that they can later be used as models for other events which are like them in some way& Thus in each s!ecific event. or instances? )re there certain symbols which re!resent only classes. therefore. you will rely on a host of !resu!!ositions about at movie—for e(am!le.ect durin its life history are its manifestations& It is interestin to wonder if the cows on a farm !erceive the invariant individual underneath all the manifestations of the . it would im!ly. the idea that a -class.in a sufficiently com!le( way. and hence would re!resent an instance& 0ut on second thou ht. this is cra<y.rototy!e . a manifestation& The successive sta es of an ob. while other symbols re!resent only instances? Er can a sin le symbol serve duty either as a class symbol or instance symbol. line C is an instance of of the eneral class of line %.rinci!le The list above seems to be a hierarchy of enerality—the to! bein a very broad conce!tual cate ory. :o the symbols in the brain re!resent classes. that finance symbols can e(ist side by side with class symbols. and are not . you will be in -mintin . which mi ht be called the protot)pe principle. and line L is an instance of line C& Aine D is a s!ecial kind of instance of a class. . for e(am!le.must always be enormously broad and abstract is far too limited& The reason is that our thou ht makes use of an in enious !rinci!le.olly farmer who feeds them hay& The . that by activatin the symbol for -!ublication. instance symbols often inherit many of their !ro!erties from the classes to which those instances belon & If I tell you I went to see a movie.

but as a human bein who ha!!ens also to be a football !layer& -Palindromi. as more information comes to you.teams& )t first you do not know the names of the !layers on either team& )ll you re ister.is an instance symbol which can become active while its !arent class symbol 4football !layer5 remains dormant& Ence.symbol& 0ut radually. the child acquires its own idiosyncratic e(!eriences and inevitably be ins to s!lit away from the !arents& Eventually. and for . but they could be seen as orbitin around each other—somethin like the Earth and the /oon& 'inally. as Palindromi makes a few ood !lays and stands out& ?is teammates may still all be re!resented by activations of the class symbol.symbol becomes more autonomous. on the class symbol for -football !layer-. the umbilical cord is broken. the child becomes a full-fled ed adult& In the same way.is that some !layer sto!!ed some other !layer& Thus it is a case of activation of the class symbol -football !layer-. or !rototy!e. like an artificial satellite circlin the Earth.. and ha!!en to tune in on a football ame between two -random. the new symbol becomes quite autonomous= now it mi ht easily serve as a class symbol around which could start rotatin new satellites—symbols for other !eo!le who are less familiar but who have somethin in common with Palindromi. !erha!s. and are called default options& In any freshly minted instance symbol. as a focal !oint& This symbol is de!endent. that it told a story about some !eo!le. the -Palindromi. Palindromi is no lon er conceived of merely as a football !layer. they !rovide some !reliminary basis for you to think about the new instance for e(am!le. the movie I went to see—by usin the reasonable uesses which are su!!lied by the -stereoty!e-. they will remain in the instance symbol. su!!ose that some Saturday afternoon you turn on your car radio. however& Eventually. which is so much bi er and more massive& Then there came an intermediate sta e. the default o!tions can easily be overridden. with some sort of coordinated activation of the symbol for tacklin & 0ut then as Palindromi fi ures in a few more key !lays. like a child. as it interacts more and more with the rest of the world. the Palindromi symbol was a satellite orbitin around its mother symbol. !erha!s after a few days.that it was shown in a local theater. usin his name. a fresh instance can s!lit off from its !arent class over a !eriod of time. where one symbol was more im!ortant than the other. and become a class. when the announcer says. and so on& These are built into the class symbol as e(!ected links to other symbols 4i&e&. -Palindromi made the sto! on the twentyseven yard line.or in colle e= you reco ni<e his face= and so on& )t this !oint. most of your ima e of Palindromi is su!!lied by your stereoty!e of a football !layer as contained in the -football !layer. but unless this is e(!licitly done. or class symbol& ) fresh and sim!le instance is like a child without its own ideas or e(!eriences—it relies entirely on its !arents1 e(!eriences and o!inions and . you be in buildin u! a fresh instance symbol for him in !articular. !otential tri erin relations5. and Palindromi can stand on his own two feet& 8ow you know such thin s as his home town and his ma. when you have read some articles in the s!orts section of your !a!er. in its own ri ht& 'or a ra!hic illustration of such a s!littin -off !rocess. and relies less and less on concurrent activation of its !arent class symbol& This may ha!!en in a few minutes. inherited from its class symbol& Fntil they are overridden. and that brin s u! fourth down and si( to o.ust !arrots them& 0ut radually.

ointly activate the symbols -three. by the sin le class symbol flittin back and forth between several different modes of activation 4one for each !erson5& 0etween the e(tremes. unless we scrutini<e them carefully& En the other hand.class symbol. com!ared to the other? If one can be activated inde!endently of the other. we certainly do not have a se!arate instance symbol for each nose. the Sun5= then it makes sense to consider that body as stationary. do we manufacture three fresh instance symbols usin the class symbol -do . we cannot rely on a sin le class symbol 4e& &. we somehow . -!erson-5 to timeshare itself amon all the different !eo!le& 7learly there must come into e(istence se!arate stance symbols for individual !eo!le& It would be ridiculous to ima ine that this feat could be accom!lished by 1. but it enables the system to be understood quite dee!ly& So to what e(tent is this cluster a !art of reality.and then rub three -co!ies. and when we !ass !eo!le on the street who have mustaches. enablin the new symbols so to become autonomous& The ifficulty of isentangling Symbols from Each 0ther These sta es of rowth and eventual detachment of an instance from a class will be distin uishable from each other by the way in which the symbols involved are linked& Sometimes it will no doubt be very difficult to tell . the Earth-/oon system& This is an a!!ro(imation. and to what e(tent is it a mental fabrication. three do s in a teacu!? Er several !eo!le in an elevator? :o we be in with the class symbol for -do .off of it? That is. and it is interestin that the !roblem of the motion of !lanets is an e(tremely com!le( one—in fact the eneral !roblem of three ravitationally interactin bodies 4such as the Earth. and Sun5 is far from solved.of boundaries drawn between what are !erceived to be autonomous or semi-autonomous clusters will create endless trouble when we relate it to symbols in the brain& Ene reatly !u<<lin question is the sim!le issue of !lurals& ?ow do we visuali<e. mustache. there must be room for many sorts of intermediate cases& There may be a whole hierarchy of ways of creatin the class-instance distinction in the brain. even after several centuries of work& Ene situation in which it is !ossible to obtain ood a!!ro(imate solutions. until you acquire more information. and a -cluster-.u lin -—that is. once we be in to distin uish individuals.whom he can serve as a tem!orary stereoty!e. is when one body is much more massive than the other two 4here.the one symbol. without mintin fresh instance symbols.ust where one symbol leaves off and the other one be ins& ?ow -active.and -do -? 0y addin more or less detail to the scene bein ima ined. however. then it would be quite sensible to call them autonomous& 3e have used an astronomy meta!hor above. on to! of this can finally be added the interaction between the two satellites& 0ut this a!!ro(imation de!ends on breakin u! the system into the Sun. etc&. either theory becomes hard to maintain& 'or instance. a human im!osition of structure on the universe? This !roblem of the -reality. that we have ever seen& 3e let class symbols take care of such numerous items. /oon. rain of salt.ust activate the -mustache. ivin rise to symbols—and symbol or ani<ations—of varyin de rees of .as tem!late? Er do we . say. with the other two rotatin about it.

the rest was quite inevitable.and -sonata. when activated to ether in the !ro!er way& So two or more symbols can act as one.oint activation of symbols mi ht be res!onsible for mental ima es of various de rees of s!ecificity.s!ecificity& The followin different kinds of individual and . would it be fair to say that the new symbol -always had been there but never had been activated-—or should one say that it has been -created-? In case this sounds too abstract. one would have to count all dormant symbols —all !ossible combinations and !ermutations of all ty!es of activations of all known symbols& This would even include those fantastic creatures of software that one1s brain invents when one is aslee!—the stran e mi(tures of ideas which wake u! when their host oes to slee!&&& The e(istence of these -!otential symbols. -3hen is a symbol a distin uishable subsystem of the brain?. consider the second e(am!le—simultaneous activation of several class symbols in some coordinated manner& This could easily be what ha!!ens when -!iano sonata. 4%5 activation of a sin le instance symbol.shows that it is really a hu e oversim!lification to ima ine that the brain is a well-defined collection of symbols in well-defined states of activation& It is much harder than that to !in down a brain state on the symbol level& . two e(istin symbols—that for -musical crab canon-.'or instance. 4B5 simultaneous activation of several class symbols in some in some coordinated manner. then it must have also been a dormant symbol in the brain of every human who ever had its com!onent symbols. 4C5 activation of a sin le instance symbol in con. and a sin le new symbol is formed by the ti ht interaction of the two old symbols& If this ha!!ens. which means that the !roblem of enumeratin the number of symbols in the brain is trickier than one mi ht uess& Sometimes conditions can arise where two !reviously unlinked symbols et activated simultaneously and in a coordinated fashion& They may fit to ether so well that it seems like an inevitable union. a new symbol— a class symbol—was born from the interaction of these two. 4L5 simultaneous activation of several instance symbols and several class symbols in some coordinated manner& This brin s us ri ht hack to the question. and from then on it was able to be activated on its own& 8ow had it always been a dormant symbol in my brain? If so. the :ialo ue 8ra( 8anon& In the invention of this :ialo ue. under the !ro!er conditions. and that for -verbal dialo ue.is the conce!t under consideration 4the symbols for -!iano. 4"5 various different modes or de!ths of activation of a sin le class symbol.bein at least two of the activated symbols5& 0ut if this !air of symbols ets activated in con. let us take a concrete e(am!le.unction often enou h. it is reasonable to assume that the link between them will become stron enou h that they will act as a unit.had to be activated simultaneously and in some way forced to interact& Ence this was done.unction with activation of several class symbols. even if it never was awakened in them& This would mean that to enumerate the symbols in anyone1s brain.

how could the activation of symbol ) be distin uished from the activation of symbol 0? 3ouldn1t our whole theory o down the drain? )nd even if there is not a total overla! of symbols.rowin re!ertoire of symbols that e(ist in each brain. so that each neuron. because if it is true. then mi ht it not . overla!!in and com!letely tan led symbols are !robably the rule. which neuron !receded which other neuron. so that symbols would be like !eo!le ettin into an elevator& -3arnin . the more that symbols do overla!? 4Ene !ossible way of !ortrayin overla!!in symbols is shown in 'i ure D*&5 There is a way to kee! a theory based on symbols even if !hysically. you mi ht wonder whether there eventually comes a !oint when the brain is saturated—when there is .ust no more room for a new symbol& This would come about. they overla! considerably or totally& 7onsider the surface of a !ond. a !rocess must be carried out which involves not only locatin the neurons which are firin .ust as easily be the case that each neuron is !art of every sin le symbol? If that were so. far from bein a member of a unique symbol. I do not mean to o so far as to su est that all the different symbols are . is our theory not more and more difficult to maintain. if symbols never overla!!ed each other—if a iven neuron never served a double function. !resumably.Symbols — Soft'are or /ard'are7 3ith the enormous and ever. but also identifyin very !recise details of the timin of the firin of those neurons& That is. if every symbol were made u! of the same com!onent neurons as every other symbol. however& In fact. which can su!!ort many different ty!es of waves or ri!!les& The hardware namely the water itself—is the same in all cases. is !robably a functionin !art of hundreds of symbols& This ets a little disturbin . and a theory havin overla!!in symbols which are distin uished from each other by modes of e(citation. then there would be no locali<ability whatsoever of symbols—every symbol would be identified with the whole of the brain& This would account for results like Aashley1s corte( removal in rats—but it would also mean abandonment of our ori inal idea of breakin the brain u! into !hysically distinct subsystems& Eur earlier characteri<ation of symbols as -hardware reali<ations of conce!ts.could at best be a reat oversim!lification& In fact.B$L symbols2This is not a necessary feature of the symbol model of brain function. and by how much? ?ow many times a second was a !articular neuron firin ? Thus !erha!s several symbols can coe(ist in the same set of neurons by havin different characteristic neural firin !atterns& The difference between a theory havin !hysically distinct symbols. then what sense would it make to s!eak of distinct symbols at all? 3hat would be the si nature of a iven symbol1s activation—that is. while the latter ives !artly hardware. is that the former ives hardware reali<ations of conce!ts. This brain has a ma(imum ca!acity of %L+.ust different kinds of -waves!ro!a atin throu h a uniform neural medium which admits of no meanin ful division into !hysically distinct symbols& 0ut it may be that in order to distin uish one symbol1s activation from that of another symbol. !artly software reali<ations of conce!ts& . but it !ossesses different !ossible modes of e(citation& Such software e(citations of the same hardware can all be distin uished from each other& 0y this analo y.

eality New York: -pringer <erlag. 'acin .ri ht out of the hardware in which it resides—or in other words. as they take !lace in the brain& Ene is to e(!lain how the low-level traffic of neuron firin s ives rise to the hi h-level traffic of symbol activations& The other is to e(!lain the hi h-level traffic of symbol activation in its own terms—to make a theory which does not talk about the low-level neural events& If this latter is !ossible—and it is a key assum!tion at the basis of all !resent research into )rtificial Intelli ence—then intelli ence can be reali<ed in other ty!es of hardware than brains& Then intelli ence will have been shown to be a !ro!erty that can be -lifted.73G5=E JE! 3n this schematic diagram. the lower levels& If. passing through one another like two ripples on a pond's surface as in 7ig! GF/! This is illustrati#e of the idea of two "acti#e s)m(ols" which share neurons and which ma) e#en (e simultaneousl) acti#ated! U7rom ?ohn 8! Eccles. neurons are imagined as laid out as dots in one plane! Two o#erlapping neural pathwa)s are shown in different shades of gra)! 3t ma) happen that two independent "neural flashes" simultaneousl) race down these two pathwa)s. there is absolutely no way to . they have their own hi h-level laws which de!end on. intelli ence will be a software !ro!erty& This will mean that the !henomena of consciousness and intelli ence are indeed hi h-level in the same sense as most other com!le( !henomena of nature. BICK/.out of. p!FB!V Liftability of Intelligence Thus we are left with two basic !roblems in the unravelin of thou ht !rocesses. yet are -liftable. on the other hand.

BICB/. as by the information stored in their brain& 7ould there be an )rtificial )nt 7olony? . it must be s!read about in the colony. !onder where the information describin an arch such as is shown in 'i ure D# can be found& Somehow. the a e distribution—and !robably lar ely in the !hysical !ro!erties of the ant-body itself& That is. in the caste distribution.ar#ard 5ni#ersit) &ress.olldo(lerR from E! K! >ilson.rawing () Turid . then. does the nest et created? 3here does the information reside? In !articular. p! FHKV reali<e symbol-tri erin !atterns without havin all the hardware of neurons 4or simulated neurons5.73G5=E JI! The construction of an arch () workers of the termite /acrotermes belosus! Each column is (uilt up () the addition of pellets of soil and e9crement! :n the outer part of the left column a worker is seen depositing a round fecal pellet! :ther workers.ust as much by their si(-le edness and their si<e and so on. e#identl) guided () odor. and much more difficult to unravel than one which owes its e(istence to a hierarchy of laws on several different levels& ?ere we come back to the mysterious collective behavior of ant colonies. (egin to e9tend it at an angle in the direction of a neigh(oring column! * completed arch is shown in the (ackground! U. are now placing them at the growing ends of the columns! >hen a column reaches a certain height the termites.+++ neurons of an ant brain almost certainly do not carry any information about nest structure& ?ow. the interaction between ants is determined . The Insect Societies 8am(ridge. this will im!ly that intelli ence is a brain-bound !henomenon. ha#ing carried pellets in their mandi(les up the columns. des!ite the fact that the rou hly "++. which can build hu e and intricate nests. 'ass!: .

consider the celebrated -lan ua e of the bees-—information-laden dances which are !erformed by worker bees returnin to the hive. so symbols are always connected to a constellation of other symbols& This does not necessarily mean that symbols can never be disentan led from each other& To make a rather sim!le analo y. symbols. a network !lus a mode of e(citation—or !ossibly somethin of a com!letely different kind& In any case. if symbols are !art of reality. as the beads in Indra1s net reflect each other& The recursive intertwinin of the functions '4n5 and /4n5 in 7ha!ter G does not !revent each function from havin its own characteristics& The intertwinin of ' and / could be mirrored in a !air of . the meshin is so inherent that no one )T8 could be activated in isolation= yet its activation may be com!letely distinctive. males and females always arise in a s!ecies to ether.um! to a whole network of )T81s intertwined with each other—a heterarchy of interactin recursive !rocedures& ?ere.T81s which call each other& 'rom this we can . a symbol1s identity lies !recisely in its ways of bein connected 4via !otential tri erin links5 to other symbols& The network by which symbols can !otentially tri er each other constitutes the brain1s workin model of the real universe. or ima ines hy!othetical worlds—variants on the world as it is. to inform other bees of the location of nectar& 3hile there may be in each bee a set of rudimentary symbols which are activated by such a dance.ects.Can 0ne Symbol Be Isolated7 Is it !ossible that one sin le symbol could be awakened in isolation from all others? Probably not& Just as ob. quite to the contrary. !resumably there e(ists a natural way to chart them out in a real brain& ?owever. with all their multi!le links to each other. their roles are com!letely intertwined. if some symbols were finally identified in a brain. which aid in fi urin out which future !athway to choose& 'or instance. and yet this does not mean that a male cannot be distin uished from a female& Each is reflected in the other. are meshed to ether and yet ou ht to be able to be teased a!art& This mi ht involve identifyin a neural network. not confusable with that of any other of the )T81s& It is not such a bad ima e.ects in the world always e(ist in a conte(t of other ob. there is no reason to believe that a bee has an e(!andable vocabulary of symbols& 0ees and other insects do not seem to have the !ower . and it is one of the reat differences between human thou ht and the thou ht !rocesses of other animals& 8ot that I have ever belon ed to another s!ecies and e(!erienced at first hand how it feels to think their way—but from the outside it is a!!arent that no other s!ecies forms eneral conce!ts as we do. this would not mean that any one of them could be awakened in isolation& The fact that a symbol cannot be awakened in isolation does not diminish the se!arate identity of the symbol= in fact. as well as of the alternate universes which it considers 4and which are every bit as im!ortant for the individual1s survival in the real world as the real world is5& The Symbols of Insects Eur facility for makin instances out of classes and classes out of instances lies at the basis of our intelli ence. the brain as an )T8colony2 Aikewise.

o inside to see that all is well. havin been ke!t in the was! equivalent of a dee!free<e& To the human mind. to develo! new class symbols from instances which we would !erceive as nearly identical& ) classic e(!eriment with solitary was!s is re!orted in :ean 3ooldrid e1s book. you need to activate symbols which re!resent a road.to enerali<e—that is. which has not decayed. a car. there may be rudimentary symbols. a !erson in a car& 8ow the conce!t -road.is a class. -3hat if I did this—what would ensue in that hy!othetical world?.oad. then flies away.is a very eneral one.oke about the borrowed car. such an elaborately or ani<ed and seemin ly !ur!oseful routine conveys a convincin flavor of lo ic and thou htfulness—until more details are e(amined& 'or e(am!le. the was!1s routine is to brin the !araly<ed cricket to the burrow. emer e. always with the same result& C This seems to be com!letely hard-wired behavior& 8ow in the was! brain. and then dra the cricket in& If the cricket is moved a few inches away while the was! is inside makin her !reliminary ins!ection. and may never be the case& Class Symbols and Imaginary >orlds Aet us reconsider the )!ril 'ool1s . on emer in from the burrow. thou h you reali<e that it is most likely quite different from the actual road where the incident took !lace& 0ut that is not im!ortant= what matters is whether your symbol is sufficiently well suited for the story—that is. and will then re!eat the !re!aratory !rocedure of enterin the burrow to see that everythin is all ri ht& If a ain the cricket is removed a few inches while the was! is inside. the e s hatch and the was! rubs feed off the !araly<ed cricket. and then to make the class symbol= nor is there anythin like the human ability to wonder. you quickly activate symbols which are instances with radually increasin s!ecificity& 'or instance. but not inside. with !erha!s several stock sam!les which you can unconsciously !ull out of dormant memory when the occasion arises& -. the was! S!he( builds a burrow for the !ur!ose and seeks out a cricket which she stin s in such a way as to !araly<e but not kill it& She dra s the cricket into the burrow. lays her e s alon side. never to return& In due course. rather than an instance& )s you listen to the tale. will brin the cricket back to the threshold. the network of neurons which re!resents -road. from which I quote. or does it mean that you are settin some !arameters in your symbol for -road-& Fndoubtedly both& That is. ca!able of tri erin each other= but there is nothin like the human ca!acity to see several instances as instances of an as-yet-unformed class.ects in a real situation. the was!. althou h that situation may not be the case. leave it on the threshold. and the ima es con. once a ain she will move the cricket u! to the threshold and reenter the burrow for a final check& The was! never thinks of !ullin the cricket strai ht in& En one occasion this !rocedure was re!eated forty times. when you learn that the road was wet. this con.has . /echanical /an.ures u! a more s!ecific ima e. there is a hi h bank a ainst which a car could smash& 8ow does this mean that you are activatin the symbol for -bank-. closes the burrow. you fill in more as!ects of this road. whether the symbols which it can tri er are the ri ht kind& )s the story !ro resses.ured u! in your mind durin the tele!hone call& To be in with.This ty!e of thou ht !rocess requires an ability to manufacture instances and to mani!ulate them as if they were symbols standin for ob. 3hen the time comes for e layin .

and -could not. etc.ective& )ctually. and this is !robably instrumental in the !rocess of selectin the !arameters for& -road-. !re!ositions. nouns mi ht have fairly locali<ed symbols. and you are selectin which subnetwork actually shall fire& )t the same time. etc& The borderline between what could and what could not ha!!en is an e(tremely fu<<y one& )s we ima ine a hy!othetical event.or -could not. tubas layin e s. are dee!ly rounded in reality& Fsually symbols !lay isomor!hic roles to events which seem like they could ha!!en. we say the event -could. chunked laws which all of us have to have in our minds in order to survive& . watches si<<lin .here does not mean -the laws of !hysics as e(!ounded by a !hysicist-. while verbs and !re!ositions mi ht have symbols with many -tentacles. there is a ood deal of a reement amon !eo!le about which events could or could not ha!!en& This reflects the reat amount of mental structure which we all share—but there is a borderline area where the sub.ective as!ect of what kinds of hy!othetical worlds we are willin to entertain is a!!arent& ) careful study of the kinds of ima inary events that !eo!le consider could and could not ha!!en would yield much insi ht into the tri erin !atterns of the symbols by which !eo!le think& Intuiti"e La's of . in that its neurons may send si nals to some of those in -road-—and vice versa& 4In case this seems a little confusin . althou h sometimes symbols are activated which re!resent situations which could not ha!!en—for e(am!le. in the way that one makes rubbin s from brasses in churches. from which all of this richness s!rin s.reachin all around the corte(= or any number of other !ossibilities& )fter the story is all over.many different ways of firin . They.are e(tremely sub. and has freed you from the need to remain faithful to the real world& The fact that symbols can act as tem!lates for other symbols ives you some mental inde!endence of reality. as well as of their com!onent neurons&5 8o less im!ortant than the nouns are the verbs.ha!!en& Thus the terms -could. and in this model all the ob. you learn it was all untrue& The !ower of -rubbin offinstances from classes. we brin certain symbols into active states—and de!endin on how well they interact 4which is !resumably reflected in our comfort in continuin the train of thou ht5. it is because I am somewhat straddlin levels of descri!tion—I am tryin to set u! an ima e of the symbols.hysics 3hen the story has been com!letely told.ects obey !hysical law& This means that !hysical law itself must be im!licitly !resent in the tri erin !atterns of the symbols& Ef course. which means that they may be !hysically somewhat differently or ani<ed& 'or instance. you can create artificial universes. in which there can ha!!en nonreal events with any amount of detail that you care to imbue them with& 0ut the class symbols themselves. you are activatin the symbol for -bank-. the !hrase -!hysical law. activate symbols. too. you have built u! quite an elaborate mental model of a scene. has enabled you to re!resent the situation. but rather the intuitive. which send messa es back and forth to each other& There are characteristic differences between the kinds of tri erin !atterns of symbols for verbs and symbols for nouns. of course.

some of which re!resent tonal relationshi!s. or -key. then stretch it strai ht. not a local detail& In other words.it as if it were in an encyclo!edia or an almanac& This usually means that it is encoded locally. others of which re!resent rhythmic devices. its vocabulary may include none of the words -En lish-. so that not only the !ro rammer but also the !ro ram can -read. if I but su est that you ima ine a scene with two cars a!!roachin each other and then !assin ri ht throu h each other. but also of how !lants. a weaker declarative re!resentation of it& The two may easily be in conflict. chunked laws of biolo y. we have in our brains chunked laws not only of how inanimate ob. -I see that because of these !rocedures here. !rocedural knowled e is not encoded as facts—only as !ro rams& ) !ro rammer may be able to !eer in and say. note by note? 7ould a sur eon e(tract a windin neural filament from your brain.rocedural and eclarati"e Kno'ledge ) distinction which is made in )rtificial Intelli ence is that between !rocedural and declarative ty!es of knowled e& ) !iece of knowled e is said to be declarative if it is stored e(!licitly. and -write. so that a native s!eaker will often instruct a forei ner to say thin s he himself would never say. there are all !ossible shades& 7onsider the recall of a melody& Is the melody stored in your brain. determinism is sacrificed for sim!licity& Eur re!resentation of reality ends u! bein able only to !redict !robabilities of endin u! in certain !arts of abstract s!aces of behavior— not to !redict anythin with the !recision of !hysics& . the !ro ram 1knows1 how to write En lish sentences-—but the !ro ram itself may have no e(!licit awareness of how it writes those sentences& 'or instance. you won1t have any trouble doin so& The intuitive !hysical laws can be overridden by ima inary laws of !hysics= but how this overridin is done. but which a ree with the declarative -book learnin he acquired in school sometime& The intuitive or chunked laws of !hysics and other disci!lines mentioned earlier fall mainly on the !rocedural side= the knowled e that an octo!us has ei ht tentacles falls mainly on the declarative side& In between the declarative and !rocedural e(tremes. a !iece of !urely !rocedural knowled e is an e!i!henomenon& In most !eo!le there coe(ists. not s!read around& 0y contrast. !eo!le and societies act—in other words. alon with a !owerful !rocedural re!resentation of the rammar of their native lan ua e. !sycholo y. and so on& )ll of the internal re!resentations of such entities involve the inevitable feature of chunked models. how such sequences of ima es are manufactured—indeed what any one visual ima e is—all of these are dee!ly cloaked mysteries—inaccessible !ieces of knowled e& 8eedless to say. then melodies are stored declaratively& Er is the recall of a melody mediated by the interaction of a lar e number of symbols.at all2 Thus !rocedural knowled e is usually s!read around in !ieces.) curious sideli ht is that one can voluntarily manufacture mental sequences of events which violate !hysical law. and finally !roceed to !in!oint alon it the successively stored notes. others of which re!resent emotional qualities. sociolo y. -sentence-.ects act. and so on? If so. animals. almost as if it were a !iece of ma netic ta!e? If so.on it& It is a lobal consequence of how the !ro ram works. if one so desires& 'or instance. then melodies are stored . and you can1t retrieve it.

so that they are as likely to sin -?a!!y 0irthday.ect and throwin it. -?ow many chairs are there in your livin room?. ima es which uide our thou hts.?ere. . in !ullin a melody out of memory.in the key of 'shar! as in the key of 7& This indicates that tone relationshi!s. there is !robably a mi(ture of these e(tremes in the way a melody is stored and recalled& It is interestin that. to smell it. because the oran e is not there& 0ut they can be sent alon the usual channels towards the cerebellum or other subor ans of the brain.the melody. rather than absolute tones.is situated. the ima es may be more or less vivid and realseemin & )n er can cause us to ima ine quite vividly !ickin u! some ob. for we have almost no insi ht into what mental ima ery is& It may be that ima ery is based on our ability to su!!ress motor activity& 0y this. and so on& 7learly these commands cannot be carried out. some of that metaknowledge may itself be stored !rocedurally.8ow su!!ose I ask you. you immediately either o to the room and count the chairs.Somehow the number five million s!rin s to mind. without your wonderin .!rocedurally& In reality. the o!!osite ha!!ens—instead of tryin to dred e the answer out of a mental almanac. those !atterns would have to be activated in the same order& This returns us to the conce!t of symbols tri erin one another. at some critical !oint. any melody could be stored as easily as any other& The fact that some melodies are catchy and others are not seems to indicate that the brain has a certain re!ertoire of familiar !atterns which are activated as the melody is heard& So. most !eo!le do not discriminate as to key. to ins!ect it. are stored& 0ut there is no reason that tone relationshi!s could not be stored quite declaratively& En the other hand. how would I o about countin them all?. hardly ivin a thou ht as to how we should do it? @nowled e of how to do this is amon the most !rocedural of all. so that it is used without your even bein aware of how it is done& 4isual Imagery Ene of the most remarkable and difficult-to-describe qualities of consciousness is visual ima ery& ?ow do we create a visual ima e of our livin room? Ef a roarin mountain brook? Ef an oran e? Even more mysterious. how do we manufacture ima es unconsciously. a -mental faucet. -6ee. rather than a sim!le linear sequence of declaratively stored notes or tone relationshi!s& ?ow does the brain know whether a !iece of knowled e is stored declaratively? 'or instance. there may occur in your corte( a set of commands to !ick it u!. some melodies are very easy to memori<e. !reventin them from actually bein carried out& :e!endin on how far down the line this -faucet. until. or you manufacture the room in your head and count the chairs in the ima e of the room& The questions were of a sin le ty!e—-how many?-—yet one of them caused a !iece of declarative knowled e to be fetched. -3hat is the !o!ulation of 7hica o?. whereas others are e(tremely elusive& If it were . su!!ose you are asked. I mean the followin & If you ima ine an oran e.is closed.ust a matter of storin successive notes. ivin them !ower and color and de!th? 'rom what store are they fetched? 3hat ma ic allows us to mesh two or three ima es. while the other one caused a !rocedural method of findin the answer to be invoked& This is one e(am!le where it is clear that you have knowled e about how you classify your own knowled e= and what is more. to -!lay back.

you retrieved this fact. and !robably. we shall discuss some !ossible ways of im!lementin active symbols in !ro rams& )nd ne(t 7ha!ter. and in ima inin the story. and made use of it in constructin your ima e? ) most unlikely theory& Er did it ha!!en instead as a consequence of some intros!ectively inaccessible interactions of the symbols which were activated in your brain? Ebviously the latter seems far more likely& This knowled e that cars are smaller than mountains is not a !iece of rote memori<ation. followed by the mutual interaction. others& This means that the knowled e is stored not e(!licitly. -mountain-.in different 7ha!ters& In 7ha!ters TGIII and TIT. even in the case of a verbally accessible !iece of knowled e. but im!licitly. in a s!read-about manner.ects have to be assembled. but rather it can be !roduced as a result of the activation.or kickin somethin = yet we don1t actually do so& En the other hand. rather than as a local -!acket of information-& Such sim!le facts as relative si<es of ob. -car-. -si<e-.to actually doin so& Probably the faucet catches the nerve im!ulses -at the last moment-& ?ere is another way in which visuali<ation !oints out the distinction between accessible and inaccessible knowled e& 7onsider how you visuali<ed the scene of the car skiddin on the mountain road& Fndoubtedly you ima ined the mountain as bein much lar er than the car& 8ow did this ha!!en because sometime lon a o you had occasion to note that -cars are not as bi as mountains-= then you committed this statement to rote memory. those for -com!are-. but a !iece of knowled e which can be created by deduction& Therefore. we shall discuss some of the insi hts that our symbol-based model of brain activity ive into the com!arison of brains& . most likely it is not stored in any sin le symbol in your brain. of many symbols—for e(am!le. on )rtificial Intelli ence. rather than merely retrieved& Therefore. there are com!le( inaccessible !rocesses which mediate its comin to the state of bein ready to be said& 3e shall continue our e(!loration of the entities called -symbols. we feel so -near.

)ll mimsy were the boro oves.ub-Go el. mon fils2 Aa ueule qui mord= la riffe qui !rend2 6arde-toi de I1oiseau Jube. )nd stood awhile in thou ht& . Aon time the man(ome foe he sou ht So rested he by the Tumtum tree. and shun The frumious 0andersnatch2q6arde-toi du Jaseroque. and the slithy toves :id yre and imble in the wabe. )nd the mome raths out rabe& Il bril ue.Nth1 aus raben& -0eware the Jabberwock.aws that bite. Kvite Ae frumieu( 0and-r-!rend2s s0ewahre doch vor Jammerwoch2 :ie 9Nhne knirschen. les toves lubricilleu( Se yrent en vrillant dans le uave& EnmpmKs sont les ou ebosqueu( Et le momerade hors rave& Es brilli war& :ie schlichten Toven 3irrten and wimmelten in 3aben= Fnd aller-m`msi e 0ur oven :ie mohmen . vor 'rumi>sen 0anderschnNt<chen2s ?e took his vor!al sword in hand. @rallen krat<en2 0ewahr1 vor Jub. the claws that catch2 0eware the Jub.ub bird.'n!lish "rench (erman Suite 0y Aewis 7arroll"&&& &&& et 'rank A& 3arrinB&&& &&& und .obert Scott% 1Twas brilli . my son2 The .

Er suchte lan das manchsam1 :in = :ann. a l1oeil flambant. The Jabberwock. Il rentre allom!hant& Eins. un deu(.Son laive vor!al en main. avec sa ttte. tout uffusK. Gient siblant !ar le bois tulle eais.ous day2 7allooh2 7allay2?e chortled in his . Et burbule en venant& )ls stand er tief in )ndacht auf. Ae Jaseroque. Er an-<u-denken-fin & )nd. )nd burbled as it came2 Pendant qu1il !ense. 9wei2 Eins. 9wei2 Fnd durch and durch Sein vor!als Schwert <erschnifer-schn`ck. it va T-r la recherche du fauve manscant= Puis arrivK r l1arbre TK-tK. rKflKchissant& Er riff sein vor!als Schwertchen <u. and with its head ?e went alum!hin back& Fn deu(. :es Jammerwochen1s )u en-feuer :urch tur en 3ald mit 3iffek kam 'in burbelnd Fn eheuer2 Ene. @o!f in ?and. two2 )nd throu h and throu h The vor!al blade went snicker-snack2 ?e left it dead. as in uffish thou ht he stood. with eyes of flame& 7ame whifflin throu h the tul ey wood. :a blieb es todt2 Er. stehend unterm Tumtum 0aum. Il y reste. two2 Ene. my beamish boy2 E frab. Ae laive vor!al fait !at-r-!an2 Aa btte dKfaite. !ar le milieu.oy& . 6elNumfi <o <ur`ck& -)nd hast thou slain the Jabberwock? 7ome to my arms.

ais2 7alleau2 7allai2s Il cortule dans sa . fils rayonnais2 u .Nth1 aus raben& . and the slithy toves :id yre and imble in the wabe.esinnt& 1Twas brilli . les toves lubricilleu( Se yrent en vrillant dans le uave& EnmpmKs sont les ou ebosqueu( Et le momerade hors rave& Es brilli war& :ie schlichten Toven 3irrten and wimmelten in 3aben= Fnd aller-m`msi e 0ur oven :ie mohmen .our frabbe. )ll mimsy were the boro oves.a den Jammerwoch? Fmarme mich.q)s-tu tuK le Jaseroque? Giens r mon coeur. mein 0>hm1sches @ind2 E 'reuden-Ta 2 E ?alloo-Schla 2q Er schortelt froh.oie& sFnd schlu st :u . )nd the mome raths out rabe& Il bril ue.

translated into En lish? Het a wealth of meanin comes throu h& Thus. it shows that you do not fully understand the !erson you were moments a o& The isomor!hism from your brain now to your brain then is im!erfect& 3hat. in another era. a corres!ondence which not only ma!s symbols in one brain onto symbols in another brain. they would be com!letely indistin uishable in their thou hts= but in order for that to be true. they would have to have com!letely indistin uishable memories. then. It is clear from the outset that such an isomor!hism does not e(ist between any !air of human bein s& If it did. this ideal& ?ow about a sin le individual? 3hen you look back over thin s which you yourself wrote a few years a o.TE$ <II Minds and Thoughts Can Minds Be Ma!!ed onto Each 0ther7 8E3 T?)T 3E have hy!othesi<ed the e(istence of very hi h-level active subsystems of the brain 4symbols5. but on the other. ca!tive in .and smile with amusement at the !erson you once were& 3hat is worse is when you do the same thin with somethin you wrote or said five minutes a o& 3hen this ha!!ens. we can dro! all ho!es of findin e(actly isomor!hic software in humans. the 'rench !oet of the "C++1s& )nother human bein . and 4B5 the tri erin !atterns of symbols& . you think -?ow awful2. of the isomor!hisms to other !eo!le. other s!ecies&&& The o!!osite side of the coin is shown by the !ower of the communication that arises between the unlikeliest !artners& Think of the barriers s!anned when you read lines of !oetry !enned in . which would mean they would have to have led one and the same life& Even identical twins do not a!!roach.ail. a corres!ondence of 4"5 the re!ertoire of symbols. or !artial isomor!hism. we may return to the matter of a !ossible isomor!hism.C/A. between two brains& Instead of askin about an isomor!hism on the neural level 4which surely does not e(ist5. or on the macrosco!ic subor an level 4which surely does e(ist but does not tell us very much5. we ask about the !ossibility of an isomor!hism between brains on the symbol level. in the remotest de ree. on the one hand. but also ma!s tri erin !atterns onto tri erin !atterns& This means that corres!ondin symbols in the two brains are linked in corres!ondin ways& This would be a true functional isomor!hism—the same ty!e of isomor!hism as we s!oke of when tryin to characteri<e what it is that is invariant about all butterflies. it is clear that some !eo!le think more alike than others do& It would seem an obvious conclusion that there is some sort of !artial software isomor!hism connectin the brains of !eo!le whose style of thinkin is similar—in !articular. s!eakin another lan ua e&&& ?ow can you ever ho!e to have a sense of the connotations behind the facade of his words.ail by 'ranvois Gillon.

73G5=E CK! * tin) portion of the author's "semantic network"! .

it does not carry u!wards.Com!aring ifferent Semantic . thereby settin u! an e(act ma! of one web onto the other. and the ty!e of activation will be influential in determinin which other symbols it tries to activate& ?ow these intertwinin tri erin relationshi!s can be re!resented in a !ictorial manner—indeed. the overall sha!e of a s!iderweb is a lobal !ro!erty. where each symbol is re!resented as a node into which. since they are made u! of many neurons& The messa es that are e(chan ed between symbols are more com!le( than the mere fact. or nearly isomor!hic? Since we are dealin with a visual re!resentation of the network of symbols. -form-. -I am now activated-& That is more like the neuron-level messa es& Each symbol can be activated in many different ways. there are many different kinds of nearness. to collections of them& In this res!ect. without attention to detail& Thus. yet there is still some sort of -style-.oinin vertices& )nother !roblem with such a dia ram is that it is not accurate to think of a symbol as sim!ly -on. which ca!ture !recisely the way in which symbols tri er other symbols& Then under what conditions would we feel that two such drawin s were isomor!hic. and out of which. such as a s!iderweb. verte( by verte(. and different ones are relevant in different conte(ts& ) tiny !ortion of my own -semantic network.or -off-& 3hile this is true of neurons.s 0ut what is a partial isomor!hism? This is a most difficult question to answer& It is made even more difficult by the fact that no one has found an adequate way to re!resent the network of symbols and their tri erin !atterns& Sometimes a !icture of a small !art of such a network of symbols is drawn. !erha!s even an le by an le? This would be a futile effort& Two webs are never e(actly the same. su!!ose that issue had been solved& Su!!ose we now a ree that there are certain drawin s of nodes. so that various ty!es of conce!tual nearness can be distin uished from each other5. fiber by fiber. symbols are quite a bit more com!licated than neurons—as you mi ht e(!ect. connected by links 4let us say they come in various colors.is shown in 'i ure $+& The !roblem is that re!resentin a com!le( interde!endency of many symbols cannot be carried out very easily with .et'or.ust a few lines . whereas the avera e number of lines meetin at a verte( is a local !ro!erty& Su!!ose we a ree that the most reasonable criterion for callin two s!iderwebs -isomor!hic. lead some arcs& The lines re!resent tri erin relationshi!s—in some sense& Such fi ures attem!t to ca!ture somethin of the intuitively sensible notion of -conce!tual nearness-& ?owever.is that they should have been s!un by s!iders of the same s!ecies& Then it is interestin to ask which kind of observation—local or lobal— tends to be a more reliable uide in determinin whether two s!iderwebs are isomor!hic& . that infallibly brands a iven s!ecies1 web& In any network-like structure. whether they can be at all—is not clear& 0ut for the moment. let us consider an analo ous visual !roblem& ?ow would you try to determine whether two s!iderwebs had been s!un by s!iders belon in to the same s!ecies? 3ould you try to identify individual vertices which corres!ond e(actly. one can look at local !ro!erties and lobal !ro!erties& Aocal !ro!erties require only a very nearsi hted observer—for e(am!le an observer who can only see one verte( at a time= and lobal !ro!erties require only a swee!in vision. what-have-you.

'rench.not make itself felt to a s!eaker of 'rench in the way that it would if it were an En lish word 4-lubricilious-. why did the Tumtum tree et chan ed into an -arbre TK-tK. in the brain of a native s!eaker of En lish. if you will—of two symbol networks& Translations of (3abber'oc. !erha!s better than an e(am!le in ordinary !rose.do not carry ordinary meanin .y( Ima ine native s!eakers of En lish. if I may ha<ard a reverse translation& /ost likely this funny turnabout of words was ins!ired by the similar !layful reversal in the En lish of one line earlier. yet doesn1t corres!ond& Incidentally.oy word!lay in their own lan ua e& 3ould their symbol networks be similar on a local level.in two different networks which are. and the !resent tense has a much fresher flavor in 'rench than the !ast& The translator sensed that this would be -more a!!ro!riate-—in some ill-defined yet com!ellin sense—and made the switch& 3ho can say whether remainin faithful to the En lish tense would have been better? In the 6erman version. which hack-translates into . let us now return to the question of the closeness—or isomor!hicness. many -words.in 'rench? 'i ure it out for yourself& The word -man(ome.occurs= it does not corres!ond to any En lish ori inal& It is a !layful reversal of words. but act !urely as e(citers of nearby symbols& ?owever. -sli!!ery-. or on a lobal level? Er is it meanin ful to ask such a question? The question becomes concrete when you look at the !recedin translations of Aewis 7arroll1s famous -Jabberwocky-& I chose this e(am!le because it demonstrates. and all of whom en. whose -(.would be better than -lubricilleu(-? Er does the Aatin ori in of the word -lubricilleu(. -lithe-. since to each word or !hrase in the ori inal lan ua e. e(tremely nonisomor!hic& In ordinary lan ua e. to varyin e(tents& :oes -lubricilleu(. but is very intellectual-soundin and Aatinate 4-lubricilleu(-5. -slithy. what is nearby in one lan ua e may be remote in another& Thus. the task of translation is more strai htforward. and 6erman. is weakly rendered in 6erman by -manchsam-.imbues it with many rich overtones.3ithout answerin the question for s!iderwebs. the droll !hrase -er an-<u-denken-fin . on some level of analysis.do the corres!ondin thin in the brain of a 'renchman? 3hat indeed would be -the corres!ondin thin -? 3ould it be to activate symbols which are the ordinary translations of those words? 3hat if there is no word. whose flavor va uely resembles that of the En lish !hrase -he out-to-!onder set-. rather than earthy and )n lo-Sa(on 4-slithy-5? Perha!s -huilasse. there can usually be found a corres!ondin word or !hrase in the new lan ua e& 0y contrast. -So rested he by the Tumtum tree-& It corres!onds. all of whom have e(cellent command of their res!ective native lan ua es. real or fabricated. the !roblem of tryin to find -the same node. which will accom!lish that? Er what if a word does e(ist.in the ori inal. in a !oem of this ty!e. and -sly-.!robably activates such symbols as -slimy-. -slither-. !erha!s5? )n interestin feature of the translation into 'rench is the trans!osition into the !resent tense& To kee! it in the !ast would make some unnatural turns of !hrase necessary.

a sur!rise takes !lace& /a ically. to make your ma! as true as you can& Ef course. !artly lobal. cities. with all natural eolo ical features !remarked—such as rivers. you have a carto ra!her on hand to !rint everythin in neatly& The end !roduct will be your !ersonal ma! of the -)lternative Structure of the Fnion-—your own !ersonal -)SF-& Hour !ersonal )SF will be very much like the FS) in the area where you rew u!& 'urthermore. mountains by color. between the brains of all the readers of these three !oems& AS&%s )n amusin eo ra!hical fantasy will ive some intuition for this kind of quasiisomor!hism& 4Incidentally.En lish as -maniful-& The 'rench -manscant. fake !o!ulations. you will be in by fillin in lar e cities and ma. !artly local. there seems to be some rou h equivalence obtainable& 3hy is this so. one reali<es that it is utterly im!ossible to make an e(act translation& Het even in this !atholo ically difficult case of translation.also lacks the manifold overtones of -man(ome-& There is no end to the interest of this kind of translation task& 3hen confronted with such an e(am!le. this fantasy is somewhat similar to a eo ra!hical analo y devised by /& /insky in his article on -frames-. and so on& 8ow you are told to convert it into a road atlas for a tri! which you will soon make& Hou must neatly fill in the names of all states. dams. or the whole of metro!olitan 8ew Hork. by makin u! fake town names. if not its true eo ra!hy. towns. etc&. all state and national !arks. which can be found in P& ?& 3inston1s book The &s)cholog) of 8omputer <ision&5 Ima ine that you are iven a stran e atlas of the FS). then all counties. and so on& This arduous task will take months& To make thin s a little easier.or roads. a few small towns in 8orth :akota or /ontana. which you know& )nd when you have e(hausted your factual knowled e of an area. if there really is no isomor!hism between the brains of !eo!le who will read the different versions? The answer is that there is a kind of rou h isomor!hism. wherever your travels have chanced to lead you. and you are trans!orted there& ) friendly committee !resents . air!orts. your )SF will have s!ots of strikin a reement with the FS). it will be to your advanta e to use your ima ination to hel! you re!roduce at least the flavor of that area. mi ht be quite faithfully re!roduced in your )SF& A Sur!rise $e"ersal 3hen your )SF is done. !erha!s. and so on&&& )ll of this must be carried out down to the level that would a!!ear in a detailed road atlas& )nd it must be manufactured out of your own head& Hou are not allowed access to any information which would hel! you for the duration of your task& Hou are told that it will !ay off. fake roads.ivers are shown as blue lines. all freeways and hi hways and toll routes. time <ones. cam! rounds. lakes. or wherever you have !erused ma!s with interest. in ways that will become clear at a later date. all county roads. mountains. scenic areas. and so on—but with nary a !rinted word& . the country you have desi ned comes into bein . fake !arks. their boundaries.

in terms of economics.or freeways. and there may be a Times Square in both as well—yet there may not be a sin le town that is found in both /ontanas& So the local. but a re ular road atlas of the FS)& 3hen you embark on your tri!. at a leisurely !ace. you will !robably be able to cross the country without ross confusions& 0ut the moment you wander off into the byways of 8ew /e(ico or rural )rkansas. one as!ect is very crucial. takin as lon as you wish—com!liments of the 6eo ra!hical Society of the )SF& )nd —to uide you around—here is a road atlas&. but their !o!ulation accordin to the atlas is wron by an order of ma nitude& Centrality and &ni"ersality 3hat makes an )SF and the FS).lobal distinction is not relevant here& 3hat is relevant is the centrality of the city. I can !lot out what seems to me to be an analo ous tri! in my )SF. around the ood old )& S& of F& Hou may o wherever you want. I can refer to somethin we have in common. and even then the routes to those cities will not be the same as are indicated on your ma!& It will ha!!en occasionally that some of the cities which are considered hu e by the locals are none(istent on your ma! of the FS)= or !erha!s they e(ist. that there are certain definite. 8ew Hork. but the voya e itself can still be carried out in both countries& )nd if you start describin a tri! from ?orsemilk to Jan<o. the main street may be 'ifth )venue. which are so different in some ways. you may now en. etc& The more vital the city is. there will be adventure in store for you& The locals will not reco ni<e any of the towns you1re lookin for. I can use the known a reement on bi cities to establish !oints of reference with which I can communicate the location of smaller cities in my )SF& )nd if I hy!othesi<e a voya e from @ankakee to 'ruto and you don1t know where those towns are. as lon as you constantly kee! me oriented by describin your !osition with res!ect to nearby lar er towns which are found in my )SF as well as in yours& . it may o alon different freeways or smaller roads. do whatever you wish to do. in both 8ew Horks. trans!ortation. if we be in com!arin my )SF with yours. communication. San 'rancisco. all sorts of curious incidents will take !lace& ) road atlas is bein used to uide you throu h a country which it only !artially fits& )s lon as you stick to ma. you are iven not the atlas which you desi ned.oy an all-e(!ense-!aid tri!. 7hica o. the more certain it will be to occur in both the )SF and the FS)& In this eo ra!hic analo y. des!ite not havin towns by those names.you with your favorite kind of automobile. in one of these ways. absolute !oints of reference which will occur in nearly all )SF1s.To your sur!rise. nor will they know the roads you1re askin about& They will only know the lar e cities you name. and so on& 8otice that this cannot be characteri<ed either as a local or a lobal isomor!hism& Some corres!ondences do e(tend down to the very local level—for instance. the cities of smaller si<e. -)s a reward for your desi nin efforts. and so on& 'rom these it is then !ossible to orient oneself& In other words. nevertheless so similar? It is that their most im!ortant cities and routes of communication can be ma!!ed onto each other& The differences between them are found in the less frequently traveled routes. and thereby uide you& )nd if I talk about a voya e from )tlanta to /ilwaukee. and e(!lains that.

minimal core—as if 7hica o were missin from their )SF. because that is taken for ranted as soon as we reco ni<e the humanity of the other !erson= rather.ockies.or differences. thanks to the e(ternal. their symbolic network is likely to . you find that another !erson is missin some of what you thou ht was the standard. such as stones. we look beyond the standard overla! and enerally find some ma. with our se!arate ma!s. or quasi-isomor!hic.iver. cars. to which everyone can make reference without ambi uity& 4Incidentally. by e(ternal realities./y roads will not be e(actly the same as yours. while roads and hi hways were analo ous to !otential tri erin !aths& The fact that all )SF1s have some thin s in common. such as the East 7oast. we can each et from a !articular !art of the country to another& 3e can do this. the 6reat Aakes. the 3est 7oast. etc&—facts which were available to us both as we worked on our ma!s& 3ithout those e(ternal features. and then we had both filled them in in reat detail. cities and towns were the analo ues of symbols. as well as some une(!ected. and I had been iven a ma! of 6ermany. we return to the question of isomor!hisms between brains& Hou mi ht well wonder why this whole question of brain isomor!hisms has been stressed so much& 3hat does it matter if two brains are isomor!hic. almost !oint-like entities& They are merely symboli<ed in that manner in a network&5 The fact is that a lar e !ro!ortion of every human1s network of symbols is universal& 3e sim!ly take what is common to all of us so much for ranted that it is hard to see how much we have in common with other !eo!le& It takes the conscious effort of ima inin how much—or how little—we have in common with other ty!es of entities. or not isomor!hic at all? The answer is that we have an intuitive sense that. to make evident the lar e amount of overla! that we have with randomly chosen !eo!le& 3hat we notice about another !erson immediately is not the standard overla!. streams. which is almost unima inable& 'or instance. someone mi ht not know what an ele!hant is. althou h other !eo!le differ from us in im!ortant ways.which can be added to it. the fact that cities are locali<ed entities should in no way be taken as indicative that symbols in a brain are small. we would have no !ossibility of reference !oints in common& 'or instance. if you had been iven only a ma! of 'rance. or who is President. but. ants.as we are in some dee! and im!ortant ways& It would be instructive to be able to !in!oint what this invariant core of human intelli ence is. additional overla!& Eccasionally. there would he no way to try to find -the same !lacein our fictitious lands& It is necessary to be in with identical e(ternal conditions— otherwise nothin will match& 8ow that we have carried our eo ra!hical analo y quite far. or that the earth is round& In such cases.or cities and roads is analo ous to the fact that we are all forced. the . and then to be able to describe the kinds of -embellishments. !redetermined eolo ical facts—mountain chains. restaurants. makin each one of us a unique embodiment of this abstract and mysterious quality called -intelli ence-& In our eo ra!hic analo y. to construct certain class symbols and tri erin !aths in the same way& These core symbols are like the lar e cities. and so forth. and many ma. the /ississi!!i . they are still -the same.

so that your two )SF1s coincide in reat detail over a very small re ion. etc& Thou h the meanin usually comes throu h.and -fauteuil. but the difference in culture 4or subculture5. -fetchinstead of . technolo ical level.4-chair. but which are now far down in frequency—for e(am!le. reli ion. say. or classes—words which at some time may have been !revalent or !referable. which is attached to the culture as a whole—its history. someone fluent in En lish uses most words at rou hly their re ular frequencies& ) non-native s!eaker will have !icked u! some words from dictionaries. there is an alien quality transmitted by the unusual choice of words& 0ut su!!ose that a forei ner learns to use all words at rou hly the normal frequencies& 3ill that make his s!eech truly fluent? Probably not& ?i her than the word level. children1s stories. you need to know the 0ible quite well in ?ebrew. what we mi ht call two -chairs. and so on& 'or instance. so that more minor routes can be described with reference to them& 8ow each of our three !eo!le may in addition have some command of the lan ua es of the other two& 3hat is it that marks the difference between true fluency.et-.be so fundamentally different from your own that si nificant communication will be difficult& En the other hand. and a mere ability to communicate? 'irst of all. either& The tri erin !atterns of !eo!le with other lan ua es will be somewhat different from our own. novels. we can say that we e(!ect them to have the standard core of class symbols. but we do not e(!ect such sharin with a randomly chosen !erson who shares our native lan ua e. to be able to s!eak modern ?ebrew absolutely fluently. des!ite the fact of different native lan ua es& 3e do not e(!ect to share hi hly s!eciali<ed networks with them. and the ma.ects belon in to two distinct ty!es. -quite. which allows you to describe how to et from one !lace to another very fluently& /o' Much o Language and Culture Channel Thought7 If we now o back to com!arin our own symbol network with those of a 'renchman and a 6erman. -chaise. we should not overstress the role of language in moldin thou hts& 'or instance. than a city dweller is& ) city dweller may call them both -trucks-& It is not the difference in native lan ua e. because the lan ua e draws on a stock of biblical !hrases and their connotations& Such an association level !ermeates each lan ua e very dee!ly& Het there is room for all sorts of variety inside fluency—otherwise the only truly fluent s!eakers would be !eo!le whose thou hts were the most stereoty!ed !ossible2 )lthou h we should reco ni<e the de!th to which culture affects thou ht.or class symbols. !erha!s this same !erson will share some s!eciali<ed kind of knowled e with you—such as e(!ertise in the ame of dominoes—so that you can communicate well in a limited domain& This would be like meetin someone who comes from the very same rural area of 8orth :akota as you do. there is an association level.or routes between them. eo ra!hy. that ives rise to this !erce!tual difference& . will be universally available.instead of -very-. the difference between a !icku! and a truck. literature.mi ht be !erceived by a s!eaker of 'rench as ob. but still the ma.and -armchair-5& Peo!le whose native lan ua e is 'rench are more aware of that difference than we are—but then !eo!le who row u! in a rural area are more aware of.

-house-.or cities and ma. however. there are certain kinds of thou hts which we call knowledge. it can et chunked into a sin le conce!t& This would corres!ond to quite a stran e event in an )SF. you will find that there is less in common& It would he like com!arin rural areas in 3isconsin in )SF1s which had been made u! by !eo!le who had never lived in 3isconsin& This will be quite irrelevant. or (eliefs. a commonly taken tri! would become. which would be followed only if s!ecial e(ternal circumstances arose& The !athways which one relies on over and over a ain are !athways which incor!orate knowled e—and here I mean not only knowled e of facts 4declarative .rass-. and -car-.otential) and . then. virtually any route leadin from one city to a second. a new town or city2 If one is to continue to use the )SF-meta!hor. but it is quite stron & Ene !roblem with it is that when a thou ht recurs in someone1s mind sufficiently often. makin allowance for some e(tra symbols—those which lie en route& 8ow if virtually any sequence of symbols can be activated in any desired order. then to a third. !assin thou hts. beliefs. such as those for . one after another.or routes. and so on. because everyone lives in the same world& 3hen you come down to more detailed as!ects of the tri erin !atterns. or humorously entertained absurdities& ?ow can we characteri<e the difference between dreams. in some stran e fashion. but also symbols which et created as a result of the chunkin ability of a brain-symbols for such so!histicated conce!ts as -crab canon-. so that there are common !oints of reference all over the ma!& Tri!s and Itineraries in AS&%s 3ithout makin it e(!licit.The relationshi!s between the symbols of !eo!le with different native lan ua es have every reason to be quite similar. which can absorb or !roduce any thou ht whatsoever& 0ut we all know that that is not so& In fact. as far as the core is concerned. or -)SF-& 8ow if it is ranted that the notion of takin a tri! is a fair counter!art to the notion of havin a thou ht& then the followin difficult issue comes u!. as lon as one remembers that some intervenin cities are also !assed throu h& This would corres!ond to the activation of an ar(itrar) se"uence of s)m(ols. as lon as there is sufficient a reement on the ma.re!osterous . I have been usin an ima e of what a -thou ht.is in the )SFanalo y—namely. I have been im!lyin that a thought corres!onds to a trip& The towns which are !assed throu h re!resent the symbols which are e(cited& This is not a !erfect analo y. which !lay quite a different role from random fancies. and !ieces of knowled e? .ath'ays There are some !athways—you can think of them as !athways either in an )SF or in a brain—which are taken routinely in oin from one !lace to another& There are other !athways which can only be followed if one is led throu h them by the hand& These !athways are -!otential !athways-. it may seem that a brain is an indiscriminate system. it is im!ortant to remember that the cities re!resent not only the elementar) symbols. can be ima ined. -!alindrome-.ossible) .

rather than the !recise sequence of symbols which are tri ered.o"els ) !oem like -Jabberwocky. strai htforward symbolconnectin routes re!resent sim!le thou hts that one can rely on—beliefs and !ieces of knowled e& En reflection.item in their culture—thus. since it is quite reasonable that we should only be able to ima ine fictitious thin s that are somehow rounded in the realities we have e(!erienced. which are also re!resented by reliable !athways. falsities.knowled e5. any weird and snaky indirect route breaks u! into a number of non-weird. and amusin . they make sense-but lobally&&& ifferent Styles of Translating . reliable !athways are what constitute knowled e& Pieces of knowled e mer e radually with beliefs. and found the followin curious situation& The first sentence em!loys the street name -S& Pereulok. and these short. your translation mi ht run. a brid e oes out. on several different levels& . take a look at the first sentence of :ostoevsky1s novel 8rime and &unishment in . non-snaky direct stretches. at rock bottom. this is hardly sur!risin . or there is heavy fo & This leaves us with fancies. we have a translation !roblem= or to be more !recise.is like an unreal .ust such random meanderin s about the )SF1s of our minds& Aocally. /aine and Aubbock. but ones which are not likely to be stock routes.4as transliterated5& 3hat is the meanin of this? ) careful reader of :ostoevsky1s work who knows Aenin rad 4which used to be called -St& Petersbur -—or should I say -Petro rad-?5 can discover by doin some careful checkin of the rest of the eo ra!hy in the book 4which incidentally is also iven only by its initials5 that the street must be -Stoliarny Pereulok-& :ostoevsky !robably wished to tell his story in a realistic way. used in everyday voya es& ) curious. -She had a bowl of borscht&. com!letely out of beliefs or !ieces of knowled e& That is. ho!!in from one state to another very quickly. Te(as& They are indeed !ossible !athways. but also knowled e of how%to's 4!rocedural knowled e5& These stable. and come across a sentence whose literal translation is. lies. absurdities.ussian to En lish. we have several translation !roblems. im!lication of this model is that all of the -aberrantkinds of thou hts listed above are com!osed.ussian and then in a few different En lish translations& I ha!!ened to look at three different En lish !a!erback translations. however. and other variants& These would corres!ond to !eculiar routes such as.8ow !erha!s many of your readers will have no idea what borscht is& Hou could attem!t to re!lace it by the -corres!ondin . yet not so realistically that !eo!le would take literally the addresses at which crimes and other events were su!!osed to have occurred& In any case. but !erha!s ones which are more susce!tible to re!lacement if. such lea!s and bounds are not so common& ?owever. so to s!eak. 8ew Hork 7ity to 8ewark via 0an or. -She had a bowl of 7am!bell1s sou!&8ow if you think this is a silly e(a eration. similar !roblems of translation do occur& Su!!ose you are translatin a novel from .ourney around an )SF. althou h they do their best in that res!ect& In ordinary !rose. followin very curious routes& The translations convey this as!ect of the !oem. no matter how wildly they deviate from them& :reams are !erha!s .

ectively describable meanin hidden in the symbols. but it has been coded in some stran e symbols& I will now !roceed to decode&1 .ussian novels were very weird& 8ow we could be frank with the reader 4who.means -car!enter.ustification that it is -the corres!ondin work in En lish-& 3hen viewed on a sufficiently hi h level. I say. and in the midst of a situation invented by :ickens. in the late "#C+1s. and which is not e(!erienced by readers of the .ust read a novel by :ickens instead. who ave the translation as -Stoliarny Place-& 3hat about number %? This is the most interestin of all& This translation says -7ar!enter1s Aane-& )nd why not. indeed? )fter all.and -nyis an ad. then you run the risk of committin a -7am!bell1s sou!. made by 3arren 3eaver. or should one settle for a word-by-word translation? If you search for an analo ous !hrase. into En lish? Then one may also consider the !roblems of how to translate slan and colloquial modes of e(!ression& Should one search for an -analo ous.ty!e of blunder= but if you translate every idiomatic !hrase word by word. if sufficiently well !ro rammed& . thanks to the unusual turns of !hrase.of the :ostoevsky novel—in fact.!hrase. can you ima ine how it must o on in the rest of the book? 3hat about the !oint where a 6erman landlady be ins shoutin in her 6erman-style . not :ostoevsky& Is that what we want? Perha!s we should . not Petro rad. which was not intended by the author.'irst of all. one of the first advocates of translation by com!uter. with the . should we kee! the initial so as to re!roduce the aura of semi-mystery which a!!ears already in this first sentence of the book? 3e would et -S& Aane. writin -Stoliarny Aane. since the .ussian ori inal& Problems such as these ive one !ause in considerin such statements as this one. and yet I didn1t know what it was&&& I decided that all . or at least somethin !retty close to ob. 1This is really written in En lish. -stoliar. it may be assumed. one chose to write -S& Place-& The translation of 8rime and &unishment which I read in hi h school took a similar o!tion& I will never for et the disoriented feelin I e(!erienced when I be an readin the novel and encountered those streets with only letters for names& I had some sort of intan ible malaise about the be innin of the book= I was sure that I was missin somethin essential.4or -Place-5& This was the choice of translator number B.3eaver1s remark sim!ly cannot be taken literally= it must rather be considered a !rovocative way of sayin that there is an ob. there would be no reason to su!!ose a com!uter could not ferret it out. the best !ossible one2 3ho needs :ostoevsky? 3e have come all the way from attem!ts at reat literal fidelity to the author1s style. it is a -translation. then the En lish will sound alien& Perha!s this is desirable.4-lanebein the standard translation of -!ereulok-5& 8one of the three translators took this tack& ?owever.ussian? ?ow do you translate broken . to hi h-level translations of flavor& 8ow if this ha!!ens already in the first sentence.ectival endin & So now we mi ht ima ine ourselves in Aondon. !robably won1t have the sli htest idea whether the street is real or fictitious anyway25 and ive him the advanta e of our modern scholarshi!.ussian s!oken with a 6erman accent. a sense—an artificial sense—of stran eness.ussian.ussian culture is an alien one to s!eakers of En lish& 0ut a s!eaker of En lish who reads such a translation will constantly be e(!eriencin .ective= therefore. -3hen I look at an article in .

a full dis!lay of the contents of memory—a so-called memor) dump—is easily available& :um!s were commonly !rinted out in the early days of com!utin ./igh-Le"el Com!arisons bet'een . the other in a com!iler lan ua e& )re two such !ro rams com!arable? 7ertainly& 0ut how to com!are them? Ene way mi ht be to com!ile the com!iler lan ua e !ro ram. a conce!tual . )PA. 'ortran. in any reasonable sense. hence two different machine lan ua es-and they may be e(tremely different& Ene machine may have si(teen-bit words= the other thirty-si(-bit words& Ene machine may have built-in stack-handlin instructions 4!ushin and !o!!in 5. more chunked view& 'rom this vanta e !oint. you are not com!arin hardware. ?ow can we make sense of a low-level descri!tion of a com!uter or a brain? Is there. chunks which fit to ether in a way that allows one to !erceive the oals of the !ro rammer& Aet us assume that both !ro rams were ori inally written in hi h-level lan ua es& Then some chunkin has already been done for us& 0ut we will run into other troubles& There is a !roliferation of such lan ua es. you are not com!arin software—you are com!arin -etherware-—the !ure conce!ts which lie back of the software& There is some sort of abstract -conce!tual skeleton. scale-that is. tryin to understand what each minuscule !iece of memory re!resented& In essence. towards a hi her. and many others& ?ow can you com!are a !ro ram written in )PA with one written in )l ol.rograms 3eaver1s statement is about translations between different natural lan ua es& Aet1s consider now the !roblem of translatin between two com!uter lan ua es& 'or instance. lookin for conce!tual. functional units which corres!ond& Thus. and we want to know if the two !ro rams carry out the same task& ?ow can we find out? 3e must com!are the !ro rams& 0ut on what level should this be done? Perha!s one !ro rammer wrote in a machine lan ua e. when somethin went wron with a !ro ram& Then the !ro rammer would have to o home and !ore over the memory dum! for hours. away from machine lan ua e.which must be lifted out of low levels before you can carry out a meanin ful com!arison of two !ro rams in different com!uter lan ua es.ective way to !ull a hi h-level descri!tion out of a low-level one. an ob. )l ol. 7ertainly not by matchin them u! line by line& Hou will a ain chunk these !ro rams in your mind. su!!ose two !eo!le have written !ro rams which run on different com!uters. rather than a local. the !ro rammer would be doin the o!!osite of wh