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*To*: Peirce Discussion Forum <peirce-l@lyris.ttu.edu>,ba <ba-unrev-talk@bootstrap.org>, c g <cg@cs.uah.edu>,INTERNATIONAL DISCUSSION GROUP <PORT-L@LISTSERV.IUPUI.EDU>*From*: Gary Richmond <garyrichmond@rcn.com>*Date*: Tue, 26 Nov 2002 18:58:10 -0500*Message-id*: <3DE40A92.6020204@rcn.com>

Summing up: Peirce’s philosophy of logical notation contains many illuminating suggestions as well [as being an] original and extensive [contribution. to logic] If [we were to ] examine [the] philosophy of notation [in relation to current developments in] linguistics, computer science and philosophy, then we [might conclude]:: logical notation is not [a] trivial matter, so how to achieve [an optimal weaving] of icons, indexes and symbols, is [essentialas regards] the progress of logic, [it is] no longer only a question of arbitrary formal arrangement.

http://ewisdom.myetang.com/abstract-en.htm

Peirce’s philosophy of logical notation

** Abstract**

In some measure, logic, or at least modern logic, can be perceived
as “notation of reasoning”. It is known that logic treats reasoning
(and argumentation) as the central subject. However, logic consists
in not only study of reasoning, but in a crucial sense it consists
in the study of reasoning by convenient notation, which tell you how
to represent reasoning in some suitable notation and make reasoning
efficiently by the notation. Many facts in history of logic make it
clear that logical notation, making much sense, should be regarded
as an important matter.

Logic and notation is not a new topic, but in the past it often behaves as relation between sign and inference. As mathematical notation played a revolutionary role in the development of algebra and geometry in the abstract, the new logical notation mainly illuminated by the algebraic notation brought on the birth of modern logic in a more direct sense. American logician C.S.Peirce, one of the founders of modern logic, shows greater zeal for exploration and research in logical notation than his many contemporaries. He, for the first time in history of logic, made an inviting exposition and discussion on the profound significance of logical notation, and advanced “philosophy of notation” in his terminology. The dissertation titled “Peirce’s philosophy of logical notation”, concentrates on discussing the methodological bearing of Peirce’s notation on his elementary logic, Peirce’s logical thoughts on types of signs, and Peirce’s quest for an ideal logical notation, trying to touch into and reveal Peirce’s comprehensive and original contribution through his investigation on logical notation on one hand and attach more importance than people commonly would to logical notation on the other hand.

Firstly, the article expounded that
Peirce’s unique semiotics offered the widest context and frame for investigating
logical notation, particularly from points of view of sign revealing
the inherent links between notation and logic: semiotics as logic. In
general, logical notation is sign or sign system. Logicians all through the
history concerned studies of signs. Peirce, a distinguish logic historian,
grounding on his irreductive triadic relation between Sign, Object and
Iinterpretant, developed his Semieotic which is distinct from Saussure’s
Semiology, and then used the semiotic as the comprehensive context for
investigating logical notation and all his logic theory. Having synthesized
and abstracted types of signs in the logic history, he classified signs
into icons, indices and symbols. Subsequently, this notable classification
of signs was adopted by many logicians, linguists, philosophers and
cognitive scientists. Next, he pointed out that each of icon, index
and symbol is essential for a perfect logical notation, as becomes a
foundational idea of Peirce’s philosophy of logical notation in some
degree. In the whole, Peirce’s investigation on signs is always along
with his logical research. He said, “Logic, in its general sense, is,
as I believe I have shown, only another name for semiotic”.

Secondly, the article, via a few instances of logical notation in modern
logic, analyzed the refinement and profoundness of Peirce’s algebraic
notation, mirrored some important contribution in his early logical research,
and indicated Peirce’s algebraic notation as a source of standard logical
notation today. Inclusive disjunction “+”, limited discourse of universe
“1”, material implication“—<” and universal
and particular quantifiers (in a sense of modern logic)
“∏
” “
∑” not only spread out Peirce’s great improvement
on notation of Boolean algebra, but also took on severe logical significance
in Peirce. In practice, Peirce’s various thoughts of algebraic notation
directly speeded up maturing propositional logic and predicate logic
in initial stages of modern logic.

Lastly, the article, introducing Peirce’s Existential Graphs on the
backgrounds of logical diagrams in history, analyzed and assessed Peirce’s
Existential Graphs and its superiority and developmental perspectives,
trying to claim that Peirce’s graphic notation not only radically improves
on logical diagrams in history but also shows to logicians in right
of its tremendous logical expressive power that, besides traditionally
algebraic notation, there is an independent diagrammatical logical notation.
Existential Graphs, which Peirce dedicated his later life to, is a two-dimensional
notation which is different from his early linear algebraic notation,
as is called by Peirce “my chef d’oeuvre”. His finished “Alpha” and
“Beta” portions of Existential Graphs correspond respectively to propositional
logic and predicate logic we commonly use today, and have proved to
be consistent and complete by some peircians and logicians. Moreover
the “Gamma” portion of Existential Graphs which Peirce himself hadn’t
finished in his life covers evidently the thoughts of modal logic and
higher-order logic. This notation is a natural deduction system in inferring
rules, and its visual features are higher than algebraically natural
deduction system, which was created thereafter by Gentzen. Peirce’s
work on the graphic notation is continued by Barwise, Sowa and other logicians
and computer scientists of the day.

Summing up，
Peirce’s philosophy of logical notation contains many illuminating
suggestions as well as much original and extensive logical contribution.
If examine philosophy of notation with the development nowadays of
linguistics, computer science and philosophy, then we would have a
conclusion:
logical notation is not trivial matter, so how to achieve a optimizing
weaving of icons, indexes and symbols, is of essential issues which
is referred to the progress of logic, no longer only a question of
arbitrary formal arrangement.

C.S.Peirce; logical notation; philosophy of notation; semiotics; algebraic notation; graphic notation; Existential Graphs

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