more from David Bostock

Single Idea 18150

[catalogued under 6. Mathematics / C. Sources of Mathematics / 4. Mathematical Empiricism / b. Indispensability of mathematics]

Full Idea

We all know that in practice no physical measurement can be 100 per cent accurate, and so it cannot require the existence of a genuinely irrational number, rather than some of the rational numbers close to it.

Gist of Idea

Actual measurement could never require the precision of the real numbers


David Bostock (Philosophy of Mathematics [2009], 9.A.3)

Book Reference

Bostock,David: 'Philosophy of Mathematics: An Introduction' [Wiley-Blackwell 2009], p.280

Related Ideas

Idea 18156 Modern axioms of geometry do not need the real numbers [Bostock]

Idea 18207 Maybe applications of continuum mathematics are all idealisations [Maddy]