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NYC LOCAL: Tuesday 12 July 2005 Lisp NYC: Raymond Puzio on Lisp, Mathema

From: secretary
Subject: NYC LOCAL: Tuesday 12 July 2005 Lisp NYC: Raymond Puzio on Lisp, Mathematics, and the Library of Leibniz and Borges and Google
Date: 11 Jul 2005 02:36:18 -0400

  what="official Lisp NYC announcement">

 From: Heow Eide-Goodman <address@hidden>
 To: "address@hidden" <address@hidden>

 Please join us for our next meeting on Tuesday, July 12th from 7:00 
 to 9:00 at Trinity Lutheran Church. 

 In last month's talk, we heard how Lisp is based upon certain ideas
 from the foundations of the Lambda Calculus branch of mathematics.  In
 this month's talk, Raymond Puzio will consider how Lisp can repay this
 debt to mathematics:

       Lisp is the language of mathematics - but many people don't
       realize that!
       The Hyperreal Dictionary of Mathematics seeks to fulfill
       Lisp's mathematical promise, and greatly expand the
       usability and accessibility of mathematics for everyone.
       The core of this project is a comprehensive dictionary of
       mathematical knowledge in a formal language inspired by Lisp
       which will represent mathematical concepts formally at a
       higher level than symbolic logic and is comprehensible to
       both humans and machines.  To make sure that this language
       will indeed be capable of express any precise mathematical
       idea that can be expressed in mathematical notation, we have
       examined examples of mathematical proofs and definitions and
       studied the theoretical underpinnings of mathematical
       Since few mathematicians are willing to adapt a new system
       of notation, no matter how well thought out, we are also
       writing programs to translate between our formalism and
       conventional mathematical notation.  In the future, we also
       hope to include natural language processing so that the
       program will be able to understand the mathematical
       litearture and produce output in a user friendly form.
       Simply translating a body of mathematics into a new
       formalism is relatively uninteresting by itself; one also
       need to do something with it.  To that end, we are working
       on programs which will perform such tasks as translate
       between different notations and verify mathematical proofs
       for correctness.  In particular, we are working on an
       approach to proof checking which treats logical and
       non-logical operations on an equal footing and views proofs
       as analogous to programs.  We believe that this approach is
       well suited to implementation in Lisp and captures the way
       mathematicians concieve of proofs better than an approach
       based upon reducing everything to formal logic.

 This talk will be of interest to mathematicians, metamathematicians, and
 lispers, and especially interesting to those who find themselves in the
 intersection of these two sets.  Only a basic acquaintence with Lisp and
 the foundations of mathematics is necessary in order to understand this

 Raymond Puzio first encountered Lisp one Saturday on 116th street as a 
 high-school student in a weekend enrichment program offered at Columbia
 University; it was love at first byte and his enthusiasm for Lisp has
 not waned since, but the relation has deepened with his appreciation of
 the subtle beauties of logic and metamathematics.  This program led him
 to enroll as an undergraduate in Columbia where he majored in physics
 with a concentration in mathematics.  He then went on to Yale for
 graduate studies in physics, leading to a doctorate in the subject of
 general relativity and quantum gravity and was a post-doctoral scholar
 in the Centre for Gravitational Physics and Geometry at Pennsylvania
 State University.

 After some time in exotic places like Mississippi and Memphis, he is now
 back in the New York metro area.  He has taken an interest in projects
 such as Planet Math, Asteroid Meta, and the Hyperreal Dictionary of
 Mathematics which aim to make mathematical knowledge generally
 accessible in digital form and build software tools which will help
 mathematicians.  He has authored more than 200 entries for the Planet
 Math encyclopaedia and is also involved in other aspects of the

 Raymond is collaborating with Joe Corneli on the ambitous Hyperreal
 Dictionary of Mathematics project and contributes regularly to Asteroid
 Meta, which serves as a focal point for coordinating work on these
 projects as well as exploring their theoretical foundations and 
 cultural implications.


 Directions to Trinity: 

   Trinity Lutheran 
   602 E. 9th St. & Ave B., on Thomkins Square Park

   From N,R,Q,W (8th Street NYU Stop) and the 4,5 (Astor Street Stop): 
     Walk East 4 blocks on St. Marks, cross Thomkins Square Park. 

   From F&V (2nd Ave Stop): 
     Walk E one or two blocks, turn north for 8 short blocks 

   From L (1st Ave Stop): 
     Walk E one block, turn sounth for 5 short blocks 

   The M9 bus line drops you off at the doorstep and the M15 is near get 
   off on St. Marks & 1st) 

   To get there by car, take the FDR (East River Drive) to Houston then 
   go NW till you're at 9th & B.  Week-night parking isn't bad at all, 
   but if you're paranoid about your Caddy or in a hurry, there is a 
   parking garage on 9th between 1st and 3rd Ave. 

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Distributed poC TINC:

Jay Sulzberger <address@hidden>
Corresponding Secretary LXNY
LXNY is New York's Free Computing Organization.

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