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Reasoning with the Greeks - Tocqueville21 : Tocqueville21
In Plato’s Republic, Glaucon may represent Plato thinking in the guise of a rational choice theorist, or a sophist who was able to make the best possible rational choice argument. And, of course, there’s Thucydides. But there’s a difference between those sorts of thinkers and, say, John von Neumann, or any contemporary game theorist. One obvious difference is that Greeks didn’t do the right sort of math; they didn’t show an interest in expressing problems of choice in algebraic form. There was a lot of sophisticated math done in the Greek world, so it’s not impossible that someone back then was connecting Thucydidean thinking and international affairs through mathematical expression, but we don’t have any surviving evidence of that.



There is something lost in trying to do choice theory without algebra, but, arguably, something is gained: the Greeks are not limited in the ways choice theorists are limited. Mathematically, it’s hard to model games with multiple players. The Greeks might not have anything to teach a contemporary game theorist in terms of formalization, but they allow us to say that there may be some advantages to thinking about how choice, preference and belief work out, in terms of generalizable conditions about human behavior. The Greeks may add some complexity to the story because they were not bound by algebra.
strategy  reason  rationality  greece  classics  history  deterrence  gametheory 
27 days ago by yorksranter
Quote by John Stuart Mill: “He who knows only his own side of the case know...”
He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that.

His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion... Nor is it enough that he should hear the opinions of adversaries from his own teachers, presented as they state them, and accompanied by what they offer as refutations. He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them...he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
quotation  reason  critical-thinking 
29 days ago by danny.hope
Pika | Introducing: @pika/pack
Looks interesting to build TS packages, for npm or browsers, etc.
webpack  build_system  npm  typescript  reason 
6 weeks ago by Sylphe

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