Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby Rainswept on Thu Dec 15, 2011 1:04 pm

Qwertyuiopasd wrote:
Roy Hunter wrote:What happens if Pinocchio tells you his nose is going to grow?


Also depends on your interpretation of what constitutes a lie. Being an action in the future, he may have no way of knowing what will happen, so it's neither a lie nor a truth. Or actually, that might make it default to a lie, since if he doesn't know, he's saying something he isn't sure is true as if it were true, so it's a lie. His nose would then grow, which would be confusing, but consistent, since he technically lied.


By that reasoning, if he believed it would grow, then it would not, thus allowing him to speak an untrue statement without the famous result.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby bacon on Thu Dec 15, 2011 2:58 pm

I always thought that it was just a matter of how excited he was. :confused:
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby Qwertyuiopasd on Thu Dec 15, 2011 5:05 pm

Rainswept wrote:
Qwertyuiopasd wrote:
Roy Hunter wrote:What happens if Pinocchio tells you his nose is going to grow?


Also depends on your interpretation of what constitutes a lie. Being an action in the future, he may have no way of knowing what will happen, so it's neither a lie nor a truth. Or actually, that might make it default to a lie, since if he doesn't know, he's saying something he isn't sure is true as if it were true, so it's a lie. His nose would then grow, which would be confusing, but consistent, since he technically lied.


By that reasoning, if he believed it would grow, then it would not, thus allowing him to speak an untrue statement without the famous result.


Actually, I think it would grow, because it's still a matter of the future, which he can know nothing of for sure, so he's making a statement without knowing that it's true. If that's a lie, then whether he says it will or won't grow, it'll be a lie (as defined by being not a known telling of the truth), and his nose will grow. It doesn't really have anything to do with what he believes.

And of course, it all depends on how you define "lie" and then "knowledge." Is a lie a statement that does not reflect reality regardless of intent or supposed "knowledge" or belief, or is it only a statement that is intentionally not true?

I don't know how the mythology goes exactly, but if it were me, I'd make it only grow if he were actively trying to deceive someone. That allows for many other uses of language which may or may not reflect reality accurately, but aren't exactly lies, and wouldn't affect the nose.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby daftbeaker on Thu Dec 15, 2011 5:13 pm

Roy Hunter wrote:What happens if Pinocchio tells you his nose is going to grow?

Why not get him to do it and see what happens? :idiot:

I know, I know, experimental evidence doesn't mix with philosophy :haha:
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby Qwertyuiopasd on Thu Dec 15, 2011 5:21 pm

Well the point is that it's a thought experiment meant to challenge and explore what constitutes a lie, basically. Since a "lie" isn't anything more than a man-made construct, and has no physical reality or anything outside of how we define it, it can only be discussed in this way.

Not everything can be answered with empirical science, since not everything is empirical. Right tool for the right job, and all that.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby daftbeaker on Thu Dec 15, 2011 5:31 pm

Qwertyuiopasd wrote:Well the point is that it's a thought experiment meant to challenge and explore what constitutes a lie, basically. Since a "lie" isn't anything more than a man-made construct, and has no physical reality or anything outside of how we define it, it can only be discussed in this way.

Not everything can be answered with empirical science, since not everything is empirical. Right tool for the right job, and all that.

Ah, good, a waste of time :haha:
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby Rainswept on Thu Dec 15, 2011 6:50 pm

daftbeaker wrote:
Qwertyuiopasd wrote:Well the point is that it's a thought experiment meant to challenge and explore what constitutes a lie, basically. Since a "lie" isn't anything more than a man-made construct, and has no physical reality or anything outside of how we define it, it can only be discussed in this way.

Not everything can be answered with empirical science, since not everything is empirical. Right tool for the right job, and all that.

Ah, good, a waste of time :haha:


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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby PKMKII on Thu Dec 15, 2011 7:26 pm

daftbeaker wrote:
Qwertyuiopasd wrote:Well the point is that it's a thought experiment meant to challenge and explore what constitutes a lie, basically. Since a "lie" isn't anything more than a man-made construct, and has no physical reality or anything outside of how we define it, it can only be discussed in this way.

Not everything can be answered with empirical science, since not everything is empirical. Right tool for the right job, and all that.

Ah, good, a waste of time :haha:


Well, not necessarily. I can see why the exact definition of a lie would be important from a legal standpoint.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby daftbeaker on Thu Dec 15, 2011 7:37 pm

PKMKII wrote:
daftbeaker wrote:
Qwertyuiopasd wrote:Well the point is that it's a thought experiment meant to challenge and explore what constitutes a lie, basically. Since a "lie" isn't anything more than a man-made construct, and has no physical reality or anything outside of how we define it, it can only be discussed in this way.

Not everything can be answered with empirical science, since not everything is empirical. Right tool for the right job, and all that.

Ah, good, a waste of time :haha:


Well, not necessarily. I can see why the exact definition of a lie would be important from a legal standpoint.

Why? All that is necessary is to deceive someone. The precise waffling over what is and is not a lie can be safely left to philosophers when they've finished with their trees in forests.

All this is a restatement of "This sentence is a lie" (which is yet more philosophical word games without any sensible answers). If you can find a judicial case where that was important then you've got a point.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby PKMKII on Thu Dec 15, 2011 8:10 pm

daftbeaker wrote:If you can find a judicial case where that was important then you've got a point.


A case where it was important to determine if someone was lying and intended to deceive? Try every single libel case in American history.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby daftbeaker on Thu Dec 15, 2011 8:30 pm

PKMKII wrote:
daftbeaker wrote:If you can find a judicial case where that was important then you've got a point.

A case where it was important to determine if someone was lying and intended to deceive? Try every single libel case in American history.

No, a case where the statement 'this sentence is a lie' (or equivalent) was important. That is what the Pinocchio question is.

Libel is a straightforward case of deciding if someone made a defamatory statement. Nothing to do with pointless philosophical conundrums.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby Ubi Dubius on Thu Dec 15, 2011 11:11 pm

In Virginia, passing a bad check is only a crime if you use the check to induce somebody to give you something. So, if you go to pick up Chinese take out (take away in Britain, I think?), write a bad check, take your food and go, you've committed a crime - if you hadn't given the check, they wouldn't have let you leave with the food. If you sit down in the restaurant, order, eat, then write a bad check, it is not a crime (you are still, of course, liable for the debt) - even if that was your intent from the beginning. To be a crime, I would also have to know (or reasonably should have known) that I did not have sufficient funds.

Lies are directly relevent in the law when we are dealing with libel, fraud (a bad check is a type of fraud), perjury, giving false identify to a law enforcement officer, and possibly other situations I can't think of at this time. In no case is a lie actionable without other elements making it a crime or other actionable behavior. Of course, figuring out when somebody is lying is always important in the law.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby gronank on Fri Dec 16, 2011 9:36 am

How does pinocchio's nose behave with half-truths? A statement that are technically true but formulated in a context so that it decieves. What if there are several people listening where at least one did not get the true meaning of the statement but others did? If it was a lie in that case, is it still a lie if the unknowing person(s) leave?
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby Qwertyuiopasd on Fri Dec 16, 2011 4:28 pm

On that same line of thinking (I think), what about sarcasm? He'd be saying something that wasn't true, strictly speaking, but in such a way that what he's communicating is perfectly intelligible and truthful. Of course, that also depends on how much the other party picks up on the sarcasm. But I would think that whether or not a statement is a lie shouldn't depend on how it's picked up, it should depend solely on the "liar" and their intent.
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Re: Logic, IQ, and Lateral Thinking Problems.

Postby gronank on Sun Dec 18, 2011 10:04 pm

Qwertyuiopasd wrote:On that same line of thinking (I think), what about sarcasm? He'd be saying something that wasn't true, strictly speaking, but in such a way that what he's communicating is perfectly intelligible and truthful. Of course, that also depends on how much the other party picks up on the sarcasm. But I would think that whether or not a statement is a lie shouldn't depend on how it's picked up, it should depend solely on the "liar" and their intent.

To take the above reasoning to the absolute limit: would pinocchio's nose grow if he was honestly misunderstood? It would seem as the core of the lie is the intent to decieve. A half-truth might as well be described as a half-lie and because it is constructed to decieve it would cause the nose to grow, even though the statement was technically true.
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