•  46
    John Venn's Hypothetical Infinite Frequentism and Logic
    History and Philosophy of Logic 35 (3): 248-271. 2014.
    The goal of this paper is to provide a detailed reading of John Venn's Logic of Chance as a work of logic or, more specifically, as a specific portion of the general system of so-called ‘material’ logic developed in his Principles of Empirical or Inductive Logic and to discuss it against the background of his Boolean-inspired views on the connection between logic and mathematics. It is by means of this situating of Venn 1866 [The Logic of Chance. An Essay on the Foundations and Province of the T…Read more
  •  18
    The place of probability in Hilbert’s axiomatization of physics, ca. 1900–1928
    Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 53 28-44. 2016.
    Although it has become a common place to refer to the ׳sixth problem׳ of Hilbert׳s (1900) Paris lecture as the starting point for modern axiomatized probability theory, his own views on probability have received comparatively little explicit attention. The central aim of this paper is to provide a detailed account of this topic in light of the central observation that the development of Hilbert׳s project of the axiomatization of physics went hand-in-hand with a redefinition of the status of prob…Read more
  •  13
    ABSTRACTThis paper provides a detailed account of the period of the complex history of British algebra and geometry between the publication of George Peacock's Treatise on Algebra in 1830 and William Rowan Hamilton's paper on quaternions of 1843. During these years, Duncan Farquharson Gregory and William Walton published several contributions on ‘algebraical geometry’ and ‘geometrical algebra’ in the Cambridge Mathematical Journal. These contributions enabled them not only to generalize Peacock'…Read more
  •  8
    Pragmatism at Cambridge, England before 1900
    British Journal for the History of Philosophy 29 (1): 84-105. 2020.
    This paper responds to the new story about the history of pragmatism and early analytic philosophy presented in Cheryl Misak's Cambridge Pragmatism. One of the new story's key claims is that pragma...
  •  7
    The Venn-MacColl Dispute in Nature
    History and Philosophy of Logic 41 (3): 244-251. 2020.
    During 1881, the British logicians John Venn and Hugh MacColl engaged in a brief dispute in Nature about ‘symbolical logic’. The letters to the editor shed interesting light on the early reception of MacColl’s contributions to logic and his position in the logical community of the Victorian era. Drawing on the correspondence between Venn and William Stanley Jevons, this paper analyzes the background and context of these letters, adding to the recent interest in the social dimensions of the devel…Read more
  • General (review)
    Isis 111 (2): 380-381. 2020.
  • The goal of this paper is to provide an extensive account of Robert Leslie Ellisʼs largely forgotten work on philosophy of science and probability theory. On the one hand, it is suggested that both his ‘idealist’ renovation of the Baconian theory of induction and a ‘realism’ vis-à-vis natural kinds were the result of a complex dialogue with the work of William Whewell. On the other hand, it is shown to what extent the combining of these two positions contributed to Ellisʼs reformulation of the m…Read more
  • Remarks on the idealist and empiricist interpretation of frequentism: Robert Leslie Ellis versus John Venn
    BSHM Bulletin: Journal of the British Society for the History of Mathematics 29 (3): 184-195. 2014.
    The goal of this paper is to correct a widespread misconception about the work of Robert Leslie Ellis and John Venn, namely that it can be considered as the ‘British empiricist’ reaction against the traditional theory of probability. It is argued, instead, that there was no unified ‘British school’ of frequentism during the nineteenth century. Where Ellis arrived at frequentism from a metaphysical idealist transformation of probability theory’s mathematical calculations, Venn did so on the basis…Read more