Concept Language: Multiple Variables

Phrases have many variables, and the values of these variables need to be able to have mutually interacting constraints. As a stepping stone towards this, let us define concepts over not only single natural numbers, but pairs, triples, etc., of natural numbers. These concepts will define sub-sets of N, N x N, N x N x N, etc.

An appropriate visualization is an n-dimensional figure demarcated into blocks, with some of these blocks being white (satisfies the concept) and others being black (does not satisfy the concept).

So let us consider a concept over variables x, y, z, …

As before, the two primitive concepts are Y and N.

Then for each of the variables we have a sequencing operator: x[C1, C2, …], y[C1, C2, …], z[C1, C2, …], … To make more sense of this, let us consider a two-dimensional concept with variables x and y. Then x[C1, C2, …] means “horizontal sequence,” and y[C1, C2, …] means “vertical sequence.” By combining horizontal and vertical sequences, we can make arbitrary two-dimensional patterns.

Then for each of the variables we have a repetition operator: x(C * n), y(C * n), z(C * n), … Only now n does not have to be a constant; it can be a complex expression referring to any variables other than the variable which the repetition operator is over. We will say that this complex expression is a function which can use the following syntax:

* Constants and variables.
* Operators: +, -, *, /, %.
* Conditionals: if (C1) { E1 } else if (C2) { E2 } … else { En }

The conditionals are composed of comparisons (=, <, <=) joined by boolean operators (and, or, xor, not).

If it’s less confusing, we can also factor out the determinants of the three variables. Then the concept has separate expressions for each variable. Those expressions consist of Y/N, sequences, and repetitions whose coefficients are functions over the variables.

Performing analysis on these concepts is a straightforward extension of the method given for one-dimensional concepts.

Performing synthesis to determine a value for one variable is straightforward if we already have fixed values for all of the other variables. If we don’t have such fixed values, then things are trickier.

One solution is to restrict the variables so that they are computed in a specific order. So if we have variables a, b, c, d, in computing a we can refer to b, c, d, in computing b to c, d, in computing c d to d, in computing d to nothing. Then performing synthesis is straightforward. This restriction is probably acceptable.

  1. Concept Language Redux « antitheology

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