On the Behavior of True and False

Minds and Machines 22 (1):1-24 (2012)
Abstract
Uzquiano (Analysis 70:39–44, 2010 ) showed that the Hardest Logic Puzzle Ever ( HLPE ) [in its amended form due to Rabern and Rabern (Analysis 68:105–112, 2008 )] has a solution in only two questions. Uzquiano concludes his paper by noting that his solution strategy naturally suggests a harder variation of the puzzle which, as he remarks, he does not know how to solve in two questions. Wheeler and Barahona (J Philos Logic, to appear, 2011 ) formulated a three question solution to Uzquiano’s puzzle and gave an information theoretic argument to establish that a two question solution for Uzquiano’s puzzle does not exist. However, their argument crucially relies on a certain conception of what it means to answer self-referential yes–no questions truly and falsely . We propose an alternative such conception which, as we show, allows one to solve Uzquiano’s puzzle in two questions. The solution strategy adopted suggests an even harder variation of Uzquiano’s puzzle which, as we will show, can also be solved in two questions. Just as all previous solutions to versions of HLPE , our solution is presented informally. The second part of the paper investigates the prospects of formally representing solutions to HLPE by exploiting theories of truth
Keywords Hardest logic puzzle ever  Self-reference  Truth
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    References found in this work BETA
    George Boolos (1996). The Hardest Logic Puzzle Ever. The Harvard Review of Philosophy 6 (1):62-65.
    Haim Gaifman (1992). Pointers to Truth. Journal of Philosophy 89 (5):223-261.

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