Tarski's problem and pfaffian functions

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This chapter discusses Tarski's problem and presents Pfaffian functions. Tarski's theorem establishes a link between the algebraic–analytic structure of the real field and its logical properties. The Renaissance gave the isomorphism between addition and multiplication: multiplying (positive) reals amounts to adding their logarithms. The (graph of) the exponential function is not semi-algebraic, so the system of semi-algebraic sets is missing a fundamental connection between its two generating operations. The remarkable finiteness properties of semi-algebraic sets are desirable. These finiteness phenomena are consequences of 0-minimality. Pfaffian functions are real analytic functions defined on certain cells called “Pfaffian cells”, and they satisfy differential equations of a certain form. The partial derivatives of a Pfaffian function on an open cell are Pfaffian, and the restriction of a Pfaffian function to a Pfaffian subcell of its domain is Pfaffian.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)59-90
Number of pages32
JournalStudies in Logic and the Foundations of Mathematics
Issue numberC
StatePublished - Jan 1986
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Logic


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