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Computer Reliability and Public Policy: Limits of Knowledge of Computer-Based Systems*

  • James H. Fetzer (a1)

Perhaps no technological innovation has so dominated the second half of the twentieth century as has the introduction of the programmable computer. It is quite difficult if not impossible to imagine how contemporary affairs—in business and science, communications and transportation, governmental and military activities, for example—could be conducted without the use of computing machines, whose principal contribution has been to relieve us of the necessity for certain kinds of mental exertion. The computer revolution has reduced our mental labors by means of these machines, just as the Industrial Revolution reduced our physical labor by means of other machines.

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Yun Peng and James Reggia , Abductive Inference Models for Diagnostic Problem-Solving (New York: Springer-Verlag, 1990).

D. A. Waterman , A Guide to Expert Systems (Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, 1986).

James H. Fetzer , Scientific Knowledge (Dordrecht, The Netherlands: D. Reidel, 1981), ch. 1.

David Nelson , “Deductive Program Verification (A Practitioner's Commentary),” Minds and Machines, vol. 2, no. 3 (081992), pp. 283307

James H. Fetzer , “Philosophical Aspects of Program Verification,” Minds and Machines, vol. 1, no. 2 (051991), pp. 197216.

James H. Fetzer , “Program Verification: The Very Idea,” Communications of the ACM, vol. 31, no. 9 (091988), p. 1057.

C. A. R. Hoare , “An Axiomatic Basis for Computer Programming,” Communications of the ACM, vol. 12, no. 10 (101969), pp. 576–80 and 583

Alan Borning , “Computer System Reliability and Nuclear War,” Communications of the ACM, vol. 30, no. 2 (021987), pp. 112–31

B. W. Boehm , Software Engineering Economics (New York: Prentice-Hall, 1981).

Avra Cohn , “The Notion of Proof in Hardware Verification,” Journal of Automated Reasoning, vol. 5, no. 2 (061989), p. 132.

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Social Philosophy and Policy
  • ISSN: 0265-0525
  • EISSN: 1471-6437
  • URL: /core/journals/social-philosophy-and-policy
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