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The game of logic Paperback – August 19, 2010

2.8 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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About the Author

Lewis Carroll was the pen name of Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, an English writer, mathematician, Anglican deacon, and photographer. Best known for his classics Alice s Adventures in Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass, and Jabberwocky, Carroll was also an accomplished inventor who created an early version of what is today known as Scrabble. The publication of Alice s Adventures in Wonderland in 1865 brought Carroll a certain level of fame, although he continued to supplement his income through his work as a mathematics tutor at Christ Church, Oxford College. Carroll s whimsical characters and nonsensical verse resonated with Victorian-era readers, and his books continue to be enjoyed by numerous modern societies dedicated to his promoting his works.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Nabu Press (August 19, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1177507285
  • ISBN-13: 978-1177507288
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.2 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,418,005 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By T. Simons VINE VOICE on August 23, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a short little text Carroll wrote to introduce children to logical reasoning, specifically set logic of the "Some Cretans are Liars" variety. At the time, it was probably an excellent work for this purpose. There are two reasons why it's not that great a text for that today, though, at least not in this kindle edition.

The first is that Carroll's tone here has aged pretty badly. To begin with, his overall tone is at times painfully precious, in a way that would probably put off any modern child reading this text; beyond that, the examples he chooses are. . curious by modern standards -- for example, the second set of extended examples centers around the two propositions ""All Dragons are uncanny" and "all Scotchmen are canny."

The bigger problem is that the whole mechanism of the book revolves around a square grid diagram that simply doesn't translate in this kindle edition -- it just appears as a set of ||||'s next to each other. Which makes the book's arguments comparatively difficult to follow, for all Carroll's wit and charm.

Those two issues aside, Carroll's text does a good job of explaining basic logical theory in a way that children can understand. But, unfortunately, this edition is more a historical curiosity than it is anything else.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Kindle version is a great disappointment, due to the flagrant abuse of the formating that is essential to Carrol's presentation. My "for fee" Kindle books do respect formatting and they are a joy. Indeed, when color is not an issue, I prefer Kindle to print (variable font, auto dictionary, search, etc.). Perhaps I am old fashioned, but for me, "for free" does not excuse sloppy performance. This sloppiness carries over to many of the "for free" poetry books as well, rendering them worthless as well.

In my mind, this tarnishes the whole Kindle experience. What is worse, the Amazon reviews (usually a powerful guide to quality or lack thereof) are dragged in as co-conspirators. To wit: The Game of Logic is a delightful book and the print edition certainly deserves several stars. The Kindle edition is a mess, as I and others have explained. Averaging the star ratings for the book with the star ratings for this Kindle edition provides deceptive guidance. I refrain from judging if this deception is intentional or just further sloppiness. I had come to have higher expectations of Amazon and of Kindle Books. This experience is a bit of a thud.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
_The Game of Logic_ carefully guides you through the initial stages of logic and provides excellent preparation for _Symbolic Logic_, Carroll's more advanced book.

Using a clever set of box diagrams and colored counters, you'll discover how to understand and manipulate the four categorical propositions: A-propositions ("All X are Y"), I-propositions ("Some X are Y"), E-propositions ("No X are Y"), and O-propositions ("Some X are not-Y"). You'll begin by learning how to transfer the propositions to the box diagrams and how to read the propositions from the box diagrams, and then you'll use these skills to process syllogisms (and pseudo-syllogisms). I was especially impressed with how you can use the two diagrams to collapse the middle term(s) in a syllogism and how logical fallacies play out on the diagrams. Even though I was familiar with the material, I still found Carroll's game intellectually stimulating and loads of fun.

What's amusing is how Carroll seems to realize that his logic game isn't going to be a crowd hit (not that it was intended as such). Probably with a resigned sense of futility, he still proceeds to drum up whatever excitement he can with a humor that can be interpreted as hilariously self-deprecating. Thus he mentions that his game requires only one player: "I am not aware of any Game that can be played with LESS than this number." He contrasts that with cricket: "How much easier it is, when you want to play a Game, to find ONE Player than twenty-two." He says his game provides a little instruction as well as amusement and rushes to defend this minor inconvenience: "But is there any great harm in THAT, so long as you get plenty of amusement?
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read The Game of Logic as a kid, so I bought it for sentimental reasons as well as to read it again, as I remember it was fun. Plus, my son may enjoy it in a few years, too.

Before buying the paperback, I read all the comments here on the poor layout of the tables in the Kindle edition, but I am sad to say that the print edition is only marginally better. I'd like to send this book back, but Amazon doesn't want it even with a refund. I agree, it's more trouble than it's worth.

Tables are composed of ASCII characters pipe and underscore, with atrocious layout errors such as the mixture of fixed- and variable-width fonts, tables continuing on the next page, misalignment due to section numbers being inserted in the MIDDLE of the table, and the general ugliness of these illustrations.

Very disappointed, and putting HardPress Publishing on my dead-to-me list.

If you want to see what these tables were supposed to look like, check out Google Books' free PDF scan of Carroll's Symbolic Logic.
I just ordered this one as a replacement (looks like the tables are well-set in this version):

Symbolic Logic and the Game of Logic (Dover Recreational Math)
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