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Introduction to Logic, 2nd Edition by Eric Kao, Michael Genesereth

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CHAPTER 4

Propositional Proofs

4.1 INTRODUCTION

Checking logical entailment with truth tables has the merit of being conceptually simple. However, it is not always the most practical method. The number of truth assignments of a language grows exponentially with the number of logical constants. When the number of logical constants in a propositional language is large, it may be impossible to process its truth table.

Proof methods provide an alternative way of checking logical entailment that addresses this problem. In many cases, it is possible to create a proof of a conclusion from a set of premises that is much smaller than the truth table for the language; moreover, it is often possible to find such proofs with less work than is necessary to ...

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