Elementary, dear Watson!

Kaul, Manohar (2016) Elementary, dear Watson! ACM. p. 1.

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In “The Sign of Four", Sherlock Holmes 1 makes some very startling inferences about Watson’s whereabouts by informing Wat- son that he was at the Wigmore Street Post Office earlier that morn- ing. On further inquiry by Watson, Holmes explains that he com- bined (joined) the observation that “Watson’s shoes had a reddish mud on their instep", with the fact that “just opposite the Wigmore Post Office the pavement was freshly dug up to expose a similar reddish mud and it was so positioned that it would be challenging to enter the office without treading into the mud". Contrary to the popular belief that this is deduction , this method of reasoning is ac- tually an example of abductive inference . Abduction begins from the facts observed and then seeks the simplest hypothesis (“Oc- cam’s razor" 2 ) that best explains the facts, while deduction finds data to support a hypothesis.

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IITH Creators:
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Item Type: Article
Subjects: Computer science > Big Data Analytics
Divisions: Department of Computer Science & Engineering
Depositing User: Team Library
Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2017 04:48
Last Modified: 20 Sep 2017 11:16
URI: http://raiith.iith.ac.in/id/eprint/3003
Publisher URL: https://doi.org/10.475/123_4
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