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Keywords: Formal logic of automotive diagnostics theory of causation theory of logic theory of diagnosis diagnostics automotive diagnosis flow of events causation if a then b logical analysis reasons why John Stuart Mill philosophy logic logician theoretical

The Formal Logic Of Automobile Diagnostics
(Also Applicable To All Other Fields Of Diagnosis)

Including John Stuart Mill's "Methods Of Inductive Inference"

A Service Of AutomobileTechnician At Internet Church Of Christ - LoveAllPeople.org
Rev. Bill McGinnis is an ASE Certified Automobile Technician

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including step-by-step directions for solving each Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC).

If you are buy or selling a used car, perhaps you can use our FREE Automobile Bill Of Sale.

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Automobile Diagnostics can be quite complicated and intellectually challenging. For those who desire to get into the serious study of Logic, there is plenty of material available. Within the field of Logic, the study of Causality (Cause and Effect) is particularly important to Automobile Diagnostics.

In my opinion, the most authoritative source on Logic today is this textbook, which is the number-one college textbook on the science of Logic. Introduction to Logic

INTRODUCTION TO LOGIC also has an on-line companion Study Guide, which is here: Study Guide To INTRODUCTION TO LOGIC

Another excellent college text, with online tutorial, is David E. Kelly's THE ART OF REASONING. The Art of Reasoning

It also has an online tutorial: Online Tutorial - THE ART OF REASONING

The Importance Of John Stuart Mill's "Methods Of Inductive Inference"

The Study Guide (above) emphasizes the particular importance of Causal Reasoning (Causality) and John Stuart Mill's "Methods Of Inductive Inference."
 "There is no type of reasoning so pervasive, or so important, as causal 
reasoning, but no type of reasoning so eludes analysis. In this section, 
you will learn some of the reasons why casual reasoning is so difficult to 
formalize. First, you will explore the question of what is really meant 
when we talk about one event "causing" another; you will see that there 
are actually several possible interpretations of the word "cause." You 
will learn that "occurring together" is not sufficient to establish a 
causal connection between two events -- many events may occur together for 
all kinds of reasons which we wouldn't want to link with lines of 
causation. But if a high correlation between two events is not sufficient 
to establish causation, then what is? In spite of the difficulties 
inherent in this subject, philosophers have struggled to find an answer to 
this question. John Stuart Mill, in particular, has analyzed causal 
relationships in depth. He hoped to find a method which would allow us to 
discover new scientific hypotheses, and to prove them once they were 
found. You will be introduced to his five suggested models of causal 
reasoning: the Method of Agreement, the Method of Difference, the Joint 
Method of Agreement and Difference, the Method of Residues, and the Method 
of Concomitant Variation. All of J.S. Mill's expectations were not 
realized -- no inductive argument can be proved conclusively -- but J.S. 
Mill's methods constitute the best instruments for testing hypotheses we 
have." 

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John Stuart Mill's "Methods Of Inductive Inference"

NOTE: This is heavy sledding if you're not into 19th century philosphical discussions. Nevertheless, this is the classic summary, so I'm putting it here for you to see. Some of the links following will provide explanations and examples. I will not even try to improve upon them.

JOHN STUART MILL'S "METHODS OF INDUCTIVE INFERENCE"

THE METHOD OF AGREEMENT

"If two or more instances of the phenomenon under investigation have only one circumstance in common, the circumstance in which alone all the instances agree is the cause (or effect) of the given phenomenon."

THE METHOD OF DIFFERENCE

"If an instance in which the phenomenon under investigation occurs, and an instance in which it does not occur, have every circumstance in common save one, that one occurring only in the former: the circumstances in which alone the two instances differ is the effect, or the cause, or an indispensable part of the cause, of the phenomenon."

THE JOINT METHOD OF AGREEMENT AND DIFFERENCE

"If two or more instances in which the phenomenon occurs have only one circumstance in common, while two or more instances in which it does not occur have nothing in common save the absence of that circumstance: the circumstance in which alone the two sets differ is the effect, or cause, or an indispensable part of the cause, of the phenomenon."

THE METHOD OF RESIDUES

"Subduct from any phenomenon such part as is known by previous inductions to be the effect of certain antecedents, and the residue of the phenomenon is the effect of the remaining antecedents."

THE METHOD OF CONCOMITANT VARIATIONS

"Whatever phenomenon varies in any manner whenever another phenomenon varies in some particular manner, is either a cause or an effect of that phenomenon, or is connected with it through some fact of causation."

Other Sources Of Information About Causality

These will help explain Mill's "Methods Of Inductive Inference."

Source 1 Source 2 Source 3 Source 4 Source 5 Source 6 Source 7 Source 8 Source 9 Source 10

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Automotive Recalls And Technical Service Bulletins (TSB's)

Complete Links To All U. S. Government Websites

ALLDATA DIY - Detailed Information Online For Your Particular Car,
including step-by-step directions for solving each Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC).

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