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Wilhelm Friedrich Ackermann (29 March 1896 – 24 December 1962) was a German mathematician best known for the Ackermann function, an important example in the theory of computation. Ackermann was born in Herscheid
Herscheid
municipality, Germany, and was awarded a Ph.D. by the University of Göttingen
University of Göttingen
in 1925 for his thesis Begründung des "tertium non datur" mittels der Hilbertschen Theorie der Widerspruchsfreiheit, which was a consistency proof of arithmetic apparently without full Peano induction (although it did use e.g. induction over the length of proofs). From 1929 until 1948, he taught at the Arnoldinum Gymnasium in Burgsteinfurt, and then at Lüdenscheid until 1961. He was also a corresponding member of the Akademie der Wissenschaften (Academy of Sciences) in Göttingen, and was an honorary professor at the University of Münster. In 1928, Ackermann helped David Hilbert
David Hilbert
turn his 1917 – 22 lectures on introductory mathematical logic into a text, Principles of Mathematical Logic. This text contained the first exposition ever of first-order logic, and posed the problem of its completeness and decidability (Entscheidungsproblem). Ackermann went on to construct consistency proofs for set theory (1937), full arithmetic (1940), type-free logic (1952), and a new axiomatization of set theory (1956). Although Ackermann did not choose a university career and rather continued as a high school teacher, he was continually engaged in research and published many contributions to the foundations of mathematics until the end of his life. He died in Lüdenscheid, Germany. See also[edit]

Ackermann coding Ackermann ordinal Ackermann set theory Ackermann function Inverse Ackermann function

Bibliography[edit]

1928. "On Hilbert's construction of the real numbers" in Jean van Heijenoort, ed., 1967. From Frege to Gödel: A Source Book in Mathematical Logic, 1879-1931. Harvard Univ. Press: 493-507. 1940. Zur Widerspruchsfreiheit der Zahlentheorie, Mathematische Annalen, vol. 117, pp 162–194. 1950 (1928). (with David Hilbert) Principles of Mathematical Logic. Chelsea. Translation of 1938 German edition. 1954. Solvable cases of the decision problem. North Holland.

External links[edit]

O'Connor, John J.; Robertson, Edmund F., "Wilhelm Ackermann", MacTutor History of Mathematics
Mathematics
archive, University of St Andrews . Wilhelm Ackermann
Wilhelm Ackermann
at the Mathematics
Mathematics
Genealogy Project Erich Friedman's page on Ackermann at Stetson University Hermes, In memoriam WILHELM ACKERMANN 1896-1962 (PDF, 945 KB) Author profile in the database zbMATH

Authority control

WorldCat Identities VIAF: 121826940 LCCN: n88676815 ISNI: 0000 0000 8385 3527 GND: 116006080 SELIBR: 287631 SUDOC: 076579603 BNF: cb16183913c (data) MGP: 7396 NDL: 0043

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