inference

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inference

1. any process of reasoning from premises to a conclusion
2. Logic the specific mode of reasoning used

Inference

 

the mental activity that makes a connection between disparate thoughts, linking them in a set of premises and conclusions. It is by inference that the norms and categories of such connections, which are inherently present in the social or individual consciousness, are expressed on the level of “inner speech.” Indeed, these norms and categories themselves—in any given instance—constitute the psychological basis of inference; when they coincide with the rules and laws of logic, the inference is judged by its result to be equivalent to logical deduction, although generally speaking there is a qualitative difference between logical deduction and inference.

Logical deduction, as distinct from inference, rests on “external means”; it operates through the verbal (symbolic) recording of thoughts or through their formalization—that is, the codification of thoughts and representation of their connections by one or another formal language or system, such as calculus—with the goal of reducing to a minimum the subconscious, enthymematic, and elliptical elements of deduction and translating abstract or “convoluted” thought processes into the language of “images.” Furthermore, the “legitimacy” of inference need not necessarily be determined by logical norms. For example, an incomplete induction is precisely an inference and not a logical deduction, inasmuch as the connection between premises and conclusions in induction has a factual and psychological basis (as expressed in the well-known norms of generalization) but lacks a logical basis—that is, lacks those formal rules by which thinking proceeds from the particular to the general.

A further distinction is drawn between inference and reasoning: the latter is always a consciously willed mental activity, while an inference, in principle at least, can be both involuntary and an act of the subconscious.

M. M. NOVOSELOV

inference

(logic)
The logical process by which new facts are derived from known facts by the application of inference rules.

See also symbolic inference, type inference.
References in periodicals archive ?
Platina Resources Limited ("The Company") announces an updated Inferred Mineral Resource for the 100% owned Skaergaard Gold & PGM Project ("Skaergaard") in Greenland (Figure 1).
Chris Rockingham, vice-president of business development and exploration, says the plan will be to bring as much of that inferred into a higher confidence level that has been measured and indicated.
The court announced its adoption of the inferred intent rule in Pennsylvania for liability insurance cases involving the sexual abuse of a child by an insured adult.
Observations of the differences between pre-and post evaluations mean scores for the Inferred Self-Concept Scale revealed significant gains in three of the experimental classes concerning teacher rating of self-concept.
The reader is cautioned that, while the Company expects to convert the greater part of the Inferred resources to Measured and Indicated at a similar grade, the process is preliminary in nature and Inferred resources are considered geologically speculative.
These Inferred Mineral Resources will only become available for mining on the
Therefore, where a supplier encourages known illegal drug traffickers to purchase supplies that ordinarily are difficult to obtain and often are used in the production of illegal drugs, it can be reasonably inferred that he is implicitly promoting the illegal drug enterprise.
The total Inferred and Indicated Resource for the Nama Project now stands at 953.
He adds that the near-spherical shape of dark matter inferred by the researchers may challenge theorists, who have postulated that galactic dark matter has a far flatter shape.
development and drilling to bring some or all of the Inferred mineral