Knowin’ Induction”

original version 1997 Dane Camp;

more words and music 1998-2004 Lawrence Mark Lesser (adapted with Camp’s permission)

How can you prove that a statement is true

For any counting number n?

‘Cause there’s no way you could try them all—

Why you could barely begin!

Is there a tool that can help us resolve

This infinite quand’ry we’re in?

 

CHORUS: The answer, my friend, is knowin’ induction;

The answer is knowin’ induction.

 

First you must find an initial case

For which the statement is true.

Then you must show that if it’s true for K,

Then K+1 must work, too!

Then all statements fall like dominoes

Tell me how did we score such a coup? (Repeat Chorus)

 

Once there was a renaissance man

Named Levi ben Gerson.

And it’s he who first did this kind of proof

Back in 1321!

You know how he showed a formula

Counted permutations (Repeat Chorus)

 

If I told you n times,

I told you n+1,

The answer is knowin’ induction!

return to Larry's www.math.utep.edu/Faculty/lesser/Mathemusician.html  page