(return to above)   (See the follow-up with responses by two other mathematicians)

Date: Mon, 03 Oct 2016
To: "Redactie NAW"
From: Thomas Cool / Thomas Colignatus
Subject: RE: Mogelijke bijdrage: "An algebraic approach to the derivative"

Dear Mr. XYZ,

I have read the referee report. My rejoinder:

(1) Where the referee claims that the discussion about division is confused with algorithmic aspects, my exposition however holds that the traditional approach is confused, and that there is more clarity in distinguishing traditional and algebraic approaches. Thus, the referee misrepresents my argument. The example taken from a ring of polynomials is irrelevant as I clearly refer to the Reals, which is a Field, where it matters whether the denominator is zero or not. This misrepresentation is disguisting.

(2) The question of the derivative of Sin[x] is discussed in "Conquest of the Plane", one of the references, and nicely solved in the new manner. The approach uses logic and no limits. It should have been simple to check that. The referee could have asked me but I received no such question. It is rather insulting that it is suggested that I would not have thought about Sin[x].

(3) On Abs[x], my training at Groningen in 1974 was that there is a left derivative and a right derivative, and that these differ, whence the derivative at 0 is undefined. The new approach suggests Sgn[x]. It is curious that the referee claims that it already is Sgn[x]. "Differentiable" and "having a derivative" are synonimous. I will not use SageMath as an authority but these definitions are standard. The problem that the referee sees is another error on his or her part.


I hope that you agree that my rejoinder is to the point. A suggestion is to ask the referee for a reply.

PM 1. I am actually amazed that you accepted this referee report. My impression is that you did not read the paper and fully relied on the false information that the referee provided. Is this true ? Let me ask you whether the editors actually read the paper, to be able to judge on the referee report.

PM 2. The quality of refereeing is so abysmal that I don't think that the referee will apologize. Every mathematician should be able to see that this is a fine paper. You better publish and see how the reactions will be. But let me await your response.

Kind regards,

Thomas Cool / Thomas Colignatus
Econometrician and teacher of mathematics

At 2016-10-03 Redactie NAW wrote:
Beste meneer Cool,

Ik heb inmiddels antwoord van de redactie. De redactie heeft uw stuk in
overweging genomen en voorgelegd aan een referent. Van de referent ontving
de redactie bijgaand rapport. De redactie is het eens met het oordeel van de
referent dat het stuk niet geplaatst kan worden in het NAW.

Het spijt me u te moeten teleurstellen.

Met vriendelijke groet,
Firstname XYZ
Eindredacteur NAW

> -----Oorspronkelijk bericht-----
> Van: Thomas Cool / Thomas Colignatus
> Verzonden: maandag 15 augustus 2016 15:39
> Aan: redactie [at] nieuwarchief.nl
> Onderwerp: Mogelijke bijdrage: "An algebraic approach to the derivative"
> Geachte redactie,
> Gaarne bied ik bijgaand artikel aan ter publicatie in NAW.
> Gangbaar werk ik in Word. Ik heb uw aanlevercondities gezien. Bij
> kan ik kijken of ik het in latex kan omzetten.
> Mijn hoop is dat het bij publicatie meteen online komt, en niet een jaar
hoeft te
> wachten.
> Met vriendelijke groet,
> Thomas Cool / Thomas Colignatus
> Econometrist (Groningen 1982) en leraar wiskunde (Leiden 2008)