## The Molyneaux Problem

The Molyneaux Problem is a long-standing Philosophical problem due to John Locke which states the following:

"If a man born blind is taught how to differentiate between different solids by touch, is it possible that this person, upon regaining sight, will be able to differentiate between them without touching them?"

This problem has been tackled in a number of ways, but never actually analyzed in practice. It seems to be clear that the contrapositive is false: There exist two objects, unable to be differentiated by a person with sight, which can be differentiated by touch if the same person is blindfolded, a test which can be accomplished by textural changes. This test is more general than Locke's question.

However this question is more subtle and the list of modifiers associated with the question are not easily reversed. A potential solution may be arrived at by attempting a contradiction: finding an object which can easily be differentiated by touch but not by sight, by anyone.

This question has been pored over by myself and Joey McDonald (NYU), but required more insight. It seems mathematically possible to construct such an object using approximations, but practically challenging.

"If a man born blind is taught how to differentiate between different solids by touch, is it possible that this person, upon regaining sight, will be able to differentiate between them without touching them?"

This problem has been tackled in a number of ways, but never actually analyzed in practice. It seems to be clear that the contrapositive is false: There exist two objects, unable to be differentiated by a person with sight, which can be differentiated by touch if the same person is blindfolded, a test which can be accomplished by textural changes. This test is more general than Locke's question.

However this question is more subtle and the list of modifiers associated with the question are not easily reversed. A potential solution may be arrived at by attempting a contradiction: finding an object which can easily be differentiated by touch but not by sight, by anyone.

This question has been pored over by myself and Joey McDonald (NYU), but required more insight. It seems mathematically possible to construct such an object using approximations, but practically challenging.