Fuzzy logic is a form of many-valued logic in which the truth values of variables may be any real number between 0 and 1. By contrast, in Boolean logic, the truth values of variables may only be the integer values 0 or 1. Fuzzy logic has been employed to handle the concept of partial truth, where the truth value may range between completely true and completely false. Furthermore, when linguistic variables are used, these degrees may be managed by specific (membership) functions.

The term fuzzy logic was introduced with the 1965 proposal of fuzzy set theory by Lotfi Zadeh. Fuzzy logic had however been studied since the 1920s, as infinite-valued logic—notably by Łukasiewicz and Tarski.

Fuzzy logic has been applied to many fields, from control theory to artificial intelligence.

Overview

Classical logic only permits conclusions which are either true or false. However, there are also propositions with variable answers, such as one might find when asking a group of people to identify a color. In such instances, the truth appears as the result of reasoning from inexact or partial knowledge in which the sampled answers are mapped on a spectrum.

Humans and animals often operate using fuzzy evaluations in many everyday situations. In the case where someone is tossing an object into a container from a distance, the person does not compute exact values for the object weight, density, distance, direction, container height and width, and air resistance to determine the force and angle to toss the object. Instead the person instinctively applies quick “fuzzy” estimates, based upon previous experience, to determine what output values of force, direction and vertical angle to use to make the toss.

Both degrees of truth and probabilities range between 0 and 1 and hence may seem similar at first, but fuzzy logic uses degrees of truth as a mathematical model of vagueness, while probability is a mathematical model of ignorance.

Take, for example, the concepts of “empty” and “full”. The meaning of each of them can be represented by a certain fuzzy set. The concept of emptiness would be subjective and thus would depend on the observer or designer. A 100 ml glass containing 30 ml of water may be defined as being 0.7 empty and 0.3 full, but another designer might, equally well, design a set membership function where the glass would be considered full for all values down to 50 ml.

Applying truth values

A basic application might characterize various sub-ranges of a continuous variable. For instance, a temperature measurement for anti-lock brakes might have several separate membership functions defining particular temperature ranges needed to control the brakes properly. Each function maps the same temperature value to a truth value in the 0 to 1 range. These truth values can then be used to determine how the brakes should be controlled.

Fuzzy logic temperature

In this image, the meanings of the expressions cold, warm, and hot are represented by functions mapping a temperature scale. A point on that scale has three “truth values”—one for each of the three functions. The vertical line in the image represents a particular temperature that the three arrows (truth values) gauge. Since the red arrow points to zero, this temperature may be interpreted as “not hot”. The orange arrow (pointing at 0.2) may describe it as “slightly warm” and the blue arrow (pointing at 0.8) “fairly cold”.

Linguistic variables

While variables in mathematics usually take numerical values, in fuzzy logic applications non-numeric values are often used to facilitate the expression of rules and facts.

A linguistic variable such as age may accept values such as young and its antonym old. Because natural languages do not always contain enough value terms to express a fuzzy value scale, it is common practice to modify linguistic values with adjectives or adverbs. For example, we can use the hedges rather and somewhat to construct the additional values rather old or somewhat young.

Fuzzification operations can map mathematical input values into fuzzy membership functions. And the opposite de-fuzzifying operations can be used to map a fuzzy output membership functions into a “crisp” output value that can be then used for decision or control purposes.

Forming a consensus of inputs and fuzzy rules

Since the fuzzy system output is a consensus of all of the inputs and all of the rules, fuzzy logic systems can be well behaved when input values are not available or are not trustworthy. Weightings can be optionally added to each rule in the rulebase and weightings can be used to regulate the degree to which a rule affects the output values. These rule weightings can be based upon the priority, reliability or consistency of each rule. These rule weightings may be static or can be changed dynamically, even based upon the output from other rules.

Process

  1. Fuzzify all input values into fuzzy membership functions.
  2. Execute all applicable rules in the rulebase to compute the fuzzy output functions.
  3. De-fuzzify the fuzzy output functions to get “crisp” output values.

Synthesis of fuzzy logic functions given in tabular form

Fuzzy logic function of Zadeh takes the value of one of its arguments or a negation of an argument. Thus, a fuzzy logic function can be given by a choice table where all the variants of ordering of arguments and their negations are listed. For example, a row of a choice table of a two arguments function can look as follows:





x

1




x

2







x
¯




2







x
¯




1


:

x

2




{\displaystyle x_{1}\leq x_{2}\leq {\bar {x}}_{2}\leq {\bar {x}}_{1}:x_{2}}

However, an arbitrary choice table does not always define a fuzzy logic function. In the paper, a criterion has been formulated to recognize whether a given choice table defines a fuzzy logic function and a simple algorithm of fuzzy logic function synthesis has been proposed based on introduced concepts of constituents of minimum and maximum. A fuzzy logic function represents a disjunction of constituents of minimum, where a constituent of minimum is a conjunction of variables of the current area greater than or equal to the function value in this area (to the right of the function value in the inequality, including the function value). For the above example row, the constituent of minimum is





x

2






x
¯




2






x
¯




1




{\displaystyle x_{2}{\bar {x}}_{2}{\bar {x}}_{1}}

.

Early applications

Many of the early successful applications of fuzzy logic were implemented in Japan. The first notable application was on the high-speed train in Sendai, in which fuzzy logic was able to improve the economy, comfort, and precision of the ride. It has also been used in recognition of hand written symbols in Sony pocket computers, flight aid for helicopters, controlling of subway systems in order to improve driving comfort, precision of halting, and power economy, improved fuel consumption for automobiles, single-button control for washing machines, automatic motor control for vacuum cleaners with recognition of surface condition and degree of soiling, and prediction systems for early recognition of earthquakes through the Institute of Seismology Bureau of Meteorology, Japan.

Example

Hard science with IF-THEN rules

Fuzzy set theory defines fuzzy operators on fuzzy sets. The problem in applying this is that the appropriate fuzzy operator may not be known. For example, the logic for a simple temperature regulator that uses a fan might look like this:

IF temperature IS very cold THEN stop fan
IF temperature IS cold THEN fan speed is slow
IF temperature IS warm THEN fan speed is moderate
IF temperature IS hot THEN fan speed is high

Using this rulebase and the previous image, we would expect the output fan speed to be a combination of zero and moderate, which would evaluated as some degree of slow when the input value is a combination of cold and warm and not hot. The fan speed will continue to get slower as the input temperature gets colder until the input temperature is 100% cold, 0% warm and 0% hot, at which point the output fan speed will be zero. As the temperature input gets warmer and hotter, the output fan speed will continue to get faster until the input temperature is 0% cold, 0% warm and 100% hot, at which point the fan speed output will be high.

If the fuzzy membership functions cover 100% of the input variable domain, then it can be proven that the behavior of the fuzzy system is fully deterministic over the entire input domain and nowhere ambiguous. This determinism is very important for use in control and decision systems.

There is no “ELSE”—all of the rules are evaluated, because the temperature might be “cold” and “normal” at the same time to different degrees.

The AND, OR, and NOT operators of Boolean logic exist in fuzzy logic, usually defined as the minimum, maximum, and complement; when they are defined this way, they are called the Zadeh operators. So for the fuzzy variables x and y:

NOT x = (1 - truth(x))
x AND y = minimum(truth(x), truth(y))
x OR y = maximum(truth(x), truth(y))

There are also other operators, more linguistic in nature, called hedges that can be applied. These are generally adverbs such as very, or somewhat, which modify the meaning of a set using a mathematical formula.

Define with multiply

x AND y = x*y
x OR y = 1-(1-x)*(1-y) = x+y-x*y

1-(1-x)*(1-y) comes from this:

x OR y = NOT( AND( NOT(x), NOT(y) ) )
x OR y = NOT( AND(1-x, 1-y) )
x OR y = NOT( (1-x)*(1-y) )
x OR y = 1-(1-x)*(1-y)

Define with sigmoid

Fuzzy sets can be defined using the sigmoid function.

sigmoid(x)=1/(1+e^-x)
sigmoid(x)+sigmoid(-x) = 1
(sigmoid(x)+sigmoid(-x))*(sigmoid(y)+sigmoid(-y))*(sigmoid(z)+sigmoid(-z)) = 1

Logical analysis

In mathematical logic, there are several formal systems of “fuzzy logic”; most of them belong among so-called t-norm fuzzy logic.

Propositional fuzzy logics

The most important propositional fuzzy logics are:

  • Monoidal t-norm-based propositional fuzzy logic MTL is an axiomatization of logic where conjunction is defined by a left continuous t-norm and implication is defined as the residuum of the t-norm. Its models correspond to MTL-algebras that are pre-linear commutative bounded integral residuated lattices.
  • Basic propositional fuzzy logic BL is an extension of MTL logic where conjunction is defined by a continuous t-norm, and implication is also defined as the residuum of the t-norm. Its models correspond to BL-algebras.
  • Łukasiewicz fuzzy logic is the extension of basic fuzzy logic BL where standard conjunction is the Łukasiewicz t-norm. It has the axioms of basic fuzzy logic plus an axiom of double negation, and its models correspond to MV-algebras.
  • Gödel fuzzy logic is the extension of basic fuzzy logic BL where conjunction is Gödel t-norm. It has the axioms of BL plus an axiom of idempotence of conjunction, and its models are called G-algebras.
  • Product fuzzy logic is the extension of basic fuzzy logic BL where conjunction is product t-norm. It has the axioms of BL plus another axiom for cancellativity of conjunction, and its models are called product algebras.
  • Fuzzy logic with evaluated syntax (sometimes also called Pavelka’s logic), denoted by EVŁ, is a further generalization of mathematical fuzzy logic. While the above kinds of fuzzy logic have traditional syntax and many-valued semantics, in EVŁ is evaluated also syntax. This means that each formula has an evaluation. Axiomatization of EVŁ stems from Łukasziewicz fuzzy logic. A generalization of classical Gödel completeness theorem is provable in EVŁ.

Predicate fuzzy logics

These extend the above-mentioned fuzzy logics by adding universal and existential quantifiers in a manner similar to the way that predicate logic is created from propositional logic. The semantics of the universal (resp. existential) quantifier in t-norm fuzzy logics is the infimum (resp. supremum) of the truth degrees of the instances of the quantified subformula.

Decidability issues for fuzzy logic

The notions of a “decidable subset” and “recursively enumerable subset” are basic ones for classical mathematics and classical logic. Thus the question of a suitable extension of them to fuzzy set theory is a crucial one. A first proposal in such a direction was made by E.S. Santos by the notions of fuzzy Turing machine, Markov normal fuzzy algorithm and fuzzy program (see Santos 1970). Successively, L. Biacino and G. Gerla argued that the proposed definitions are rather questionable. For example, in one shows that the fuzzy Turing machines are not adequate for fuzzy language theory since there are natural fuzzy languages intuitively computable that cannot be recognized by a fuzzy Turing Machine. Then, they proposed the following definitions. Denote by Ü the set of rational numbers in [0,1]. Then a fuzzy subset s : S







{\displaystyle \rightarrow }

[0,1] of a set S is recursively enumerable if a recursive map h : S×N







{\displaystyle \rightarrow }

Ü exists such that, for every x in S, the function h(x,n) is increasing with respect to n and s(x) = lim h(x,n). We say that s is decidable if both s and its complement –s are recursively enumerable. An extension of such a theory to the general case of the L-subsets is possible (see Gerla 2006). The proposed definitions are well related with fuzzy logic. Indeed, the following theorem holds true (provided that the deduction apparatus of the considered fuzzy logic satisfies some obvious effectiveness property).

Theorem. Any axiomatizable fuzzy theory is recursively enumerable. In particular, the fuzzy set of logically true formulas is recursively enumerable in spite of the fact that the crisp set of valid formulas is not recursively enumerable, in general. Moreover, any axiomatizable and complete theory is decidable.

It is an open question to give supports for a “Church thesis” for fuzzy mathematics, the proposed notion of recursive enumerability for fuzzy subsets is the adequate one. To this aim, an extension of the notions of fuzzy grammar and fuzzy Turing machine should be necessary. Another open question is to start from this notion to find an extension of Gödel’s theorems to fuzzy logic.

Fuzzy databases

Once fuzzy relations are defined, it is possible to develop fuzzy relational databases. The first fuzzy relational database, FRDB, appeared in Maria Zemankova’s dissertation (1983). Later, some other models arose like the Buckles-Petry model, the Prade-Testemale Model, the Umano-Fukami model or the GEFRED model by J.M. Medina, M.A. Vila et al.

Fuzzy querying languages have been defined, such as the SQLf by P. Bosc et al. and the FSQL by J. Galindo et al. These languages define some structures in order to include fuzzy aspects in the SQL statements, like fuzzy conditions, fuzzy comparators, fuzzy constants, fuzzy constraints, fuzzy thresholds, linguistic labels etc.

Comparison to probability

Fuzzy logic and probability address different forms of uncertainty. While both fuzzy logic and probability theory can represent degrees of certain kinds of subjective belief, fuzzy set theory uses the concept of fuzzy set membership, i.e., how much a variable is in a set (there is not necessarily any uncertainty about this degree), and probability theory uses the concept of subjective probability, i.e., how probable is it that a variable is in a set (it either entirely is or entirely is not in the set in reality, but there is uncertainty around whether it is or is not). The technical consequence of this distinction is that fuzzy set theory relaxes the axioms of classical probability, which are themselves derived from adding uncertainty, but not degree, to the crisp true/false distinctions of classical Aristotelian logic.

Bruno de Finetti controversially argues that only one kind of mathematical uncertainty, probability, is needed, and thus fuzzy logic is superfluous. However, Bart Kosko shows in Fuzziness vs. Probability that probability theory is a subtheory of fuzzy logic, as questions of degrees of belief in mutually-exclusive set membership in probability theory can be represented as certain cases of non-mutually-exclusive graded membership in fuzzy theory. In that context, he also derives Bayes’ theorem from the concept of fuzzy subsethood. Lotfi A. Zadeh argues that fuzzy logic is different in character from probability, and is not a replacement for it. He fuzzified probability to fuzzy probability and also generalized it to possibility theory. (cf.)

More generally, fuzzy logic is one of many different extensions to classical logic intended to deal with issues of uncertainty outside of the scope of classical logic, the inapplicability of probability theory in many domains, and the paradoxes of Dempster-Shafer theory.

Relation to ecorithms

Computational theorist Leslie Valiant uses the term ecorithms to describe how many less exact systems and techniques like fuzzy logic (and “less robust” logic) can be applied to learning algorithms. Valiant essentially redefines machine learning as evolutionary. In general use, ecorithms are algorithms that learn from their more complex environments (hence eco-) to generalize, approximate and simplify solution logic. Like fuzzy logic, they are methods used to overcome continuous variables or systems too complex to completely enumerate or understand discretely or exactly. Ecorithms and fuzzy logic also have the common property of dealing with possibilities more than probabilities, although feedback and feed forward, basically stochastic weights, are a feature of both when dealing with, for example, dynamical systems.

Compensatory fuzzy logic

Compensatory fuzzy logic (CFL) is a branch of fuzzy logic with modified rules for conjunction and disjunction. When the truth value of one component of a conjunction or disjunction is increased or decreased, the other component is decreased or increased to compensate. This increase or decrease in truth value may be offset by the increase or decrease in another component. An offset may be blocked when certain thresholds are met. Proponents claim that CFL allows for better computational semantic behaviors.http://web.mit.edu/6.863/www/fall2012/projects/writeups/semantic-similarity-betweenverbs.pdf

Compensatory Fuzzy Logic consists of four continuous operators: conjunction (c); disjunction (d); fuzzy strict order (or); and negation (n). The conjunction is the geometric mean and its dual as conjunctive and disjunctive operators.