- To develop a universal programming language.
- To define a theory of equivalence of computation processes. This would be

the basis for a theory of equivalence preserving transformations.
- To represent algorithms by symbolic expressions in such a way that significant

changes in the behavior represented by the algorithms are represented by

simple changes in the symbolic expressions.
- To represent computers as well as computations in a formalism that permits

a treatment of the relation between a computation and the computer that

carries out the computation.
- To give a quantitative theory of computation. For example to find a quantitative

measure of the size of a computation analogous to Shannon’s measure

of information

(Referencing a paper by McCarthy, quoted from a summary here)

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