6
   

philosophy of science

 
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 09:16 am
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

Smile
Next !


Is that a bumper-sticker slogan too? Why don't you consider my arguments and try to learn something? You might even learn to like it. As Plato pointed out, medicine may be bitter, but it is good for you. Anyway, others can read my posts, and even if you are unable to understand them, others may be able to remember what Socrates advised: "Follow the argument wherever it goes".
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 09:21 am
@kennethamy,
Hemlock is in the post !
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 10:08 am
@fresco,
fresco wrote:

Hemlock is in the post !


And that means? That reason and argument are poison? I am not surprised that you should think so.
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 12:08 pm
@kennethamy,
Think a bit Ken. It's you who is following Socrates. I'm trying to help you all the way. Twisted Evil
0 Replies
 
SammDickens
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 02:08 pm
@talk72000,
talk72000 wrote:

Yes, I find many who locked philosophy into a liberal arts discipline and not include the tough courses like sciences and mathematics are deluding themselves if they think they can adequately address serious issues but instead focus on 'is time real ?' which is asinine.

What kinds of degrees do you have, talk?

Samm
0 Replies
 
SammDickens
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 02:11 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

talk72000 wrote:

Yes, I find many who locked philosophy into a liberal arts discipline and not include the tough courses like sciences and mathematics are deluding themselves if they think they can adequately address serious issues but instead focus on 'is time real ?' which is asinine.


Isn't the question, "Is time real" a serious issue? Are you saying that philosophical issues are not serious issue, or just what are you saying? Many people think that whether God exists is a serious issue. According to you, it doesn't seem to be. Some philosophers think that whether there is free will is a serious issue. You don't seem to think so. It may be that you are not the arbiter of the seriousness of issues. Have you ever seriously considered that possibility? Take the issue, for example, of whether only science deals with serious issues: is that a serious issue, in your view, and, if it is, is it one that can be settled by science? Actually, I have taken courses in both science and philosophy, and I have found both equally tough. As John Stuart Mill (who knew science as well as philosophy) writes, "Those who know only one side of an issue know little about that". I hope you don't find that too asinine.

While I'm asking, Ken, what kinds of degrees do you have? It gives me some perspective on this debate. I myself never finished college, and got a high school degree with some reluctance on their part I think. Very Happy

Samm
0 Replies
 
SammDickens
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 02:32 pm
@kennethamy,
Yea rah, Ken! I finally get to agree with you on something. Relevance is a subjective thing. I am not interested in cloning or the ethics of cloning, except as it applies to Sci-Fi and imagination. Let the people who know that crap discuss its ethics. I'm a little interested in eugenics because I also raise chickens. (That's a joke.)

Now I am interested in whether the idea of God is a realistic concept. I have read a good bit about cosmology, avoiding the deep math which makes no sense to me. I philosophize about cosmology. I ask where or what the big bang may have "come from". I ask what is the nature of space and time, matter and energy. Screw anyone who thinks I should not ponder such issues simply because I'm not a cosmologist. I can't not ponder such wonderful issues. And I'll freely post my opinions about them whether anyone cares for them or not.

You and I, Ken have discussed metaphysical and epistemological issues on these forums. We disagree a lot and get right mean about it at times. But I think we both enjoy the spirit of our battles and the challenge of communicating ideas effectively.

The world is not a science lab. Out here, we don't have to be qualified. We don't have to avoid error. We can say stupid things, and believe stupid things. And I doubt that Able2Know or any other forum would set its standards so high as to lock regular old working class people apart from the scholars.

So right on, Ken! I'm glad we can share a bit of common ground here.

Samm
SammDickens
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 02:38 pm
@wandeljw,
Is your name like J. W. Wandel? Or is it a Slavic name pronounced like "Von-del-hyoo" maybe? Or what? Just curious.

I like your posts. They're very short and to the point. Informative without the passion of someone pushing an agenda (as I so often do! Embarrassed ).

Thanks for your contributions.

Samm
0 Replies
 
SammDickens
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 02:46 pm
@talk72000,
A philosopher is not generally disadvantaged by limited math knowledge. I'm not sure that math is the divine language you may think it to be. I do not entirely trust anything that accepts infinity as an acceptable answer when its not even a number. Infinity is the math equivalent to "Hell! I don't know!"

I philosophically ponder a place beyond space and time and wonder what kind of existence might be there. Numbers are meaningless here where there is no number, no dimension, no differentiation. But I can still consider it as a metaphysical possibility.

Samm
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 04:04 pm
@SammDickens,
SammDickens wrote:

Yea rah, Ken! I finally get to agree with you on something. Relevance is a subjective thing. I am not interested in cloning or the ethics of cloning, except as it applies to Sci-Fi and imagination. Let the people who know that crap discuss its ethics. I'm a little interested in eugenics because I also raise chickens. (That's a joke.)

Now I am interested in whether the idea of God is a realistic concept. I have read a good bit about cosmology, avoiding the deep math which makes no sense to me. I philosophize about cosmology. I ask where or what the big bang may have "come from". I ask what is the nature of space and time, matter and energy. Screw anyone who thinks I should not ponder such issues simply because I'm not a cosmologist. I can't not ponder such wonderful issues. And I'll freely post my opinions about them whether anyone cares for them or not.

You and I, Ken have discussed metaphysical and epistemological issues on these forums. We disagree a lot and get right mean about it at times. But I think we both enjoy the spirit of our battles and the challenge of communicating ideas effectively.

The world is not a science lab. Out here, we don't have to be qualified. We don't have to avoid error. We can say stupid things, and believe stupid things. And I doubt that Able2Know or any other forum would set its standards so high as to lock regular old working class people apart from the scholars.

So right on, Ken! I'm glad we can share a bit of common ground here.

Samm


What is a "realistic concept"? Are you asking whether the concept of God has an object, or, in plain English, whether God exists? If that is what you are asking, then why not just ask it in English rather than in philosophese? It is philosophese that is the bane of philosophy.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 05:21 pm
@kennethamy,
The question of truth in religion is important as they claim it came from God and not from the intoxicating spirit. The truth of religion is their 'word of God'. It is religious propaganda. Jesus asks 'What is truth?' when accused of blasphemy. Jesus' version is that he is the prophisied messiah thus it is not blasphemy. It is religious debate on prophecies of the Bible. The truth of science and philosophy is to know the facts as they are so they can act accordingly. In science it would be to gauge the situation in order to plan further actions e.g. in a disaster such as the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. This is the same truth that politicians (politicians are practicing philosophers in the state affairs) need to marshall forces to take care of the disaster. These facts are no concern of the religions. Anyway it can be proven that the existence of God is improbable.
0 Replies
 
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 06:46 pm
@wandeljw,
wandeljw wrote:

Popper’s The Logic of Scientific Discovery was first published in 1935.

In a 1963 essay, Popper summarized his ideas on falsifiability:
Quote:

1. It is easy to obtain confirmations, or verifications, for nearly every theory — if we look for confirmations.
2. Confirmations should count only if they are the result of risky predictions; that is to say, if, unenlightened by the theory in question, we should have expected an event which was incompatible with the theory — an event which would have refuted the theory.
3. Every "good" scientific theory is a prohibition: it forbids certain things to happen. The more a theory forbids, the better it is.
4. A theory which is not refutable by any conceivable event is non-scientific. Irrefutability is not a virtue of a theory (as people often think) but a vice.
5. Every genuine test of a theory is an attempt to falsify it, or to refute it. Testability is falsifiability; but there are degrees of testability: some theories are more testable, more exposed to refutation, than others; they take, as it were, greater risks.
6. Confirming evidence should not count except when it is the result of a genuine test of the theory; and this means that it can be presented as a serious but unsuccessful attempt to falsify the theory. (I now speak in such cases of "corroborating evidence.")
7. Some genuinely testable theories, when found to be false, are still upheld by their admirers — for example by introducing ad hoc some auxiliary assumption, or by reinterpreting the theory ad hoc in such a way that it escapes refutation. Such a procedure is always possible, but it rescues the theory from refutation only at the price of destroying, or at least lowering, its scientific status. (I later described such a rescuing operation as a "conventionalist twist" or a "conventionalist stratagem.")


Popper added that the riskier the theory (the more exposed to refutation) -- the more interesting the theory will be.


Who cares whether a theory is interesting if it is false? What is so wonderful about a risky and false theory. What seems to me important about a theory is that it is true, not whether it is interesting. Interesting, but false does not seem to me to be an recommendation for adopting a theory. Does it to you? Truth is more important than being interesting. By a long shot.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Wed 14 Jul, 2010 06:56 pm
@kennethamy,
You miss the reality of the situation. When you first learned to walk I bet you crawled and hung on to furniture or whatever what handy or when you construct an essay it doesn't come out perfect straight from your mind likewise theory go thru a test period and work ou the kinks before they are finalized. You proof read your essay so likewise theories go testing.
0 Replies
 
melonkali
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 10:40 am
@TuringEquivalent,
TuringEquivalent wrote:

gungasnake wrote:

Modern mathematics and much of modern science is at least partly based on an erroneous assumption, i.e. the idea that there is such a thing in the world as proving something.

In real life, there is only such a thing as proving something to somebody's satisfaction. If the intended audience is too thick to comprehend the proof or too ideologically committed to some other idea or paradigm (as in the case of evolution and evolosers) to accept or deal with proofs or disproofs, then they will simply go on changing their pet theories every few years and basically throwing **** at the wall hoping some of it will stick. At that point the question ceases to be scientific and becomes political.



I agree that scientific debates can quickly become political, and this is in fact what the idea of theory laden nature of theories tell us, and agree upon by common consensus by scholars. This is not true in math! Justification isn mathematics is must more tight. If we agree on a set of axioms, definitions, rules, the theorem follows. There is no room for debate.


I've been following this thread with great interest. Although I don't have the necessary foundations (in mathematics, physics, logic or hard philosophy) to contribute, I have certainly appreciated reading the content.

I do have a layman's curiosity about how this seemingly unquestioning reliance on mathematical certainty correlates with the von Neumann calculations which stood for, how many decades was it, until Bohm found a problem with von Neumann's initial presumptions? And did not Hawking also, early in his career, discover a longstanding error in the math supporting steady state theory?

rebecca

rebecca
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 11:34 am
@melonkali,
melonkali wrote:

TuringEquivalent wrote:

gungasnake wrote:

Modern mathematics and much of modern science is at least partly based on an erroneous assumption, i.e. the idea that there is such a thing in the world as proving something.

In real life, there is only such a thing as proving something to somebody's satisfaction. If the intended audience is too thick to comprehend the proof or too ideologically committed to some other idea or paradigm (as in the case of evolution and evolosers) to accept or deal with proofs or disproofs, then they will simply go on changing their pet theories every few years and basically throwing **** at the wall hoping some of it will stick. At that point the question ceases to be scientific and becomes political.



I agree that scientific debates can quickly become political, and this is in fact what the idea of theory laden nature of theories tell us, and agree upon by common consensus by scholars. This is not true in math! Justification isn mathematics is must more tight. If we agree on a set of axioms, definitions, rules, the theorem follows. There is no room for debate.


I've been following this thread with great interest. Although I don't have the necessary foundations (in mathematics, physics, logic or hard philosophy) to contribute, I have certainly appreciated reading the content.

I do have a layman's curiosity about how this seemingly unquestioning reliance on mathematical certainty correlates with the von Neumann calculations which stood for, how many decades was it, until Bohm found a problem with von Neumann's initial presumptions? And did not Hawking also, early in his career, discover a longstanding error in the math supporting steady state theory?

rebecca

rebecca


There are all kinds of uncertainties in math and logic beginning, but not ending with Godel's theorem and the problem surrounding the axiom of choice in set theory.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 11:57 am
@kennethamy,
Theories are only as goodas the person who created them till someone more able than the theorist comesalongand spot errors. The math is okay just the practioner is in error. Even Einstein wasn't up to the math.
0 Replies
 
GoshisDead
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 12:28 pm
@kennethamy,
kennethamy wrote:

wandeljw wrote:

Popper’s The Logic of Scientific Discovery was first published in 1935.

In a 1963 essay, Popper summarized his ideas on falsifiability:
Quote:

1. It is easy to obtain confirmations, or verifications, for nearly every theory — if we look for confirmations.
2. Confirmations should count only if they are the result of risky predictions; that is to say, if, unenlightened by the theory in question, we should have expected an event which was incompatible with the theory — an event which would have refuted the theory.
3. Every "good" scientific theory is a prohibition: it forbids certain things to happen. The more a theory forbids, the better it is.
4. A theory which is not refutable by any conceivable event is non-scientific. Irrefutability is not a virtue of a theory (as people often think) but a vice.
5. Every genuine test of a theory is an attempt to falsify it, or to refute it. Testability is falsifiability; but there are degrees of testability: some theories are more testable, more exposed to refutation, than others; they take, as it were, greater risks.
6. Confirming evidence should not count except when it is the result of a genuine test of the theory; and this means that it can be presented as a serious but unsuccessful attempt to falsify the theory. (I now speak in such cases of "corroborating evidence.")
7. Some genuinely testable theories, when found to be false, are still upheld by their admirers — for example by introducing ad hoc some auxiliary assumption, or by reinterpreting the theory ad hoc in such a way that it escapes refutation. Such a procedure is always possible, but it rescues the theory from refutation only at the price of destroying, or at least lowering, its scientific status. (I later described such a rescuing operation as a "conventionalist twist" or a "conventionalist stratagem.")


Popper added that the riskier the theory (the more exposed to refutation) -- the more interesting the theory will be.


Who cares whether a theory is interesting if it is false? What is so wonderful about a risky and false theory. What seems to me important about a theory is that it is true, not whether it is interesting. Interesting, but false does not seem to me to be an recommendation for adopting a theory. Does it to you? Truth is more important than being interesting. By a long shot.


If a theory is not interesting no one will follow it through to the end. Interest is of primary importance to all hypotheses and theories otherwise they escape notice completely. Behavior and motive cannot be distilled to simplistic logic.
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 12:36 pm
@kennethamy,
The point of theory is not the curiosity factor but its implication. The theory that mental illnesses could be solved by drill into the head as practised in the Middle Ages in Europe was wrong. As a theory it is not interesting unless you happen to have your skull drilled.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 01:53 pm
@GoshisDead,
GoshisDead wrote:

kennethamy wrote:

wandeljw wrote:

Popper’s The Logic of Scientific Discovery was first published in 1935.

In a 1963 essay, Popper summarized his ideas on falsifiability:
Quote:

1. It is easy to obtain confirmations, or verifications, for nearly every theory — if we look for confirmations.
2. Confirmations should count only if they are the result of risky predictions; that is to say, if, unenlightened by the theory in question, we should have expected an event which was incompatible with the theory — an event which would have refuted the theory.
3. Every "good" scientific theory is a prohibition: it forbids certain things to happen. The more a theory forbids, the better it is.
4. A theory which is not refutable by any conceivable event is non-scientific. Irrefutability is not a virtue of a theory (as people often think) but a vice.
5. Every genuine test of a theory is an attempt to falsify it, or to refute it. Testability is falsifiability; but there are degrees of testability: some theories are more testable, more exposed to refutation, than others; they take, as it were, greater risks.
6. Confirming evidence should not count except when it is the result of a genuine test of the theory; and this means that it can be presented as a serious but unsuccessful attempt to falsify the theory. (I now speak in such cases of "corroborating evidence.")
7. Some genuinely testable theories, when found to be false, are still upheld by their admirers — for example by introducing ad hoc some auxiliary assumption, or by reinterpreting the theory ad hoc in such a way that it escapes refutation. Such a procedure is always possible, but it rescues the theory from refutation only at the price of destroying, or at least lowering, its scientific status. (I later described such a rescuing operation as a "conventionalist twist" or a "conventionalist stratagem.")


Popper added that the riskier the theory (the more exposed to refutation) -- the more interesting the theory will be.


Who cares whether a theory is interesting if it is false? What is so wonderful about a risky and false theory. What seems to me important about a theory is that it is true, not whether it is interesting. Interesting, but false does not seem to me to be an recommendation for adopting a theory. Does it to you? Truth is more important than being interesting. By a long shot.


If a theory is not interesting no one will follow it through to the end. Interest is of primary importance to all hypotheses and theories otherwise they escape notice completely. Behavior and motive cannot be distilled to simplistic logic.


But being interesting is, then, only valuable as a means to an end. The intrinsic value of a theory is in whether it is true. Not in whether it is interesting. You don't distinguish between value as a means, and value as an end. And the means has value only in so far as it enables the end to be achieved, namely truth.
kennethamy
 
  1  
Reply Thu 15 Jul, 2010 01:55 pm
@talk72000,
talk72000 wrote:

The point of theory is not the curiosity factor but its implication. The theory that mental illnesses could be solved by drill into the head as practised in the Middle Ages in Europe was wrong. As a theory it is not interesting unless you happen to have your skull drilled.


Yes, but who does not agree with that? The point of a theory is to be true. Unless it is true it is (at best) of only historical interest.
 

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