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Questions tagged [philosophy-of-science]

for applied philosophical questions about the study of science, the pursuit of scientific knowledge, and the scientific method

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1answer
167 views

Do we consider all parameters when we deal the term, 'SCIENTIFIC'? [closed]

There are different sciences and different definitions to 'science'. But there must be some commonness when we use the term--'SCIENTIFIC'. Since it is supposed that almost all sciences are seeking ...
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3answers
138 views

Are we seeing useless physics today [on hold]

Are we seeing useless physics today? By useless physics I refer to for example the study of multiverse(s): it is useless because there is no use for it to mankind - except that there are physicists ...
4
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1answer
186 views

Thomas Kuhn's “paradigm” and its 22 different uses

Thomas S. Kuhn, both in his Second Thoughts on Paradigms [1971] and in the Postscript to the second edition of The Structure of Scientific Revolutions [1970], refers to someone who found 22 different ...
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2answers
57 views

Explaining the Termination Risk of Simulation Technologies

There is a recent article in Erkenntnis that discusses termination risks related to the simulation hypothesis [1]. That is, if we are living in a computer simulation, are there risks that might ...
4
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8answers
1k views

Do transfinite sets have practical applications?

This may not qualify as a philosophy question exactly, but I would argue that potential applications of pure mathematics are in the bounds of philosophical interest. Many innovations in pure ...
4
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1answer
276 views

What is the relevance of applicability to the natural sciences in pure mathematics?

I think I am coming to a good, new understanding of the relationship of pure mathematics to the natural sciences. A major concern of mine is just how reliable is rigorous (characteristically "pure") ...
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6answers
128 views

Can a theory that is now wrong be right in the future?

For example we take as granted that energy is conserved (Energy conservation Principle). Imagine someone “build” a theory where the energy conservation doesnt apply. Scientific community should reject ...
6
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7answers
8k views

Do good explanations have to be true?

Is it so that whenever one gives an explanation to a question starting from 'why' or 'how' the explanation that we receive in return always is true in nature? From one perspective, an explanation is ...
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4answers
122 views

Would philosophy still exist if there was no life? [closed]

Would philosophy still exist without life? For example, for us humans, philosophy answers big questions and sort of governs society. But is philosophy something that would exist without life? On this ...
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1answer
55 views

Are paradigms still the driving force of scientific revolution?

I read long time ago about Kuhn's The Structure of Scientific Revolutions. Kuhn's demonstrate that scientific paradigms are the driving force that makes science go on, but more for social reasons than ...
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1answer
173 views

Can our universe be a pocket in a bigger unseen eternal universe?

Taking time as a fourth dimension is due to Einstein because of the speed of light being fixed. But why should such a finding have so important consequence on our philosophical contemplation of ...
3
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2answers
155 views

Causality: is it possible for one attribute to be found in one node but not the others before it?

This is a rather basic question about causality, but I'm a bit confused over it (especially in terms of the "first cause" argument). Causality (from Wikipedia): Agency or efficacy that connects ...
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2answers
202 views

Are the “laws” of deductive logic empirically verifiable?

"Is Logic Empirical?" strongly suggests a question that I would like very much to get a handle on. That phrase is a title of an article by Hilary Putnam, and, according to synopses/reviews, the ...
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0answers
27 views

Is there a philosophical position for and against the idea that every causal entity contributes to every effect?

Is there a philosophical position for and against the idea that every causal entity can in principle contribute to every effect? So do some e.g. physical explanations claim that entities of type X ...
3
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6answers
245 views

What are examples of causes that do not require energy to produce an effect?

As a comment to an answer Conifold mentioned that "Causes may not require any energy to produce the effect". After thinking about that, I couldn't come up with any such causes outside of metaphysical ...
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3answers
798 views

Why is epistemology done from a phenomenological point of view?

I'm currently in a class where we are studying, among other things, the philosophy of perception. The papers we have read so far, for example Grice's "The Causal Theory of Perception" and Strawson's "...
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4answers
256 views

Where is the line between Quantum Mechanics and Relativity?

I've asked the question below on Physics SE but it seems an answer may not be straight forward... Question: Is there any answers from Epistemology or philosophy-of-science? Its often said QM is ...
2
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0answers
186 views

Philosophy of Physics/Mathematics PhD with Mathematics/Physics undergrad (no philosophy undergrad)

I've found that I'm really interested in some research in the philosophy of mathematics and physics that's currently happening at various institutions. However, I don't have much experience in ...
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8answers
2k views

Difference between math and physics in terms of describing the/a universe?

"The difference between math and physics is that physics describes our universe, while math describes any potential universe" This was one of my math professor's arguments in trying to convince me to ...
7
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5answers
2k views

Does Albert Einstein's interpretation of Ockham's razor violate it?

An often-quoted version of Ockham's razor (that can not be verified as being posited by Einstein himself) says "Everything should be kept as simple as possible, but no simpler." Doesn't it violate ...
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2answers
3k views

Why do the professional mathematicians believe blindly in so meaningless concepts as Infinity? [closed]

To refute such a concept as Infinity (or many infinities) in mathematics doesn't at all require all that big efforts mainly from its own definition in mathematics. To explain this very simple fiction ...
2
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1answer
42 views

Null Hypothesis Appearing in Everyday Life [closed]

What are examples of a Null Hypothesis we use in everyday life but do not recognize?
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5answers
2k views

Was Kant right about space and time (and wrong about knowledge)?

According to Kant our empirical experience is synthesized from sensations through categories. Apparently, unconscious "productive ability of imagination" mediates the process using the schemes of ...
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4answers
359 views

Why are minds not considered part of the external environment?

I will try to be as specific as possible here: philosophers of mind often specify two levels of existence and/or explanation, the mental and the physical, even if they don't subscribe to dualism. ...
5
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1answer
345 views

Why must we choose an intuitionistic explanation over a paraconsistent one, given they are dual?

Given the anti-intuitive results of Quantum Mechanics, it is not surprising that Physicists would look for a deeper reason in the structure of the theory to explain what was then (and still is) ...
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3answers
285 views
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1answer
34 views

What does ‘Disinterestedness’ mean in the context of Mertonian norms?

With ref to the CUDOS Mertonian norms...I used to think disinterestedness mean’t striving to be objective but I now think the intended meaning was for it to be taken literally.
2
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2answers
141 views

How is philosophy of science essential? [closed]

How is philosophy of science still one of the most essential fields after it broke from classical philosophy and established its own discipline?
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1answer
56 views

Why or How? Which one do we prefer more in philosophy? [closed]

Why or How? Which one of them do we use in Philosophy to understand and describe the world around us? More simply, which one do we prefer more and why? In physics, more likely, we use HOW to know how ...
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0answers
43 views

About the advantages of the propensity perspective on probability

I am wandering what are the advantages of the propensity perspective on probability. Why would it be better to explain probability in physics? Except for the fact that it solves various problems of ...
5
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3answers
134 views

underdetermination in the engineering world

Newbie here- please go easy on me. Now that I am retired from the world of physics and engineering, I am struggling to come to terms with my career failings. The most spectacular of these occurred ...
5
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3answers
157 views

How does one judge “complexity” of assumptions for the purposes of “best explanation”?

The context for this question is from assessing theological arguments from the point of view of 'inference to the best explanation'. In philosophy (and science), we may wish to argue that some ...
3
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0answers
43 views

Name of Principle Giving Precedence to a More General Hypothesis

As far as I know, there is a principle that gives precedence to a theory that is more general than a more specific one, i.e the more general one is more acceptable. What is the name of that principle?
5
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1answer
197 views

Why was the quest for an objective universal demarcation criteria deemed untenable after Kuhn?

I know that Kuhn had developed his own demarcation criteria to determine whether something is science or not. But according to my lecturer the quest for an objective, universal demarcation criteria ...
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2answers
170 views

Defending the value of Moral Philosophy against Scientism

What are the best arguments against someone who believes 'Moral philosophy is useless, what we call morality is simply evolutionary instincts to do what we were designed to do as a species'. This ...
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3answers
3k views

Can something exist without energy?

Einstein showed that energy is matter; for something to exist in a physical sense it must be incarnated as matter. So on the face of it - it seems that the answer should be no. However what about ...
7
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0answers
250 views

Are humans becoming more hive-like? Does this have philosophical implications?

Have any philosophers taken up human hive-like behaviour and its implications? EO Wilson and others have outlined eusociality, a mode of group selection acting in addition to selection at the ...
33
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17answers
6k views

What is the purpose of the universe?

There are two extremes known as creationism vs evolutionism. Let's consider creationism for a moment, and imagine that God exists, and he/she has created us. The question that obsesses my mind after ...
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0answers
52 views

What approach, choosing from Barnes and Bloor from SSK, or Kitcher from ESK, best described current practices in economics

Can someone help me with this question, because I can't get the answer myself, would like to start a discussion as well. SSK is the sociology of scientific knowledge and ESK is the economics of ...
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1answer
50 views

Has there been any philosophical guidance regarding when to use logic vs empirical testing?

One obvious disadvantage of testing a given claim with scientific constraints is that one may never know the number of possible constraints to try, in which combinations, and in which order to modify ...
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1answer
345 views

If there is anything that could behave like a god, is it then a real god? [closed]

Let's assume that the our universe's physics allows time travel. This is my main assumption! Let's further assume that there is an quite intelligent, invulnerable being, that found a way to achieve ...
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2answers
63 views

What is the relation between the propensity interpretation of probability and probability in physics?

I would like to know what physicists think about the propensity viewpoint.If this latter one is in line with physics and especially Quantum Mechanics. Otherwise, what is the most coherent ...
2
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1answer
170 views

Finding desirabilities and probabilities in Jeffrey's Logic of Decision

I'm trying to solve problem 16 (Ch. 5) of Jeffrey's Logic of Decision. The problem says: Suppose that A and B are pairwise incompatible propositions, and suppose that the preference ranking is as ...
3
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5answers
131 views

Can an exception ever “prove” a rule?

It is a common thing to say that, when an "exception" is found, this proves (as in it provides evidence) there is a rule (or succinctly stated as "the exception proves the rule"). Is there a logical/...
11
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5answers
436 views

To what extent was Galileo's trial a conflict between science and religion?

In an answer to another question (https://philosophy.stackexchange.com/a/50328/8160), I mentioned Galileo as an example of religion contradicting science. Several comments criticised that. I posted ...
5
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1answer
849 views

Explain Ramsey sentences in simple terms

Can you explain Ramsey sentences in simple terms, maybe giving some concrete examples? I can't seem to understand them (everything about them), no matter how hard I try.
6
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3answers
120 views

How can the credibility of dietary recommendations of medical sciences and EBM be upheld in light of a history of radical changes of its claims?

I know the typical argument is that science is a work in progress and is constantly self-improving. However, self-improvement demands some continuity in claims. For example, relativistic physics was ...
2
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1answer
44 views

Popper and Platonism

Regarding thought experiments in science, James Robert Brown believes that thought experiments can provide knowledge of the laws of nature or the real world based on intuitive thinking (and not ...