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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

8
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2answers
462 views

What other philosophy of mind books might be recommended if I like John Searle?

What other philosophy of mind books might be recommended if I like John Searle? I am an engineer who is interested in AI and the possibility of machines become able to think and the philosophy behind ...
3
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1answer
1k views

Would immortality be good or bad for humanity? [closed]

I had a flash after watching some videos of Dr Aubrey de Gray's researches on postponing aging indefinitely. According to him, it will be possible – in a near future – to cure aging process of every ...
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2answers
1k views

Is there something in the real world that cannot be proved nor disproved? [closed]

It is often said that you cannot prove nor disprove God. People who bring forward this kind of reasoning often try to persuade you that there is a kind of balance, a truce; you can't prove your point (...
15
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7answers
811 views

Is it possible for a layperson to suitably evaluate scientific disputes?

As a layperson, I try not to fall victim to the Dunning-Kruger effect. As an example, one area where I know that I am vulnerable is when biochemistry intersects with nutrition and disease. Is it ...
13
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1answer
565 views

What did John Passmore mean when he reported that logical positivism “is dead”?

The philosophical school of logical positivism (which later became known as "logical empiricism") was a type of analytic philosophy that attempted to combine empiricism with rationalist epistemology. ...
3
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3answers
1k views

What is a mathematical representation of the physical world?

Possible Duplicate: Was mathematics invented or discovered? To be more precise, does mathematics describe the physical world or does it describe a mental representation of the physical world? If ...
7
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4answers
339 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. ...
3
votes
2answers
176 views

How does physics apply to philosophy? [closed]

A friend of mine keeps trying to convince me that within quantum mechanics there are deep philosophies. I must admit I'm lost, I saw "what the bleep do we know" and find the experiments interesting ...
20
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10answers
3k views

Is the universe isomorphic to a universal turing machine?

I often think about problems that require an understanding of the very essence of computation and its inherent limitations. So, my questions are as followed: Is the universe isomorphic to a universal ...
12
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1answer
5k views

Representation versus cartography in Deleuze and Guattari?

Can someone help me contextualize and concretize the theme of representation (what they sometimes call "tracing") versus cartography ("mapping," "diagramming," even "meta-modeling", etc.) in Deleuze ...
31
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15answers
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 ...
49
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23answers
7k views

Why is there something instead of nothing?

A simple but fundamental question. The "something" means the whole Universe (known and unknown), it could be represented as the reality version of the set of all sets, which is itself debated. It ...
14
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3answers
438 views

Are there JTB epistemologies which reject the knowledge of some Gettier problems, but in which religious experiences still justify belief?

Such is my current worldview that there is no religious experience or numinous feeling that could justify faith in any god. This is because, in the wake of a slew of discoveries about the ...
26
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7answers
1k views

What are some works that apply an axiomatic method to something other than mathematics?

The axiomatic method is today mostly associated with mathematics. However, historically there have been some works, as for example Spinoza's Ethics, that have applied axiomatic method to philosophy, ...
9
votes
1answer
156 views

Is the justificationist theory of meaning compatible with scientific realism?

Can a realist picture adapt itself to the justificationist world view? The question might sound self contradictory. But here is where my question coming from. If you consider quantum theory as a ...
9
votes
2answers
548 views

Is compatibilism still considered a valid approach to free will?

Has the Free Will Theorem of Conway and Kochen been taken seriously by the philosophical community? Is compatibilism still considered a valid approach to free will?
3
votes
1answer
932 views

What are the major points of Meillassoux's critique of correlationism?

What are the major points of Quentin Meillassoux's critique of correlationism? I am beginning to work through After Finitude and am finding it difficult to grasp exactly what his critique consists in;...
8
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3answers
720 views

How do proponents of the Cosmological argument respond to the nature of time?

How do proponents of the Cosmological argument respond to the nature of time? Is asking what occurred before the Big Bang like asking what is north of the North Pole? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...
14
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3answers
775 views

Is the simulation hypothesis outside of science?

On the question of the simulation hypothesis (i.e. that reality is a simulation), a friend of mine once remarked he didn't accept it on the grounds of Ockham's razor. To me (with my admittedly ...
38
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11answers
5k views

What should philosophers know about math and natural sciences?

My question is whether a lack of knowledge about formal mathematics or theoretical science in general would have an impact on a philosopher's ability to think and make judgments. Why should a ...
10
votes
11answers
6k views

Does philosophy belong to empirical science or formal science?

According to Wikipedia, science can be divided into empirical science (such as natural science and social science) and formal science (such as mathematics, logic, statistics). I was wondering if ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

What are the philosophical implications of the uncertainty principle?

What, if any, are the major philosophical consequences of the uncertainty principle? Wikipedia describes the principle this way: [T]he principle implies that it is impossible to simultaneously ...
18
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2answers
784 views

Is Science about Truth or Adequate Models?

Is it the general view amongst philosophers of science that science isn't about truth but rather adequately predictive models and therefore it doesn't make sense to speak of a scientific theory as ...
40
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9answers
2k views

What basis do we have for certainty in current scientific theories?

Given there is much past scientific belief that we now know NOT to be true, what basis do we have for the seemingly increasing certainty in our scientific beliefs held today being true? On the one ...
10
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2answers
304 views

Did Kuhn “recant”?

I've heard (from a source which now escapes me) that later in his life Kuhn retreated from some of the more relativistic claims of The Structure of Sceintific Revolutions. Specifically, I think I ...
18
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10answers
2k views

Is it possible to scientifically determine good and evil?

Sam Harris has argued on many occasions - the earliest of which I'm aware of being in his book, The End of Faith, as well as later on in The Moral Landscape - that it is (at least theoretically) ...
10
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10answers
13k views

Was Einstein a philosopher?

Albert Einstein described the fact that he believed in 'god'; yet, he did not define that god as a personal god who actually existed as a separate being. He used the concept to describe everything ...
8
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1answer
1k views

What are the most significant philosophical consequences of instrumentalism?

Are there any significant philosophical consequences to the instrumentalist view of the universe? Does it quickly become a distinction without a difference (perhaps simply inline with pragmatism?), ...
7
votes
1answer
175 views

Current research on experimental philosophy and the philosophy of technology?

X-Phi, the practice of performing philosophy based on experimental measures from the "real world" tends to concern itself with moral philosophy testing. As I'm finishing up my thesis on the philosophy ...
2
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3answers
191 views

What is the main argument behind not using the “mutually interbreeding kinds” definition of species in the “species problem”?

Or in other words, why is the species problem a problem? The "mutually interbreeding kinds" definition seems natural enough; in fact, it's as ancient as the Bible, as shown by Leviticus 19:19 You ...