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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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281 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 ...
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268 views

How do disjunctive antecedents work in Marc Lange's stability concept of laws of nature?

I'm an ecology student who's dabbling into philosophy of science. I'm currently writing a term paper on laws of nature (with a focus on ecology as a special science) and try to wrap my mind around ...
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95 views

Explanation vs. prediction in statistics and in the philosophy of science?

In the realm of statistics and machine learning, a lot of discussion has arisen recently around the difference between explaining and predicting: That the two are not the same, and that the difference ...
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192 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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47 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?
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70 views

Looking for a book to compliment Zammito and Mohanty in understanding the ethos of post positivistic realism

There are two books which I consider to be indispensable to an understanding of contemporary western culture’s post-truth/alternative facts (scientific and cultural post modernism/structuralism/...
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88 views

In which sense does Kuhn acknowledge the importance of metaphors in science?

Kuhn, in Metaphors and Through [1993], claims: “Metaphors play an essential role in establishing links between scientific language and the world. Those links are not, however, given once and ...
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113 views

Is 't Hooft cellular automaton compatible with Floridi's Informational (Structural) Realism?

Informational (Structural) Realism (by Luciano Floridi) relates to digital physics ideas (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_physics) As Floridi himself says in one of his articles (http://philsci-...
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63 views

Is there anything left in contemporary epistemology and science from the German Idealism?

Kant, Reinhold, Fichte, Schelling, Hegel.. Is there anything left from the Kantian movement today in the thoughts of knowledge and nature? The question is focused especially after Popper essentially "...
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54 views

Why is there no “Mario Bunge” entry in the SEP? Where could I find a valuable presentation of Mario Bunge's philosophy?

I only have a rudimentary knowledge of Mario Bunge's philosophy. But what I've read in the Ontology part of his Treatise of basic philosophy seems much promising. I'm astonished that Bunge is not ...
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80 views

Quine, subjective probability and QM

I have just read Confessions of a Confirmed Extensionalist where Quine says: “Probability? Of events? Restore extensionality (...). Of states of affairs? Treat quotationally, like de dicto. How much ...
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48 views

Does falsifiability require reproducibility according to Popper?

I can see how the idea of falsifiability (rather than some form of verificationism) could support a demarcation between science and pseudoscience. Here is the Wikipedia definition of falsifiability: ...
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120 views

AGI and Quine's conundrums:underdetermination and holism

How has [or will] the prevalence of “big data” – the exploding plethora of information and computing power to classify, categorize and correlate it, combined with Artificial General Intelligence, or ...
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48 views

Philosophical way to look at classical interpretation of probability

I was thinking about the classical interpretation of probability. They make the assumption that determinism obtains in the natural world. Hence, probability is epistemic. Can I see that as a form of ...
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76 views

Kierkegaard and Natural Sciences

Is there any overlap in Kierkegaard's work and Philosophy of Science? If my memory is not misleading, Søren's journals had plenty of mathematical and scientific examples, but used for the most part to ...
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36 views

is perceptual / observational incommensurability equivalent to ontological incommensurability?

perceptual/observational—observational evidence cannot provide a common basis for theory comparison, since perceptual experience is theory-dependent Kuhn expresses or builds on the idea that ...
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185 views

Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics - Argument explanation

I would be grateful if someone could explain me this argument from Philosophy of Physics in plain English. I'm not sure how Albert arrives at his conclusion and I lack the mathematical skills to ...
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56 views

Arguments in scientific discussion and questioning administration on decision making

While we may have a no-holds barred attitude to prove a point in a scientific deliberation, we have to be little more responsible while questioning the decision making of an administration (assuming ...
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96 views

Why didn't Newton pursue philosophy?

Why didn't he pursue philosophy in the same way Leibniz did, many "natural philosophers" during that time often delved into many fields since it wasn't really required to specialize yet, but it seems ...
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105 views

Philosophy and Reading: Towards Math, and Physics

I was reading a book about learning philosophy for beginners called Introduction to Philosophy Classical and Contemporary Readings Edited by John Perry, Michael Bratman, John Martin Fischer It ...
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52 views

What is Malebranche's explanation for the source of human error?

An omnibenevolent God would not deceive us or cause us to be in error, thus the gifts from cannot be the source of error. Rather sin confuses our faculties and prevents us from using them as they ...
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56 views

What was Putnam's position re truth and/or word/world relationship at the time of his death.

The formidable philosopher of science and mathematics, Hillary Putnam, died last year, at 89, shortly [relatively] after his retirement. His was an intellectually peripatetic career. Though he ...
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81 views

Does Every Logic Have the Potential for Violent Measurement?

Measurement, in the broad sense, involves useful abstractions and logical applicability that allow us to survey environmental data with extreme precision and prediction. The tools or instruments used ...
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120 views

How can rational choice theory be explanatory?

In his work, John Harsanyi appears to have taken issue with classical social theorists' account of social phenomena. For example, he criticized Max Weber's typological approach on the grounds, "If we ...
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91 views

field concept - historical and contemporay perspectives?

Can someone give me some reference (or insight) on the development of the field concept in physics. In particularly, the period between 17th century Newton/Leibniz notion of force/action-at-distance ...
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66 views

Is the Anglo-Analytical tradition founded on rejecting the principle of sufficient reason?

In this blog-post on a criticism of Nagels book Mind & Cosmos the author makes the assertion: This is no surprise because analytical philosophy was founded in the act of rejecting PSR. Our ...
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63 views

How and why Aristotelian essentialism is a problem for Quine?

I cannot understand how and why the Aristotelian essentialism is problematic for Quine. I have tried to read articles on the theme but probably I am not smart enough to understand them. Could you ...
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24 views

What is Quine’s reductionism?

I am especially interested in how reductionism is related to the fact that even though science broadly comprehends a number of subjects, physics is paradigmatic.
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48 views

What are the accomplishments of critical theory vs. logical positivism

Coming from a natural science viewpoint I find that logical positivism is much more important for scientific research than is critical theory. I've read the critics/flaws of logical positivism and ...
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60 views

What were Hegel's criticisms of Newton?

I recently read this thread THREAD describing the relationship between Hegel and Newton. Apparently, Hegel misread Newton's principia, and criticized a specific point of science on Newton. This is ...
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127 views

Which kinds of academic revolutions has philosophy of science indentified so far and when?

Recently, I had an interdisciplinary discussion with some friends about Industry 4.0, internet of things,...which brought up the question, which kind of academic revolutions apart from industrial ...
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29 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 ...
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45 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 ...
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63 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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43 views

Would Popper have argued that a coin toss is indeterministic?

I know that Popper was an adovcate of the propensity theory of probability, i.e. probabilities are understood as properties of sets of generating conditions. Furthermore I (think) I have read that ...
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23 views

What does Latour mean by (-/non/post/)modernism?

There is a summary on wikipedia of We Have Never Been Modern which says Latour viewed modernism as an era that believed it had annulled the entire past in its wake.[29] He presented the antimodern ...
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46 views

Foucault and scientific revolutions

In the famous debate between Foucault and Chomsky (link), Foucault argues that there is no human nature really because, among other things, a scientific revolution in some science is just a revolution ...
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24 views

What is the Lange's viewpoint on laws of nature?

I am just wondering what is the Lange's philosophical perspective on laws of nature and what line of thought he follows in the contemporary debate.
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29 views

What hisorical time period does Kuhn's “pre-paradigm state” correspond?

In Thomas Kuhn's analysis of scientific development, in The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, the "pre-paradigm state" is a condition in which all members of the scientific community practice ...
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204 views

How can I apply logical positivism in the philosophy of education?

How can I apply logical positivism in the philosophy of education? How would I use logical positivism to explore why teachers teach (objectives), what should be taught (curriculum) and how should ...
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44 views

Philosophy of Science and the nature of observation: what counts as 'observable'?

In the realist-antirealist debate within philosophy of science, the distinction between the 'observable' and 'unobservable' is made very often though I have seen that this distinction is also ...
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69 views

Does it matter possessing knowledge about the Universe if it is going to end?

To be specific, I'm referring to physical reality. Moreover, this question might seem awkward at first glimpse. Well, it does not appear that there are any meaningful relations between the end of the ...
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67 views

What is uncomfortable science (Tukey 1954)?

I came across the term "uncomfortable science" on Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uncomfortable_science) where it is defined: Situations where the same data is used for model development (...
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31 views

Any book/article that talks about a difference in what science achieves and what society wants/needs?

I'm not trying to ignite a discussion on the topic, simply a reading reference for someone who talks about any difference between the academia and society - for example I've seen a book (published ...
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58 views

Kuhn's incommensurability of scientific theory

Kuhn's view of the development of scientific theory has it that changes in paradigms mean that a scientist cannot compare paradigms with one another to determine which one is objectively better since ...
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26 views

Models of explanations and their conditions

Carl Hempel's idea of explanation (D.N. model) in the sciences is that you should be able to make some deductive argument by which the fact you're trying to explain is the conclusion. I.e. you form an ...
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51 views

Swinburne's solution to Grue

In the new riddle of induction, Swinburne proposes the idea that there is a genuine distinction to be made between the predicate 'green' and the predicate 'grue' in that 'green' is a qualitative ...
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111 views

William James on mathematical conceptions not related to perceptions?

I'm studying William James. I'm mainly interested in his Radical Empiricism and Pluralism. I really like his views but I need some clarification on what is his position on conceptions that are not ...
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116 views

On the explanation of facts

As a chemist, I have some philosophical doubts about explanation of facts. Short intro In Bertrand Russell's book 'History of Western Philosophy' he says that leading-to scientific knowledge is the '...
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38 views

Does anyone say that mind/brain type identity theory is just vacuous without scientific evidence that some part brain state is always the exact same?

Does anyone say that mind/brain type identity theory is just vacuous without scientific evidence that some part brain state is always the exact same experience? I think that's what type identity ...