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The notion of evolution in the sense of different species descending from a common ancestor predates Hegel, Darwin's contribution was the theory of natural selection to explain how the process happens, along with lots of empirical evidence for common descent and local adaptive processes such as Darwin's finches. Darwin's own grandfather Erasmus Darwin (1731 -...


7

Darwin I should have thought that Darwin's theory of evolution does not recognise anything like an 'arc of history'; that evolution is not progressive, and that it moves with no purpose (cf. R.Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker). Darwinian evolution, working causally through random variation and natural selection, is naturalistic, non-directional and non-...


4

The cited article references a paper by Sean M. Carroll which provides an overview of Boltzmann Brains (BB). Carroll views BBs not as a reality, but as a way to test whether a cosmological theory is plausible or not. The rule of thumb goes something like this: if the cosmological theory allows BBs then reject the cosmological theory. (page 23) We ...


4

The evolutionary biologist (and student of the history of science), Stephen Jay Gould writes in his book Eight Little Piggies: Reflections in Natural History, chapter entitled Darwin and Paley Meet the Invisible Hand: Where did Darwin get such a radical version of evolution? Surely not from the birds and bees, the twigs and trees. Nature helped, but ...


3

Instrumentalism is a pragmatic school of thought which asserts what is real (ontology) and what is true (epistemology) are ideas that aren't answerable and thus is an antirealist position. This is contradistinction to scientific realism. From WP's entry on instrumentalism: According to instrumentalists, a successful scientific theory reveals nothing ...


2

The natural world is a complicated place. I've never heard of any reasonable scientist or philosopher of science claim only one theory is needed to understand a phenomenon. Theories, like words in a paragraph, support each other in order to function. Some scientific theories are more important than others, such as the theories of relativity, quantum theory, ...


1

Welcome, Kat A useful account - no more than that - is to be found in Paul T. Sagal, 'Paradox, Confirmation and Inquiry'. I'm going to draw on three extracts from this article to throw light on Quine's theory of confirmation. Confirmation - the easy view A theory is confirmed if the positive evidence for it is sufficient. One theory is more highly ...


1

We always have to keep in mind that science makes models of the universe. It does not 'prove' truths or facts or do anything of that nature. This is the case with mathematics as well, though it's harder to see because the things mathematics models are far more abstract; I'd even go so far as to say that modeling is the basic activity of reason. Science is ...


1

Linguists are not always that fond of methods using sciences other than linguistics itself. But certainly there are ways to explain why the word hound is related to hunt; Canis is related to tooth and kalba is related to saliva (drewling). The languages that use these different words are spoken in countries where the dog had different cultural significances. ...


1

Only if you don't believe time started (which Boltzmann found unconvincing.) The notion of Boltzmann Brains relies on Boltzmann's original notion that the low-entropy nature of our universe (and its tendency to therefore increase in entropy whenever possible) is part of an eternity of random fluctuations in entropy, going back and forth. But an infinity of ...


1

The Wikipedia article on constructivist epistemology may provide the key references and overview you are looking for. Regarding philosophy of science and constructivism they write: Thomas Kuhn argued that changes in scientists' views of reality not only contain subjective elements, but result from group dynamics, "revolutions" in scientific practice and ...


1

Philosophy and science should not be confused. In philosophy something may be proven or demonstrated. As Edward Feser puts it (page 235), philosophical arguments are more like (though of course not exactly like) the proofs of geometry than they are like the probabilistic hypotheses put forward in empirical science. One could, of course, try to show that ...


1

The short answer is that as a continental philosopher, Heidegger wanted to look at hidden assumptions built into Western philosophy. Unlike the logical positivists who attempted to formalize scientific inquiry by restructuring it's metaphysics to disallow much subjective philosophical discourse as meaningless (ethics? Meaningless!), Heidegger looked to show ...


1

In short, propensities are, precisely, the quantum mechanical probabilities. In a classical, deterministic, world we set up approximations to the ideal of a repeatable experiment being understood that each experimental run differs from the others in small mechanical variations. In a classical context propensities are thus extracted from the deterministic ...


1

"Mathematicians wish to treat matters of perception mathematically, and make themselves ridiculous... the mind.. does it tacitly, naturally, and without technical rules." - Pascal, Pensées Big data and narrow AI have minimal impact on the underdetermination thesis. In effect, the computational practices are a natural extension of essentially well-understood ...


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There's The Logic of Reliable Inquiry by Kevin Kelly, which develops a formal learning theory framework to address philosophical problems about scientific inquiry.


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Karl Popper - The logic of scientific discovery - it is a classic book about methodology and Philosophy of science. The concept of falsiability is crucial to understand modern epistemological debates.


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Allow me to express a generally unpopular (but apropos) perspective... As I see it, the entire centuries-long empiricist/rationalist divide boils down to an attempt to legislate the scope and definition of the word 'empirical'. Science and philosophy are meant to deal with an obvious tension between two obvious points: We cannot deny that someone has an '...


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Empirical means an epistemological property of being of and/or derived from experience. Experience can be either the subjective (psychological states) or objective (experiment) kind, so non-empirical experience is an absurdity. To answer according to the spirit rather the letter; do inaccessible phenomena fall into the domain of science? Yes, science can ...


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Meaning can be found in action -- therefore if you find meaning in life (whatever that means for you) but you die sometime, your meaning likely dies with you. In such an event I'd say that life has no meaning unless it's always existing -- namely because "the meaning of life" is multifaceted and could mean various things. You can't reasonably argue of "...


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