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35 votes

We know Classical Mechanics is wrong. But can we also say every other theory is wrong except the Theory of Everything?

Asimov's "The Relativity of Wrong" has a lot to say about this. John, when people thought the Earth was flat, they were wrong. When people thought the Earth was spherical, they were wrong. ...
causative's user avatar
  • 13.6k
33 votes

We know Classical Mechanics is wrong. But can we also say every other theory is wrong except the Theory of Everything?

It is not a coincidence that you ask this here at philosophy SE, and not over at physics: The vast majority of physicists would simply reject your question and readily admit that their theories are ...
Peter - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
22 votes

Why is the complex number an integral part of physical reality?

The short answer: Your premise is not correct. Quantum Mechanics is not necessarily complex-valued. Here is a primer from Physics.SE if you are solid on the math. An explanation that is light on math:...
Geoffrey's user avatar
  • 776
18 votes

The problem of Motion

I recommend to start with the arrow paradox by the Greek philosopher Zeno, see https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/paradox-zeno/#ParMot Afterwards you could study how calculus formalizes the limit ...
Jo Wehler's user avatar
  • 33.1k
15 votes

Is much of theoretical physics nothing more than speculative assumptions?

Unlike pseudoscience, both types of speculation in physics begin with evidence, remain constrained by evidence, and have falsifiable empirical predictions as the end goal. Which mathematical formalism ...
g s's user avatar
  • 6,199
13 votes
Accepted

How meaningful is the notion of now here on Earth?

Special relativity has no bearing whatsoever on your day to day activities. If you are moving relative to someone else, then yes in theory you will be time dilated in their frame of reference and they ...
Marco Ocram's user avatar
  • 22.9k
9 votes
Accepted

Philosophical implications of entangled states (and the 2022 physics nobel prize)

In the high-level summary and explanation I've read/watched… this means or confirms that everything… is probabilistic. This is wrong. Bell's Theorem and the experiments that won this years Nobel ...
Sandejo's user avatar
  • 823
8 votes

Do naturalists think that only microscopic physical things exist?

The view OP is alluding to is called mereological nihilism (mereology is a branch of metaphysics that studies relations between parts and wholes). It is the view that only "simples" (...
Conifold's user avatar
  • 43.3k
8 votes

What is meant by a more "general" theory?

In physics theory B is more general than theory A, if B explains all results which A explains and some additional results. According to this definition Special Relativity is more general than Newton’s ...
Jo Wehler's user avatar
  • 33.1k
8 votes

Is something physical if and only if we can perceive it (directly or indirectly) with our bodily senses?

Referring to perception is an erroneous restriction. We can't perceive planets in far off galaxies, but that doesn't stop there being planets in far off galaxies or make them unphysical. Physical ...
Marco Ocram's user avatar
  • 22.9k
7 votes
Accepted

What philosophical problem did Newton solve?

A science is a well-defined systematic way of organizing and extending a body of knowledge. What makes it a science is its reliability, not its subject. Philosophy explores subjects that are outside ...
Chris Sunami's user avatar
  • 30.2k
7 votes

What philosophical problem did Newton solve?

The problems of motion and gravity were philosophical problems before the scientific revolution. People followed Aristotle's teachings. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aristotelian_physics Look at how ...
Ameet Sharma's user avatar
  • 3,083
7 votes
Accepted

Euler's 1746 philosophy paper

1st premise : No body can have a force contrary to inertia. Based on [Engl.transl.,page 2] analysis of "current" (still quite incomplete) understanding of matter and bodies and of knowledge of only a ...
Mauro ALLEGRANZA's user avatar
7 votes

Why is the complex number an integral part of physical reality?

In my opinion you are mixing up different points: Physics does not use complex numbers to count entities. It is sufficient to count mangos by non-negative rational numbers, i.e. 1 mango, 1.5 mangos, ...
Jo Wehler's user avatar
  • 33.1k
6 votes

Shouldn't Last Thurdayism be able to be proved wrong by Physics?

I think you're misunderstanding the idea behind "Last Thursdayism" on two fronts. First, as can be seen from the selection of "Thursday", the main point of the posit is to point out a problem in ...
virmaior's user avatar
  • 24.7k
6 votes

Why is the complex number an integral part of physical reality?

Complex numbers are ordered pairs of numbers that have an extended definition of multiplication that is useful for representing circular motion in two-dimensions. (The definition of multiplication ...
Ben's user avatar
  • 1,936
6 votes

"v = 1 m/s": predicate or relation? Any literature?

The statement "The ball is red" can be rewritten with subject-predicate form: "Red(ball)" where "Red( )" is a predicate (a property predicated of something) and "ball" is the subject (an object of ...
Mauro ALLEGRANZA's user avatar
6 votes
Accepted

What's the "opposite" of emergence?

Emergence isn't necessarily about smaller to bigger, although it is a property of groups or interactions. It is something that happens in intermediate states between absolutely chaotic behaviour and ...
CriglCragl's user avatar
6 votes

To what extent is mathematics a tool to grasp the world beyond human intuition?

this is a complex topic, but I want to present a counterexample to one of Nikos M.'s points. When Maxwell formulated his four equations of unified electromagnetism, he noticed afterwards that they ...
niels nielsen's user avatar
6 votes

The problem of Motion

To enlarge upon Jo Wehler's answer, Zeno's Paradox was only a paradox for philosophers, not for Zeno's neighbors who sailed boats, walked down roads, built buildings, plowed the earth or carried rocks ...
niels nielsen's user avatar
6 votes

Is all change movement?

If you believe so, you are making the claim in the same spirit Hobbes did. Hobbes said: "all change is motion" The argument goes like this: All time is defined in term of motion. A day is ...
J D's user avatar
  • 27.6k
5 votes

Why do philosophical discussions of the teleportation paradox seem to ignore the physics involved?

Discussions of philosophical issues can often benefit from taking into account what we know about physics. In this case this may not be as pronounced because the teleportation paradox is more about ...
Conifold's user avatar
  • 43.3k
5 votes
Accepted

Shouldn't Last Thurdayism be able to be proved wrong by Physics?

As virmalor pointed out, last Thursdayism is not that literal. It is the assertion that the universe came into existence in a preconfigured state, at some point in time, as opposed to developing from ...
Daniel Goldman's user avatar
5 votes

Why is the complex number an integral part of physical reality?

Are we answering the right question? You touch upon an interesting point, but I have the feeling that your question isn't specific enough yet to reach a proper resolutions. Others have argued that '...
Discrete lizard's user avatar
5 votes

Why is the complex number an integral part of physical reality?

You have several fundamental misunderstandings. Physics does not define reality. Physics defines a model that approximates reality in a testable fashion. Reality can—and, going by experience,...
zibadawa timmy's user avatar
5 votes

The shape and extension of the fundamental particles

This is one of the reasons why we switched to quantum field theory. Instead of referring to individuated particles and waves otherwise operating in a quasi-void, we took this quasi-void to be the ...
Kristian Berry's user avatar
5 votes

On the connection between science and reality

I don't remember which one, but I think it was Special Relativity that Einstein formulated purely on the basis of thought and did not keep anything to fit observed reality. This is false. There were ...
Babu's user avatar
  • 2,188
5 votes
Accepted

How does entropy explain consciousness and the forward direction of time?

I mean, time isn't explained, or we woikd have a quantum-gravity theory. What you are talking about is the thermodynamic Arrow of Time, and in a very real sense it hasn't been fully reconciled with ...
CriglCragl's user avatar

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