Scientific Realism or Antirealism
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22-04-2017, 01:36 PM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
I wish you all the best too Nails and I'm glad to see you looking to improve yourself.

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22-04-2017, 06:34 PM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(21-04-2017 10:06 PM)Full Circle Wrote:  The issue with philosophy, as I see it, is that it isn't utilitarian. You can mind fuck yourself from here till the end of time with it but in the end someone still has to get up from the couch and do the laundry.

Ah, but who? And Why? Consider

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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22-04-2017, 06:42 PM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(21-04-2017 10:06 PM)Full Circle Wrote:  The issue with philosophy, as I see it, is that it isn't utilitarian.

John Stuart Mill argued for a practical philosophy. Dude look like Chas. Laughat

[Image: john_stuart_mill_3_zpsyghz1aji.jpg]

#sigh
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23-04-2017, 02:22 PM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(22-04-2017 06:42 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(21-04-2017 10:06 PM)Full Circle Wrote:  The issue with philosophy, as I see it, is that it isn't utilitarian.

John Stuart Mill argued for a practical philosophy. Dude look like Chas. Laughat

[Image: john_stuart_mill_3_zpsyghz1aji.jpg]

Actually I'm studying Mill now. I've focused on metaphysics an epistemology for a while so I figured I'd move around a bit in philosophy. I started with the philosophy of science and while I'm not done with it, I think I can start on morality as well. Right now I'm an emotivist. I think my position might be close to utilitarianism, but not exactly the same.

"I think part of the appeal of mathematical logic is that the formulas look mysterious - you write backward Es!" - Hilary Putnam
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23-04-2017, 04:52 PM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(21-04-2017 05:08 PM)Naielis Wrote:  
(21-04-2017 09:23 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  I can and do scoff at anyone who claims certainty about anything beyond analytic statements and logical tautologies.

So just a quick question about this: do you think the results mathematical proofs are known with certainty? I believe they are because they follow from the laws of logic and basic axioms establishing our understanding of quantity.

Yes, provided the proofs are valid (which becomes more difficult to verify as they get longer and more complicated), but this is really included in my quoted statement above, because a valid mathematical proof is essentially a logical tautology -- it follows inexorably from the basic definitions and axioms. However, it can only be said to be "true" in the context of those definitions and axioms. Witness the various different geometries -- all valid given their respective axioms, but in a given time and space, at most one of them can be "true", because they contradict each other. This tends to happen whenever physical reality enters the picture.
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23-04-2017, 05:28 PM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(23-04-2017 02:22 PM)Naielis Wrote:  
(22-04-2017 06:42 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  John Stuart Mill argued for a practical philosophy. Dude look like Chas. Laughat

[Image: john_stuart_mill_3_zpsyghz1aji.jpg]

Actually I'm studying Mill now. I've focused on metaphysics an epistemology for a while so I figured I'd move around a bit in philosophy. I started with the philosophy of science and while I'm not done with it, I think I can start on morality as well. Right now I'm an emotivist. I think my position might be close to utilitarianism, but not exactly the same.

I find your insistence on labels and pigeon-holing not constructive.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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24-04-2017, 01:45 AM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
I should point out again that mathematics needs only to work internally. It doesn't have to have any (known) correlation with reality whatsoever.

I was once studying a form of geometry where the "length" between two points was defined as something totally obscure. It's been a long time now so I can't remember exactly what it was, but it was something to do with how a particular prime number divides into the difference between the coordinates. It produced a result so weird that it had no possible practical use, even as far as the professors who gave me the task knew. It was entirely theoretical.

I studied how this version of geometry produced different results than normal, such as the summation of infinite series tending to a finite limit if the terms tended to zero (this isn't always the case in regular maths).

I was producing facts that could be shown to be 100% true within the framework. Like others have said, I'm basically manipulating tautologies. That's what maths is, at the end of the day. Yet everything I was proving may not have any relationship whatsoever with the real world.

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24-04-2017, 06:15 AM (This post was last modified: 24-04-2017 06:18 AM by Robvalue.)
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
When we create a mathematical system, we're effectively creating an abstract reality. We get to dictate the rules of the reality. We know them, with certainty. So we can make absolute logical deductions based on that certainty, using the rules we know about it.

This is not the case when we are trying to apply a mathematical system to the reality we observe, as a model. We know everything about our system, but we don't know everything about reality. So we can only test out how well our model works. We can never have certainty that it always works as we think it does, even for very simple things.

The idea for the model may well have come from reality in the first place. Maths often does. But that doesn't mean our inference is correct. Certainly not universally correct. We don't "learn" that 1+1=2. We notice patterns in reality, and we create an abstract system in which we define those symbols so that it is true. We then see how well that transfers back to reality. No matter how many times we test it, we can never be certain there isn't some way it could fail to be true, in some respect.

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24-04-2017, 07:58 AM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(23-04-2017 05:28 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(23-04-2017 02:22 PM)Naielis Wrote:  Actually I'm studying Mill now. I've focused on metaphysics an epistemology for a while so I figured I'd move around a bit in philosophy. I started with the philosophy of science and while I'm not done with it, I think I can start on morality as well. Right now I'm an emotivist. I think my position might be close to utilitarianism, but not exactly the same.

I find your insistence on labels and pigeon-holing not constructive.

You're just out of sorts because Girlyman compared you to an ugly photo of J.S. Mill.

Tongue
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24-04-2017, 11:45 AM
RE: Scientific Realism or Antirealism
(23-04-2017 05:28 PM)Chas Wrote:  
(23-04-2017 02:22 PM)Naielis Wrote:  Actually I'm studying Mill now. I've focused on metaphysics an epistemology for a while so I figured I'd move around a bit in philosophy. I started with the philosophy of science and while I'm not done with it, I think I can start on morality as well. Right now I'm an emotivist. I think my position might be close to utilitarianism, but not exactly the same.

I find your insistence on labels and pigeon-holing not constructive.

We see this a lot with theists... searching for a label; searching a church...

Churching? Consider

Seeking a label vs. seeking for what is true vs. seeking for what is real.

"Oh god, what am I?" asks Adam.

"Oh oracle, what do I know?" asks Socrates.

"Oh world, what is I?" asks Darwin.

The ages of man.

Yet, all that really matters is "what is useful?"

"... in truth,
being is all
that matters
matter is all
that is."

"I am he
As you are he
As you are me
And we are all together"

"What is great in man is that he is a bridge and not an end,” spoke Zarathustra thusly.

Rolleyes

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