It requires certain commitments that reveal a pragmatic aspect to the acceptance of a theory. Next, Van Fraassen critiques arguments in favor of... ... middle of paper ... ...tful and thought provoking opinions on scientific realism. Each perspective explains science in its own unique way. As a result, I was drawn to know how entity realism defines success in science. According to Steven French, success for entity realism depends on more than just the “supposed truth of theories”.
In this sense, the inductive reasoning used in the scientific method is justified, as our understanding of scientific truths and all scientific advancement relies on its existence. While Popper’s qualms about inductive reasoning appear to be justified, it nonetheless proves itself to be the less-problematic approach to scientific learning. This approach need not be flawless for it to be functional in its practical application in the world, and for us to justify its continued use. It simply needs to allow progress, which Popper’s overly-cautious deductive approach evidentially does not allow, at least not on a comparable scale.
In this thesis I propose a new philosophical framework for the philosophy of physics as an alternative to the existing scientific realism and antirealism debate. Such reconsideration of the debate is warranted by the widely shared perception of a disconnect between the philosophy and the practices it purports to describe. Specifically, I offer a shift in focus from analysis of the justificatory practices of physicists to an examination of the methodologies evident in the presentation of theories. I will show that this scientific activity can be described in terms of a tension between a "conservative" strategy and an "innovative" strategy. This interaction will be demonstrated in two case studies.
But the differences are not as great as might be expected, and, as current discussions of the metatheoretical issues of explanation are generally ahistorical, I believe an attempt to compare these two intellectual mileposts in our understanding of scientific method should prove useful. The most obvious and interesting similarities between the two metatheories of science lie in their deductive character, and this is where their significant contrasts lie as well. Aristotle had developed two major deductive systems: the hypothetical and categorical syllogisms. Of these, he thought only the latter suitable to the demanding rigors of scientific knowledge, whose first characteristics he saw to be 'certainty' and 'necessity'. (3) There are some problematic elements in just what Aristotle took these concepts to mean, but I postpone discussion of that to a later stage.
Logical positivism purported that empirical exploration was only observable and truth could only be explained if it could be seen. However, scientific realism addressed the weaknesses inherent in logical positivism. It addressed the need for the cyclic nature between theory and observation and bridged the understanding of the time. One of the main assertions that scientific realism argues for is the concept that scientific knowledge is progressive in nature, and that it is able to predict phenomena successfully. Theory provided credibility to the objects that were unobservable and they ... ... middle of paper ... ...e with the world.
Thus, inductive arguments can be described as “weak” or “strong” (Copi). Since an inductive argument is probabilistic, it is still the case for the conclusion to be false even if the premises are true. Because inductive arguments provide with new ideas and knowledge beyond what is already known, unlike deductive arguments which do not provide anything new, inductive argument is seen as necessary in the scientific method, in order to arrive at new explanations (Cline). Moreover, Bacon introduced the use of induction in the Scientific Method since induction would be adequate for observations of specific issues to a broader issues. Induction was also seen as adequate for scientific experimentation as it would allow to generalize the findings in such experiments.
The method by which we gather this knowledge and the ability of the knowledge to accurately explain why things work the ways they do are equally important. Moreover, with science we are trying to bring an order into, a chaotic world. With giving things names we take the mystery out of it and it makes it less scary for us. Also, this gained knowledge needs to be continually compared to the real world to test and improve its accuracy and demonstrate its explanatory power (Popper 1988). I agree with Popper (1988), who stated that only those propositions that research may prove false should be considered as scientific (the principle of falsification).
In his paper Explanatory Unification, Kitcher argues that the theory of unification is a better explanatory theory than the covering law model. Where unification represents the purpose of scientific explanation as having an objective insight, the covering law model proposes a subjective insight. I will first summarize Kitcher’s argument for unification. I will then assert that unification is vulnerable to the metaphysical problem of causal theory and correct explanations. I will show how this objection challenges unification in two ways by using David Lewis’ example of the non-unified world.
Alan Chalmer’s controversial description of scientific method is, in many ways, in opposition to Karl Popper’s hypothetico-deductivist account, otherwise known as falsificationism. In this essay, I will elaborate on the various conflicts that the Popperian view has with Chalmer’s account. I think that Chalmer and Popper have common ground on which they have built their views but that while each are imperfect, I support the Popperian hypothetico-deductivist account as the predominant view at present. I shall justify this in my proposed objections to Chalmer’s statements but also highlight the shortcomings of falsificationism. I will assume that science is rational.
Concluding that on Chalmers he would disagree with every statement made. With my personal perspective I am inclined to side with the hypothetico-deductivists as when forming an argument against Chalmers they have a much more accurate judgment on the world, so I am forced to reach a decision with the interpretation Popperian science has bought into the modern scientific world.