View Single Post
Old 15th June 2011, 05:01 AM   #101
Dave Rogers
Bandaged ice that stampedes inexpensively through a scribbled morning waving necessary ankles
Dave Rogers's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Cair Paravel, according to XKCD
Posts: 28,325
Originally Posted by stevea View Post
It is trivial to construct examples where the scientific method is suboptimal. For example the "Occam's razor" feature requires that we choose the hypothesis which matches the data and has the least number of presuppositions (simplest). But obviously sometimes the simplest hypothesis is not the correct one.
No, that's not tenable. You're assuming that there is a "correct" hypothesis that is correct in some way over and above being one of a set of hypotheses that correctly predict all known data, but that assumption is unwarranted. If we have a hypothesis that predicts all known data, then what other properties do we require for it? If we find, on amassing further data, that there is data that our current hypothesis does not predict, then we must replace it with a new hypothesis that does predict that data in addition to all the already known data; but that, too, is in accordance with Occam's Razor and the scientific method.

So what, precisely, are the properties required of your "correct" hypothesis other than correctly matching all the data?

Me: So what you're saying is that, if the load carrying ability of the lower structure is reduced to the point where it can no longer support the load above it, it will collapse without a jolt, right?

Tony Szamboti: That is right
Dave Rogers is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top