A Historical Introduction to the Philosophy of Science by John Losee

By John Losee

Designed for first-time readers of the topic, this stimulating advent bargains a old exposition of differing perspectives at the philosophy of technology. With concise profiles featuring the foremost philosophers whose contributions are mentioned during this ebook, Losee explores the long-argued questions raised by means of philosophers and scientists in regards to the right review of technology. This new version accommodates modern advancements within the self-discipline, together with contemporary paintings on theory-appraisal, experimental perform, the controversy over medical realism, and the philosophy of biology. Taking a balanced and informative strategy, this paintings is the appropriate introductory quantity.

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No such derivation is available in the case of black ravens. Nicolaus of Autrecourt on Necessary Truth as Conforming to the Principle of Non-Contradiction Nicolaus of Autrecourt restricted the range of certain knowledge more severely than did Duns Scotus. Nicolaus’s analysis was the culmination of a fourteenth-century erosion of confidence in what can be known to be necessarily true. Nicolaus resolved to accept as necessary truths only those judgements that satisfy the Principle of Non-Contradiction.

The requirement that the axioms of deductive systems be self-evident * Archimedes used a reductio ad obsurdum argument to prove that ‘weights that balance at equal distances from a fulcrum are equal’ (‘T ’). He began by assuming the truth of the contradictory statement that ‘the balancing weights are of unequal magnitude’ (‘not T ’), and then showed that ‘not T ’ is false, because it has implications that contradict one of the axioms of the system. For if ‘not T ’ were true, one could decrease the weight of the greater so that the two weights were of equal magnitude.

The ratio of the squares of the periods of any two planets is directly proportional to the ratio of the cubes of their mean distances from the sun. Kepler’s discovery of the Third Law is a striking application of Pythagorean principles. He was convinced that there must be a mathematical correlation between planetary distances and orbital velocities. He discovered the Third Law only after having tried a number of possible algebraic relations. The committed Pythagorean believes that if a mathematical relation fits phenomena, this can hardly be a coincidence.

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