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17 minutes ago, mathematicalproiectionofme said:

every human have their perspective about science it pointless to force someone to accept your perspetive

Yeah, and some people think the world is flat. They are wrong. And so are you.

But as you cannot provide any support for your claim that science proves things, I think we can safely ignore it.

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  • So if I follow this post right, we can never prove or disprove anything. So we are back to the beginning of not knowing. If we prove something someone will just disprove it. And if science proves it, the proof is incomplete because we lack the evidence of proof. So a theory is useful until disproven. So it use to be useful when we were ignorant and didn't know it didn't work. To bad that disproven theory disproved so many other theories.........;)

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17 minutes ago, Trurl said:

So if I follow this post right...

You didn't.

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18 minutes ago, Trurl said:
  • So if I follow this post right, we can never prove or disprove anything. So we are back to the beginning of not knowing. If we prove something someone will just disprove it. And if science proves it, the proof is incomplete because we lack the evidence of proof. So a theory is useful until disproven. So it use to be useful when we were ignorant and didn't know it didn't work. To bad that disproven theory disproved so many other theories.........

Science disproves things all the time, but science never proves anything. Proofs are for math. Science instead collects evidence and builds models of the cosmos that get better and more refined everyday, but all science and understandings derived from it is only ever provisional. It’s the best current explanation awaiting a possibly better future explanation.

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Can anyone think of a theory that is disproven, but still useful?

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Posted (edited)

Newtonian physics and classical (non-quantum) physics are the standard examples.

Of course, when saying that, The Relativity of Wrong is required reading.

Edited by uncool

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7 hours ago, Trurl said:

Can anyone think of a theory that is disproven, but still useful?

Very few theories have been shown to be “wrong”. Usually, more accurate or more general theories are found - like example above. Or quantum theory and classical electromagnetism. 

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Question from a novice to the brains trust here. It has been said (sorry I cant quote the source but variously and probably pop science) not simply that SR hasn't been proven, but that it is unfalsefiable. That is not a subtle difference.

I have also seen Sean Carroll state it doesn't matter,  that it is unfalsefiable for now but someone will resolve it at some stage.  But that does seem to contradict one of the basic tenets of science - leading the topic into either math or conjecture.

 

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11 minutes ago, druS said:

Question from a novice to the brains trust here. It has been said (sorry I cant quote the source but variously and probably pop science) not simply that SR hasn't been proven, but that it is unfalsefiable. That is not a subtle difference.

I have also seen Sean Carroll state it doesn't matter,  that it is unfalsefiable for now but someone will resolve it at some stage.  But that does seem to contradict one of the basic tenets of science - leading the topic into either math or conjecture.

 

I'm a novice too, but if a theory makes a testable prediction the theory is falsifiable. 

SR predicts time dilation (among others) and this is shown to be correct every time you use Google Maps to find your way home.

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8 minutes ago, druS said:

Question from a novice to the brains trust here. It has been said (sorry I cant quote the source but variously and probably pop science) not simply that SR hasn't been proven, but that it is unfalsefiable. That is not a subtle difference.

I have also seen Sean Carroll state it doesn't matter,  that it is unfalsefiable for now but someone will resolve it at some stage.  But that does seem to contradict one of the basic tenets of science - leading the topic into either math or conjecture.

I assume you mean ST (string theory) rather than SR (special relativity) ?

It is true that string theory does not make any currently testable predictions. In that sense it is not falsifiable.

I would reserve unfalsifiable for the stronger sense of "not falsifiable in principle"; i.e. whatever technology or techniques are used. Examples are solipsism or last-Thursdayism or Creationism. I would define string theory as untestable rather than unfalsifiable.

There have been examples of theories in the past that could not be tested at the time. But later advances in technology (or a better understanding of the theory) allowed tests to be developed (which either confirmed or falsified the theory).

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