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What is the real difference between science and philosophy?


dimreepr
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1 hour ago, dimreepr said:

Philosophy gave birth to science, so...

Philosophy, (from Greek, by way of Latin, philosophia, “love of wisdom”)

https://www.britannica.com/topic/philosophy

Science is an applied philosophy. Measurement, analysis a real-world object and attempt to make a hypothesis and later a scientific theory based on the data acquired. Measurement -> data -> equation -> prediction of future results when the same inputs are given next time.

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6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

So is history, the difference?

Bingo! I'm with Lawrence Krauss' recent critique of philosophy, which had the philosophers strangely jumping up and down in dismay. Sure philosophy laid the groundwork for science, and a moral society for that matter, but science has now developed to a stage where many theoretical physics questions, have overtaken the philosophy of science/physics questions. What's the difference I hear you ask? philosophical questions are just that...questions asked and pondered without any application of maths or the existing technicalities of the subject. Theoretical physics on the other hand, is based on previous knowledge and know how, plus the use of mathematics and whatever observational and experimental data is at hand.eg: Krauss' book, "A UNIVERSE FROM NOTHING"....Why many philosophers started jumping up and down, is hard to understand in reality, as he certainly agreed to philosophy having laid the ground work for the scientific disciplines.

In summing, science/physics asks how the universe and life [abiogenesis] works, while philosophy and philosophers ask what is the universe and what is life. 

As a non scientist and a non physicist, I believe I can speak on this matter without too  much bias. The Lawrence Krauss, "storm in a tea cup", seems to have developed because of a comment he mad along the lines of  "philosophers are threatened by science because science progresses and philosophy doesn’t”. 😊 

The late Stephen Hawking and Neil DeGrasse Tyson have from memory also made similar remarks https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neil_deGrasse_Tyson  https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/belief/2010/sep/08/stephen-hawking-philosophy-maths

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, beecee said:

science has now developed to a stage where many theoretical physics questions, have overtaken the philosophy of science/physics questions.

Perhaps in the same way that science has [to any reasonable thinking person supported by evidence] pushed religion back to near oblivion, [well at least to t+10-45 seconds] and its factual account of evolution of life. 

 

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10 minutes ago, beecee said:

Perhaps in the same way that science has [to any reasonable thinking person supported by evidence] pushed religion back to near oblivion, [well at least to t+10-45 seconds] and its factual account of evolution of life. 

 

The Guardian says otherwise . . .

 

"If you think religion belongs to the past and we live in a new age of reason, you need to check out the facts: 84% of the world’s population identifies with a religious group." 

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/aug/27/religion-why-is-faith-growing-and-what-happens-next

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10 hours ago, dimreepr said:

Philosophy gave birth to science, so...

I'm going to stop there, because I want this thread to evolve naturally.

Discuss...

I think rudimentary mathematics came before either philosophy or science., although what we now call materials science may well have been contemporaneous with rudmentary mathematics.

1 hour ago, beecee said:

"philosophers are threatened by science because science progresses and philosophy doesn’t”.

I dont' think this is correct because I think philosophy has developed beyond esoteric discussions down the pub.

 

My concept of philosphy today is  embodied in the idea of

The Philosophy of Fishing Or insert your chosen subject here ......

That is a distillation of the core principles of the subject under consideration.

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Here are some questions asked fo Professor Krauss just after a memorial service for Christopher Hitchens.......

https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2012/04/has-physics-made-philosophy-and-religion-obsolete/256203/

Andersen: I want to start with a general question about the relationship between philosophy and physics. There has been a fair amount of sniping between these two disciplines over the past few years. Why the sudden, public antagonism between philosophy and physics?

Krauss: That's a good question. I expect it's because physics has encroached on philosophy. Philosophy used to be a field that had content, but then "natural philosophy" became physics, and physics has only continued to make inroads. Every time there's a leap in physics, it encroaches on these areas that philosophers have carefully sequestered away to themselves, and so then you have this natural resentment on the part of philosophers. This sense that somehow physicists, because they can't spell the word "philosophy," aren't justified in talking about these things, or haven't thought deeply about them—

Andersen: Is that really a claim that you see often?

Krauss: It is. Philosophy is a field that, unfortunately, reminds me of that old Woody Allen joke, "those that can't do, teach, and those that can't teach, teach gym." And the worst part of philosophy is the philosophy of science; the only people, as far as I can tell, that read work by philosophers of science are other philosophers of science. It has no impact on physics what so ever, and I doubt that other philosophers read it because it's fairly technical. And so it's really hard to understand what justifies it. And so I'd say that this tension occurs because people in philosophy feel threatened, and they have every right to feel threatened, because science progresses and philosophy doesn't.

Andersen: On that note, you were recently quoted as saying that philosophy "hasn't progressed in two thousand years." But computer science, particularly research into artificial intelligence was to a large degree built on foundational work done by philosophers in logic and other formal languages. And certainly philosophers like John Rawls have been immensely influential in fields like political science and public policy. Do you view those as legitimate achievements?

Krauss: Well, yeah, I mean, look I was being provocative, as I tend to do every now and then in order to get people's attention. There are areas of philosophy that are important, but I think of them as being subsumed by other fields. In the case of descriptive philosophy you have literature or logic, which in my view is really mathematics. Formal logic is mathematics, and there are philosophers like Wittgenstein that are very mathematical, but what they're really doing is mathematics—it's not talking about things that have affected computer science, it's mathematical logic. And again, I think of the interesting work in philosophy as being subsumed by other disciplines like history, literature, and to some extent political science insofar as ethics can be said to fall under that heading. To me what philosophy does best is reflect on knowledge that's generated in other areas.

Andersen: I'm not sure that's right. I think that in some cases philosophy actually generates new fields. Computer science is a perfect example. Certainly philosophical work in logic can be said to have been subsumed by computer science, but subsumed might be the wrong word—

Krauss: Well, you name me the philosophers that did key work for computer science; I think of John Von Neumann and other mathematicians, and—

Andersen: But Bertrand Russell paved the way for Von Neumann.

Krauss: But Bertrand Russell was a mathematician. I mean, he was a philosopher too and he was interested in the philosophical foundations of mathematics, but by the way, when he wrote about the philosophical foundations of mathematics, what did he do? He got it wrong.

Andersen: But Einstein got it wrong, too—

Krauss: Sure, but the difference is that scientists are really happy when they get it wrong, because it means that there's more to learn. And look, one can play semantic games, but I think that if you look at the people whose work really pushed the computer revolution from Turing to Von Neumann and, you're right, Bertrand Russell in some general way, I think you'll find it's the mathematicians who had the big impact. And logic can certainly be claimed to be a part of philosophy, but to me the content of logic is mathematical.

Andersen: I'm not sure that's right. I think that in some cases philosophy actually generates new fields. Computer science is a perfect example. Certainly philosophical work in logic can be said to have been subsumed by computer science, but subsumed might be the wrong word—

Krauss: Well, you name me the philosophers that did key work for computer science; I think of John Von Neumann and other mathematicians, and—

Andersen: But Bertrand Russell paved the way for Von Neumann.

Krauss: But Bertrand Russell was a mathematician. I mean, he was a philosopher too and he was interested in the philosophical foundations of mathematics, but by the way, when he wrote about the philosophical foundations of mathematics, what did he do? He got it wrong.

Andersen: But Einstein got it wrong, too—

Krauss: Sure, but the difference is that scientists are really happy when they get it wrong, because it means that there's more to learn. And look, one can play semantic games, but I think that if you look at the people whose work really pushed the computer revolution from Turing to Von Neumann and, you're right, Bertrand Russell in some general way, I think you'll find it's the mathematicians who had the big impact. And logic can certainly be claimed to be a part of philosophy, but to me the content of logic is mathematical.

 

more....................

3 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

The Guardian says otherwise . . .

 

"If you think religion belongs to the past and we live in a new age of reason, you need to check out the facts: 84% of the world’s population identifies with a religious group." 

https://www.theguardian.com/news/2018/aug/27/religion-why-is-faith-growing-and-what-happens-next

84% of the worlds's population have faith...including my Mrs. I prefer the empirical scientific methodology and reason. The fact that 84% of the world's population, claim they are chrisitian or jew or whatever [including me unless the Pope has excommunicated me 🤣] does not detract from the fact that science/cosmology is able to explain how the elements, planets, stars, and life came to be, without any reference to myth and/or supernatural entities.

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8 minutes ago, beecee said:

 

Krauss: Sure, but the difference is that scientists are really happy when they get it wrong, because it means that there's more to learn. And look, one can play semantic games, but I think that if you look at the people whose work really pushed the computer revolution from Turing to Von Neumann and, you're right, Bertrand Russell in some general way, I think you'll find it's the mathematicians who had the big impact. And logic can certainly be claimed to be a part of philosophy, but to me the content of logic is mathematical.

 

Cough, cough.

 

Trivia time, folks: Can you name a scientist who threw a party to celebrate when his life's work was flushed down the toilet?

 

I take it on trust that prof Krauss is outstanding in his field (not unlike the scarecrow who won a Nobel prize). When he steps back from his own area of expertise, though, and gets philosophical about science, well . . . without meaning to be rude, it's almost painful to have to listen to.

 

Personally, I see it as regrettable that certain scientists are not only ignorant of, but hostile to, philosophy.

 

Quote

Thus Niels Bohr acknowledged that his reading in Kierkegaard and William James helped him to the imaginative leap embodied in his physics, Einstein stressed the influence on his early scientific thinking of the philosophical tracts of the period, and Heisenberg noted the stimulus of Plato's 'Timeaus', read in his school years.


- Gerald Holton, "The Advancement of Science and its Burdens", p122
 

Edited by Davy_Jones
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2 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

Well, there's a rotten apple in every basket, eh? :)

Rather than indulge in a smartass slanging match I would rather discuss the content of my post.

You have noted the influence of non scientists on science.

This book makes salutory reading about the influence of Byron and Tennyson and Coleridge on the science of Geology.

Coleridge was also an accomplished Mathematician, as I ahve noted here before.

rtr.jpg.1e559debbc75ad03cb13380c973c44c5.jpg

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1 minute ago, Davy_Jones said:

Cough, cough.

 

Trivia time, folks: Can you name a scientist who threw a party to celebrate when his life's work was flushed down the toilet?
 

*cough cough* 

Do they need to throw a party? You fail to consider that science is a discipline in eternal progress. If any physicist or scientists's life's work  is superceded by a new progressive theory, he or she accomadates that new theory/model or advancement in knowledge. If he didn't, he would be a fossil.

7 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

I take it on trust that prof Krauss is outstanding in his field (not unlike the scarecrow who won a Nobel prize). When he steps back from his own area of expertise, though, and gets philosophical about science, well . . . without meaning to be rude, it's almost painful to have to listen to.

 

Personally, I see it as regrettable that certain scientists are not only ignorant of, but hostile to, philosophy.

Hostile? Sometimes its the other way round, particularly when philosophers are faced with some cold hard truths.

Perhaps you need to read Krauss's book.

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31 minutes ago, beecee said:

Hostile? Sometimes its the other way round, particularly when philosophers are faced with some cold hard truths.

Coulda swore you're the fella that told us (in another thread) that science doesn't deal in metaphysical hokum like truth and reality. :)

 

But getting back on point . . . my first thought would be that neither the concept SCIENCE nor PHILOSOPHY can be captured in a definition.

(following standard practice, DOG (in caps) denotes a concept; dog denotes a hairy animal )

"My concept of philosphy today is  embodied in the idea of . . . " - @studiot

Some of you may be aware of recent work in the study of concepts.

Treating a concept as a definition is known as the "classical theory of concepts" (CTC). On this understanding, a concept is linguistic in nature, encoded as necessary and sufficient conditions (presumably in the brain somewhere).

Take, for example, the concept BIRD. The classical theory would have us believe that this concept is encapsulated by a definition such as "feathered biped"; anything satisfying the definition falls under the BIRD concept. And that's that!

CTC has fallen on hard times in recent years. Among other fairly catastrophic problems, it fails to account for what are known as "typicality effects". That is to say, and continuing with BIRD as our example, people do not treat all birds as equally bird-like. A sparrow, say, rates far more highly as a respectable card-carrying BIRD than does an cassowary, say. Moreover, subjects will assent far more quickly to a sparrow being granted BIRD status than an ostrich or a turkey.

A cassowary, it would appear, is indeed a BIRD, just not a very good one.

Contra the classical theory, it would appear that that is not that after all. There is more to being a BIRD concept than simply satisfying a definition.

Edited by Davy_Jones
typo
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3 minutes ago, beecee said:

Yes you did.....

+1

A small point,

I hope this thread will not become a battle of the (headline) quotes.

It is really pleasing to see people thinks for themselves, and you have shown on many occasions that you are quite capable of doing this very well.

 

I think it is good to read multiple authors on a subject to compare and contrast their thoughts and correlate agreements and differences, anf then form your own opinion.

Multiple sources are better than employing just one or two high profiles sources eg Krauss or DrDon.

11 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

my first thought would be that neither the concept science nor philosophy can be captured in a definition.

I agree which is why I offered my idea of modern philosophy, as opposed to whatever it might have been in the past.

Since this is a Science site there are plenty of notions of Science already on offer, although I find them overlimited in scope.

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38 minutes ago, beecee said:

Do they need to throw a party? You fail to consider that science is a discipline in eternal progress. If any physicist or scientists's life's work  is superceded by a new progressive theory, he or she accomadates that new theory/model or advancement in knowledge. If he didn't, he would be a fossil.

Well, that's what the story books tell us.

Of course, the historical reality is somewhat different.

Joseph Priestley, just to name one, went to his deathbed insisting on the reality of phlogiston.

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1 minute ago, Davy_Jones said:

Well, that's what the story books tell us.

Of course, the historical reality is somewhat different.

Joseph Priestley, just to name one, went to his deathbed insisting on the reality of phlogiston.

And Newton went to his death bed with his model. Again,what you fail to comprehend is that science is a discipline in eternal progress...you know, the next generation standing on the shoulders of the preceeding one, add infinitum. 

Of course in other times, religion rearing its ugly head, stifled some of that progress...albeit for a short time.

29 minutes ago, studiot said:

+1

A small point,

I hope this thread will not become a battle of the (headline) quotes.

It is really pleasing to see people thinks for themselves, and you have shown on many occasions that you are quite capable of doing this very well.

Thanks for that. Not bad for an old fart that is! 😜

30 minutes ago, studiot said:

Multiple sources are better than employing just one or two high profiles sources eg Krauss or DrDon.

Of course....It's just a shame, that so many philosophers are so thin skinned. Krauss at least imo, did not deserve the criticism he received, and as I showed other physicists also expressed the same or similar...Degrasse Tyson and the late Stephen Hawking. 

Everyone of them recognise that philosophy has laid the ground work and foundations for science and physics, but as our knowledge of the universe has increased, as our 'scopes have peered further and further into the universe and our observational data has increased, theoretical physicists, have over-lapped, and in many circumstances over-taken the philsophical concepts. Theoretical physicists of course lay the ground work for the practical physicist. This is all Krauss, Hawking and Degrasse-Tyson, and probably many more are expressing or would like to express. 

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1 minute ago, beecee said:

Everyone of them recognise that philosophy has laid the ground work and foundations for science and physics, but as our knowledge of the universe has increased, as our 'scopes have peered further and further into the universe and our observational data has increased, theoretical physicists, have over-lapped, and in many circumstances over-taken the philsophical concepts. Theoretical physicists of course lay the ground work for the practical physicist. This is all Krauss, Hawking and Degrasse-Tyson, and probably many more are expressing or would like to express. 

Er, pretty sure you also told us in that other thread that science/physics is not in the business of describing reality.

If this is the case, how can our knowledge of the universe be increasing?

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