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What is the real difference between science and philosophy?


dimreepr
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5 minutes ago, beecee said:

Much as you site your philoosphy over many disciplines, with all the zeal of Buddah.

How can I cite my philosophy (I don't what it is, as I'm sure @Eise will attest)?

I'm just 'trying' to explain what I've learned.

10 minutes ago, beecee said:

I may mot be a philosopher old friend, nor a scientist, but I'm pretty good at sorting the wheat from the chaff, be that philosophers or scientists, and as such of course, am able to approach things without bias. 

That would be a good starting point.

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4 hours ago, Davy_Jones said:

Re various claims here, there & everywhere to the effect that physics, or science in general, does not, or does not try to, describe reality ("All we do is construct models for their instrumental accuracy, we make no claims to the reality of theoretical entities, we leave that to the metaphysicians & philosophers, etc., etc.") . . .

 

Well, I'm up to Lecture 20 now in prof. Don Lincoln's (see the "Is Gravity a Force?" thread for details and price) wonderful series "The Evidence for Modern Physics" entitled "How We Search for Dark Matter".


Right off the bat, at the 00:10 min mark, prof Lincoln opens with a no-holds-barred:


"In the last lesson I laid out some of the reasons why scientists believe that dark matter is real."

 

Now, I'm honestly not trying to be a pest here, folks. :)


What I am trying to make recognized is that, contrary to certain members' protestations, this is the way scientists/physicists, or at least a great many of them, routinely talk.


Pay closer attention for yourself from now on.

I have seen you misquote before or take out of context, and coupled with your obvious vagueness, I take your claims with a grain of salt.

You have been informed by Professor Lincoln and others here that a scientific model or theory does not search for your truth and/or reality. We do not know the true nature of gravity for reasons I have informed you of. You speak of DM. We have reasonable evidence that it exists, other then the anomolous rotational curves of galaxies, there is the Bullet cluster observation that indicates DM. Could scientists be wrong? Of course they could! Could our models of gravity be faulty over large scales? Possibly yes, but less likely. Or are you finally admitting in your vagueness that what people have been telling you about gravity is correct. That's admirable of you if correct!

 

4 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

That would be a good starting point.

Unlike you, that is always my starting point.

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10 minutes ago, beecee said:

Is he?

Yes.

And please, no funny meant bon mots anymore.

11 minutes ago, beecee said:

We all philosophise [is that a word? ☺️]

I think it is a word, but I am not a native English speaker...

And yes, many people have their philosophical phases, in which they reflect on their basic assumptions.

13 minutes ago, beecee said:

It's the silly extent some see the need to go to, indugling in pedant and semantics.

I don't see any pedantry here. (Except maybe someone who thinks he contributes to a discussion by dropping (the same) bon mots again and again).

And philosophy (and most of the sciences) are impossible if we do not clearly define our concepts. 'Beliefs' can be true or false. Knowledge is true as per definition. So you correctly use 'belief' here:

20 minutes ago, beecee said:

The actual belief of the day, was that the Sun and everything else, in fact the whole universe, orbitied the Earth...While with regards to the solar system,  it is a useful model, it was not seen as a model in that era...

 

22 minutes ago, beecee said:

I believe we have some idea about certain things, but obviously not others. Again you need to talk to Dave about that.

You said that we that 'we still do not know the true nature of gravity'. Which implicitly means we might one day. But how will we recognise we did? Therefore I introduced my example of the electron, of which we seem to know very much (Dirac equation, QED), of which Feynman proudly tells us that the anomalous magnetic dipole moment of the electron can be calculated until an unprecedented  precision, and in the same lecture says 'this is how nature really works'. So, if there is nothing to discover about the electron anymore, do we know its true nature? I ask you, because you seem to adhere to the idea that we can know the true nature of (at least certain) things. 

I expect arguments (this is the philosophy forum!), not just be mentioned pedantic or a semantic ant fucker (OK, last two words are mine, but I assume you know what I mean.)

There certainly exists a spectrum of opinions on what exactly science 'delivers': knowledge, models of reality, descriptions of reality, truths, insight, just calculation tools, etc. It is clear as day that different views about it also exist under physicists. Or even worse, some people might even speak with more than one voice, not noting that these voices are contradicting each other. And then such a irritant philosopher comes along and points them at that...

 

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The question in the title is "What is the real difference between science and philosophy"?

While philosophy has laid the ground work for the scientific methodology and most other disciplines, in the case of science, it seems that it [science]  is now by necessity encroaching on areas that were once only covered by philosophy. This is what many scientist of late now believe, starting with of course Professor Krauss, Professor Degrasse Tyson and the late Professor Stephen Hawking smf sd [rt links given previously. 

A more professional appraisel follows.....

https://1000wordphilosophy.com/2018/02/13/philosophy-and-its-contrast-with-science/#:~:text=Science is about empirical knowledge,truths (if they exist).

Science is about empirical knowledge; philosophy is also about a priori knowledge (if it exists).

Science is about contingent facts; philosophy is also about necessary truths (if they exist).

Science is about descriptive facts; philosophy is also about normative truths (if they exist).

Science is about physical objects; philosophy is also about abstract objects (if they exist).

more at link.................................................

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26 minutes ago, beecee said:

I may mot be a philosopher old friend, nor a scientist, but I'm pretty good at sorting the wheat from the chaff, be that philosophers or scientists, and as such of course, am able to approach things without bias. 

The one with no bias throweth the first stone. 

You do not know about philosophy, but you recognise the chaff? Sorry, but now you stretched your neck too much. This is hubris, beecee. If philosophy or semantics is not your thing, all right. But be honest about it: because you are more interested in physics and cosmology, not all arguments that modern philosophers bring are worthless. 

 

7 minutes ago, beecee said:

While philosophy has laid the ground work for the scientific methodology and most other disciplines, in the case of science, it seems that it [science]  is now by necessity encroaching on areas that were once only covered by philosophy. This is what many scientist of late now believe, starting with of course Professor Krauss, Professor Degrasse Tyson and the late Professor Stephen Hawking smf sd [rt links given previously. 

Funny... no philosopher between them, only people with an 'astro-physical' background.

Yes, back to the topic! My answer to dimreepr, if you remember, was that they have different topics. Did you read the link to my posting?

If you read it, we can go on.

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9 minutes ago, Eise said:

Yes.

Your opinion and you are entitled to it. Mine is different. He obviously has hit a sore point with many philosophers, as did Hawking and Degrasse Tyson. Probably others as I havn't really made this a hobby.

12 minutes ago, Eise said:

And please, no funny meant bon mots anymore.

You need to talk to Davey and Dimreeper, and perhaps examine your own rhetoric.

13 minutes ago, Eise said:

You said that we that 'we still do not know the true nature of gravity'. Which implicitly means we might one day. But how will we recognise we did?

We might, yes...How will we recognise that fact. Go ask a cosmologist. Probably in the first instance though, elimination the BH and BB singularities...perhaps as Professor Krauss speculates, the quantum foam is as close to nothing as we can ever get...perhaps for all intents and purposes it is nothing. You should be able to get your philosophical claws into some of that Eise! 😊

18 minutes ago, Eise said:

 Therefore I introduced my example of the electron, of which we seem to know very much (Dirac equation, QED), of which Feynman proudly tells us that the anomalous magnetic dipole moment of the electron can be calculated until an unprecedented  precision, and in the same lecture says 'this is how nature really works'. So, if there is nothing to discover about the electron anymore, do we know its true nature? I ask you, because you seem to adhere to the idea that we can know the true nature of (at least certain) things. 

I answerd that. 

20 minutes ago, Eise said:

I don't see any pedantry here. (Except maybe someone who thinks he contributes to a discussion by dropping (the same) bon mots again and again).

That's because you're not being fair dinkum. You understood perfectly my use of "false Knowledge" Knowledge and belief in either.

24 minutes ago, Eise said:

I expect arguments (this is the philosophy forum!), not just be mentioned pedantic or a semantic ant fucker (OK, last two words are mine, but I assume you know what I mean.)

The question asks the differences between science and philosophy. Your semantics and pedant about my use of "false Knowldge" is disingenious to say the least. 

28 minutes ago, Eise said:

There certainly exists a spectrum of opinions on what exactly science 'delivers': knowledge, models of reality, descriptions of reality, truths, insight, just calculation tools, etc. It is clear as day that different views about it also exist under physicists. Or even worse, some people might even speak with more than one voice, not noting that these voices are contradicting each other. And then such a irritant philosopher comes along and points them at that...

You would do better to be critical of the philosopher that has refused to see reason in two threads so far and others conducting disingenious banter.

http://www.differencebetween.net/miscellaneous/career-education/difference-between-science-and-philosophy/

Philosophy is like being in a dark room looking for a cat:

Metaphysics is like being in a dark room and looking for a black cat that isn't there:

Theology is like being in a dark room looking for a black cat that isn't there, and shouting I've found him!: 

Science is like looking for a black cat in a dark room using a flash light!

26 minutes ago, Eise said:

The one with no bias throweth the first stone. 

The first stone was thrown by another, in the gravity thread.

28 minutes ago, Eise said:

You do not know about philosophy, but you recognise the chaff? Sorry, but now you stretched your neck too much. This is hubris, beecee. If philosophy or semantics is not your thing, all right. But be honest about it: because you are more interested in physics and cosmology, not all arguments that modern philosophers bring are worthless. 

I'm tempted to throw in that excellent Henry Menken quote again. 

30 minutes ago, Eise said:

Funny... no philosopher between them, only people with an 'astro-physical' background.

Plenty of philosophers jumping up an down, screaming blue murder that someone dare critise them... 

33 minutes ago, Eise said:

Yes, back to the topic! My answer to dimreepr, if you remember, was that they have different topics. Did you read the link to my posting?

If you read it, we can go on.

Near bedtime here, I'll think about checking it out tomorrow morning.

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26 minutes ago, beecee said:

He obviously has hit a sore point with many philosophers, as did Hawking and Degrasse Tyson. Probably others as I havn't really made this a hobby.

That doesn't really mean that someone is on to something. Crackpots hit a sore point with scientists, precisely for the opposite reason.

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3 hours ago, swansont said:

"Does not describe" and "does not try to describe" are very different things and AFAICT only one has been offered in discussion.

But even if we take the obvious one: the cannonball trajectory is not reality, let me ask this: how do we know that the cannonball is not, in reality, moving in a twelve-dimensional space but it's just that we can only perceive three spatial dimensions, and the projection of those twelve dimensions onto our three-dimensional perception is a sphere moving along that trajectory? How can we be certain about this?

And is there anything about Newtons laws of motions, used to derive the trajectory of the ball, that can be inferred as an attempt to confirm that the ball is or is not in a twelve-dimensional space?

 

 

 

I posted earlier . . .

QUOTE

My own position would probably lie closest to that of Bas van Fraassen's "constructive empiricism". Roughly:

1. Scientific theories/statements are truth applicable (They are the kinds of things that can be true or false)

2. The epistemic warrant is insufficient to believe anything science says about unobserveable reality

3. Science aims for "empirical adequacy", i.e., saving the appearances.

 

and . . .

Edit: I'm saying we may have (indeed almost certainly do have) good reason to believe what scientists tell us about trajectories, i.e., observable reality.

What I balk at is believing any causal-explanatory, behind-the-scenes account (i.e. the story about unobservable reality) of why cannonballs behave as they do.

UNQUOTE

 

All talk of twelve, or however many, dimensions falls into the realm of the unobservable.

So how do we know, how can we be certain, of the unobservable scenarios you are suggesting?

My answer: We don't know. See 2 above. On my view, we don't know anything about unobservable reality. The best we can hope for is empirical adequacy (i.e., describing what can be seen).

 

Edited by Davy_Jones
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2 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

My answer: We don't know. See 2 above. On my view, we don't know anything about unobservable reality. The best we can hope for is empirical adequacy (i.e., describing what can be seen).

How is this different from my position that science describes behavior (i.e. what we can observe) rather than reality. (something you balked at)

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2 minutes ago, swansont said:

How is this different from my position that science describes behavior (i.e. what we can observe) rather than reality. (something you balked at)

Er, before going any further, where did I "balk at reality"?

I have no problem with science describing observable reality; it's the unobservable bits that make me squeamish.

 

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1 minute ago, Davy_Jones said:

Er, before going any further, where did I "balk at reality"?

I didn't claim that you did. "reality" is only part of the sentence. Read the whole thing. You balked at my position, which I describe.

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@swansont

I don't have a problem with science describing behavior, either . . . in the realm of the observable

You, meanwhile, told us (in the other thread): "physics does not try to describe reality" (I quote from memory)

I say it does . . . in the observable realm (at least - some physicists clearly feel they are trying to describe unobservable reality too). This is something both realists and antirealists agree on, moreover, seems so obviously true that it's baffling to hear someone suggest otherwise.

You mean you guys are not trying to describe the trajectory of that cannonball?

Edited by Davy_Jones
typos and added a bit in (brackets)
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7 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

I have no problem with science describing observable reality; it's the unobservable bits that make me squeamish.

Good. Because there's lots of physics that are unobservable, as I have previously described. We see the effects of this. But, you disagreed with this. (well, sort of, since you never actually addressed my examples, and instead cherry-picked others)

2 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

You mean you guys are not trying to describe the trajectory of that cannonball?

Here's an example of what I just talked about. The cannonball is what you brought up, not me. It's a straw man argument, and you should really stop doing this.

 

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I like van Fraassen's anti-realist position of "empirical adequacy," which @Davy_Jones has acquainted us with. 

 From SEP.... 

Quote

Constructive empiricism is a view which stands in contrast to the type of scientific realism that claims the following:

Science aims to give us, in its theories, a literally true story of what the world is like; and acceptance of a scientific theory involves the belief that it is true. (van Fraassen 1980, 😎

In contrast, the constructive empiricist holds that science aims at truth about observable aspects of the world, but that science does not aim at truth about unobservable aspects. Acceptance of a theory, according to constructive empiricism, correspondingly differs from acceptance of a theory on the scientific realist view: the constructive empiricist holds that as far as belief is concerned, acceptance of a scientific theory involves only the belief that the theory is empirically adequate.

This sounds to me how a lot of scientists view their work.   A theory is empirically adequate,  but few would mistake it for a declaration of metaphysical realism.   What is a wavefunction, really?  

 

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10 minutes ago, TheVat said:

 

I like van Fraassen's anti-realist position of "empirical adequacy," which @Davy_Jones has acquainted us with. 

 From SEP.... 

This sounds to me how a lot of scientists view their work.   A theory is empirically adequate,  but few would mistake it for a declaration of metaphysical realism.   What is a wavefunction, really?  

 

I'd personally amend that, sir, to "how a lot of physicists view their work".

It (i.e. antirealism) does appear to be the dominant poistion in physics. I doubt very much it is in other branches of science.

Copied from page 2 . . .

 

And I'd reiterate, this is almost certainly a minority view in science as a whole (physics being the apparent exception).

Try asking a psychologist if he thinks consciousness is real.

Try asking a geologist if she thinks tectonic plates are real.

Try asking a paleontologist if he thinks dinosaurs are real.

Try asking a chemist if she thinks oxygen is real.

Try asking a neuroscientist if she thinks neurons are real.

Try asking Richard Dawkins whether he thinks natural selection is real or merely a theoretical postulate, useful for predictive purposes, but not to be taken at face value.

. . .

16 minutes ago, swansont said:

Here's an example of what I just talked about. The cannonball is what you brought up, not me. It's a straw man argument, and you should really stop doing this.

 

Does physics try to describe the trajectory of cannonballs and other such thingies or not?

If it does, then contra your own (seemingly crazy) view, physics is trying to describe reality (at least the observable part thereof).

Edited by Davy_Jones
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4 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

I'd personally amend that, sir, to "how a lot of physicists view their work".

It (i.e. antirealism) does appear to be the dominant poistion in physics. I doubt very much it is in other branches of science.

Copied from page 2 . . .

 

And I'd reiterate, this is almost certainly a minority view in science as a whole (physics being the apparent exception).

Try asking a psychologist if he thinks consciousness is real.

Try asking a geologist if she thinks tectonic plates are real.

Try asking a paleontologist if he thinks dinosaurs are real.

Try asking a chemist if she thinks oxygen is real.

Try asking a neuroscientist if she thinks neurons are real.

Try asking Richard Dawkins whether he thinks natural selection is real or merely a theoretical postulate, useful for predictive purposes, but not to be taken at face value.

. . .

You could always, try asking yourself; he who is without sin etc...

Original sin, is not about innocence; it's about forgiving oneself for not being innocent... 

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4 hours ago, swansont said:

The topic of the thread is the difference between science and philosophy, so the whole premise here is that there are distinctions between the two, i.e. we are looking at the bits that do not overlap. Pointing to science and calling it philosophy is not in keeping with that premise.

That's rich when I have been saying that and keeptrying to bring the thread back to that opening question.

In particular I have identified everything that is a difference between S and P, mathematically but no one (yourself included) seems interested.

Anyway here is a Venn diagram to illustracte my point.

If we take all that is Science (red S ring) and add all that is Philosophy (blue P ring) and subtract everything that is common to both (white lenticular shape) then what remains is everything that is different between Science and Philosophy (the combination of the red and blue lunes)

S_PVenn.jpg.6bffd960283e9a28740bd80390087117.jpg

Furthermore to avoid the impression that Science only consists of Physics, here is an example of something that definitely belong firmly in the red area.

A scientist measures the wingspan of a red admiral butterfly.

As far as I can tell this has no philosophical value at all, except that, along with my emboldened quote from Eise, it introduces a comment about the philosophy of Science.

4 hours ago, Eise said:

Another kind of example: we have a very extended theory of the electron. We know how it behaves in all kind of situations. It might be that there is nothing more to add to it. Suppose this is the case, do we  then know the true nature of the electron? 

 

Eise says 'might be'.

This is a very ill quantified statement. A Philosopher's statement (no offence intended)

Science has developed several specific techniques for improving on such philosophical statements, indeed we have already seen one example that has again been ignored here. The contraction mapping (Banach) theorem.

In the case of might be Science has developed probabiltiy and statistics theory.

So the Scientist measuring his butterfly measurement is in a position to offer his measurement scientifically, within tolerance limits and perhaps as an average, perhaps compared in some way to a standard or other wingspans or in relation to a bodyweight to span ratio or whatever.

Philosophers who seek truth do not work in this sort of context.

So here are some major differences between S and P.

 

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3 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

Doesn't that describe, the difference? 

I thought I explained how it does indeed 'describe the difference' ?

 

10 minutes ago, studiot said:

then what remains is everything that is different between Science and Philosophy (the combination of the red and blue lunes)

 

Was there something that needs further explanation ?

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29 minutes ago, studiot said:

That's rich when I have been saying that and keeptrying to bring the thread back to that opening question.

In particular I have identified everything that is a difference between S and P, mathematically but no one (yourself included) seems interested.

I've asked the question about how philosophy is intended to help me align my laser, which seems on par with your butterfly measurement question. It seems to be couched more toward "how does philosophy extend its overlap" rather than "how does science extend its overlap" and I have no issue with that, but it does seem that people more adept at philosophy must answer it.

 

47 minutes ago, Davy_Jones said:

Does physics try to describe the trajectory of cannonballs and other such thingies or not?

If it does, then contra your own (seemingly crazy) view, physics is trying to describe reality (at least the observable part thereof).

It's not contra my view. Can you point to where I introduced any claims about cannonball trajectories?

I'm trying to figure out if this is a comprehension issue or if you are being deliberately obtuse.(edit: or possibly a matter of simply not having an understanding of QM or some other areas of physics, so not being able to comment, but then, if you lack familiarity, how can you make a declaration with such certainty?)

Some physics does not describe reality, does not mean all of physics does not describe reality. (and you might note that I never made any distinction between observable and non-observable. That goalpost was moved by you)

 

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