What counts as a Newtonian system? The view from Norton's dome

If the force on a particle fails to satisfy a Lipschitz condition at a point, it relaxes one of the conditions necessary for a locally unique solution to the particle’s equation of motion. I examine the most discussed example of this failure of determinism in classical mechanics—that of Norton’s dome—and the range of current objections against it. Finding there are many different conceptions of classical mechanics appropriate and useful for different purposes, I argue that no single conception is preferred. Instead of arguing for or against determinism, I stress the wide variety of pragmatic considerations that, in a specific context, may lead one usefully and legitimately to adopt one conception over another in which determinism may or may not hold
Keywords Determinism  Classical mechanics  Newtonian mechanics  Pluralism  Pragmatism
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DOI 10.1007/s13194-011-0040-8
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References found in this work BETA
John D. Norton (2007). Causation as Folk Science. In Huw Price & Richard Corry (eds.), Philosophers' Imprint. Oxford University Press
Mark Wilson (2009). Determinism and the Mystery of the Missing Physics. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (1):173-193.

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Citations of this work BETA
Marij van Strien (2014). The Norton Dome and the Nineteenth Century Foundations of Determinism. Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 45 (1):167-185.
Boris Kožnjak (2015). Who Let the Demon Out? Laplace and Boscovich on Determinism. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 51:42-52.

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David Malament (2008). Norton's Slippery Slope. Philosophy of Science 75 (5):799-816.
Jessica Wilson (2007). Newtonian Forces. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 58 (2):173 - 205.
Mark Wilson (2009). Determinism and the Mystery of the Missing Physics. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 60 (1):173-193.

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