A simplification of the theory of simplicity

Synthese 107 (3):373 - 393 (1996)
Abstract
Nelson Goodman has constructed two theories of simplicity: one of predicates; one of hypotheses. I offer a simpler theory by generalization and abstraction from his. Generalization comes by dropping special conditions Goodman imposes on which unexcluded extensions count as complicating and which excluded extensions count as simplifying. Abstraction is achieved by counting only nonisomorphic models and subinterpretations. The new theory takes into account all the hypotheses of a theory in assessing its complexity, whether they were projected prior to, or result from, projection of a given hypothesis. It assigns simplicity post-projection priority over simplicity pre-projection. It better orders compound conditionals than does the theory of simplicity of hypotheses, and it does not inherit an anomaly of the theory of simplicity of predicates — its failure to order the ordering relations. Drop Goodman's special conditions, and the problems fall away with them.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 10,561
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA
Nelson Goodman (1959). Recent Developments in the Theory of Simplicity. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 19 (4):429-446.
Nelson Goodman (1961). Safety, Strength, Simplicity. Philosophy of Science 28 (2):150-151.

View all 9 references

Citations of this work BETA
John R. Welch (2013). New Tools for Theory Choice and Theory Diagosis. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 44 (3):318-329.
Similar books and articles
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

24 ( #70,201 of 1,098,129 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

10 ( #18,492 of 1,098,129 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.