Hypotheses and Inductive Predictions

Synthese 141 (3):333-364 (2004)
Abstract
ABSTRACT. This paper studies the use of hypotheses schemes in generating inductive predictions. After discussing Carnap–Hintikka inductive logic, hypotheses schemes are defined and illustrated with two partitions. One partition results in the Carnapian continuum of inductive methods, the other results in predictions typical for hasty generalization. Following these examples I argue that choosing a partition comes down to making inductive assumptions on patterns in the data, and that by choosing appropriately any inductive assumption can be made. Further considerations on partitions make clear that they do not suggest any solution to the problem of induction. Hypotheses schemes provide the tools for making inductive assumptions, but they also reveal the need for such assumptions.
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