David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Foundations of Chemistry 1 (3):255-268 (1999)
Based on the design of many modern chemical instruments, information about a specimen is retrieved after the specimen undergoes agitation, manipulation and disturbance of its internal state. But can we retain the traditional ideal that instruments should reveal properties that are definable independently of all modes of detection? In this paper I argue that the capacity of chemical instruments to convert experimental phenomena to information places constraints on the way in which the specimen is characterized. During research, the specimen is defined by those properties which permit its detection. Based on modern instrumentation, this constraint necessitates a conception of the specimen as a reactive system of dynamical properties. The dream of a purely transparent detection process violates the design of chemical instruments. This mutual dependence of instrument and specimen is illustrated by empirical studies of the geometrical configuration of DNA.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
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
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Marcel Boumans (2004). The Reliability of an Instrument. Social Epistemology 18 (2 & 3):215 – 246.
Margaret Sleeboom-Faulkner (ed.) (2009). Human Genetic Biobanks in Asia: Politics of Trust and Scientific Advancement. Routledge.
B. L. (2002). Instruments and Rules: R. B. Woodward and the Tools of Twentieth-Century Organic Chemistry. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 33 (1):1-32.
Thomas Sturm & Mitchell G. Ash (2005). The Roles of Instruments in Psychological Research. History of Psychology 8:3-34.
Jennifer Wilson Mulnix (2008). Patient Autonomy and the Freedom to Act Against One's Self-Interest. Clinical Laboratory Science 21 (2):114-115.
Mark V. Barrow (2000). The Specimen Dealer: Entrepreneurial Natural History in America's Gilded Age. [REVIEW] Journal of the History of Biology 33 (3):493 - 534.
Isaac Record (2010). Scientific Instruments: Knowledge, Practice, and Culture [Editor's Introduction]. Spontaneous Generations 4 (1):1-7.
Joseph LaPorte (2003). Does a Type Specimen Necessarily or Contingently Belong to its Species? Biology and Philosophy 18 (4):583-588.
Ernst Mayr (1982). Comments on David Hull's Paper on Exemplars and Type Specimens. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1982:504 - 511.
Davis Baird (2000). Encapsulating Knowledge: The Direct Reading Spectrometer. [REVIEW] Foundations of Chemistry 2 (1):5-46.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads13 ( #127,469 of 1,102,122 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #41,656 of 1,102,122 )
How can I increase my downloads?