David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Inquiry 22 (1-4):441-457 (1979)
Although prima facie no more than a successful private detective, Sherlock Holmes is a classic exponent of scientific method and has laid down several fundamental rules of scientific discovery and truth?detection. While he rediscovered and modified well?known principles of induction, analysis and synthesis, and decision theory, he also made significant contributions to patterns of explanation, and with his ?principle of exclusion? was an ingenious innovator. This latter cornerstone of Holmes's methodology led him to an interesting modal theory of the ?improbable possible? as a competitor to the famous doctrine of the ?impossible probable? put forward by Aristotle in de Arte Poetica. Holmes's scientific discipline was seasoned by warmth, understanding, and boldness
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