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  1. Wave-Particle Duality and the Objectiveness of “True” and “False”.Arkady Bolotin - 2021 - Foundations of Physics 51 (4):1-27.
    The traditional analysis of the basic version of the double-slit experiment leads to the conclusion that wave-particle duality is a fundamental fact of nature. However, such a conclusion means to imply that we are not only required to have two contradictory pictures of reality but also compelled to abandon the objectiveness of the truth values, “true” and “false”. Yet, even if we could accept wave-like behavior of quantum particles as the best explanation for the build-up of an interference pattern in (...)
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  • Assessing Direct and Indirect Evidence in Linguistic Research.Christina Behme - 2014 - Topoi 33 (2):373-383.
    This paper focuses on the linguistic evidence base provided by proponents of conceptualism (e.g., Chomsky) and rational realism (e.g., Katz) and challenges some of the arguments alleging that the evidence allowed by conceptualists is superior to that of rational realists. Three points support this challenge. First, neither conceptualists nor realists are in a position to offer direct evidence. This challenges the conceptualists’ claim that their evidence is inherently superior. Differences between the kinds of available indirect evidence will be discussed. Second, (...)
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  • Thought Experiments Considered Harmful.Paul Thagard - 2014 - Perspectives on Science 22 (2):122-139.
    Thought experiments have been influential in philosophy at least since Plato, and they have contributed to science at least since Galileo. Some of this influence is appropriate, because thought experiments can have legitimate roles in generating and clarifying hypotheses, as well as in identifying problems in competing hypotheses. I will argue, however, that philosophers have often overestimated the significance of thought experiments by supposing that they can provide evidence that supports the acceptance of beliefs. Accepting hypotheses merely on the basis (...)
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  • Introduction to Special Issue of Perspectives on Science.Yiftach Fehige & Michael T. Stuart - 2014 - Perspectives on Science 22 (2):167-178.
    This is an introduction to a special issue of Perspectives on Science, the outcome of a workshop entitled "Thought Experiments in Science: Four Blind Spots," held at the University of Toronto, March 23rd, 2012. The recent revival in philosophical study of thought experiments has been limited to fields like epistemology, science studies, and metaphilosophy. With this issue we hope to facilitate a discussion about how some other disciplinary perspectives might bear on the subject; specifically, the history of philosophy, literary studies, (...)
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  • Imagination: A Sine Qua Non of Science.Michael T. Stuart - 2017 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy (49):9-32.
    What role does the imagination play in scientific progress? After examining several studies in cognitive science, I argue that one thing the imagination does is help to increase scientific understanding, which is itself indispensable for scientific progress. Then, I sketch a transcendental justification of the role of imagination in this process.
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  • Thought Experiments in Ethics.Georg Brun - 2017 - In Michael T. Stuart, Yiftach J. H. Fehige & James Robert Brown (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Thought Experiments. Abingdon/New York: Routledge. pp. 195–210.
    This chapter suggests a scheme of reconstruction, which explains how scenarios, questions and arguments figure in thought experiments. It then develops a typology of ethical thought experiments according to their function, which can be epistemic, illustrative, rhetorical, heuristic or theory-internal. Epistemic functions of supporting or refuting ethical claims rely on metaethical assumptions, for example, an epistemological background of reflective equilibrium. In this context, thought experiments may involve intuitive as well as explicitly argued judgements; they can be used to generate moral (...)
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  • Galileo Versus Aristotle on Free Falling Bodies.Markus Schrenk - 2004 - History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis 7 (1):81-89.
  • Poznawczy status eksperymentów myślowych. Platonizm, empiryzm, modele mentalne i analogia.Przemysław Zawadzki - 2017 - Filozofia Nauki 98 (2):121-135.
    The paper begins with a characterization of thought experiments, followed by a general outline of contemporary debates in the field. The discussion reveals that the most significant controversyinvolved is the dispute over the epistemic status of thought experiments between empiricists, Platonists, and the proponents of mental models. After a critical analysis of these approaches, a new theoretical framework proposed by Paul Bartha is introduced. It is suggested that Bartha’s approach, which appeals to a theory of analogy, offers new insights into (...)
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  • Exploring Techno-Spirituality: Design Strategies for Transcendent User Experiences.Elizabeth Buie - 2018 - Dissertation, University of Newcastle
    This thesis presents a study of transcendent experiences — experiences of connection with something greater than oneself — focusing on what they are, how artefacts support them, and how design can contribute to that support. People often find such experiences transformative, and artefacts do support them — but the literature rarely addresses designing artefact support for TXs. This thesis provides a step toward filling that gap. The first phase of research involved the conduct and analysis of 24 interviews with adults (...)
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  • The Forever War: Understanding, Science Fiction, and Thought Experiments.Harald Wiltsche - 2019 - Synthese 198 (4):1-24.
    The aim of this paper is to show that scientific thought experiments and works of science fiction are highly suitable tools for facilitating and increasing understanding of science. After comparing one of Einstein’s most famous thought experiments with the science fiction novel “The Forever War”, I shall argue that both proceed similarly in making some of the more outlandish consequences of special relativity theory intelligible. However, as I will also point out, understanding in thought experiments and understanding in science fiction (...)
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  • International Handbook of Research in History, Philosophy and Science Teaching.Michael R. Matthews (ed.) - 2014 - Springer.
    This inaugural handbook documents the distinctive research field that utilizes history and philosophy in investigation of theoretical, curricular and pedagogical issues in the teaching of science and mathematics. It is contributed to by 130 researchers from 30 countries; it provides a logically structured, fully referenced guide to the ways in which science and mathematics education is, informed by the history and philosophy of these disciplines, as well as by the philosophy of education more generally. The first handbook to cover the (...)
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  • The computational philosophy: simulation as a core philosophical method.Conor Mayo-Wilson & Kevin J. S. Zollman - forthcoming - Synthese:1-27.
    Modeling and computer simulations, we claim, should be considered core philosophical methods. More precisely, we will defend two theses. First, philosophers should use simulations for many of the same reasons we currently use thought experiments. In fact, simulations are superior to thought experiments in achieving some philosophical goals. Second, devising and coding computational models instill good philosophical habits of mind. Throughout the paper, we respond to the often implicit objection that computer modeling is “not philosophical.”.
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  • How Can Computer Simulations Produce New Knowledge?Claus Beisbart - 2012 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 2 (3):395-434.
    It is often claimed that scientists can obtain new knowledge about nature by running computer simulations. How is this possible? I answer this question by arguing that computer simulations are arguments. This view parallels Norton’s argument view about thought experiments. I show that computer simulations can be reconstructed as arguments that fully capture the epistemic power of the simulations. Assuming the extended mind hypothesis, I furthermore argue that running the computer simulation is to execute the reconstructing argument. I discuss some (...)
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  • Biomorphism and Models in Design.Cameron Shelley - 2015 - In Woosuk Park, Ping Li & Lorenzo Magnani (eds.), Philosophy and Cognitive Science Ii. Springer Verlag.
  • Thought-Experiments About Gravity in the History of Science and in Research Into Children’s Thinking.E. J. Blown & T. G. K. Bryce - 2013 - Science & Education 22 (3):419-481.
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  • Thought Experiments: Determining Their Meaning.Igal Galili - 2009 - Science & Education 18 (1):1-23.
  • Are Computer Simulations Experiments? And If Not, How Are They Related to Each Other?Claus Beisbart - 2018 - European Journal for Philosophy of Science 8 (2):171-204.
    Computer simulations and experiments share many important features. One way of explaining the similarities is to say that computer simulations just are experiments. This claim is quite popular in the literature. The aim of this paper is to argue against the claim and to develop an alternative explanation of why computer simulations resemble experiments. To this purpose, experiment is characterized in terms of an intervention on a system and of the observation of the reaction. Thus, if computer simulations are experiments, (...)
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  • Visual Information and Scientific Understanding.Nicola Mößner - 2015 - Axiomathes 25 (2):167-179.
    Without doubt, there is a widespread usage of visualisations in science. However, what exactly the _epistemic status_ of these visual representations in science may be remains an open question. In the following, I will argue that at least some scientific visualisations are indispensible for our cognitive processes. My thesis will be that, with regard to the activity of _learning_, visual representations are of relevance in the sense of contributing to the aim of _scientific_ _understanding_. Taking into account that understanding can (...)
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  • Imagination and Insight: A New Acount of the Content of Thought Experiments.Letitia Meynell - 2014 - Synthese 191 (17):4149-4168.
    This paper motivates, explains, and defends a new account of the content of thought experiments. I begin by briefly surveying and critiquing three influential accounts of thought experiments: James Robert Brown’s Platonist account, John Norton’s deflationist account that treats them as picturesque arguments, and a cluster of views that I group together as mental model accounts. I use this analysis to motivate a set of six desiderata for a new approach. I propose that we treat thought experiments primarily as aesthetic (...)
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  • The Puzzle of Thought Experiments in Conceptual Metaphor Research.András Kertész - 2015 - Foundations of Science 20 (2):147-174.
    How can thought experiments lead to new empirical knowledge if they do not make use of empirical information? This puzzle has been widely discussed in the philosophy of science. It arises in conceptual metaphor research as well and is especially important for the clarification of its empirical foundations. The aim of the paper is to suggest a possible solution to the puzzle of thought experiments in conceptual metaphor research. The solution rests on the application of a novel metatheoretical framework that (...)
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  • Galileo Vs Aristotle on Free Falling Bodies.Markus Andreas Schrenk - 2004 - History of Philosophy & Logical Analysis 7 (1):1-11.
    This essay attempts to demonstrate that it is doubtful if Galileo's famous thought experiment concerning falling bodies in his 'Dialogues Concerning Two New Sciences' (Galileo 1954: 61-64) actually does succeed in proving that Aristotle was wrong in claiming that "bodies of different weight […] move […] with different speeds which stand to one another in the same ratio as their weights," (Galileo 1954: 61). (Part I); and further that it is likewise doubtful that that argument does or even can establish (...)
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  • Consciousness Makes a Difference: A Reluctant Dualist’s Confession.Avshalom C. Elitzur - 2009 - In A. Batthyany & A. C. Elitzur (eds.), Irreducibly Conscious: Selected Papers on Consciousness.
    This paper’s outline is as follows. In sections 1-3 I give an exposi¬tion of the Mind-Body Problem, with emphasis on what I believe to be the heart of the problem, namely, the Percepts-Qualia Nonidentity and its incompatibility with the Physical Closure Paradigm. In 4 I present the “Qualia Inaction Postulate” underlying all non-interactionist theo¬ries that seek to resolve the above problem. Against this convenient postulate I propose in section 5 the “Bafflement Ar¬gument,” which is this paper's main thesis. Sections 6-11 (...)
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  • Literature and Thought Experiments.David Egan - 2016 - Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 74 (2):139-150.
    Like works of literature, thought experiments present fictional narratives that prompt reflection in their readers. Because of these and other similarities, a number of philosophers have argued for a strong analogy between works of literary fiction and thought experiments, some going so far as to say that works of literary fiction are a species of thought experiment. These arguments are often used in defending a cognitivist position with regard to literature: thought experiments produce knowledge, so works of literary fiction can (...)
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  • Galileo and the Indispensability of Scientific Thought Experiment.Tamar Szabó Gendler - 1998 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 49 (3):397-424.
    By carefully examining one of the most famous thought experiments in the history of science—that by which Galileo is said to have refuted the Aristotelian theory that heavier bodies fall faster than lighter ones—I attempt to show that thought experiments play a distinctive role in scientific inquiry. Reasoning about particular entities within the context of an imaginary scenario can lead to rationally justified concluusions that—given the same initial information—would not be rationally justifiable on the basis of a straightforward argument.
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  • The Future of Value Sensitive Design.Batya Friedman, David Hendry, Steven Umbrello, Jeroen Van Den Hoven & Daisy Yoo - 2020 - Paradigm Shifts in ICT Ethics: Proceedings of the 18th International Conference ETHICOMP 2020.
    In this panel, we explore the future of value sensitive design (VSD). The stakes are high. Many in public and private sectors and in civil society are gradually realizing that taking our values seriously implies that we have to ensure that values effectively inform the design of technology which, in turn, shapes people’s lives. Value sensitive design offers a highly developed set of theory, tools, and methods to systematically do so.
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  • Are Thought Experiments “Disturbing”? The Case of Armchair Physics.Samuel Schindler & Pierre Saint-Germier - 2020 - Philosophical Studies 177 (9):2671-2695.
    Proponents of the “negative program” in experimental philosophy have argued that judgements in philosophical cases, also known as case judgements, are unreliable and that the method of cases should be either strongly constrained or even abandoned. Here we put one of the main proponent’s account of why philosophical cases may cause the unreliability of case judgements to the test. We conducted our test with thought experiments from physics, which exhibit the exact same supposedly “disturbing characteristics” of philosophical cases.
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  • Avicenna's Essentialism.Sakineh Karimi & Mohammad Saeedimehr - 2019 - Journal of Knowledge 12 (1):179-212.
    Reflecting on Avicenna’s works indicates that by ‘Dhat’(ذات), when used in the context of universal essences, he means either the quiddity or the nature, and when used in the context of individual essence, especially God’s essence, he means the very existence. The second meaning, i.e. the nature, which is the result of his inquiry about the reality of things, is based on the first one, i.e. the quiddity. According to this second meaning, and througha kind of thought experiment and using (...)
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  • Models of Philosophical Thought Experimentation.Jonathan Andy Tapsell - 2014 - Dissertation, Australian National University
    The practice of thought experimentation plays a central role in contemporary philosophical methodology. Many philosophers rely on thought experimentation as their primary and even sole procedure for testing theories about the natures of properties and relations. This test procedure involves entertaining hypothetical cases in imaginative thought and then undergoing intuitions about the distribution of properties and relations in them. A theory’s comporting with an intuition is treated as evidence in favour of it; but a clash is treated as evidence against (...)
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  • The False Promise of Thought Experimentation in Moral and Political Philosophy.Friderik Klampfer - 2017 - In Borstner Bojan & Gartner Smiljana (ed.), Thought Experiments between Nature and Society. A Festschrift for Nenad Miščević. Newcastle upon Tyne, UK: Cambridge Scholars Publishing. pp. 328-348.
    Prof. Miščević has long been an ardent defender of the use of thought experiments in philosophy, foremost metaphysics, epistemology and philosophy of mind. Recently he has, in his typically sophisticated manner, extended his general account of philosophical thought-experimenting to the domain of normative politics. Not only can the history of political philosophy be better understood and appreciated, according to Miščević, when seen as a more or less continuous, yet covert, practice of thought-experimenting, the very progress of the discipline may crucially (...)
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  • Thought Experiments and Inertial Motion: A Golden Thread in the Development of Mechanics.Mark Shumelda & James Robert Brown - 2009 - Rivista di Estetica 42:71-96.
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  • Empirical Thought Experiments: A Transcendental-Operational View.Marco Buzzoni - 2009 - Epistemologia 33 (1):5-26.
    The operational perspective here defended permits a reflexive-transcendental point of view that sharply distinguishes the two concepts, while, at the same time, maintaining the connection between them. On the one hand, simply imagining that the experimental apparatus, counterfactually anticipated in a thought experiment, has really been constructed is sufficient to erase any difference between thought and real experiments. On the other hand, this very ‘imagining’, this capacity of the mind to assume every real entity as a possible entity, underpins the (...)
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  • Platonism and the Apriori in Thought Experiments.Thomas Grundmann - 2017 - In Michael T. Stuart, Yiftach J. H. Fehige & James Robert Brown (eds.), The Routledge Companion to Thought Experiments. London, New York: Routledge.
  • Philosophical Thought Experiments as Heuristics for Theory Discovery.Asbjørn Steglich-Petersen & Sara Kier Praëm - 2015 - Synthese 192 (9):2827-2842.
    The growing literature on philosophical thought experiments has so far focused almost exclusively on the role of thought experiments in confirming or refuting philosophical hypotheses or theories. In this paper we draw attention to an additional and largely ignored role that thought experiments frequently play in our philosophical practice: some thought experiments do not merely serve as means for testing various philosophical hypotheses or theories, but also serve as facilitators for conceiving and articulating new ones. As we will put it, (...)
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  • Imagination Rather Than Observation in Econometrics: Ragnar Frisch’s Hypothetical Experiments as Thought Experiments.Catherine Herfeld - 2019 - Hopos: The Journal of the International Society for the History of Philosophy of Science 9 (1):35-74.
    In economics, thought experiments are frequently justified by the difficulty of conducting controlled experiments. They serve several functions, such as establishing causal facts, isolating tendencies, and allowing inferences from models to reality. In this paper, I argue that thought experiments served a further function in economics: facilitating the quantitative definition and measurement of the theoretical concept of utility, thereby bridging the gap between theory and statistical data. I support my argument by a case study, the “hypothetical experiments” of the Norwegian (...)
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  • Thought Experiments and Mental Simulations.John Zeimbekis - 2011 - In Katerina Ierodiakonou & Sophie Roux (eds.), Thought Experiments in Methodological and Historical Contexts. Brill.
    Thought experiments have a mysterious way of informing us about the world, apparently without examining it, yet with a great degree of certainty. It is tempting to try to explain this capacity by making use of the idea that in thought experiments, the mind somehow simulates the processes about which it reaches conclusions. Here, I test this idea. I argue that when they predict the outcomes of hypothetical physical situations, thought experiments cannot simulate physical processes. They use mental models, which (...)
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  • Genetic Ties: Are They Morally Binding?Giuliana Fuscaldo - 2006 - Bioethics 20 (2):64–76.
  • Thought Experiments Rhetoric and Possible Worlds.Benoît De Baere - 2003 - Philosophica 72.
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  • The Function and Limit of Galileo’s Falling Bodies Thought Experiment.Rawad el Skaf - 2018 - Croatian Journal of Philosophy 18 (1):37-58.
    The ongoing epistemological debate on scientific thought experiments revolves, in part, around the now famous Galileo’s falling bodies TE and how it could justify its conclusions. In this paper, I argue that the TE’s function is misrepresented in this a-historical debate. I retrace the history of this TE and show that it constituted the first step in two general “argumentative strategies”, excogitated by Galileo to defend two different theories of free-fall, in 1590’s and then in the 1638. I analyse both (...)
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  • Quantum Physics and Theology: John Polkinghorne on Thought Experiments.Yiftach J. H. Fehige - 2012 - Zygon 47 (2):256-288.
    Abstract Thought experimentation is part of accepted scientific practice, and this makes it surprising that philosophers of science did not seriously engage with it for a very long time. The situation changed in the 1990s, resulting in a highly intriguing debate over thought experiments. Initially, the discussion focused mostly on thought experiments in physics, philosophy, and mathematics. Other disciplines have since become the subject of interest. Yet, nothing substantial has been said about the role of thought experiments in nonphilosophical theology. (...)
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