How Accurate Is the Standard Second?

Philosophy of Science 78 (5):1082-1096 (2011)
Abstract
Contrary to the claim that measurement standards are absolutely accurate by definition, I argue that unit definitions do not completely fix the referents of unit terms. Instead, idealized models play a crucial semantic role in coordinating the theoretical definition of a unit with its multiple concrete realizations. The accuracy of realizations is evaluated by comparing them to each other in light of their respective models. The epistemic credentials of this method are examined and illustrated through an analysis of the contemporary standardization of time. I distinguish among five senses of ‘measurement accuracy’ and clarify how idealizations enable the assessment of accuracy in each sense.
Keywords Measurement  Accuracy  Standards  Physics  Models  Idealizations
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1086/662268
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
Our Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 26,188
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
Some Varieties of Robustness.Jim Woodward - 2006 - Journal of Economic Methodology 13 (2):219-240.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Old and New Problems in Philosophy of Measurement.Eran Tal - 2013 - Philosophy Compass 8 (12):1159-1173.
Measuring Effectiveness.Jacob Stegenga - 2015 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 54:62-71.
Measurement, Coordination, and the Relativized a Priori.Flavia Padovani - forthcoming - Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics.
Computer Simulation and the Features of Novel Empirical Data.Greg Lusk - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part A 56:145-152.

View all 9 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles
The Epistemology of Measurement: A Model-Based Account.Eran Tal - 2012 - Dissertation, University of Toronto
Modeling Measurement: Error and Uncertainty.Alessandro Giordani & Luca Mari - 2014 - In Marcel Boumans, Giora Hon & Arthur Petersen (eds.), Error and Uncertainty in Scientific Practice. Pickering & Chatto. pp. 79-96.
Measurement in Economics.Marcel Boumans - 2012 - In Uskali Mäki, Dov M. Gabbay, Paul Thagard & John Woods (eds.), Philosophy of Economics. North Holland. pp. 395.
Measurement, Models, and Uncertainty.Alessandro Giordani & Luca Mari - 2012 - IEEE Transactions on Instrumentation and Measurement 61 (8):2144 - 2152.
Measuring Accuracy is an Intractable Problem.Gillian Cohen - 1998 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 21 (1):164-164.
Emotional Truth.Ronald De Sousa & Adam Morton - 2002 - Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 76:247-275.
Expanding the Scope of Explanatory Idealization.Andrew Wayne - 2011 - Philosophy of Science 78 (5):830-841.

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2011-11-07

Total downloads

56 ( #91,296 of 2,153,783 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

2 ( #279,963 of 2,153,783 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums