This volume, the third in this Springer series, contains selected papers from the four workshops organized by the ESF Research Networking Programme "The Philosophy of Science in a European Perspective" in 2010: Pluralism in the Foundations of Statistics Points of Contact between the Philosophy of Physics and the Philosophy of Biology The Debate on Mathematical Modeling in the Social Sciences Historical Debates about Logic, Probability and Statistics The volume is accordingly divided in four sections, each of them containing papers coming (...) from the workshop focussing on one of these themes. While the programme's core topic for the year 2010 was probability and statistics, the organizers of the workshops embraced the opportunity of building bridges to more or less closely connected issues in general philosophy of science, philosophy of physics and philosophy of the special sciences. However, papers that analyze the concept of probability for various philosophical purposes are clearly a major theme in this volume, as it was in the previous volumes of the same series. This reflects the impressive productivity of probabilistic approaches in the philosophy of science, which form an important part of what has become known as formal epistemology - although, of course, there are non-probabilistic approaches in formal epistemology as well. It is probably fair to say that Europe has been particularly strong in this area of philosophy in recent years.. (shrink)
This paper and its predecessor () are about the question: 'Are the events in the entire universe encoded in and predictable from any of its parts?' To approach a positive answer in classical physics, the following result is proved and commented on: in Newton's theory of gravitation, the entire trajectory of a particle can be predicted given any segment of it, regardless of how the other particles are moving-provided that there is only a finite number of particles and that their (...) speeds remain bounded. (It is this condition, together with a set of parameters characterising the motion of the other particles, which enables us to estimate the effect of the other particles on the trajectory of the given particle.) The extension of this result to other theories, in particular to special relativity, is discussed. (shrink)
This book develops the theses that in late Victorian England there was a move to replace the ideological orthodoxy of establishment Christianity with "scientific naturalism," that this outlook was no less ideological, orthodoxy-demanding, and establishmentarian in its mentality than what it tried to replace, and that a number of bright minds were no more willing to conform to the new order than they had been to the old. The themes are elaborated by the portrayal of the intellectual progress of six (...) pilgrims who, having left the confinement of Zion, were unwilling to settle in another prison however "natural" its restraints. (shrink)
A series of individual devotional meditations by the former President of the U.N. General Assembly. The current world crisis is more fundamentally spiritual than political, economic, or military, and hence a crisis to which the Christian gospel has relevance.--J. H. H.
The fruit of many years of research and reflection, this volume is an historical exposition of Wieman’s view of creativity. It shows how Wieman used the philosophical concepts and insights of his teachers, Ralph Barton Perry and William Ernest Hocking, and others, including Bergson, Whitehead, James, and Dewey to develop his distinctive understanding of creativity.
Obviously the work of an erudite and cultured man, this book is what it purports to be, "an informal story of China," "designed for the interested layman as well as the student rather than the specialist." Like most popularization, it suffers from oversimplification, overenthusiasm, lack of proper scholarly support for the material, and zealous digression. The somewhat stilted style is often awkward and un-English. Nevertheless, a decidedly entertaining book, distinguished by several translations of Chinese lyrics. --J. H. S.
I argue that in a classical universe, all the events that ever happen are encoded in each of the universe's parts. This conflicts with a statement which is widely believed to lie at the basis of relativity theory: that the events in a space-time region R determine only the events in R's domain of dependence but not those in other space-time regions. I show how, from this understanding, a new prediction method (which I call the &unknown;Smoothness Method&unknown;) can be obtained (...) which allows us to predict future events on the basis of local observational data. Like traditional prediction methods, this method makes use of so-called &unknown;ceteris paribus clauses&unknown;, i.e. assumptions about the unobserved parts of the universe. However, these assumptions are used in a way which enables us to predict the behaviour of open systems with arbitrary accuracy, regardless of the influence of their environment--which has not been achieved by traditional methods. In a sequel to this paper (Schmidt, 1998), I will prove the Uniqueness and Predictability Theorems on which the Smoothness Method is based, and comment in more detail on its mathematical properties. (shrink)
The starting point for this book is the assertion that all gods are man-created, and that the Vedic gods were created in India, none being imported. The author then proceeds to examine the most important of the 33,000 Hindu gods and their worship. An enlightening introduction to the subject, aptly illustrated with quotations from the Hindu religious books, but difficult to read because of its monotonous, short, direct sentences, and its overt chauvinism. -- J. H. S.