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Author Topic:   So I Wrote A Book On The Scientific Method
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 61 of 168 (733071)
07-13-2014 6:08 PM
Reply to: Message 60 by Tangle
07-13-2014 5:35 PM


Re: Just a thought ...
I thought that I would find something definitive at talkorigins - but see if you can find the word 'prediction' on this page
The word prediction does not appear. But then the word hypothesis appears only three times, the term falsification does not appear at all, nor does the word scientific method.
I don't think anyone is proposing that predicting the future is a required part of the scientific method. If you are using prediction in only that sense, then predicting the future is not required of science.
Edited by NoNukes, : No reason given.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass

This message is a reply to:
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Dr Adequate
Member (Idle past 400 days)
Posts: 16113
Joined: 07-20-2006


Message 62 of 168 (733074)
07-13-2014 6:37 PM
Reply to: Message 58 by NoNukes
07-13-2014 4:31 PM


I read the first chapter and have some questions relating to style and choice of examples. I am off all next week and I will give you some comments by Tuesday.
Cool. Thanks.

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 Message 58 by NoNukes, posted 07-13-2014 4:31 PM NoNukes has not replied

  
RAZD
Member (Idle past 1521 days)
Posts: 20714
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004


(2)
Message 63 of 168 (733085)
07-13-2014 8:34 PM
Reply to: Message 60 by Tangle
07-13-2014 5:35 PM


Re: Just a thought ...
I don't think so. What it does is explain the fossils we find. Finding another fossil tomorrow has no predictive ability. ...
Not what I meant -- rather the theory explains the fossils we have found, and the prediction is that the next fossil we find will also be explained by the theory.
Thus every time a fossil is found it is a test of the theory of evolution's ability to explain the fossil record.
So your hypothetical explanatory theory explains the evidence we know, and the prediction is that new evidence will also be explained in the same way, and this is tested every time new evidence is found.
Enjoy.

we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAmerican☆Zen☯Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 60 by Tangle, posted 07-13-2014 5:35 PM Tangle has not replied

Replies to this message:
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anglagard
Member (Idle past 952 days)
Posts: 2339
From: Socorro, New Mexico USA
Joined: 03-18-2006


Message 64 of 168 (733088)
07-13-2014 9:12 PM


Once Published
Please let me know if and when this book is published in physical form since as a librarian I am good for six copies.

Read not to contradict and confute, not to believe and take for granted, not to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider. - Francis Bacon

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 65 of 168 (733089)
07-13-2014 11:12 PM
Reply to: Message 63 by RAZD
07-13-2014 8:34 PM


Re: Just a thought ...
Thus every time a fossil is found it is a test of the theory of evolution's ability to explain the fossil record.
I agree. In what sense are the requirement that any new fossils will fit into a nest hierarchy (e.g. no crocoducks) not predictions of the future?
No, we cannot predict which X-man humanity will evolve into in the future, or even whether descendants of humans will survive. But there is no requirement for that in the scientific method.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass

This message is a reply to:
 Message 63 by RAZD, posted 07-13-2014 8:34 PM RAZD has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 69 by RAZD, posted 07-14-2014 6:36 AM NoNukes has not replied

  
ramoss
Member (Idle past 728 days)
Posts: 3228
Joined: 08-11-2004


Message 66 of 168 (733090)
07-13-2014 11:22 PM
Reply to: Message 60 by Tangle
07-13-2014 5:35 PM


Re: Just a thought ...
However, we can make predictions about the kind of fossils that might be found in a specific area. The Tiktaalik (or a fish/amphibian missing link) was being looked for in the area where they found it because the rocks were the right age, and of the right environment. It was predicted something like that would be found, and they found it.
That's a prediction.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 60 by Tangle, posted 07-13-2014 5:35 PM Tangle has not replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9539
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 67 of 168 (733098)
07-14-2014 4:44 AM


I'm not arguing that predictions are not good and useful things for a theory to have, I'm asking whether they are necessary and, if so, can someone point me to a formal definition which includes it. I would have thought that someone who wrote a book on the scientific method might have included such a thing ;-)
As an example I've just read the first chapter in Aker's & Sellers book 'Criminological Theories' which opens with the heading 'What is a theory?' and completely ignores the ability to predict. (Although, of course, it's inferred. Deterrence theory predicts that punishment deters crime.)
Here's a couple:
[Scientific theories] make statements about relationships between observable phenomena. (Berbard, Snipes, & Gerould, 2014)
A theory is a set of interconnected statements or propositions that explain how two or more events or factors are related to one another. (Curren and Renzetti 2001)

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android
"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.

Replies to this message:
 Message 68 by Dr Adequate, posted 07-14-2014 5:24 AM Tangle has not replied
 Message 70 by NoNukes, posted 07-14-2014 7:22 AM Tangle has replied

  
Dr Adequate
Member (Idle past 400 days)
Posts: 16113
Joined: 07-20-2006


Message 68 of 168 (733101)
07-14-2014 5:24 AM
Reply to: Message 67 by Tangle
07-14-2014 4:44 AM


I'm not arguing that predictions are not good and useful things for a theory to have, I'm asking whether they are necessary and, if so, can someone point me to a formal definition which includes it. I would have thought that someone who wrote a book on the scientific method might have included such a thing ;-)
Well, very briefly what I say about it is as follows:
* A theory is a collection of laws and facts.
* When we talk of the "predictions" of a theory, we mean its logical consequences.
* These predictions divide conceivable observations into things which can happen if the theory is true and things which can't.
* We gain confidence in a theory if we go on seeing the things it says we can see and not the things it says we can't see. And, of course, we lose confidence if we see the things it says we can't see.
* This is the only test of a theory. Although a theory can do other things for us --- in particular, it can explain things --- its utility in this respect can't be used to judge whether a theory is true. (In those instances where you think its explanatory power is so impressive as to confirm the theory, it can always be shown that there is an equivalent and related aspect of its predictive power which is what is really making the theory credible.)
Now these last few facts don't appear in the definition of a theory --- just as the definition of a good wine doesn't appear in the definition of wine. But they're still true.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 67 by Tangle, posted 07-14-2014 4:44 AM Tangle has not replied

  
RAZD
Member (Idle past 1521 days)
Posts: 20714
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004


Message 69 of 168 (733103)
07-14-2014 6:36 AM
Reply to: Message 65 by NoNukes
07-13-2014 11:12 PM


Re: Just a thought ...
Thus every time a fossil is found it is a test of the theory of evolution's ability to explain the fossil record.
I agree. In what sense are the requirement that any new fossils will fit into a nest hierarchy (e.g. no crocoducks) not predictions of the future?
This also shows that we don't need to have experienced the past to explain it, to theorize about it, and to test those theories with new evidence.
Enjoy

we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
RebelAmerican☆Zen☯Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 65 by NoNukes, posted 07-13-2014 11:12 PM NoNukes has not replied

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 70 of 168 (733104)
07-14-2014 7:22 AM
Reply to: Message 67 by Tangle
07-14-2014 4:44 AM


Predictions are necessary because they are a required part of the scientific method. If you are looking at definitions of theory that do not even mention the scientific method, you are not looking in the right place.
It is possible to talk about theories without discussing details of how they are tested. That's why your search technique is not working.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass

This message is a reply to:
 Message 67 by Tangle, posted 07-14-2014 4:44 AM Tangle has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 71 by Tangle, posted 07-14-2014 5:08 PM NoNukes has replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9539
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 71 of 168 (733178)
07-14-2014 5:08 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by NoNukes
07-14-2014 7:22 AM


NoNukes writes:
Predictions are necessary because they are a required part of the scientific method.
Quite so. So I expect you will be able to demonstrate that rather than simply assert it. That's all I'm asking. Point me to an authorative source.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android
"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 70 by NoNukes, posted 07-14-2014 7:22 AM NoNukes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 72 by Dr Adequate, posted 07-14-2014 8:14 PM Tangle has not replied
 Message 73 by Dr Adequate, posted 07-14-2014 8:52 PM Tangle has not replied
 Message 74 by NoNukes, posted 07-14-2014 10:53 PM Tangle has replied

  
Dr Adequate
Member (Idle past 400 days)
Posts: 16113
Joined: 07-20-2006


(1)
Message 72 of 168 (733188)
07-14-2014 8:14 PM
Reply to: Message 71 by Tangle
07-14-2014 5:08 PM


Quite so. So I expect you will be able to demonstrate that rather than simply assert it. That's all I'm asking. Point me to an authorative source.
Try this.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 71 by Tangle, posted 07-14-2014 5:08 PM Tangle has not replied

  
Dr Adequate
Member (Idle past 400 days)
Posts: 16113
Joined: 07-20-2006


(1)
Message 73 of 168 (733190)
07-14-2014 8:52 PM
Reply to: Message 71 by Tangle
07-14-2014 5:08 PM


Quite so. So I expect you will be able to demonstrate that rather than simply assert it. That's all I'm asking. Point me to an authorative source.
Or here's a nice short argument; if people like it I'll add it to the appropriate place in my book.
On the one hand, for every prediction there is a test: if a theory predicts something, then by seeing if that something is the case, we'd be testing the theory.
But on the other hand, for every test there is a prediction. Because if some procedure really does put a theory to the test --- that is, if failing the test would discredit the theory --- then to affirm the truth of the theory is to predict that it will pass the test.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 71 by Tangle, posted 07-14-2014 5:08 PM Tangle has not replied

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


Message 74 of 168 (733194)
07-14-2014 10:53 PM
Reply to: Message 71 by Tangle
07-14-2014 5:08 PM


Please provide an authoritative source for F=ma...
Quite so. So I expect you will be able to demonstrate that rather than simply assert it. That's all I'm asking. Point me to an authorative source.
It is difficult to avoid finding an authoritative source providing exactly what you require. My question, asked several times is how you avoided finding references yourself, and I've pointed out your errors. To find references you simply look for sources describing the scientific method rather than for those simply discussing theory.
http://www.colby.edu/biology/BI17x/expt_method.html
Scientific Method
http://carm.org/scientific-method
Scientific method - Wikipedia
If you want to insist on finding your response in an authoritative article, you can conduct your search on google scholar.
See page 81 of the following law review article.
http://illinoislawreview.org/...ent/articles/2002/4/Ulen.pdf
Article contrasting types of prediction:
LMU Build
My point was that your own arguments indicating that prediction might not be required were nonsense. Is failing to find "prediction" on a single talkorigins page that does not describe the details of testing theories more persuasive than a wikipedia article describing prediction as a vital part of the scientific method?
I challenge you to find a serious article on the scientific method that does not require prediction as a method of testing hypothesis. I asked you for references, but you did not see any reason to answer my request or my criticisms of what you did provide.

Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)
I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. Galileo Galilei
If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightning. Frederick Douglass

This message is a reply to:
 Message 71 by Tangle, posted 07-14-2014 5:08 PM Tangle has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 75 by Tangle, posted 07-15-2014 3:38 AM NoNukes has replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 9539
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 75 of 168 (733198)
07-15-2014 3:38 AM
Reply to: Message 74 by NoNukes
07-14-2014 10:53 PM


Re: Please provide an authoritative source for F=ma...
NoNukes writes:
I challenge you to find a serious article on the scientific method that does not require prediction as a method of testing hypothesis. I asked you for references, but you did not see any reason to answer my request or my criticisms of what you did provide.
My request was to find an authoritative source for the definition of a theory that includes prediction as being a necessary part. I provided two quotes which don't contain it and a book which has a whole chapter dedicated to describing a theory which does not mention predictive ability at all.
I agree that both random websites and random scientific papers use the terms but that is not what I asked.

Life, don't talk to me about life - Marvin the Paranoid Android
"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 74 by NoNukes, posted 07-14-2014 10:53 PM NoNukes has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 76 by Straggler, posted 07-15-2014 7:30 AM Tangle has replied
 Message 78 by NoNukes, posted 07-15-2014 8:39 AM Tangle has not replied
 Message 81 by NoNukes, posted 07-15-2014 8:53 AM Tangle has replied

  
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