How science fails
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How science fails

There is a really interesting Aeon article on what bad science, and how it fails. Update: a discussion on this exists in the philsci FB group on here. What is Bad Science? According to Imre Lakatos, science degenerates unless it is both theoretically and experimentally progressive. Can Lakatos’s ‘scientific programme’ approach, which incorporates merits of…

John Wilkins – Comprehension and Compression
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John Wilkins – Comprehension and Compression

“In short, data is not knowledge; knowledge is not comprehension; comprehension is not wisdom” The standard account of understanding has been, since Aristotle, knowledge of the causes of an event or effect. However, this account fails in cases where the subject understood is not causal. In this paper I offer an account of understanding as…

Physicalism & Materialism – John Wilkins
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Physicalism & Materialism – John Wilkins

Materialism was a pre-socratic view that for something to be real it has to be matter – physical stuff made of atoms (which at the time were considered hard like billiard balls – fundametal parts of reality).  The reason these days the term physicalism is used is because it can describe things that aren’t matter…

Ethics, Qualia Research & AI Safety with Mike Johnson
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Ethics, Qualia Research & AI Safety with Mike Johnson

What’s the relationship between valence research and AI ethics? Hedonic valence is a measure of the quality of our felt sense of experience, the intrinsic goodness (positive valence) or averseness (negative valence) of an event, object, or situation.  It is an important aspect of conscious experience; always present in our waking lives. If we seek to…

Marching for Science with John Wilkins – a perspective from Philosophy of Science
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Marching for Science with John Wilkins – a perspective from Philosophy of Science

Recent video interview with John Wilkins! What should marchers for science advocate for (if anything)? Which way would you try to bias the economy of attention to science? Should scientists (as individuals) be advocates for particular causes – and should the scientific enterprise advocate for particular causes? The popular hashtag #AlternativeFacts and Epistemic Relativism –…

Metamorphogenesis – How a Planet can produce Minds, Mathematics and Music – Aaron Sloman
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Metamorphogenesis – How a Planet can produce Minds, Mathematics and Music – Aaron Sloman

The universe is made up of matter, energy and information, interacting with each other and producing new kinds of matter, energy, information and interaction. How? How did all this come out of a cloud of dust? In order to find explanations we first need much better descriptions of what needs to be explained. By Aaron…

Automating Science: Panel – Stephen Ames, John Wilkins, Greg Restall, Kevin Korb
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Automating Science: Panel – Stephen Ames, John Wilkins, Greg Restall, Kevin Korb

A discussion among philosophers, mathematicians and AI experts on whether science can be automated, what it means to automate science, and the implications of automating science – including discussion on the technological singularity. – implementing science in a computer – Bayesian methods – most promising normative standard for doing inductive inference – vehicle : causal…

Bayeswatch – The Pitfalls of Bayesian Reasoning – Chris Guest
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Bayeswatch – The Pitfalls of Bayesian Reasoning – Chris Guest

Bayesian inference is a useful tool in solving challenging problems in many fields of uncertainty. However, inferential arguments presented with a Bayesian formalism should be subject to the same critical scrutiny that we give to informal arguments. After an introduction to Bayes’ theorem, some examples of its misuse in history and theology will be discussed….

Science vs Pseudoscience – Kevin Korb
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Science vs Pseudoscience – Kevin Korb

Science has a certain common core, especially a reliance on empirical methods of assessing hypotheses. Pseudosciences have little in common but their negation: they are not science. They reject meaningful empirical assessment in some way or another. Popper proposed a clear demarcation criterion for Science v Rubbish: Falsifiability. However, his criterion has not stood the…

Panel on Skepticism & Science
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Panel on Skepticism & Science

Panelists: Terry Kelly (Former president of Vic Skeptics), Chris Guest (Current president of Vic Skeptics), Bill Hall (Researcher at the Kororoit Institute) Discussion includes the history of skepticism, what skepticism is today, the culture of skepticism as a movement and how skepticism relates to broader philosophy. 00:26 Terry discusses Active Skepticism – Where Science, Skepticism…