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The (epistemological) Foundations Of Physical Reality


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#1 AnssiH

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Posted 07 June 2014 - 02:34 AM

This post may be a borderline case in terms of forum policy, but since DD's arguments have been a major topic on this forum, I'd think there are people here interested of a clean version of his arguments. You can find the links to read his book online at;

 

http://foundationsof...s.blogspot.com/

 

I have been helping DD by setting up that a blog, which is intended to operate as a location to comment on various issues and reply to any reasonable criticism in as clear form as possible. The forum posts quickly get filled with noise, so the blog space offers little bit easier future reference for issues. Also it prevents from having to respond to the exact same thing over and over again.

 

The blog is meant to be a form of editing with a minimal amount of censorship, so the comments on the blog pages will not be censored.

 

I'm also thinking of helping the readers by commenting my way through the arguments, in the form of blog posts.

 

If there is immediately some questions or criticism that you think should be addressed in the blog, just let us know! You can do so in this thread, or just use the blog contact.

 

Finally, I feel compelled to comment on the title of the blog. The title of DD's book is referring to some universal requirements that are necessary for the creation of a world view (a well-defined representation which we call "physical reality"), so the arguments are entirely epistemological by nature. It would be easy for the uninitiated to assume the title implies yet another belief-based ontological argument about reality. That would be exactly the opposite of the truth; the entire argument revolves around the idea of what can be said without using a belief. Or another meta level above that, how can we avoid belief in an analysis at all?

 

-Anssi



#2 Rade

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Posted 23 June 2014 - 10:45 PM

The definition of explanation presented on p.9 of the book...."the process by which those answers are achieved" is anything but well-defined. Worst yet, the definition of explanation presented devolves into a tautology...an explanation is an explanation. How ? The text on p.9 makes the claim via the student-teacher-test example that THE PROCESS that DEFINES an explanation includes three parts: (1) to provide explanations to student by a teacher, (2) for teacher to test students to judge understanding of explanations they taught, (3) for students to answer questions to match what they feel teachers hold to be correct explanations. As presented, the definition of explanation does not meet the requirement of being a 'definition' as the term is used in the English language, but instead is tautology given that the word explanation is used or logically necessary to define the concept explanation, not once, but three times during "the process by which those answers are achieved".

(edit) What is extremely confusing is that the author had previously on this forum and others provided a more useful definition of the concept explanation which was held as valid at least since 2006 that would have fit well the argument presented in this most recent 'book' offering.

Edited by Rade, 02 July 2014 - 11:29 AM.


#3 Rade

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Posted 24 June 2014 - 08:53 PM

To answer the question asked at the end of post #1...we avoid belief in any analysis of any circumstance via use of KNOWLEDGE in the analysis. To say you KNOW anything (such as perhaps to say that "the past is what you know") means you have avoided the use of BELIEF in what can be said about any circumstance under investigation (such as the past). Science is BY DEFINITION to have UNCERTAIN KNOWLEDGE of any circumstance (the past), something the author of the book apparently does not understand given comment that science and religion both use belief to understand past circumstances (to readers: it will be more fun if you take the time to read the book and find yourself the false comparison of science and religion made by the author).

Also, How can any valid presentation on the epistemological foundations of anything, let alone physical reality, not begin with a clear definition of the concept KNOWLEDGE. Then in the first few paragraphs discuss how knowledge differs from the concept belief, well before one reaches the false conclusion that science and religion are both based on use of belief to gain understanding. This book not only says nothing about the foundations of reality (a valid conclusion made by the author), it also says nothing about epistemology of physical reality given that it lacks a valid definition of the concept knowledge.

Edited by Rade, 02 July 2014 - 02:31 PM.


#4 AnssiH

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Posted 30 November 2014 - 05:58 AM

Sorry I had not realized there are responses here. I didn't see any e-mails about it. Well,

About post #2,

While that part of the book could be clearer, I personally feel that the unclarity comes from unnecessarily long explanation of something that should be easily understood by anyone who's thought about epistemology at all. Perhaps you are reading too much into it, and not really "seeing the forest from the trees" so to speak?

The text on p.9 says that the quality of the understanding is judged by questions and answers. This is just allegorical to your normal procedure in physics experiments for instance. Pretty obvious, right?

The reason he is talking about it in terms of student and teacher is to point out how much semantical interpretation plays a role in communication of explanations; something you can't ignore in rational analysis.

All you need to understand there is that if you model something (that model being your explanation), the quality of your model can only be judged by checking how good answers it gives; i.e. does it give predictions that will hold in real situations. Every single second of your conscious life you are generating expectations, and generally you are right and not surprised by things. Sometimes your expectations are wrong; that is when you get surprised. And sometimes those surprises require you to alter your views. That's all there is to it.

Post #3 is just semantical confusion I addressed in another thread just recently.


I wonder, did you ever get past these nags to check out the actual analysis? Did you follow things up to the point of deriving Schrödinger at least?