. . . and what it doesn't
We can relate this to
or whatever we feel like discussing
A starting point:
What is the difference between
prove new things
Mathematical reasoning is:
- (proof by substitution)
- All men are mortal
- Socrates is a man
- Socrates is mortal
- (proof by "syllogism")
- Deduction can prove things
- Mathematics uses deduction
- mathematics can prove things
- (proof by syllogism again!)
3. Science is different from math!
- Science is based on:
- (not deduction)
- All apples that break off the tree,
- fall down
- Therefore, if I shake this apple tree,
- and an apple breaks off,
- it will fall down
- Not a proof!
- Can you think of a counterexample?
- That which goes up has always come down
- Therefore, if I throw this up, it will come down
- Not a proof! Can you think of a counterexample?
4. Science needs more than induction
Humankind has always sought reasons
Scientists call those reasons
"theories" and "hypotheses"
Theories are the BIG ones
- continental drift/plate tectonics
Hypotheses are the >little< ones
- If the ground gets waterlogged,
- water will get into my basement
- IFSC majors
- are more employable
- than physics majors
Conclusion. . .
science does not prove!
(by refuting inductive "truths")
(because the theories predict)
5. The phrase "scientific proof" makes no sense!
- Science does not prove things!
- It explains things and finds evidence
- If only everyone actually knew that
- Not just you, but also
- the average person
6. Example: Global Warming
7. Example: Various medical advice
8. Example: US legal system
9. Example: More speculative science
("Do toxoplasma germs control humanity?")