General Thread on Science/Mathematics/Logic

17 posts

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Seeing as the only reason I get on these forums often is to check on some interesting debates on science, mathematics, and logic, I thought it would be convenient (whether or not it is in truth) to create a thread in which I post current questions, paradoxes, and common debates in these threads on this initial post, and leave it free to discussion and free debate. I will start out with a few questions that have been bothering me:


Set 1

Science:

- Are dark matter and dark energy true phenomena consistent with our standard model, or are they clear weaknesses in the model’s accuracy and scope? (Are the explanations for Dark Matter and Dark Energy mere hypotheses trying to cover up gaps in our current scientific theories, or do they hold some credence?)

Mathematics:

- Does abstraction bring us closer or take us further away from the reality that mathematics was formed to describe? (Is delving into symbols that hold no explicit physical meaning ultimately bringing us to a greater truth that we just can’t see yet?)

Logic:

- Can an extensive and applicable philosophy be formed completely on logical tautologies? (Can a philosophy be built on statements that must always be true?)


I will update with new topics when I find it necessary to re-stimulate the discussion with fresh thoughts. Feel free to supply questions of your own, I will add them to the list if they are noteworthy. In answering a question, please quote it in order to distinguish it.

I hope this works.

EDIT: I added some brief “explanations” of the questions. Hope that helps to some extent. Sorry if my questions are too much nonsense…

You are free to use this Equation Editor in order to more clearly express your mathematical thoughts, thanks to AlvinFlummox for suggestion.

 
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Great thread, I admire that we have one of these on here for people that want to learn more and get further into science and other things, Pardon my mere horrible language skills, but I would be able to figure out many things if I could understand the questions more clearly.

 
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I am so following this thread tomorrow morning. As of right now, though, I don’t have the brainpower… Awesome thread.

 
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I very much think dark matter is a hole-filler.

 
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Too bad the only person who can contribute to this thread in any credible way is SaintAjora.

I bow out..

 
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Great thread! Had not reach that high level in science and mathematics. Eagerly awaits the progress of logical philosophy.

Suggestion: Would it be better to place 3 threads for each topic instead?

 
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Science: dark matter and dark energy theory fits the data we have so far. until the theory is disproved or a more “fitting” one is presented, it’s valid. is the concept of dark matter, and especially of dark energy, a bit of a stretch? sure. so were a lot of other theories we have proved since – but then again, so were many ideas that were later disproved. any discussion conducted by laymen on a forum would just be question of belief, not fact. hell, so are discussions by experts on that matter. we’ll just have to wait for confirmation or disproof.

Mathematics: the fundamentals of the universe are certainly abstract to the human mind. sciences that are going to observe them (namely, physics) need proper tools to do so.

Logic: extensive? certainly. on the other hand, it would be possible to construct an extensive philosophy (or anything else) using two apples and a used diaper. it wouldn’t be applicable, though. neither is the philosophy of today – exactly for the lack of “truths”.

 
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Can an extensive and applicable philosophy be formed completely on logical tautologies? (Can a philosophy be built on statements that must always be true?)

Logical positivism? I can see many issues, and I am not sure it would be possible to be completely consistent, but you should at least be able to set up some sort of extensive system based on this. The major problem is the impossibility of proving universal claims, although I suppose that would apply to any philosophy system.

 
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Still glad I dropped Science at Maths when I was 16.

 
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Does abstraction bring us closer or take us further away from the reality that mathematics was formed to describe? (Is delving into symbols that hold no explicit physical meaning ultimately bringing us to a greater truth that we just can’t see yet?)

I don’t really think this will quite answer the question, but one could argue abstraction brings us closer to reality. My main (read: currently, only) argument is to do with the concept of imaginary numbers( for anyone who doesn’t know), which are used in electronics to produce real number answers which are applicable to the real world for finding out voltages etc (it could specifically be for voltages, I’m not sure…).

I am only basing this on what my friend who is currently studying for a Masters in Electronics has told me, but I will try and find another source unless somebody beats me to it.

Of course, I may be completely missing the point of the question too…

EDIT: Added a couple of missed words, in case somebody was quick to quote me… Also, got to love the LaTeX equation editor , really useful. Could you maybe link it in your initial post mxmm, in case people need to write mathematical formulae in this thread? Credit must go to matt for finding it in the last maths thread :)

 
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I’ll stick with the logic one… it makes the most sense to me.

I think a philosophy can be made up entirely of truths. Although it maybe only be applicable to a few select things. Do you know of any studies on the matter?

 
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I suspect a philosophy would more easily be developed with conditionals (if A then B), but perhaps that’s because I’m a programmer.

 
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Originally posted by Conco:

Still glad I dropped Science at Maths when I was 16.

I’m glad you dropped English as well.

 
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This gives an example of complex numbers in electronics, and how imaginary numbers make real life situations easier to understand. It’s not the most detailed site out there, but it gives a quite nice visual example.

 
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“Can an extensive and applicable philosophy be formed completely on logical tautologies?”

This question really requires further refining. The terms extensive and applicable are quite broad, but manageable. But throwing around the word “philosophy” like that makes the question to broad. Are we talking about an ethical or epistemological system? Or perhaps a metaphysical one?
Given the nature of tautologies, we would have a hard time instantiating anything useful. There is also a problem with the nature of language and representing it in a logical format. One notable example of this is a result you get from a logical tautology of identity. You can derive from the tautology that any x is identical to itself the conclusion that anything (at all) exists. So we can somehow prove the existence of things that don’t exist, like god or unicorns. This is indicative of the struggle to match meaning within logical predication.
Given the nature, then, of logical systems what makes a certain philosophical system founded on tautologies better than one that isn’t? What if the system I develop is one of skepticism (which would certainly be a strong move in this scenario)? Is that system better than one that is veridical in nature and corresponds to our experiences?

 
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Originally posted by pacaholic:
Originally posted by Conco:

Still glad I dropped Science at Maths when I was 16.

I’m glad you dropped English as well.

why you glad?

 
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Originally posted by mxmm:


Logic:

- Can an extensive and applicable philosophy be formed completely on logical tautologies? (Can a philosophy be built on statements that must always be true?)

Lets go with this.

THIS STATMENT IS FALSE
facepalm