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#181 PhilC

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 03:30 AM

Have you verifiedit beyond your realm of physicality?

Do you know anyon e who has verified it beyond their realm of physicality?


We don't need to for it to be a scientific fact. It has to match the evidence we have and if it does we can apply it to other situations to see of it produces answers.

One of the planets was discovered by the theory of gravity. If we only used theoriest that worked for what we know (as you seem to think science works) then no-one would have looked for it.

The theory starts by explaining a limited group of facts, and then the theory is in itself used to predict other things. If the new things (which were not part of our original knowledge) work according to the theory then the theory continues, if some new evidence comes in then it is overthrown (like Mercury's orbit did).

To limit science in the way you do would be to stop any new research.

#182 Ron

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 03:42 AM

Lol, wow, that gravitational constant question was meant as a joke. 

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So, not being able to verify something, and asserting it as a fact anyway is a joke?


Dropping a bowling ball on my foot would only verify that objects fall. 

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Now extend that out, and ask why it falls.

You could intuitively say objects attract, but you still have to explain why they attract. 

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And this is why we do experimentation. But that experimentation is NOT valid until we have physically/empirically proven it. Until then, it is nothing more than speculation.

Can you answer the question.

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Absolutely! I could also refer you to books and web links so you could bone up on the subject as well. But it still doesn’t erase the fact that “experimentation is NOT valid until we have physically/empirically proven it. Until then, it is nothing more than speculation.”

How did Newton test his law of gravitation experimentally using the Earth-Moon system.  How has Newtonian gravity ever been verified experimentally.

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Again, I could also refer you to books and web links so you could bone up on the subject as well. But it still doesn’t erase the fact that “experimentation is NOT valid until we have physically/empirically proven it. Until then, it is nothing more than speculation.”

You could drop bowling balls all day long, and you wouldn't come up with Newton's law of gravitation.

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Again, you are skirting the issue… How do YOU verify EMPIRICALLY something that you have not physically tested (and tested over and over, providing inductive evidences) for or against your hypothesis?
The answer is: you cannot! You are merely speculating. And your tangent on Newtonian experimentation doesn’t change that fact.


There's an actual answer to this, but you don't know so you're going to hide behind your "empirical" argument.

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You still haven’t answered the basic scientific method of induction questions I’ve posited. You’ve just hidden behind the smoke and mirrors of physics modeling (for which you have yet to prove) in an attempt to not answer the basic question “How do YOU verify EMPIRICALLY something that you have not physically tested (and tested over and over, providing inductive evidences) for or against your hypothesis?”

And dragging your red herring across the stage to divert from that only wastes time that could be better spent answering the questions.

Now, come on back to the original question.


It's much easier than engaging in an actual discussion about something you don't understand isn't it.  I just can't wait for you to tell me Newton couldn't empirically verify the moon's distance from the Earth, even though the distance he used turned out to be right.

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Again, Newton didn’t verify it, it was verified long after his death. You can keep playing this game if you wish, but you still haven’t even come close to answering the question: “How do YOU verify EMPIRICALLY something that you have not physically tested (and tested over and over, providing inductive evidences) for or against your hypothesis?”

#183 Ron

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 03:48 AM

We don't need to for it to be a scientific fact.  It has to match the evidence we have and if it does we can apply it to other situations to see of it produces answers.

One of the planets was discovered by the theory of gravity.  If we only used theoriest that worked for what we know (as you seem to think science works) then no-one would have looked for it.

The theory starts by explaining a limited group of facts, and then the theory is in itself used to predict other things.  If the new things (which were not part of our original knowledge) work according to the theory then the theory continues, if some new evidence comes in then it is overthrown (like Mercury's orbit did).

To limit science in the way you do would be to stop any new research.

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And the hypothesis isn't proven true until it is verified. So yes, you do "need to for it to be a scientific fact" in order for it to be verified. But you “don't need to for it to be a scientific fact” if you are just hypothesizing or modeling.

I would lose my job if I told my bosses “well, I don’t need to prove this works, because it works in theory!” That wouldn’t fly at all, and you know it. I have to continue to test the subject to insure it WILL work, not that it CAN work. That is proceeding on speculation, not fact.

#184 falcone

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 04:07 AM

I would lose my job if I told my bosses “well, I don’t need to prove this works, because it works in theory!” That wouldn’t fly at all, and you know it. I have to continue to test the subject to insure it WILL work, not that it CAN work. That is proceeding on speculation, not fact.

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If this was true, nothing anywhere would ever get done.

Let's say you drop a bowling ball 100 times on your foot and observe the results. Then you try the same experiment with a football, a baseball, and a basketball. You now have a workable "Theory of Dropping Stuff" which predicts how sore it's going to be to drop a given object on your foot.

Using this theory, do you think you need to actually need to drop a cannonball on your foot to be able to explain what would happen? Of course not. You continue whatever you're working on using the perfectly reasonably assumption that dropping a cannonball on your foot is going to hurt more than a ping pong ball.

You seem to think that unless actually experimenting with the cannonball, any explanation offered by the "Theory of Dropping Stuff" is nothing more than a random guess.

#185 PhilC

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 04:17 AM

And the hypothesis isn't proven true until it is verified. So yes, you do "need to for it to be a scientific fact" in order for it to be verified. But you “don't need to for it to be a scientific fact” if you are just hypothesizing or modeling.

I would lose my job if I told my bosses “well, I don’t need to prove this works, because it works in theory!” That wouldn’t fly at all, and you know it. I have to continue to test the subject to insure it WILL work, not that it CAN work. That is proceeding on speculation, not fact.


You are oversimplifying, equivocating on the word theory too and not answering my point that if you think we only expect theories to work on what we can empirically test then you are limiting science.

With simplification: A hypothesis can be turnd into a theory based on a couple of observations, but it won't be a strongly held theory. As evidence builds up it becomes stronger. It’s a continuum, not a cut and dried process and if you fail to grasp that then you are missing so much.

Equivocation: The phrase “I don’t need to prove this works, because it works in theory!” is equivocating between the common and the scientific definition. If you said to your boss “We know we can build this because the theory of gravity shows it will work” then you will have a closer approximation. Also, proof is never expected in a theory. Proof implies that it is fully understood. Every theory, including the theory of gravity, is contingent. Ah! I’ve got it, I know where you are coming from. The Bible is absolutely true, and for you is proven, so I am guessing you are trying to judge science by that standard. No theory could ever match the way that you see the Bible. Theories are never proven. Remember this: All theories are contingent.

Limited science: We have built the LHC based on a theory. We have no observational evidence so we build something to show whether the theory is right. We are chasing the theory, and the new evidence will either support the theory and make it a bit stronger (but never prove it) or the theory will be cast aside.

James Clark Maxwell messed around with some equations and came up with something that was not known from empirical observation. Is that a scientific theory? Yes, even before it was experimentally confirmed ie before there was one jot of empirical evidence to back it up it was a theory. The empirical evidence did back it up but if you were there at the time you would have rejected it as not scientific.

#186 Ron

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 04:47 AM

If this was true, nothing anywhere would ever get done.

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That is totally untrue; you are actually going in the opposite direction of reality. This is why we experiment to get things right, or to see that it isn’t going to work. And it actually drives us to get things done; to find the best way to do things, and to continue to do so.

Let's say you drop a bowling ball 100 times on your foot and observe the results. Then you try the same experiment with a football, a baseball, and a basketball. You now have a workable "Theory of Dropping Stuff" which predicts how sore it's going to be to drop a given object on your foot.

Using this theory, do you think you need to actually need to drop a cannonball on your foot to be able to explain what would happen? Of course not. You continue whatever you're working on using the perfectly reasonably assumption that dropping a cannonball on your foot is going to hurt more than a ping pong ball.

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Again, incorrect… If you know (using your "Theory of Dropping Stuff" analogy) that dropping something heavy (like a bowling ball) on your foot repeatedly (induction), does more damage than dropping a football or a pig-pong ball on it, then by using the statistics from the inductive experimentation to deduce that a cannon ball will do more damage (due to its heaver weight and gravity) is inevitable. But, that is based on what we know where we are, or have been, and using existing information to extrapolate. But, if you want to verify that information, you still need to experiment!

But, if we take this same experiment to the Moon, we will have different results. Why do we know this? Because we have been there, and can extrapolate that information as well, to come up with our conclusion. But, if you want to verify that information, you still need to experiment!

On the other hand; we have never been to Alpha Centauri. We have absolutely NO idea what forces are in effect there. Therefore, any discussion is speculation! No matter how you want to parse it.

You seem to think that unless actually experimenting with the cannonball, any , explanation offered by the "Theory of Dropping Stuff" is nothing more than a random guess.

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Again, you are incorrect. You really need to read what I said, and not make up what you want it to say, in order to support your hypothesis. We CAN infer, within a reasonable proximity, what the outcome will be. BUT, it IS NOT verified until you conduct the experiments.

And, it is reasonable to assume, that someone may have already conducted those experiments. So, dependant upon their credentials and reputation, you can refer to their experiments for verification, to a degree as well.

#187 PhilC

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 05:01 AM

We CAN infer, within a reasonable proximity, what the outcome will be. BUT, it IS NOT verified until you conduct the experiments


We can use the theory to predict and outcome, and even if we don't test that particular outcome, the prediction is scientific, because it can be falsified.

#188 falcone

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 05:31 AM

If you know (using your "Theory of Dropping Stuff" analogy) that dropping something heavy (like a bowling ball) on your foot repeatedly (induction), does more damage than dropping a football or a pig-pong ball on it, then by using the statistics from the inductive experimentation to deduce that a cannon ball will do more damage (due to its heaver weight and gravity) is inevitable. But, that is based on what we know where we are, or have been, and using existing information to extrapolate.

Exactly. So when you go to the moon and repeat the bowling ball experiment where a couple of variables are different, you find it doesn't hurt so much. You incorporate this new information into your theory, and the "Theory of Dropping Stuff" becomes more complete. It becomes the "Theory of Dropping Stuff in Different Places"

But, if you want to verify that information, you still need to experiment!

Do you really need to physically verify it every single time? Aren't you confident enough in the robustness of the "Theory of Dropping Stuff in Different Places" to proceed using known height, mass and gravitational effects? That's what I meant what I said, 'nothing anywhere would ever get done'.

You don't need to start from scratch every single time. You keep working with what your theory predicts until you get an unexpected result (someone somewhere drops a ping pong ball and it breaks their big toe).


On the other hand; we have never been to Alpha Centauri. We have absolutely NO idea what forces are in effect there. Therefore, any discussion is speculation! No matter how you want to parse it.

My emphasis. I don't accept that the work which has gone into developing astronomical and cosmological theories has resulted in the predictions these theories make being a complete, random guess. I'm afraid that is what your saying

We CAN infer, within a reasonable proximity, what the outcome will be. BUT, it IS NOT verified until you conduct the experiments.

I agree. But I would still argue that with a robust theory, you can safely proceed based on what it predicts without having to conduct every single experiment. It doesn't mean your guessing or have no idea of the outcome.

Remember all that stuff about jumping off the Empire State Building a while back? It is safe to assume that you'll go 'splat', but there's only one way to find out. I'd rather not. I'm happy that what the "Theory of Jumping off Skyscrapers" predicts is accurate enough.

#189 Ron

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 09:46 AM

Exactly. So when you go to the moon and repeat the bowling ball experiment where a couple of variables are different, you find it doesn't hurt so much. You incorporate this new information into your theory, and the "Theory of Dropping Stuff" becomes more complete.

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Exactly! As long as you only incorporate those things that are verifiable in both places you have been to physically verify with the empirical scientific method.


It becomes the "Theory of Dropping Stuff in Different Places"

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No, that would be the "Theory of Dropping Stuff in Different Places where we have been to empirically verify the results"


Do you really need to physically verify it every single time?

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YES!!! Anything else IS NOT empirically verified.


Aren't you confident enough in the robustness of the "Theory of Dropping Stuff in Different Places" to proceed using known height, mass and gravitational effects?

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No, because it ISN’T empirically verified, and is therefore merely speculating.

That's what I meant what I said, 'nothing anywhere would ever get done'.

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But, you’re still incorrect, because this drives us to go there and empirically verify the hypotheses.

If we fell for the relativistic “just claming it’s so makes it so” scientific method, nothing would ever get done, because we can just make claims… And “wah-lah” its done… We’ll call this the “Wal-Lah… It’s done” scientific method fallacy.

It’s not done until it’s proven or disproved! That is our motivation! Facts are not facts until they’re verified as facts!

#190 Ron

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 09:47 AM

You don't need to start from scratch every single time.

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That is your misconception… I never claimed that.

You keep working with what your theory predicts until you get an unexpected result (someone somewhere drops a ping pong ball and it breaks their big toe).

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No, you keep on working until you either prove or disprove your hypothesis or model.

My emphasis. I don't accept that the work which has gone into developing astronomical and cosmological theories has resulted in the predictions these theories make being a complete, random guess. I'm afraid that is what your saying

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Again, incorrect… If you pretend that you can make facts out of non facts (i.e. making factual claims about unempirical postulates, then you ARE merely guessing.

I agree. But I would still argue that with a robust theory, you can safely proceed based on what it predicts without having to conduct every single experiment. It doesn't mean your guessing or have no idea of the outcome.

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Again, you are totally by passing the “BUT, it IS NOT verified until you conduct the experiments.” portion of my statement. A robust theory is not an empirical fact (or facts). You can use empirical facts from other verified works, but that doesn’t mean a non-fact is a fact. Also, I never said you’d “have no idea of the outcome”. This is a totally misrepresentation or misunderstanding on your part. But, that is what most relativists attempt… What I said was basically “What you have not empirically verified, is speculation”… Period.

Remember all that stuff about jumping off the Empire State Building a while back? It is safe to assume that you'll go 'splat', but there's only one way to find out. I'd rather not. I'm happy that what the "Theory of Jumping off Skyscrapers" predicts is accurate enough.

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Again, you totally misrepresent what I said, and the dilemma you place yourself into from a relativistic standpoint. I never said that you cannot go upon the “concrete” evidence of empiricism as experimented upon and proven by trusted sources. Why: Because they were “physically there” to conduct the experimentation and investigation. So, you assumption would not really be an assumption per-se.

BUT, if you attempt to use UNVERIFIED theorem as fact, then you are proceeding upon mere assumption.

#191 jason78

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Posted 12 July 2010 - 09:15 PM

On the other hand; we have never been to Alpha Centauri. We have absolutely NO idea what forces are in effect there. Therefore, any discussion is speculation! No matter how you want to parse it.

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I disagree. We can look at and see the forces in effect there.

#192 Ron

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 03:38 AM

I disagree.  We can look at and see the forces in effect there.

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And you doso on faith.

#193 falcone

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 05:18 AM

BUT, if you attempt to use UNVERIFIED theorem as fact then you are proceeding upon mere assumption.

A theory doesn't have experimental evidence for every single outcome in every single circumstance. It will be verified to a reasonable point, and is then considered an accurate way of making predictions. Until it isn't, at which point it will have to be modified or abandoned.

A theory will never be verified as a fact. You have basically just said the predictions made by any scientific theory is 'mere assumption'. No, wait. you surely can't be saying that. I must have misunderstood.

I've just found nine numbers down the back of my sofa, 2,4,6,10,12,14,16,20, and 22. They are blue and made of plastic. I've never seen them before. I'm going to use my "Theory of filling in the blanks" to make two predictions:

Prediction 1: There are two missing numbers.
Prediction 2: The missing numbers are 8 and 18.

Would you say these are reasonable predictions, or are they 'mere assumprions'?

**EDIT** I think I could have worded that first paragraph better. It doesn't read quite the way I wanted it to

#194 PhilC

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 05:25 AM

Ron seems to be talking about the induction problem, and how any induction is limited by observation.

If I’m right (apologies, Ron, if I’m wrong; this is meant to try and clarify where you are coming from, not to denigrate your way of thinking) he would think that it is not scientific to say that the Sun will rise tomorrow.

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Posted 13 July 2010 - 07:50 AM

So, not being able to verify something, and asserting it as a fact anyway is a joke?

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No, and if you got the joke you would have jumped all over it.

Now extend that out, and ask why it falls.
And this is why we do experimentation. But that experimentation is NOT valid until we have physically/empirically proven it. Until then, it is nothing more than speculation.

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No, in science you do experimentation to see if the current explanation doesn't work. You can have empirical evidence without physically testing something. Science doesn't, and can't, work that way.

Absolutely! I could also refer you to books and web links so you could bone up on the subject as well. But it still doesn’t erase the fact that “experimentation is NOT valid until we have physically/empirically proven it. Until then, it is nothing more than speculation.”

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Then answer the question.

Again, I could also refer you to books and web links so you could bone up on the subject as well. But it still doesn’t erase the fact that “experimentation is NOT valid until we have physically/empirically proven it. Until then, it is nothing more than speculation.”

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I don't need books or links.

Again, you are skirting the issue… How do YOU verify EMPIRICALLY something that you have not physically tested (and tested over and over, providing inductive evidences) for or against your hypothesis?

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Irony.

The answer is: you cannot! You are merely speculating. And your tangent on Newtonian experimentation doesn’t change that fact.
You still haven’t answered the basic scientific method of induction questions I’ve posited. You’ve just hidden behind the smoke and mirrors of physics modeling (for which you have yet to prove) in an attempt to not answer the basic question “How do YOU verify EMPIRICALLY something that you have not physically tested (and tested over and over, providing inductive evidences) for or against your hypothesis?”

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Not speculation, and there was no tangent. You're saying Newton couldn't provide evidence of gravity. I'm saying you're wrong.


Now, come on back to the original question.
Again, Newton didn’t verify it, it was verified long after his death. You can keep playing this game if you wish, but you still haven’t even come close to answering the question:  “How do YOU verify EMPIRICALLY something that you have not physically tested (and tested over and over, providing inductive evidences) for or against your hypothesis?”

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And this is just not true. Newton could very well explain the dynamics of the Earth-Moon system using his maths. What physical tests did use???

A better question, what physical tests have been done to verify that Newton's law of gravity explains the Earth and Moon??

At this point, I'm simply trying to get an idea of what an example of a physical test because you don't seem willing to actually discuss the science involved.

No, you keep on working until you either prove or disprove your hypothesis or model.

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For the 2nd time, proof is the domain of mathematics. You never prove a theory because you never know what you mind find. You can only disprove a theory by finding something it can't explain.




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