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Posted by / 10-Jul-2019 06:19

Single edge scheermes

Some increases in complexity are sometimes necessary.So there remains a justified general bias toward the simpler of two competing explanations.Similarly in natural science, in moral science, and in metaphysics the best is that which needs no premises and the better that which needs the fewer, other circumstances being equal." The Summa Theologica of Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274) states that "it is superfluous to suppose that what can be accounted for by a few principles has been produced by many".Aquinas uses this principle to construct an objection to God's existence, an objection that he in turn answers and refutes generally (cf.The origins of what has come to be known as Occam's razor are traceable to the works of earlier philosophers such as John Duns Scotus (1265–1308), Robert Grosseteste (1175–1253), Maimonides (Moses ben-Maimon, 1138–1204), and even Aristotle (384–322 BC).Robert Grosseteste, in Commentary on [Aristotle's] the Posterior Analytics Books (Commentarius in Posteriorum Analyticorum Libros) (c.Ernst Mach formulated the stronger version of Occam's Razor into physics which he called the Principle of Economy stating: "Scientists must use the simplest means of arriving at their results and exclude everything not perceived by the senses." The idea of parsimony or simplicity in deciding between theories, though not the intent of the original expression of Occam's Razor, has been assimilated into our culture as the widespread layman's formulation that "the simplest explanation is usually the correct one." Prior to the 20th century, it was a commonly held belief that nature itself was simple and that simpler hypotheses about nature were thus more likely to be true.

In science, Occam's razor is used as a heuristic guide in the development of theoretical models, rather than as a rigorous arbiter between candidate models.To understand why, consider that for each accepted explanation of a phenomenon, there is always an infinite number of possible, more complex, and ultimately incorrect, alternatives.This is so because one can always burden a failing explanation with an ad hoc hypothesis.While it has been claimed that Occam's razor is not found in any of William's writings, one can cite statements such as Numquam ponenda est pluralitas sine necessitate [Plurality must never be posited without necessity], which occurs in his theological work on the 'Sentences of Peter Lombard' (Quaestiones et decisiones in quattuor libros Sententiarum Petri Lombardi (ed. This theory is a mathematical formalization of Occam's razor.A variation used in medicine is called the "Zebra": a doctor should reject an exotic medical diagnosis when a more commonplace explanation is more likely, derived from Theodore Woodward's dictum "When you hear hoofbeats, think of horses not zebras".

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The procedure to test the former interpretation would compare the track records of simple and comparatively complex explanations.

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