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By Jan Faye (auth.)

Scientific considering needs to be understood as an job. The acts of interpretation, illustration, and clarification are the cognitive techniques wherein medical considering ends up in knowing. The ebook explores the character of those techniques and describes how medical pondering can merely be grasped from a realistic perspective.

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Extra resources for The Nature of Scientific Thinking: On Interpretation, Explanation, and Understanding

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It is not the case, according to this interpretation, that correlated particles, whose quantitative properties are designated by non-commuting operators, are influencing the value of each other’s properties via a non-local field. Such an interpretation is, indeed, very foreign to classical mechanics and impossible to visualize within standard quantum mechanics, but has been confirmed by experiments. * * * * * * Summarizing our discussion so far we notice that the epistemic aim of science is to enhance our understanding of the world in which we live, and the function of scientific practice is to accomplish such a goal.

The ruling norm is that a literal understanding requires being able to picture a process, taking place in physical three-dimensional space. Thus, the state vector is symbolic, where ‘symbolic’ means that the state vector’s representational function should not be taken literally but must be considered as an abstract tool for calculation of probabilities of observables: The entire formalism is to be considered as a tool for deriving predictions of definite or statistical character, as regards information obtainable under experimental conditions described in classical terms and specified by means of parameters entering into the algebraic or differential equations of which the matrices or the wave-functions, respectively, are solutions.

Apart from the fact that he construed understanding as a particular kind of knowledge, which I would reject, I agree that understanding is associated with our ability to relate things together to our rational satisfaction. 25 Scriven holds that we may in principle have knowledge without understanding, but have no understanding without knowledge. In opposition I hold that understanding is organized beliefs rather than knowledge, and that you may have organized beliefs that are not true and therefore do not count as knowledge.

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