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Comment: Re:Already happened? (Score 1) 281

Historically, what Galileo and Newton and other "scientists" in the 17th-century called their work was not "science" but rather "natural philosophy." And the reason they called it that was because it came out of a long philosophical tradition, which was in the process of evolving under the work of a number of scientist-philosophers like Mersenne, Descartes, etc. who was seen at the time as leading the real intellectual "revolution."

Really? And how often did Newton and Galileo cite philosophers in their works?

As for how things are practiced, well there are in fact scholars who work on philosophy of science

I've never disputed that. But those who work on the philosophy on science can only do so insofar as there are established practices within science. They never touch the frontiers of science, which is arguably where science always is. People can philosophize about science all they want, but science develops independent of what philosophers claim science is. Are you serious? Of course they cared about the big questions. That's why they created gods and goddesses and personified nature to create explanations for all the "big questions" happening around them. Religion was the first answer.

I'm pretty sure agriculture developed before religion. Religion arose after agriculture got sophisticated enough. Mostly due to the fact that there is a stable supply of food and people can sit around more and think. But in the early stages of agriculture, people were experimenting with growing things MORE than they were thinking about the philosophical underpinnings of agriculture. I don't see how you can dispute that. No amount of philosophizing grows crops. Simple as that.

Naive empiricism is not the same as philosophy nor science.

You miss the point. Science evolves from naive empiricism mostly independent of philosophy. Philosophy can talk about the progression from naive empiricism from science, but that doesn't mean it becomes the parent of science. They are just commentators, not originators.

but it did develop out of philosophical debates, and the underlying assumptions are still something to think about.

I find this to be strange reasoning. Just because you can have debates about something from a philosophical standpoint doesn't make it the child of philosophy. Philosophy was APPLIED to science after science evolved into something recognizable. Science's evolution owes its modern form to debate, which is always a part of science and does not require philosophy to grant it such powers.

Comment: Re:Already happened? (Score 1) 281

I don't accept that definition of philosophy, so no. If that is philosophy, then nothing isn't philosophy, making it a meaningless term. I don't care for definitions. All that matters is how they arose and how they're actually practiced.

I'm not the one arguing for any authority over the other. I'm pointing out the attitude of some philosophers towards science as a junior form of philosophy when it isn't and probably never was. When humans were learning how to farm, they were doing proto-scientific research and they probably couldn't care less about the "big questions" or the "nature of things".

The process of observation and working out what is happening is not in itself philosophy. It's something every human does since birth.

Comment: Re:Already happened? (Score 2) 281

You mischaracterize the debate. The debate is not about what either of those is, but whether science comes from philosophy, or developed as a complement/reaction to philosophy that has now far exceeded philosophy's capabilities. The corollary to that debate is the argument that if philosophy gave birth to science, whether philosophy is allowed to "pull rank" on science any time they hit a wall and claim credit for things as though science "owes" anything to philosophy for its existence. As though because there's a perpetual licencing agreement for science to pay or otherwise the philosophers will get angry and try to shut it down.

Comment: Re:Already happened? (Score 1) 281

Again, bollocks.

First, there is no "Scientific Method", with capital letters. There have been many philosophical attempts at trying to formally define science, but none are accurate and often fly in the face of how science is actually done.

If science doesn't exist before attempts to formalize science, then you are saying that Galileo wasn't doing science. The practice came before the theory and is a recorded historical fact. You demonstrate precisely the problem with philosophers - the theory overrides facts. Science also continues to evolve outside of the philosophical boundaries philosophers try to impose on science.

One can only assume these attempts by philosophers trying to pull rank on science because of supposed priority is the twitchings of a dead body.

Science is an EVOLVING discipline and philosophers can only formally define science insofar as there are established practices to begin with. On the frontiers of science where we're still trying to figure out how to do science, no philosopher has ever created a definition that ever satisfies those practices that are just beginning to be fleshed out.

Comment: Re:Already happened? (Score 2) 281

Without science, philosophy is useless. Philosophers have a bad habit of treating things as binary true or false and statistical answers are not acceptable. No philosopher I know has made any sense of Quantum Mechanics or natural selection so far and are completely beholden to science in modern times. The only philosophy that's worth pursuing these days is the philosophy of science itself, but even that is hitting its limits. I've been in too many debates where philosophers try to label science as "logical positivism" or some other ridiculous mischaracterization. Even science must now be looked at under a scientific lens and figure out what science actually is by looking at what scientists actually do rather than imposing philosophical strawmen.

Comment: Evolutionary algorithms (Score 3, Insightful) 281

I do recall reading a while back experiments done with AI in which programs compete for resources by generating programs to do tasks given to it (computing sums etc). Some programs did generate code that were completely unexpected.

It raises the question programs that are evolved are designed by the programmer or the program, or the process of evolution. And it also raises the philosophical question about whether we should be more humble and accept that our "creativity" that we think is what makes humans intelligent could be nothing more than a process of the evolution of ideas (I hesitate to use the word meme) that we don't actually originate nor control.

If we consider programs that can create things through evolution as "intelligent", that would ironically make natural selection intelligent, since DNA is a digital program that is evolved into complex things over time that can't be reduced to first principles.

Comment: Re:Bollocks (Score 1) 322

by The Evil Atheist (#47189631) Attached to: Fixing China's Greenhouse Gas Emissions For Them
It does, because its own citizens are complaining about the environment more and more. Say what you like about the CCP, and I know bloody well I do, but they're deathly afraid of losing control. When pollution gets too bad, there will be riots. Actually, given the previous arrests of environmental activists in China, you can tell they're really keeping an eye on it.

Upgrading would cost money, but you have to think more creatively doing business with the Chinese. Each province has its own interests and you can sweeten the deal quite a lot.

Comment: Bollocks (Score 4, Insightful) 322

by The Evil Atheist (#47189219) Attached to: Fixing China's Greenhouse Gas Emissions For Them
Why should China, or any developing country, give up its own economic development when the currently developed and powerful countries didn't have to and because they lack the political will do their part? Developed countries should see this as an opportunity to make money from China by selling them back cleaner technology that the developed countries invent.

It's bollocks to say "well, we already have a developed economy and we're too scared to change anything, so we'll make you live by the sink or float rules that we impose on you because we can".

The confusion of a staff member is measured by the length of his memos. -- New York Times, Jan. 20, 1981