Comments on “Scenius: upgrading science FTW”

Add new comment

The nebulosity of reality?

xpym 2023-02-15

A question I’ve been meaning to ask you for some time, which you may have answered elsewhere, and if so, I’d appreciate a pointer. Do you accept or reject the premise that the universe is lawful in a paramount, and, dare I say it, ‘eternalist’ sense? That there are underlying ‘laws’, which are unchanging and have no exceptions? And that a complete ‘theory of everything’ is possible, in principle?

Because, while your point about non-existence of a well-defined ‘scientific method’ is well taken, it seems obvious to me that the main reason that science is possible at all is that there are objective patterns that humans can discern, which are consistent throughout time and space. But you seem to insist that ‘nebulosity’ is somehow also an essential property of reality, and not only of our limited understanding of it, and I’m not sure how do you reconcile these positions.

Nebulosity and lawfulness

David Chapman 2023-02-15

The universe is unquestionably objectively patterned, as well as nebulous. The two appear to be inseparable.

At the scale of eggplant-sized objects, the patterning does not seem to be “lawful” in the sense of concisely and exactly captured by math or language. In fact, we don’t know of any absolutely true laws. General relativity comes closest, but it appears to be somewhat wrong (“dark energy”).

So, yes, science definitely depends on objective patterning, but whether or not there could be a Theory of Everything is an open question.

It’s not clear even what it would mean; what would a complete explanation of an eggplant even be? Plausibly there is an absolutely true explanation of its constituents (although we don’t have one; the Standard Model is also apparently wrong). That wouldn’t be an explanation of eggplantness, though.

Add new comment:

You can use some Markdown and/or HTML formatting here.

Optional, but required if you want follow-up notifications. Used to show your Gravatar if you have one. Address will not be shown publicly.

If you check this box, you will get an email whenever there’s a new comment on this page. The emails include a link to unsubscribe.