Chris_Wegford

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For The People Who Are Still Alive

Be honest, how many of you finished the Portal Song at the end of this post?

Dark Side Epistemology

For a long time, I've had problems with phrases that treat Pride as a good thing. i.e. "Take some pride in X" "Where is your pride?" "Have you no pride?"

I realize that in the past, Pride may have had many positive evolutionary values, but in modern times, we have more efficient and accurate ways to test for usefulness and prowess among our population.

Friedman's "Prediction vs. Explanation"

If I were to travel to the North Pole and live there through the months of January and February with no prior knowledge of the area, then I would almost certainly believe (one could even say Theorize) that it is constantly night time at the North Pole. I could move back to The United States, and may never know that my theory is wrong. If I had, however, stayed through March and maybe into April, I would then know that the Sun does eventually rise. From this extra information, I could postulate a new theory that would likely be more correct.

"The Sun rises and falls in months-long cycles at the North Pole", is, subjectively, more complex than "The sun never rises at the North Pole" and yet, the second theory is more correct.

A Theory based on more information (assuming the experiments were pure and variables were controlled) has to be more accurate. Fear of "Over-fitting" is a bias. The principle can only be used on hindsight after the mistakes are already known. Also, it would seem that "Over-fitting" is a product of human error. That we are given no information on the scientists running the experiments and doing the theories means we must assume that they are faithful and diligent, and in a word, Perfect.

Occam's Razor is itself a bias. It assumes human error in the form of over-complication via insufficient information. Given the information we have for this puzzle, we cannot use any tool that assumes any such thing. I vote that Occam's Razor sit this one out.

Given only what we have, even if E21 sides with T1 (Say that T1 = A is true, and T2 = A is true except when B. E21 yields A in spite of B.), then we must conclude T3 (A is true except when B, except when C), which will be closer to T2 than to T1.

T1 < T2 < T3 etc.

Now if we were given information on the Theories, Experiments, or Scientists, then it might be a completely different story and Occam's Razor might come off the sidelines. Until then though, I am of the opinion that this is the only logical conclusion to this puzzle using only the information we were given.