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The Improbability of Hyperspace, Part II Options
 
Parshvik Chintan
#21 Posted : 1/11/2014 8:03:48 PM

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AlbertKLloyd wrote:
Take gravity, we can conjecture that a gravity monster exists that pushes all things down, it is invisible and undetectable, this monster hypothesis is thus consistent with experience, but is not valid, for it is not evidenced.
Being able to come up with a hypothesis consistent with experience does not mean that hypothesis is validated.

boy, won't you look silly when we discover the gravity monster
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AlbertKLloyd
#22 Posted : 1/11/2014 9:51:50 PM

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Parshvik Chintan wrote:

boy, won't you look silly when we discover the gravity monster

I already look silly with this big stupid grin on my face after reading that comment!
 
gibran2
#23 Posted : 1/11/2014 10:00:19 PM

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I’m not very familiar with taxonomy, so I can’t really comment on your example. Can you provide any examples that are more easily understood by a general audience?

AlbertKLloyd wrote:
In the abstract we can conceive of equally consistent hypothesis, but in actual use this fails to be demonstrated. It becomes useless and meaningless as a statement when applied for example to taxonomy.

I gave several examples of concrete, consistent hypotheses: Evidence consisting of an image of a rose in a vase is consistent with the hypothesis “the image is a photo of a rose in a vase” and is equally consistent with the hypothesis “the image is generated using 3D computer simulation software”.

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When we apply this statement, we can automatically reject hypothesis that are consistent with experience but are not evidenced.

I still don’t understand what you mean. How can something be evidenced but not experienced?

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Take gravity, we can conjecture that a gravity monster exists that pushes all things down, it is invisible and undetectable, this monster hypothesis is thus consistent with experience, but is not valid, for it is not evidenced.

My experiences are not consistent with “gravity monsters”, so I would say that the hypothesis is not valid. Let’s not forget there are infinitely many hypotheses that are inconsistent with experience!
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AlbertKLloyd
#24 Posted : 1/11/2014 10:41:11 PM

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Reduce it and you will see what I mean, you provide an example of an experienced effect, say a picture of a rose, or in my example gravitation, then you provide possibilities resulting in that picture and omit any criteria of parsimony or evidence and thus allow for infinite validity of any possibility that can as a hypothesis explain the observable effect, this logic also allows for a gravity monster providing the effects of gravity.

However in your examples there is no experience because they are not experiments, you did not actually do the experiment with the image of the rose, ergo there is no evidence or experience involved in them, just abstract conjecture, which again allows the concept of an invisible undetectable gravity monster producing gravity to be considered valid because your hypothesis is this:
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if a hypothesis is consistent with experience, then it is as valid as any other hypothesis that is equally consistent.

And since the experience of gravity is simply the effect, then any random hypothesis that can explain gravity is valid according to your logic, moreover you allow for infinite equally valid hypothesis, which while abstractly true fails when you introduce evidence to the concept. Experience is not evidence per say, for example the experience of gravity is evidence of gravity but not evidence of the cause of gravity, thus a lack of experience of an undetectable invisible monster causing gravity does not contradict the experience of gravity and is according to your logic a valid hypothesis, one among an infinite set.

The problem is that your statement allows non-evidenced hypothesis that can theoretically explain experienced phenomena to be considered valid, like gravity monsters or wizards, provided that those hypothesis can explain what is experienced. In your example you provide contrasting means of achieving the experienced effects, in each case your causation of the effect is undetectable to the observer, this is no different than the gravity monster. In practice if there is no evidence to support a hypothesis then it is not valid, despite being able to explain the experience and being consistent with the effect.

So while in the abstract the claim:
Quote:
if a hypothesis is consistent with experience, then it is as valid as any other hypothesis that is equally consistent.

is logically true, it is not effectively true or meaningful or useful beyond mental exercise.

In the case of the rose image, there is no evidence for any of the hypothesis you give and thus they are all invalid, this can be interpreted as equally valid, for they are all equally invalid, but because they lack evidence, ergo there is nothing in your case to support the conclusion of one other another, then in practice they all become invalid as hypothesis, they are all equally meaningless because they are all unsubstantiated by the example.


regardless of if a hypothesis is consistent with experience, it is as invalid as any other hypothesis (that is equally consistent) until indicated by some measure of evidence







 
AlbertKLloyd
#25 Posted : 1/11/2014 11:21:23 PM

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For me the problem with the examples is that they are different forms of a logical fallacy that can be expressed as:
"Between points A and (which are exactly one millimeter apart by physical measurement) there is actually an infinite amount of space between them because they can be divided an infinite amount of times."
A philosopher would tend hold this to be (logically) true, but it is not actually true.

The same issue arises with the concept of:
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Considering that there are infinitely many hypotheses about the nature of reality, all equally consistent with experience*, it is highly improbable that any hypothesis one adopts accurately reflects the true nature of things.


This abstract concept of probability cannot be expressed in any definite way, for example there is no statistical aspect of probability, this means that in this case the very word probability )here as improbable) is just an opinion, not a conclusion that is indicated. True probability is a measure or estimation and can be expressed in definite terms, your chance of drawing any one card out of a deck of cards is for example 1/52, thus being improbable. However there is not an infinite number of equally valid hypothesis for the nature of reality, rather there is an infinite number of equally invalid hypothesis, there is a rather limited number of valid hypothesis for the nature of reality, for merely thinking of a hypothesis does not make it valid, only evidencing it does, thus the tenet here is wrong, and is based entirely upon logical fallacy.

It is just another way of stating the fallacy about infinite distance in a finite space and equivalent to stating that it is improbable that one can measure that space because it is conceptually infinite.

Many people will not see the fallacy for what it is and will become caught up in the logical truth and conflate it with actual truth. Religion does the exact same thing, it asks someone to consider something that abstractly true and conflate it with factual truth. Typically the presenter always arrives (in the end) at a version of the No True Scotsman Fallacy, regardless of if the presenter is a philosopher or a religious person, but we usually see some Appeal To Authority along the way with some name dropping of other philosophers.

I actually enjoy the lack of the appeal to authority and the no true Scotsman so far in this discussion. Well done!
 
gibran2
#26 Posted : 1/12/2014 12:17:38 AM

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AlbertKLloyd wrote:
In the case of the rose image, there is no evidence for any of the hypothesis you give and thus they are all invalid, this can be interpreted as equally valid, for they are all equally invalid, but because they lack evidence, ergo there is nothing in your case to support the conclusion of one other another, then in practice they all become invalid as hypothesis, they are all equally meaningless because they are all unsubstantiated by the example.

This is mostly in agreement with what I’ve been saying all along. However, the image itself is evidence of its creation, so there must be at least one hypothesis that accurately corresponds to its creation.

Also keep in mind that we’re not discussing scientific hypotheses, which are testable. The term hypothesis as I use it is more in line with “a proposed explanation for a phenomenon”. See wikipedia. In fact, the hypotheses under discussion here are, by design, not testable at all. (What sort of test could you do on 4 identical images of a rose to distinguish among them? What test could you do on the number 2 to determine the sequence of mathematical operations that generated the particular instance? What sort of test could you do to prove that the material universe exists independently of consciousness?)

Don’t forget – I’m arguing that any hypothesis one has regarding the nature of hyperspace (or the source of existence in general) is almost certainly wrong – “The Improbability of Hyperspace”.

Quote:
This abstract concept of probability cannot be expressed in any definite way, for example there is no statistical aspect of probability, this means that in this case the very word probability )here as improbable) is just an opinion, not a conclusion that is indicated. True probability is a measure or estimation and can be expressed in definite terms, your chance of drawing any one card out of a deck of cards is for example 1/52, thus being improbable. However there is not an infinite number of equally valid hypothesis for the nature of reality, rather there is an infinite number of equally invalid hypothesis, there is a rather limited number of valid hypothesis for the nature of reality, for merely thinking of a hypothesis does not make it valid, only evidencing it does, thus the tenet here is wrong, and is based entirely upon logical fallacy.

If we agree that there is at least one correct hypothesis regarding some phenomenon, and if we further agree that the number of correct hypotheses is finite, and if we still further agree that the total number of possible hypotheses approaches infinity, then mathematically we can agree that the probability of any random hypothesis being a valid hypothesis approaches zero.
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AlbertKLloyd
#27 Posted : 1/12/2014 5:49:54 PM

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Which is why it is meaningless, a random hypothesis is invalid and has no purpose.

A proposed explaination should be based upon observation, just random, which is why this has no value for me.

Being able to propose a gravity monster is meaningless, observation is meaningful.

So being able to propose different theories of reality is trivial, only those based upon evidence are meaningful. There is no reason to suppose that a hypothesis based upon observation cannot be valid, ergo we have no reason to suppose that reality is subjective or not percieved, the concept that it is not percieved is itself a random meaningless hypothesis that is useless to me. It is for me the same as saying nothing and starts at a given regarding perception being subjective, but that does not mean reality is subjective.
 
jbark
#28 Posted : 1/12/2014 7:11:54 PM

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AlbertKLloyd wrote:
Which is why it is meaningless, a random hypothesis is invalid and has no purpose.

A proposed explaination should be based upon observation, just random, which is why this has no value for me.

Being able to propose a gravity monster is meaningless, observation is meaningful.




By meaningless you mean not applicable, or not repeatable. I agree with the two latter words with respect to the subject at hand, and find myself in total disagreement with the first. But your definition of meaningful seems inextricably tied to value and utility. Can you think of nothing that has meaning for you that is not quantifiable or repeatable? I hope the answer to that is negative...

If not, please explain.

JBArk
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Redguard
#29 Posted : 1/12/2014 7:20:13 PM
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AlbertKLloyd wrote:
Which is why it is meaningless, a random hypothesis is invalid and has no purpose.

A proposed explaination should be based upon observation, just random, which is why this has no value for me.

Being able to propose a gravity monster is meaningless, observation is meaningful.

So being able to propose different theories of reality is trivial, only those based upon evidence are meaningful. There is no reason to suppose that a hypothesis based upon observation cannot be valid, ergo we have no reason to suppose that reality is subjective or not percieved, the concept that it is not percieved is itself a random meaningless hypothesis that is useless to me. It is for me the same as saying nothing and starts at a given regarding perception being subjective, but that does not mean reality is subjective.



My memory of this is a little hazy but i thought the brain was the intermediary between our senses?. For example, Light hits our eyes, which is turned into electrical impulses and then gets translated by our brain to produce how we see reality. 98% of what our brain interprets gets filtered out into our subconscious as well. Since no two people are the same, it stands to reason that different brains could perceive things differently. After all chaos theory tells us that in complex systems even the slightest deviation could have drastic effects of the whole. I don't think there's enough falsifiable proof to believe in this 100% but it's a useful thought exercise to expand one's perception of reality.

"Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will you get you everywhere" --Einstein
“I am that gadfly which God has attached to the state, and all day long …arousing and persuading and reproaching…You will not easily find another like me.”-- Socrates
 
gibran2
#30 Posted : 1/12/2014 7:22:41 PM

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AlbertKLloyd wrote:
Which is why it is meaningless, a random hypothesis is invalid and has no purpose.

A randomly selected hypothesis may coincide with a valid hypothesis, in which case it is valid.

Quote:
A proposed explaination should be based upon observation, just random, which is why this has no value for me.

I assume you meant “not just random [hypothesis]” and not “just random”. Regardless, I don’t think people usually generate explanations at random. Explanations, however fanciful, are likely to have some basis.

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Being able to propose a gravity monster is meaningless, observation is meaningful.

This is a subjective statement. What is meaningless to you may be very meaningful to someone else.

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So being able to propose different theories of reality is trivial, only those based upon evidence are meaningful.

Many of Einstein’s theories were proposed prior to any sort of evidence or observational support, yet few would consider them trivial. I would never consider the “hunches” of a brilliant scientist to be trivial.

Quote:
There is no reason to suppose that a hypothesis based upon observation cannot be valid, ergo we have no reason to suppose that reality is subjective or not percieved, the concept that it is not percieved is itself a random meaningless hypothesis that is useless to me.

I’m trying to untangle the logic here, but having a hard time. You seem to be equating subjectivity with inability to perceive? To be subjective = to not be perceived? Where does that come from?
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AlbertKLloyd
#31 Posted : 1/13/2014 6:21:20 PM

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Sorry, it is difficult to participate using this simple phone.

The subjective claim is that objective reality is not percieved as that perception is subjective.

Meaning for me is only in a context of utility and not an abstract notion. This is meaningful in terms of hypothesis, not in terms of emotion or sentiment, sentimetal attachment to hypothesis is useless. A conflation of sentimental value with value in terms of working hypothesis underlies some approaches here. How you feel emotionally about a theory does not give it value in terms of efficacy.

Opinion is trivial, as is belief, when it comes to ontological efficacy.

I note that the appeal to authority fallacy has been introduced now! I expected this but am a bit sad that it has come to that.
 
endlessness
#32 Posted : 1/13/2014 9:06:27 PM

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AlbertKLloyd, I think what gibran was getting at was not necessarily appeal to authority, but rather an example of how you can devise a theory that yet has no evidence for, but turns out to be true with time.

If Einstein did not speculate at all and thought about possible explanations for the universe even though they weren`t (yet) testable, scientific development might have slowed down and certain experiments might never have been eventually devised to show the speculations were true (or so it seems... ). I bet that`s often the case, that the fact our minds try to reach out to the beyond can actually bring benefits, except they might not be immediately practical.


In any case, great discussion, keep it coming Smile
 
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