What Science is(n’t)

Stolen from the blinkenlights box :

Science is not–I repeat, not–a method for finding out the "truth" about anything. Without going into a great deal of detail, I would characterize science as a methodology that allows us to test our beliefs about how nature behaves with how nature actually behaves and to derive laws and theories with useful predictive power that allow us to predict how nature will behave under certain conditions. In fact, it could well be argued that science is a method of testing hypotheses, refuting them, and through that process coming up with hypotheses that better explain how nature works.


2 comments to What Science is(n’t)

  • So if the Platonic essence of how “nature actually behaves” is the “truth”, then Science is just a mechanism for better resolving the shadows on the wall of the cave – “our beliefs about how nature behaves”.

    Sounds like a good-enough definition of truth for me.

  • BaS

    It’s just that the word “truth” is dangerous to lob around, especially when a majority of your society holds a very different definition of it.

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