Concepts of Evidence, or How the Electron Got Its Charge

Peter Achinstein

in The Book of Evidence

Published in print October 2001 | ISBN: 9780195143898
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780199833023 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Studies in the Philosophy of Science

 Concepts of Evidence, or How the Electron Got Its Charge

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Using as an example the results of Hertz's experiments on cathode rays in 1883, in which no electrical effects of these rays were observed, four concepts of evidence are introduced: ES (epistemic situation), subjective, potential, and veridical. It is argued that although all four types are used in science, veridical evidence, which is entirely objective and requires the truth of the hypothesis, is the most important for scientists.

Keywords: cathode rays; epistemic‐situation evidence; evidence; Hertz; objective evidence; potential evidence; subjective evidence; veridical evidence

Chapter.  15698 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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