Journal Article

A Gruesome Problem for the Curve-Fitting Solution

Scott DeVito

in The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science

Published on behalf of British Society for the Philosophy of Science

Volume 48, issue 3, pages 391-396
Published in print September 1997 | ISSN: 0007-0882
Published online September 1997 | e-ISSN: 1464-3537 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/bjps/48.3.391
A Gruesome Problem for the Curve-Fitting Solution

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This paper is a response to Forster and Sober's [1994] solution to the curve-fitting problem. If their solution is correct, it will provide us with a solution to the New Riddle of Induction as well as provide a basis for choosing realism over conventionalism. Examining this solution is also important as Forster and Sober incorporate it in much of their other philosophical work (see Forster [1995a, b, 1994] and Sober [1996, 1995, 1993]). I argue that Forster and Sober's solution is subject precisely to the problem they seek to solve. They provide a method of choosing among hypotheses but only at the cost of requiring that we have a method of choosing between different ways of conceptualizing the world. Thus the solution raises a new problem—the world-fitting problem.

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Subjects: Philosophy of Science ; Science and Mathematics

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