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How To Spot A Bad Scientific Theory

14 Sep 2018, 14:01 UTC
How To Spot A Bad Scientific Theory
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There is a large suite of scientific evidence that supports the picture of the expanding Universe and the Big Bang. The small number of input parameters and the large number of observational successes and predictions that have been subsequently verified are among the hallmarks of a successful scientific theory. (NASA / GSFC)Our biases, preferences, and ideas of simplicity and elegance can get in the way. Here’s a scientific way to cut through them all.What are the rules governing reality? If you can determine what the actual laws of nature are, you’d be able to successfully predict the outcome of any experiment. You could create any physical setup you dreamed up, and you’d know how it would behave as you moved forward in time. Even within the parameters of quantum mechanics, you’d be able to give an exact probability distribution, with reality matching what you’d observe time and time again.That’s the dream of any scientist who works with a theory: to come up with something so successful that its predictive and post-dictive powers are correct every time. In 2018, we’re closer than we’ve ever been to getting it right across the board. But there are rules to theorizing successfully, and if ...

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