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A question of proof and beliefs

  1. Abolsutely, 100% correct, and that's it?

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. Seemingly 100% correct, but there is the chance of some new discovery some day which may make us re-

    9 vote(s)
    100.0%
  1. Jan 24, 2004 #1
    As far as I am aware, E=m(c*c) is supported by all applicable experimental evidence. No experiment has ever showed it is wrong. So far as I know, anyway.

    Do you believe: E=m(c*c) is 100% correct, and that's it?

    Or do you believe: E=m(c*c) seems 10% correct, but of course there is the possibility that some day some new discovery may cause a re-think, or alteration, or the relation?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 24, 2004 #2

    russ_watters

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    By definition, no theory can ever be known to be 100% correct.
     
  4. Jan 24, 2004 #3
    Who could be so ignorant as to believe any scientific theory is 100% correct? Part of what's great about science is the recognition that new evidence can prove any theory wrong.
     
  5. Jan 24, 2004 #4

    Kerrie

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    many forget this when they are asserting their "belief in science"...
     
  6. Jan 24, 2004 #5

    Tsu

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    Too true.
     
  7. Jan 24, 2004 #6

    Monique

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    I once told my philosophy teacher: "you can prove something something wrong, but you can never really proof that something is right" or something like that, he thought I was crazy.

    I also told the class about antimatter, they all started laughing really loudly! :frown:
     
  8. Jan 24, 2004 #7
    How horribly ironic. People who "believe in science" are violating one of the basic principles of the system they profess belief in.

    Of course sometimes when people say they believe in a scientific theory they just mean "I think this is the best theory we have right now, so I'll agree with it until something better comes along".
     
  9. Jan 24, 2004 #8

    Monique

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    Scientists are scepticists, they don't believe in anything, all they do their whole life is prove others wrong..
     
  10. Jan 24, 2004 #9

    Tsu

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    Even more ironic - trying to get them to understand that!
     
  11. Jan 24, 2004 #10
    Actually, you can prove that something is right. You just have to prove that every contradictory theory is wrong. That shouldn't take too long.
     
  12. Jan 24, 2004 #11

    Monique

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    Until a new theory pops up..
     
  13. Jan 24, 2004 #12

    Ivan Seeking

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    ...or new information pops up.
     
  14. Jan 24, 2004 #13

    Ivan Seeking

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    That's completely wrong.
     
  15. Jan 24, 2004 #14

    Ivan Seeking

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    Einstein and I think Heisenberg are both known for similar quotes...the harsher and short version being this:

    Science progresses one death at a time.
     
  16. Jan 24, 2004 #15

    Kerrie

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    i am referring to those who "believe in science" as those who are ardently oppossed to religion, and almost make it a point to "believe in science" to defy religion that may have been a part of their child rearing or just plain despise it...
    i believe monique to be correct in saying most are skeptics...
     
  17. Jan 24, 2004 #16
    People always say that like it's a bad thing.
     
  18. Jan 24, 2004 #17
    I believe that E=MC2 is 100% correct. I'm not sure if my belief in it is 100% correct.
     
  19. Jan 24, 2004 #18
    Then it sounds like you don't really believe it.
     
  20. Jan 24, 2004 #19
    Actually, I'm not confident I completely understand it, therefore I am being squirrely and evasive to cover my ass.
     
  21. Jan 24, 2004 #20
    If I hypothesise "At one point in your life you have written with a Bic pen" and you have infact done so, then my hypothesis was proved correct.

    I think it would actually be harder to prove something false. To prove you've never written with a Bic pen would be pretty hard, since you'd need to document every time you wrote with a pen, but just one writing with a Bic pen and I'm proven correct.

    Other things would seem to follow the general principle of being proved correct easier than false. Like if I hypothesised that "Bigfoot is real", certainly it can be disputed, but if I could find and capture a bigfoot, I would be proven right. Wheras there's pretty much no way to say that bigfoot doesn't exist. You can refute individual pieces of evidence supporting bigfoot, but can't say that there isn't some mysterious giant primate running around with absolute certainty.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2004
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