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The Popperian revolution in the methodology of science. (English) Zbl 0940.01006

Padilla Gálvez, Jesús (ed.) et al., Wittgenstein and the Vienna Circle. Proceedings of the international congress, Toledo, Spain, November 2-5, 1994. Cuenca: Ediciones de la Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha. Estudios. 49, 305-316 (1998).
The author argues for a revolution in the methodology of science, released by K. Popper’s “Logik der Forschung zur Erkenntnistheorie der modernen Naturwissenschaft” [Wien, Springer (1935; Zbl 0010.24202)], because it had reversed a valid frame and installed a new one instead. “Nobody,” the author claims, “could seriously maintain any longer that induction is the key for scientific progress” (p.305).
The author starts with a glance at induction in history starting with Aristotles rather unsystematic hints and their effect on the philosophy of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance up to Newton. He then discusses Hume’s arguments against the certainty of inductive inferences, the probability theory of Jakob Bernoulli and Thomas Bayes’ work on mathematical inverse probability which gave a widely accepted solution to the induction problem.
The author finally presents Popper’s falsificationism as the revolutionary step, ignoring, however, that Rudolf Carnap and Hans Reichenbach, e.g., never became Popperians, but continued to be influential in the philosophy of science. It should furthermore be noted that Popper’s normative methodology of science itself became a victim of the “anti-positivistic turn” in the philosophy of science released by Thomas S. Kuhn’s idea of scientific revolutions.
For the entire collection see [Zbl 0932.00037].

MSC:

01A60 History of mathematics in the 20th century
03A05 Philosophical and critical aspects of logic and foundations
00A35 Methodology of mathematics

Citations:

Zbl 0010.24202
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