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The Algorithmic Theory of Laws

  • Billy WheelerEmail author
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Part of the SpringerBriefs in Philosophy book series (BRIEFSPHILOSOPH)

Abstract

Chapter 4 brings together the insights of the first three chapters, and argues that the best way to understand ideal laws is to think of them as rules or algorithms for compressing empirical data. Idealization is explained as a form of lossy compression. Lossy compression is tolerated in scientific theories because of predictive redundancy in our theories. Idealizations in scientific theories and their application are accounted for as compression artefacts left over from the lossy compression. A number of possible objections to this explanation are considered and responses given.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PhilosophySun Yat-Sen UniversityZhuhaiChina

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