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Low Quality Criticism of Popper

Anthony O'Hear is quoted at http://www.friesian.com/ohear.htm as saying:
The first problem for a Popperian to consider, though, is whether he can really talk of a severe test [of a theory] without the use of inductive reasoning....

For a severe test is one which is unlikely on past evidence. Without using some sort of inductive assumptions, how can one move from past experience to calculations of present (or future) probability?.... All we have, on non-inductive grounds, are reports of past experience, and generalization from them is forbidden. [pp. 39-40]
The reason he thinks that the inductive reasoning comes into play is that he is in the habit of making inductive assumptions. A Popperian can see at once how to avoid them. It is the same way we approach problems in general. Make a guess at the solution, then subject it to criticism and try to find mistakes or better guesses. So if we want to know how severe a test is, that's what we'll do, not induction. Before criticizing Popper in published work, one should make a serious attempt at understanding Popper.

Elliot Temple on August 19, 2008

Comments (2)

I think he also wrong to suggest that it is past evidence that determines the severity of the test. It is background knowledge. Which are themselves conjectures that there we are testing, if true, would render false.

Anonymous at 3:28 PM on December 21, 2016 | #7984
I think he also wrong to suggest that it is past evidence that determines the severity of the test. It is background knowledge. Which are themselves conjectures that theory we are testing, if true, would render false.

Anonymous at 3:28 PM on December 21, 2016 | #7986

What do you think?

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