The Philosophy of Physics

Author: Roberto Torretti

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521565714

Category: Philosophy

Page: 512

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Pursues the development of physics from Galileo and Newton to Einstein and the founders of quantum mechanics.

Appearance and Reality

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Physics

Author: Peter Kosso

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: 9780195115154

Category: Philosophy

Page: 196

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Appearance and Reality: An Introduction to the Philosophy of Physics addresses quantum mechanics and relativity and their philosophical implications, focusing on whether these theories of modern physics can help us know nature as it really is, or only as it appears to us. The author clearly explains the foundational concepts and principles of both quantum mechanics and relativity and then uses them to argue that we can know more than mere appearances, and that we can know to some extent the way things really are. He argues that modern physics gives us reason to believe that we can know some things about the objective, real world, but he also acknowledges that we cannot know everything, which results in a position he calls "realistic realism." This book is not a survey of possible philosophical interpretations of modern physics, nor does it leap from a caricature of the physics to some wildly alarming metaphysics. Instead, it is careful with the physics and true to the evidence in arriving at its own realistic conclusions. It presents the physics without mathematics, and makes extensive use of diagrams and analogies to explain important ideas. Engaging and accessible, Appearance and Reality serves as an ideal introduction for anyone interested in the intersection of philosophy and physics, including students in philosophy of physics and philosophy of science courses.

The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Physics

Author: Robert Batterman

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0195392043

Category: Philosophy

Page: 688

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This Oxford Handbook provides an overview of many of the topics that currently engage philosophers of physics. It surveys new issues and the problems that have become a focus of attention in recent years. It also provides up-to-date discussions of the still very important problems that dominated the field in the past. In the late 20th Century, the philosophy of physics was largely focused on orthodox Quantum Mechanics and Relativity Theory. The measurement problem, the question of the possibility of hidden variables, and the nature of quantum locality dominated the literature on the quantum mechanics, whereas questions about relationalism vs. substantivalism, and issues about underdetermination of theories dominated the literature on spacetime. These issues still receive considerable attention from philosophers, but many have shifted their attentions to other questions related to quantum mechanics and to spacetime theories. Quantum field theory has become a major focus, particularly from the point of view of algebraic foundations. Concurrent with these trends, there has been a focus on understanding gauge invariance and symmetries. The philosophy of physics has evolved even further in recent years with attention being paid to theories that, for the most part, were largely ignored in the past. For example, the relationship between thermodynamics and statistical mechanics—-once thought to be a paradigm instance of unproblematic theory reduction—-is now a hotly debated topic. The implicit, and sometimes explicit, reductionist methodology of both philosophers and physicists has been severely criticized and attention has now turned to the explanatory and descriptive roles of "non-fundamental,'' phenomenological theories. This shift of attention includes "old'' theories such as classical mechanics, once deemed to be of little philosophical interest. Furthermore, some philosophers have become more interested in "less fundamental'' contemporary physics such as condensed matter theory. Questions abound with implications for the nature of models, idealizations, and explanation in physics. This Handbook showcases all these aspects of this complex and dynamic discipline.

The Philosophy of Physics

Author: Dean Rickles

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1509509402

Category: Science

Page: 212

View: 8270

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Does the future exist already? What is space? Are time machines physically possible? What is quantum mechanical reality like? Are there many universes? Is there a ‘true’ geometry of the universe? Why does there appear to be an arrow of time? Do humans play a special role in the world? In this unique introductory book, Dean Rickles guides the reader through these and other core questions that keep philosophers of physics up at night. He discusses the three pillars of modern physics (quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, and the theories of relativity), in addition to more cutting-edge themes such as econophysics, quantum gravity, quantum computers, and gauge theories. The book’s approach is based on the idea that philosophy of physics is a kind of ‘interpretation game’ in which we try to map physical theories onto our world. But the rules of this game often lead to a multiplicity of possible victors: rarely do we encounter a simple answer. The Philosophy of Physics offers a highly accessible introduction to the latest developments in this exciting field. Written in a lively style, with many visual examples, it will appeal to beginner-level students in both physics and philosophy.

The Philosophy Behind Physics

Author: Thomas A. Brody

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3642789781

Category: Science

Page: 355

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Thomas Brody had one of the most powerful and wide-ranging intellects of his generation. Although primarily a physicist who worked on statistical prob lems in nuclear physics, on probability theory and on computational physics he had an extensive knowledge of the philosophy of science and of philosophy, and was fluent in many languages. He is well-known among physicists for the Brody-Moshinsky transformation but his extensive work on probability and on the philosophy of science remained almost unknown. This was because the originality of his ideas entailed many lengthy battles with uncomprehending referees, and he frequently published in Mexican journals of limited circula tion. In addition, his strongly critical spirit inhibited his willingness to publish his ideas. He was always most concerned by the very unsatisfactory situation in the philosophy of physics, that is largely due to the generally poor knowledge that physicists and philosophers have of each other's disciplines. Philosophers of science write at length about physics without any detailed first-hand knowl edge of how research is actually carried out. Physicists, for their part, often implicitly assume naive or erroneous philosophical ideas, and this often hinders their scientific work, besides spreading further confusion if they try to give an account of what they are doing.

Philosophy Of Physics

Author: Lawrence Sklar

Publisher: CRC Press

ISBN: 042997793X

Category: Science

Page: 246

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The study of the physical world had its origins in philosophy, and, two-and-one-half millennia later, the scientific advances of the twentieth century are bringing the two fields closer together again. So argues Lawrence Sklar in this brilliant new text on the philosophy of physics.Aimed at students of both disciplines, Philosophy of Physics is a broad overview of the problems of contemporary philosophy of physics that readers of all levels of sophistication should find accessible and engaging. Professor Sklar's talent for clarity and accuracy is on display throughout as he guides students through the key problems: the nature of space and time, the problems of probability and irreversibility in statistical mechanics, and, of course, the many notorious problems raised by quantum mechanics.Integrated by the theme of the interconnectedness of philosophy and science, and linked by many references to the history of both disciplines, Philosophy of Physics is always clear, while remaining faithful to the complexity and integrity of the issues. It will take its place as a classic text in a field of fundamental intellectual importance.

Philosophy of Physics

Space and Time

Author: Tim Maudlin

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 0691143099

Category: Philosophy

Page: 183

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Introduces non-physicists to core philosophical issues surrounding the nature & structure of space & time, & is also an ideal resource for physicists interested in the conceptual foundations of space-time theory. Provides a broad historical overview, from Aristotle to Einstein, & covers the Twins Paradox, Galilean relativity, time travel, & more.

Philosophy of Physics

Author: M. Bunge

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9401025223

Category: Science

Page: 251

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This book deals with some of the current issues in the philosophy, methodology and foundations of physics. Some such problems are: - Do mathematical formalisms interpret themselves or is it necessary to adjoin them interpretation assumptions, and if so how are these as sumptions to be framed? - What are physical theories about: physical systems or laboratory operations or both or neither? - How are the basic concepts of a theory to be introduced: by ref erence to measurements or by explicit definition or axiomatically? - What is the use ofaxiomatics in physics? - How are the various physical theories inter-related: like Chinese boxes or in more complex ways? - What is the role of analogy in the construction and in the inter pretation of physical theories? In particular, are classical analogues like those of particle and wave indispensable in quantum theories? - What is the role of the apparatus in quantum phenomena and what is the place of measurement theory in quantum mechanics? - How does a theory face experiment: single-handed or with the help of further theories? These and several other questions of the kind are met with by the research physicist, the physics teacher and the physics student in their everyday work. If dodged they will recur. And a wrong answer to them may obscure the understanding of what has been achieved and may even hamper further advancement. Philosophy, methodology and foundations, like rose bushes, are enjoyable when cultivated but become ugly and thorny when neglected.

Holism in Philosophy of Mind and Philosophy of Physics

Author: M. Esfeld

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9401717877

Category: Philosophy

Page: 370

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The Scope of the Project The concept of holism is at the centre of far-reaching changes in various areas of philosophy in the second half of the twentieth century. Holism in epistemology and the philosophy of mind is widespread among analytic philosophers subsequent to the work of the later Wittgenstein and to Quine's "Two Dogmas of Empiricism". Roughly speaking, the claim is that (a) for a person to have beliefs, a social, linguistic community is required and that (b) single beliefs have a meaning only within a whole system of beliefs. Furthermore, holism is discussed in science, in particular in the interpretation of quantum physics. In fact, the term "holism" goes back to Smuts (1926), who introduces this term in a biological context. I Holism in any of these areas has considerable consequences for our philosophical view of the world and ourselves. Holism in quantum physics is said to refute atomism, which has been predominant in modem philosophy of nature. Holism in epistemology and the philosophy of mind is seen as an alternative to what is known as the Cartesian tradition, which dominated modem thought down to logical empiricism.

An Introduction to the Philosophy of Physics

Locality, Fields, Energy, and Mass

Author: Marc Lange

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

ISBN: 9780631225010

Category: Science

Page: 344

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This book combines physics, philosophy, and history in a radical new approach to introducing the philosophy of physics. It leads the reader through several central problems in the philosophy of physics by tracing their connections to a single issue: whether a cause must be spatiotemporally local to its effect, or whether action at a distance can occur

Niels Bohr and the Philosophy of Physics

Twenty-First-Century Perspectives

Author: Jan Faye,Henry Folse

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1350035130

Category: Philosophy

Page: 368

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Niels Bohr and Philosophy of Physics: Twenty-First Century Perspectives examines the philosophical views, influences and legacy of the Nobel Prize physicist and philosophical spokesman of the quantum revolution, Niels Bohr. The sixteen contributions in this collection by some of the best contemporary philosophers and physicists writing on Bohr's philosophy today all carefully distinguish his subtle and unique interpretation of quantum mechanics from views often imputed to him under the banner of the "Copenhagen Interpretation.” With respect to philosophical influences on Bohr's outlook, the contributors analyse prominent similarities between his viewpoint and Kantian ways of thinking, the views of the Danish philosopher Harald Høffding, and themes characteristic of American pragmatism. In recognizing the importance of Bohr's epistemological naturalism they examine his defence of the indispensability of classical concepts from a variety of different perspectives. This collection shows us that Bohr's interpretation of quantum mechanics, now nearly a century old, still has the power to shed light on a variety of issues that have arisen only since his lifetime, as well as decoherence theory and other non-collapse interpretations. Balancing historical themes with contemporary discussions, Niels Bohr and the Philosophy of Physics establishes Bohr's on-going contribution to the philosophy of physics and examines his place in the history of philosophy.

The Philosophy of Physics

Author: Lawrence Sklar

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9780815334934

Category: Philosophy

Page: 422

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First published in 2000. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

From Physics to Philosophy

Author: Jeremy Butterfield,Constantine Pagonis

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 9780521660259

Category: Philosophy

Page: 235

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These essays by leading philosophers of physics offer philosophical perspectives on quantum theory and relativity.

The Ashgate Companion to Contemporary Philosophy of Physics

Author: Dean Rickles

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317044312

Category: Philosophy

Page: 392

View: 1021

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Introducing the reader to the very latest developments in the philosophical foundations of physics, this book covers advanced material at a level suitable for beginner and intermediate students. A detailed overview is provided of the central debates in the philosophy of quantum mechanics, statistical mechanics, quantum computation, and quantum gravity. Each chapter consists of a 'state of the art' review written by a specialist in the field and introduces the reader to the relevant formal aspects along with the philosophical implications. These, and the various interpretive options, are developed in a self-contained, clear, and concise manner. Special care is given to situating the reader within the contemporary debates by providing numerous references and readings. This book thus enables both philosophers and physicists to engage with the most pressing problems in contemporary philosophy of physics in a fruitful way.

The Philosophy of Physics

Or, Process of Creative Development by which the First Principles of Physics are Proved Beyond Controversy, and Their Effect in the Formation of All Physical Things Made Comprehensible to All Intelligent Minds, as in Phenomenal Nature

Author: Andrew Brown

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Cosmogony

Page: 541

View: 7404

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Writings on Physics and Philosophy

Author: Wolfgang Pauli

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9783540568599

Category: Mathematics

Page: 289

View: 7185

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For the first time Pauli's famous articles on the history and philosophy of science are completely translated into English. He writes about complementarity, space, time and causality, about symmetry and the exclusion principle, but also about the role of the unconscious in modern science. Historical essays on Bohr, Ehrenfest, and Einstein and on the history of the neutrino as well as his famous article on Kepler complete the collection. It addresses physicists, philosophers and historians of science as well as a more general public.