Paper Review: The Evolution of Social Norms

I write a lot on this blog about rationality. Not only is it interesting in its own right, but the claim that we are rational creatures has been at the center of western philosophy for millennia, even when under attack. However, regardless of whether or not one thinks we are rational beings, there is one… Continue reading Paper Review: The Evolution of Social Norms

Paper Review: Philosophy and the practice of Bayesian statistics

One of the more interesting things I've learned in my life is that our best account of epistemology is that rational beliefs are governed by the probability axioms. Furthermore, there is a specific way in a rational agent updates her beliefs given new evidence---Bayesian conditionalization. Of course there is disagreement on this. At this point… Continue reading Paper Review: Philosophy and the practice of Bayesian statistics

Paper Review: The Idea of a Scientific Philosophy

Often when someone learns I am studying philosophy of science I get a confused look in response. Even worse is when I use the term mathematical philosophy (see here, the top of page 1 for my favourite definition of mathematical philosophy), which often gets the response "math and philosophy, aren't those opposites?!" I've developed a… Continue reading Paper Review: The Idea of a Scientific Philosophy

Paper Review: Unified dynamics for microscopic and macroscopic systems

In the wake of the quantum measurement problem there is a constellation of competing theories of quantum mechanics. Any adequate solution to the measurement problem must make predictions that agree with the observed quantum statistics. In particular, the theory must explain why small particles exhibit counter-intuitive behaviour and why this seems to go away at… Continue reading Paper Review: Unified dynamics for microscopic and macroscopic systems

Paper Review: Subject and Object

One way to think about the quantum measurement is to think about the conflict between subjective and objective probability. We looked at some of Everett's earlier thoughts along these lines last week. As I mentioned in that post, later on in one version of his thesis he provided a much cleaner account of the measurement… Continue reading Paper Review: Subject and Object

Paper Review: Objective versus Subjective Probability

Hugh Everett III proposed his many worlds (or as he preferred to call it, relative state) formulation of quantum mechanics back in the mid 50s in order to solve the quantum measurement problem. Although it took a while for the theory to gain traction, it (or some form of it) is one of the more… Continue reading Paper Review: Objective versus Subjective Probability

Paper Review: Nonconglomerability for Countably Additive Measures that are not κ-additive

Probability plays a central role in this blog---many of my posts focus on where probability makes contact with philosophy and physics. However, there is also of course the mathematical theory of probability. The mathematics and the;philosophy interact in many ways, often technical results in the mathematics can be important for our work as philosophers. For… Continue reading Paper Review: Nonconglomerability for Countably Additive Measures that are not κ-additive