Often analogies can be good ways of communicating. If it is raining heavily I could say “it’s raining heavily” or perhaps I could use an analogy “it’s raining cats & dogs”. This a perfectly reasonable use of analogy to underline the point I wish to make with perhaps greater force and imagery. However, analogies are … Continue reading Is an Argument from Analogy Helpful
I commonly observe it that having no responsibility for implementation leads to impossible plans. In meetings when plans are being discussed, often those without the responsibility for their implementation will argue for much tougher targets and objectives (to the point of fantasy) than those that have to do it. Often in relationships one partner will suggest a plan … Continue reading Nothing is impossible to someone who doesn’t have to do it.
Hanlon's Razor, as a term, is a bit of a spoof on Ockham's razor (see previous post), but this light-hearted presentation conceals an insidious tendency. Hanlon's Razor states: It is unwise to attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity. It is common to jump to an explanation of events by attributing bad faith, … Continue reading Hanlon’s Razor
In my previous blog "Best or Least Worse 1", I argued that many problems that confront us in the real world do not have simple solutions and that in reality we are searching for the least worse solution rather than trying to optimise and achieve a perfect solution. Today I want to further consider two … Continue reading Best or Least Worse 2
In life we often seek to solve problems and do the best we can. Often we, others and the media couch a discussion as a need to do our best, solving problems and achieving success. We think of solutions as panaceas for the problems that confront us. But is this approach realistic or make any … Continue reading Best or Least Worse 1
It is a common human failing that we assume we have knowledge of facts that we can't possibly have. We often describe this is as our intuition. Sometimes we leap to a conclusion and when we look for evidence we find there is ample, well-founded sources to support this leap. In this way we could … Continue reading Intuition: Its Pros and Cons
Ockam's Razor is normally stated: "Among competing hypotheses, the hypothesis with the fewest assumptions should be preferred." Also known by the Latin "lex parsimoniae" the heuristic is attributed to William of Ockham (also Occam) who was a Franciscan friar (1287–1347) and an influential medieval philosopher (see first link below). However, the form of words attributed … Continue reading Ockam’s Razor
How can we ever know the truth or validity of any claim? How can we gain knowledge? There would appear to be three potential sources to affirm the truth ofd any claim: Supporting evidence. Divine inspiration/revelation. Majority Opinion I know of no other ways to affirm the truth of claims, but if you can please … Continue reading How Can We Gain Knowledge
In daily life we act and assume that the truth is accessible and in many cases, we know it. We base our law enforcement and courts on the premise that the truth of any matter can be determined in court. Our politicians trade in truth, claiming they are bastions of truth whereas their opposition are … Continue reading Truth: A Figment of Our Imagination?
We can categorise ideas and statements into two types: Those that are falsifiable. Those that are not falsifiable. A falsifiable statement is one that it is possible, in principle, to be wrong. We may not be able to prove it right, but we can prove it wrong. For example, if I say "I have a … Continue reading Falsifiability