Essays On Philosophy Of Science

Plato (428/427 BC[a] - 348/347 BC) had the archetypal Greek belief, that humanity was born with an innate knowledge of everything, and that learning was a process of unlocking the memories.

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The great scientist and polymath, Ibn-Sina (980 - 1037), also known as Avicenna, built upon the scientific processes postulated by Aristotle, but was one of the first philosophers to bring the metaphysical issue of God into the picture.

He believed that general and universal questions were the first stage, and experiments uncovered the truth.

The Romans were the next to take the burgeoning science, developing the scientific method of the Greeks.

The Romans, as their architecture and engineering shows, were far more interested in the empirical applied side of science, using mathematics and practical knowledge to create some great technological advances.

In this way, humanity undergoes a gradual accumulation of knowledge.

Aristotle believed in observational science, and performed many measurements and observations, including describing the hydrological cycle and undertaking taxonomic work, separating many animals into families according to shared characteristics.

Aristotle (384 - 322 BCE), by contrast, believed that Plato had everything the wrong way around, and that knowledge could only be gained by comparing it with what was already known and perceived.

For example, Plato's famous idealized Republic required a perfect Philosopher King to rule it, with wisdom and benevolence.

The other great contributor to the history of the philosophy of science during the Islamic Golden Age was Al-Biruni, who was the first philosopher to understand the importance of errors within scientific experimentation.

He understood that any experiment would contain small and random fluctuations, and that repeated experimentation was the only way to neutralize these inaccuracies.


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