July 16th, 2002


Definitions are Dogmas

"Definitions are dogmas; only the conclusions drawn from them can afford us any new insight" - K Menger, Dimensionstheorie, from K. Popper, The Logic of Scientific Discovery

Popper's brilliance in this section of the book is clearly evident to me. He is making the distinction of methodological rules, or conventions, as part and substance to the game of experimental science, and set in opposition to logical rules. "Although logic may perhaps set up criteria for deciding whether a statement is testable, it certainly is not concerned with the question whether anyone exerts himself to test it". Rules are set to play the game of science, and the setting of rules to the game make science different from other pursuits. The rules of science in and of themselves do not create useful constructs. The conclusions drawn from science are only as good as the rules constructed to play the game. But there is the idea of the game of science being endless since proof can never be conclusive- the game is over when the player resigns.

Accomplishments: set up Hebrew keyset on my laptop.

Setbacks: will probably be in Delaware for the weekend assisting the AZ nutjobs through the long dark night.
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