TED Conversations

Pabitra Mukhopadhyay

TEDCRED 50+

This conversation is closed.

Truths and Facts. Does Science prove anything?

There is a great deal of interest of us in examining claims of ‘truths’ and ‘facts’. In such examination there is a noticeable stress on scientifically proven facts which can be taken as fundamentally true. This is possibly because mathematics is the language of Science and we make mistake thinking mathematical proofs to be reflecting the essence of scientifically proven facts.

Does science necessarily prove anything? The way mathematics proves a proposition?

It is surprising that such a basic debate cannot be laid to rest and a conclusion arrived at even after 1934 book by Karl Popper: The Logic of Scientific Discovery.

Alan Moghissi, Matthew Amin and Connor McNulty of Institute for Regulatory Science, Alexandria, Va wrote to the editor of Science (the magazine) disagreeing with Peter Gleick and 250 members of the (US) National Academy of Sciences writing to the editor of Science : All citizens should understand some basic scientific facts. There is always some uncertainty associated with scientific conclusions; science never absolutely proves anything.

http://www.nars.org/Voice_of_Science_Articles/Does%20Sciences%20Ever%20Absolutely%20Prove%20Anything.pdf

Is there an absolutely proven scientific fact?

Share:

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • Jun 3 2013: "Is there an absolutely proven scientific fact?"

    Yes, the fact that you exist. If you didn't then you wouldn't be here to question it.

    *Bam*
    • thumb
      Jun 3 2013: Aww, there is nothing scientific in my existence. Or is there? :)
      • Jun 3 2013: The fact that you exist if an absolutely proven fact that you have just proved to yourself by asking the question. - read up on some Rene Descartes :)
        • Jun 3 2013: However, it is not scientifically proven. Taking it literally, you cannot prove something scientifically - using the scientific method.
      • Jun 4 2013: Nothing else but science, only science and all of science if you define science as the application of axiomatic logic where self similarity as the operational mode exists. It means that it is untouched by human imagination let loose.

Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.