Saturday, January 7, 2017

Truth is different for math, physics, chemistry, and engineering

(Refer back to my blog of 1 Jan 2017.) Mathematics, the science of patterns, places a strong emphasis on the truth component "deduction from assumptions" and a much weaker emphasis on the component "usefulness."  Engineering, on the other hand, places a much stronger emphasis on "usefulness." Physics and chemistry both place emphasis on the truth component "agreement with observation" but the cold fusion episode shows us that physics places more emphasis on theory than chemistry does while chemistry places more emphasis on experiment ("agreement with observation") than physics does. The vector concept of truth is a bit different in each field and for each individual scientist. A theoretical physicist's valuation differs from that of an experimental physicist.

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