more from Karl Popper

Single Idea 6794

[catalogued under 14. Science / A. Basis of Science / 6. Falsification]

Full Idea

In Popper's sense of the word 'falsify', whereby an observation statement falsifies a hypothesis only by being logically inconsistent with it, nothing can ever falsify a probabilistic or statistical hypothesis, which is therefore unscientific.

Gist of Idea

If falsification requires logical inconsistency, then probabilistic statements can't be falsified


comment on Karl Popper (The Logic of Scientific Discovery [1934]) by Alexander Bird - Philosophy of Science Ch.5

Book Reference

Bird,Alexander: 'Philosophy of Science' [UCL Press 2000], p.179

A Reaction

In general, no prediction can be falsified until the events occur. This seems to be Aristotle's 'sea fight' problem (Idea 1703).

Related Idea

Idea 1703 It is necessary that either a sea-fight occurs tomorrow or it doesn't, though neither option is in itself necessary [Aristotle]