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    Carina Prunkl (Oxford): “How Anthropocentric is Thermodynamics?”

Carina Prunkl (Oxford): “How Anthropocentric is Thermodynamics?”

9 December 2019|

 

Carina Prunkl (Oxford): “How Anthropocentric is Thermodynamics?”

Thermodynamics “smells more of its human origin than other branches of physics”, Bridgman famously wrote in 1941. Taking a closer look at the history of thermodynamics and statistical mechanics, we find that this ‘human smell’ enters the subject as early as the writings of Maxwell, who makes use of concepts such […]

Matt Farr (Cambridge): “The C Theory of Time”

30 April 2018|

 

Matt Farr (Cambridge): “The C Theory of Time”

Does time have a direction? Intuitively, it does. After all, our experiences, our thoughts, even our scientific explanations of phenomena are time-directed: things evolve from earlier to later, and it would seem unnecessary and indeed odd to try to expunge such talk from our philosophical lexicon. Nevertheless, in this talk […]

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    Nora Boyd (Pittsburgh): “Daedal Data: The Problem of Empirical Adequacy”

Nora Boyd (Pittsburgh): “Daedal Data: The Problem of Empirical Adequacy”

20 March 2017|

 

Nora Boyd (Pittsburgh): “Daedal Data: The Problem of Empirical Adequacy”

Whatever else our theories about the natural world are, they ought to be consistent with the evidence produced by our interactions with it – our theories ought to be at least empirically adequate. This is the minimal commitment of empiricism. Yet the central notions of evidence and empirical […]

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    Jo E. Wolff (KCL): “Absolutism about Quantity – Decision by case study?”

Jo E. Wolff (KCL): “Absolutism about Quantity – Decision by case study?”

13 February 2017|

 

Jo E. Wolff (KCL): “Absolutism about Quantity – Decision by case study?”

Recent work on physical quantities has focused on a debate over absolutism vs. comparativism about quantities. In this talk I will be interested in whether this debate can be decided by arguments from physics. I will look at several case studies from the physical sciences, some […]

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    James Owen Weatherall (Irvine): “On Stuff: The Field Concept in Classical Physics”

James Owen Weatherall (Irvine): “On Stuff: The Field Concept in Classical Physics”

26 September 2016|

 
 
James Owen Weatherall (Irvine): “On Stuff: The Field Concept in Classical Physics”

Discussions of physical ontology often come down to two basic options. Either the basic physical entities are particles, or else they are fields. I will argue that, in fact, it is not at all clear what it would mean to say that the world consists of […]