Posts filed under “Philosophy”

Fact, Hypothesis, Theory, and Law In Science

It’s time we learn the difference between a fact, a theory, a hypothesis, and a scientific law.




Hat tip Lifehacker

Category: Mathematics, Philosophy, Science, Video

FOMC: Much Ado About Nothing

Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no more: it is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing. –Macbeth     Sept. 17 is finally here, and one can’t help but be reminded of Shakespeare’s…Read More

Category: Federal Reserve, Fixed Income/Interest Rates, Philosophy

The Hard Problem of Consciousness

What is consciousness?

“I THINK, therefore I am.” René Descartes’ aphorism has become a cliché. But it cuts to the core of perhaps the greatest question posed to science: what is consciousness? The other phenomena described in this series of briefs—time and space, matter and energy, even life itself—look tractable. They can be measured and objectified, and thus theorised about. Consciousness, by contrast, is subjective. As Descartes’ observation suggests, a conscious being knows he is conscious. But he cannot know that any other being is. Other apparently conscious individuals might be zombies programmed to behave as if they were conscious, without actually being so.

Video after the jump

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Category: Philosophy, Science, Video

Thinking About Fermi’s Paradox

As the story goes, famed physicist Enrico Fermi looked up one starry night, noticed thousands of visible stars and the billions more they represent, and wondered “Where is everybody?” If the physicist knew then what we know today, might he have asked that famous question? Fermi, who died in 1954, certainly missed a lot of…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Psychology, Science, Technology

Alpha & Beta: Two Competing Investment Philosophies

The best investment strategy for you? It’s the one you’re likely to stick with. Barry Ritholtz WaPo, August 16, 2015   “Where’s the Dow going to be in a year?” That’s often asked of financial TV guests. From their responses, you’ll detect two distinct investment philosophies emerge. Which answer resonates with you most strongly probably…Read More

Category: Asset Allocation, Investing, Philosophy

About Time . . .

Today’s column is going to wax a bit philosophical. Stay with me, its worth your effort. You do not really understand Time. By “you” I mean you humans, and by “Time,” I refer to the abstract concept within which all human (excepting Billy Pilgram) structure events in a formal sequence. This has significant ramifications for…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Psychology

What’s Your Investing Philosophy?

    My Sunday Washington Post Business Section column is out. This morning, we look at two competing investment philosophies, Alpha & Beta. The print version had the sort of misleading headline Be the guy with the calm and collected investing strategy – I much prefer the online version’s The best investment strategy for you? It’s the…Read More

Category: Analysts, Asset Allocation, Financial Press, Investing, Philosophy

Will Donald Trump Crack-up the Republican/Tea Party Alliance?

In an interview some years ago, I described the conservative and libertarian movements as all chiefs and no Indians. By this I meant that these movements, as they existed historically, were mostly just a tiny group of intellectuals writing for small circulation magazines and journals, without much of a public following. To be sure, a…Read More

Category: Philosophy, Politics, Think Tank

Who Benefits from Bailouts?

I always find it amusing whenever someone expresses surprise that the financial bailouts for Greece haven’t benefitted Greek citizens. “Bailout Money Goes to Greece, Only to Flow Out Again” in the New York Times is just the latest example. “The cash exodus is a small piece of a bigger puzzle over why — despite two…Read More

Category: Bailouts, Philosophy, Really, really bad calls

Gramm’s Unrepentant Cognitive Dissonance

    Some people look at subprime lending and see evil. I look at subprime lending and I see the American dream in action. My mother lived it as a result of a finance company making a mortgage loan that a bank would not make. –former U.S. Senator Phil Gramm Many elected or appointed officials…Read More

Category: Bailout Nation, Bailouts, Philosophy, Politics, Really, really bad calls