Veni, Vidi, Vici
- Jun 12, 2009
As much as I like Tegmark and Carroll, Popper>>>>>Tegmark/Carroll. Popper was one of best thinkers of the 20th century.
This isn't a new argument. The history of science is littered with theories which were speculated in the minds of brilliant individuals before science/technology could catch up to attempt to falsify them. Someone like Tegmark doesn't even really do science. He takes current falsifiable scientific theories and logically extrapolates the consequences of those theories assuming consistent assumptions about reality are made. They are fascinating, probably true if the scientific theories end up being "correct" (one can never really know, the real problem of falsification which ironically neither article addresses although the first article was somewhat close), but are philosophical speculative extrapolations buttressed by logic.
As for elegance determining truth, it is prima facie as dumb as it sounds. First, elegance is a value judgement of beauty. On a humorous note, imagine thinking evolution is more "elegant" than creation. Secondly, there is nothing whatsoever, even if there is universal acceptance among the human race of a theories elegance/beauty, which tethers such a theory to reality.