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post #46 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man View Post

Green is green and science proves that easily and irrefutably. Colour blindness is also scientifically and easily provable. Arguments over the perception of the colour green are not scientific they are philosophical. That difference has become more and more blurred by dangerous pseudoscience. 


head_in_sand.jpg

 

I wish I could find one wearing 19th century clothing to make the analogy complete.


Edited by b0dhi - 5/28/10 at 2:03pm
post #47 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott_Tarlow View Post

All  of which is good and well, but I am not making an argument for science, I am making an argument that a truth holds no universal claim.

 

And I am making an argument that there is a universal claim to truth, and it is science.

 

It something that you believe or recognize to be true. You cannot vote truth. You can say someone is wrong, but does that necessarily  change their opinion, do you change their opinion? No they do.

 

This argument only applies if they think they're right. In the case of the colorblind, they should be familiar with their problem, and that they do not perceive in the same way a "normal" person does. Their truth and the universal truth can coexist.

 

You could say green is green all day, but they could say green is red and they could believe it to be true and if you were to ask them if it were true they would say yes. In their reference frame green is red. In their reference frame, the laws of physics may not even exist.

 

You seem like a smart guy, and that's why this comment depresses me. This is typical teenager philosophy fare. My brother makes this argument all the time. I just look at him sideways and tell him to do his science homework.

 

When I start seeing kids floating into the sky because they believe really hard, maybe I'll change my mind, but for now I call bull**** on your philosophy. You can't change reality with a frame of reference. You'll still get dragged down by gravity.

 

Because a truth is an idea, and all of our ideas are inherently flawed no two frames of references will hold all the same truths. So which frame of reference is true? Both of them to their respective holders.

 

So if you flip a coin, no two people will think it landed on the same side? How many sides do your coins have?

 

Science does not prove green to be green. It proves that a certain wavelength of light will be perceived the same way as long as a reference frame has not been changed. For example, in reference frame A the length of a photon could be 1032 nanometers but in another frame of reference it could be 531 nanometeres easily, depending on the physical attributes of that reference frame.

 

Science proves that all shades of the exact same color have the same wavelength. What our brains perceive that color as depends on the brain, but science can account for that, too. Then there's all that relativity stuff, where light is a constant speed regardless of relative frame. Actually, relativity sort of kills your "no two frames the same" argument because of that. Also, photons have no length 

 

If there is an absolute truth, again I don't think there is a scientific argument for absolute truth, because there is no evidence explicitly saying there is or even suggesting it. In fact, even if it does exist, science definitely suggests that we will never know it, for it could exist in some demension we could not comprehend, as we only live in 3.

 

Well, I do. Huh, I guess our frames of reference are just different, so we're both spot on accurate in our assumptions.

post #48 of 150

Green is defined by light at a certain wave length in vacuum. What people perceive as green is not exact and since no person can see what another person sees, you can debate green is green all day.

 

Absolute truths, I think, are very very hard to come by. Since everything used to prove your truth must be absolute and nothing hardly ever is, you can always find another level to a certain problem. Given that we do not even have solid prof for all the elementary particles getting to an absolute level of truth will be difficult.

 

Maybe I misread some posts it is getting late here in Denmark. Interesting debate for sure.

post #49 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by FrederikS|TPU View Post

Green is defined by light at a certain wave length in vacuum. What people perceive as green is not exact and since no person can see what another person sees, you can debate green is green all day.


But if it all has the same wavelength and we all call it green, why does it matter how we perceive it? How we perceive it changes nothing about how we measure it, or how we use it, or what it is. Green is still green, grass is still green, green jello is still green. If we at least both think it looks alike to us, it's the same. If an eye doctor shows you a green card and you say it's not green, then we have a problem, physical or mental. If you use some terrible teenage argument like "Well, I perceive it as not green, so it's not green in my reference truth" then we're really in trouble.

post #50 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Head Injury View Post


But if it all has the same wavelength and we all call it green, why does it matter how we perceive it? How we perceive it changes nothing about how we measure it, or how we use it, or what it is. Green is still green, grass is still green, green jello is still green. If we at least both think it looks alike to us, it's the same. If an eye doctor shows you a green card and you say it's not green, then we have a problem, physical or mental. If you use some terrible teenage argument like "Well, I perceive it as not green, so it's not green in my reference truth" then we're really in trouble.

A frame of reference can hold truth but it can not itself be the definition of truth. Truth is what is real. False is what is not real. I only brought up the color green to give an instance of what truth could be. Again this is all just symantics. You can not have a truth that is different than my truth. That is call an opinion not a truth. science can not prove all truth and that has been proven time and time again. Every time scientists find something they call truth years or decades later another scientist disproves the previous theory. I believe that is why they call it theory not truth. Am I right?
 

post #51 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcrawford777 View Post

A frame of reference can hold truth but it can not itself be the definition of truth. Truth is what is real. False is what is not real. I only brought up the color green to give an instance of what truth could be. Again this is all just symantics. You can not have a truth that is different than my truth. That is call an opinion not a truth. science can not prove all truth and that has been proven time and time again. Every time scientists find something they call truth years or decades later another scientist disproves the previous theory. I believe that is why they call it theory not truth. Am I right?


You are, and that's what I've been saying. So while the post you quoted wasn't saying it exactly, I'm probably not the best person to be quoting 

 

I wouldn't call it opinion, though. I would call it a perception.

post #52 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by jcrawford777 View Post

Every time scientists find something they call truth years or decades later another scientist disproves the previous theory. I believe that is why they call it theory not truth. Am I right?

 


Agreed.  As a professional scientist, we are continually adapting a framework of ideas that is consistent with a vast and growing body of findings and data.  Nobody would claim to find an irrefutable 'truth', just the best explanation available.  That being said, some theories seem pretty darned good.  For example the periodic table and elements such as oxygen are also just theories, but all data to date reinforce that theory, and those theories make specific empirical predictions that have are consistently borne out in experiments.

 

post #53 of 150
Quote:

Originally Posted by Danneq View Post

 

What is "truth"? A difficult word to define indeed!

 

I studied both philosophy and neuroscience as an undergraduate, and found that the only philosophical position that was consistent with brain science was pragmatism (or existentialism as it is called on the other side of the pond).  It states that as animals, what we perceive in the world are opportunities for action that are relevant for our lives/survival.  Available actions delineate the perceptual world (note that 'basic level categories' in psychology such as car or pencil or desk all have a typical repertoire of action for us) and our perceptions are a mirror of the way a person or animal has adapted to an environment.  So all is neurochemistry at some level, but the architecture and molecular machinery of the brain were formed and shaped and by its ability to carry out actions that succeed in an environment.

 

The genius of pragmatism is that it recognizes that perception and the world is a construction of the mind (Kant's insight) but we are also not free to define it any way we want, because our transaction with the world (what Heidegger called Being) wil fail if we are not still receptive to it.  The environment has the last word on what we choose to see in it, since our actions cannot be arbitrary and without instrumental agency we perish. Just as it has since the inception of life and the long selective process that has created the architecture of the brain, and the individual life that made its particular synaptic architecture.

post #54 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott_Tarlow View Post

All  of which is good and well, but I am not making an argument for science, I am making an argument that a truth holds no universal claim. It something that you believe or recognize to be true. You cannot vote truth. You can say someone is wrong, but does that necessarily  change their opinion, do you change their opinion? No they do.  You could say green is green all day, but they could say green is red and they could believe it to be true and if you were to ask them if it were true they would say yes. In their reference frame green is red. In their reference frame, the laws of physics may not even exist. Because a truth is an idea, and all of our ideas are inherently flawed no two frames of references will hold all the same truths. So which frame of reference is true? Both of them to their respective holders.

 

Science does not prove green to be green. It proves that a certain wavelength of light will be perceived the same way as long as a reference frame has not been changed. For example, in reference frame A the length of a photon could be 1032 nanometers but in another frame of reference it could be 531 nanometeres easily, depending on the physical attributes of that reference frame.

 

If there is an absolute truth, again I don't think there is a scientific argument for absolute truth, because there is no evidence explicitly saying there is or even suggesting it. In fact, even if it does exist, science definitely suggests that we will never know it, for it could exist in some demension we could not comprehend, as we only live in 3.


To me that is a language issue, green or what another calls red is the same wavelength band. So long as we both point to grass or leaves on a tree and agree that the colour is the same, it does not matter if I call it red and another calls it green and we know that we have a translation issue.

post #55 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by b0dhi View Post


head_in_sand.jpg

 

I wish I could find one wearing 19th century clothing to make the analogy complete.


OK, so I needed somewhere to park my bike after I had buried a load of pseudoscientists and their daft beliefs.

post #56 of 150
Quote:
Originally Posted by eucariote View Post

Agreed.  As a professional scientist, we are continually adapting a framework of ideas that is consistent with a vast and growing body of findings and data.  Nobody would claim to find an irrefutable 'truth', just the best explanation available.  That being said, some theories seem pretty darned good.  For example the periodic table and elements such as oxygen are also just theories, but all data to date reinforce that theory, and those theories make specific empirical predictions that have are consistently borne out in experiments.

 

Exactly what I was trying to point out, just more elegantly phrased.
 

post #57 of 150
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man View Post


OK, so I needed somewhere to park my bike after I had buried a load of pseudoscientists and their daft beliefs.

 

Hehehe, priceless.
 

post #58 of 150

Keep the discussion away from Religion and Politics, please.  Perhaps steer it back towards audio related discussion.

post #59 of 150

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man
OK, so I needed somewhere to park my bike after I had buried a load of pseudoscientists and their daft beliefs.

 

 "The easy confidence with which I know another man's religion is folly
  teaches me to suspect that my own is also."

- Mark Twain

 

See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientism.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prog Rock Man View Post

To me that is a language issue, green or what another calls red is the same wavelength band. So long as we both point to grass or leaves on a tree and agree that the colour is the same, it does not matter if I call it red and another calls it green and we know that we have a translation issue.


There is no 1:1 correspondence between a wavelength of light and a perceived colour (Magenta for example). Light is not even required for the perception of colour (dreams, the perception of "black", etc). Moreover, you've missed the point the above poster was trying to make, which is that the perception of colour, as a form of qualia, has nothing to do with light. It is an experience, and only the observer has direct experience of it. External observers can only measure and affect that experience through its physical correlates, i.e., neural activity, but the nature of the experience itself cannot be communicated externally or between experiencers.

post #60 of 150

Nice to see that this discussion has continued. I guess I have said what I wanted to say. There is some confusion on words here. I wish that more people would read up on Wittgenstein.

 

There is truth and truth and truth. Colors can be scientifically proved and what we decide to call them is irrelevant (remember Shakespeare - "A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet"). What we agree to call "green" is a certain property in nature. It is something that is there independent of any observer.

 

But no one seems to notice the important issue: we use words and terms blindly without ever truly analyzing them. Just because "green" as a concept and word is something we can agree on and that has got a corresponding existence in "the real world" does not mean that all words have.

If I say "green", "tree", "tall", "chair" all people who understand English understands what I mean and can conjure a image of the object or property in their minds.

If I on the other hand says "good", "bad" and "truth", it is not so easy to get an image in our minds.

 

My point is: words which simply point to objects or the property of objects can be proved trough measurements. In that case "true" or "false" is simple a matter of that object having those specific properties that can be measured or what we have agreed upon. "Green - true" is what is green according our concept of that word and color measured scientifically. "Green - false" does not correspond to our concept of that word and color measured scientifically. In these cases "true" and "false" are simple binary values.

 

Words which point to certain moral values are much more difficult to define and this is where we usually get lost. "Good", "bad" and different moral values are too often seen as something absolute. We think that they are as real as for example colors.

 

I have to agree with what eucariote writes. However existentialism/pragmatism forgets the thing that makes ethologist Desmond Morris see man as a playful ape that has never grown up. Do you enjoy music, movies and games, eucariote? What necessity have these got according to either pragmatism or neuroscience? Something that does not play any relevance for our lives/survival besides providing simple enjoyment does not seem to have any place in these theories. Or am I mistaken?

 

I kind of like the thought of man being infinitely difficult for man itself to comprehend.

Any attempt to define her will show an incomplete picture.


Edited by Danneq - 5/29/10 at 5:28am
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