Computer Science

Philosophy of Science

The Philosophy of Science is concerned with how science operates, what the goals of science should be, what relationship science should have with the rest of society, the differences between science and other activities, etc. Everything that happens in science has some relationship with the Philosophy of Science and is predicated upon some philosophical position, even though that may be rarely evident.

Questions asked in the Philosophy of Science:
Is science based upon faith?
What is the scientific method?
How are new scientific discoveries treated?
Is everything reducible to physics and mathematics?

Important Texts in the Philosophy of Science:
Treatise on Human Nature, by David Hume.
Structure of Scientific Revolutions, by Thomas Kuhn.
Criticism and the Growth of Knowledge, by Imre Lakatos.
The Logic of Scientific Discovery, by Karl Popper.
Unweaving The Rainbow, by Richard Dawkins.

Philosophy of Science & Scientific Research:
The Philosophy of Science can be divided into two areas of concern, the first being the process of scientific research and discovery, and the second being the fruits of that process - the things we discover and the insights we gain. With the first, we are concerned with the proper procedure for acquiring knowledge which can justifiably be called "scientific"; with the second, we are concerned with the ultimate use and purpose of that which is discovered.

Philosophy of Science & Philosophy:
Because so much of the Philosophy of Science is concerned with questions about knowledge and knowledge claims, it is often considered a subfield of Epistemology. The Philosophy of Science also raises important questions touching upon Ethics (for example, whether or not science is morally culpable for some of the destructive results of various research programs) and Metaphysics, because it raises questions about whether or not and how the very substance of reality can be understood.

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