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Worth reposting

Isaac Asimov, on the Relativity of Wrong.

"Scientific progress does not come from replacing theories that are wrong with theories that are right. It comes from replacing theories that are wrong with theories that are more subtly wrong."

In other words, only a Sith deals in absolutes.

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( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
torakiyoshi
Nov. 6th, 2010 07:42 am (UTC)
Brilliant!
marmoe
Nov. 6th, 2010 09:26 am (UTC)
And even the replaced theory often remains useful.
jordan179
Nov. 6th, 2010 12:56 pm (UTC)
Yes. The obvious case is Newtonian gravity, which is not an absolutely accurate model, but works well enough for most purposes.
jordan179
Nov. 6th, 2010 12:55 pm (UTC)
A better way of stating it might be that scientific theories asymptotically approach absolute truth -- they get closer and closer to the Truth, but can never quite completely reach it.
sleepyjohn00
Nov. 6th, 2010 01:28 pm (UTC)
Or that they fit the Universe until new data come in and make the Universe bigger ;)
jordan179
Nov. 6th, 2010 01:30 pm (UTC)
Sorry, we don't live in White Wolf's "World of Darkness," and the Technocracy doesn't get to edit or expand reality. All that happens is that we learn more about the reality which was always out there, unknown to us.
deckardcanine
Nov. 6th, 2010 07:42 pm (UTC)
I wouldn't be surprised if some so-called scientific progress took us further from the truth than before. Hopefully, that's rare.

"Only a Sith deals in absolutes."
"Only a Sith?"
"Yes, absolu-- D'OH!"
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )

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