By "ampliative induction" I mean, not mathematical induction.
I also use the term to suggest that I mean inference that is not only
ampliative (a technical term meaning that the inference adds info in its
conclusion) but also "retentive" (not a technical term, so far as I know). In
saying "induction," usually I mean not simple induction (premise about a sample
group to a conclusion about another individual) or statistical syllogism, etc.,
but instead inference that is both ampliative and retentive (in terms of formal
implication relations, both non-preservative of truth and preservative of
falsity), such that all information in the premisses is retained (still of
interest) in the conclusion and the conclusion contains further information.
I.e., some kind of generalization to the extent of a distribution, tendency,
trend, etc. across a larger population or set of items. (I need a more general
word than "population" since I've also talked (though somewhat vaguely) about
the use of induction in for the kind of ideas studied by philosophy.)
This is all especially in distinction from "surmise," by which I usually mean
inference that, in terms of formal implication relations, is neither
truth-preservative nor falsity-preservative. In other words, if my premiss is
that the sun has risen every day for a thousand years, and my conclusion is
that the sun will rise tomorrow, I call that a surmise (to an instance or
individual) and if my conclusion is that there will never have been a day when
the sun doesn't rise, I call that a surmise (to a law, though a weak surmise,
since, among other things, it is not at all luminously explanatory with its
law; and surmise is of more distinctive interest when, for instance, it is not
clear which among various patterns should be used as premisses). The dropping
out of premissed information from the conclusion reflects the focus of
interest, just as a "strict" or non-reversible deduction drops some info in
order to highlight other info.
Best, Ben Udell
Le 09-janv.-06, à 17:43, Benjamin Udell a écrit :
> You've outline a whole range of degrees of cognitive assurance from
> firm to uncertain, and I continue to doubt that it can all be fitted
> under the notion "faith" or "belief" at all.
Not at all. It was not my goal. More explanation soon.
Ben, before I (try) to anwer your long post, could you explain briefly
what you mean by "ampliative induction"? Thanks.
I will try to make a synthetical answer to your long post tomorrow or
the day after.