On 4/6/2011 2:06 PM, John Mikes wrote:
The exchange between SPK and Bruno is hard to personalize, there is am
unmarked paragraph after a par marked "...
so I was in doubt whether it is Bruno, or Stephen who wrote:
/"His use of the word "causation" is unfortunate but we can forgive
him because there is no correct word for the relation that he is
Both mathematical and philosophical "causation" is partial: all we can
consider as instigating a 'change' (= cause?) may only come from the
part of the totality we already know of and include into that
partivular model used in our consideration, while the influences of
the still unknown factors are included (active?) as well (not to
mention those known ones we neglected in our limited thinking).
In precise thinking such uncertainty interferes with applying
In fundamental physics where evolution is time-symmetric, the
distinction between cause and effect is just an arbitrary choice. In
more practical terms cause usually refers to some part of a process we
could chose to control. If a cable breaks and drops something, we say
the accident was caused by cable failure - because what we think we
could have done to prevent the accident is use a better cable. We don't
say gravity caused it because we can't turn off gravity.
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