On Monday, January 13, 2014 11:49:17 AM UTC-6, Edgar L. Owen wrote:
> Forget all other theories when you read mine and judge it only on its own 
> merits... Don't shoehorn!

FWIW, that's all well and good for mathematical and other formal theories.  
You've been insistent on not formalizing your theories, though, so it isn't 
possible to examine them on the basis of internal coherence -- if they were 
wrong, there would be no way to falsify them using only logical analysis.  
Instead we'd need scientific methods, and since humans are extremely prone 
to lots of nasty cognitive biases like confirmation bias and anchoring, we 
need to bring in some more careful tools.

Specifically, when people are thinking about explanatory accounts and 
models, then it's never sensible to forget all others and consider only one 
on its merits.  If we look at only one explanatory account, then whether it 
fits poorly or exactly, we find that it still in some sense fits.  Even if 
it's definitely wrong we can't really falsify it that way.  The way we can 
avoid getting stuck on partial or less exact theories and move on toward 
better theories, the rational way to do it, is to always be comparing the 
relative merits of two or more theories at a time.  That way we can 
determine that theory A makes better predictions here, and theory B makes 
better predictions there, and so on, until we can build them into a theory 
that beats all the others that we know about given the current stock of 


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