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John Clifford

  • Commented on Question Submission 13
    In Wimsatt's piece, he describes four biases that are implicit in forwarding the standard model of reductionism: 1) assuming lower-level theories are more general/explanatory 2) distinctions between context of discovery and justification 3) laws over causal factors/mechanisms 4) and problems...
  • Commented on Question Submission 12
    I think this brings up an interesting point within the dichotomy between development and inheritance that we've been grappling with over the last couple weeks. If we think that Mendelian genetics cannot (or at least hasn't been yet) reduced to...
  • Commented on Question Submission 10
    On page 79, Morange opens the chapter "The Influence of the Rockefeller Foundation" with a serious question regarding the driving force of scientific development, namely, can scientific research "be oriented in a given direction from the outside"? Or is it...
  • Commented on Question Submission 9
    This brings up a dilemma for understanding history in general: Does it make sense to think of history as a science? Depending on how we answer this should inform us as to whether/how we can make claims to the "truth"...
  • Commented on Question Submission 7
    I hate to be the dissenting voice as to the intrinsic value of science, but given that this comment has had several replies to it that hold a similar tone, I can't help but think this needs to be addressed:...
  • Commented on Question Submission 7
    Tuesday's second diagram shows that there is a distinction between the range of explanation and the investigative reach. I found it particularly interesting that the knowledge column was broken up into several entries. Professor Waters made the claim that the...
  • Commented on Question Submission 6
    I think this is a really interesting perspective, especially in light of Water's explanation of Mill's critique of causality. It would seem (at least in terms of an evolutionary perspective) causality should be seen in light of a totality. Perhaps...
  • Commented on Question Submission 6
    Godfrey-Smith poses an interesting idea in Chapter 4: Reproduction and Individuality by way of critiquing the "common sense" notion of reproduction. Specifically, he spells out how the dilemma of "growth versus reproduction" and "collective entities" stresses our intuitive notion of...
  • Commented on Question Submission 5
    I totally agree with the optimism and hope coming from synthetic biology, but perhaps with some caution when claiming that the theory of evolution is under fire. Darwin has this quote that I think is quite illuminating in regards to...
  • Commented on Question Submission 5
    In Griesemer's "Tracking Organic Processes", p. 378-379 presents a schema for what a causal process ought to look like in biology, in spite of existing in a dynamic process. The conclusion drawn is that the same schema can be used...
  • Commented on Question Submission 4
    I think the dichotomy between specialization and generalized science can be particularly useful in trying to explain how science "develops", but I think there is maybe a tacit assumption about "progression" (truth?), justified or not, that needs to be addressed....
  • Commented on Question Submission 2
    Considering how old the the dichotomy of "phenomenological/reductionism" is, how easily classifiable is Mendel? Specifically, throughout Mendel's "Experiments in Plant Hybridization" the use of literals as representations of transmittable characteristics seems to be either a desperate attempt to maintain a...
  • Commented on Question Submission 1
    I think the question of natural selection on the level of species/groups (versus individuals) was perhaps avoided by Darwin not only because of a lack of clarity regarding the definition of species, but also because of how dynamics like a...
  • Commented on Trial Run
    Mendel...
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