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Thread: Personal Theories and Alternate Ideas

  1. #1 Personal Theories and Alternate Ideas 
    Forum Masters Degree
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    Shouldn't this just be alternate ideas? It seems misleading on what a theory actually is.

    As far as I understand it, a personal theory is actually impossible. There is no such thing as a personal theory, because to be a true theory demands that the hypothesis is scrutinized within the field, has good evidence, and is accepted by a non-trivial number of scientists?

    What do you think?


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  3. #2  
    Bullshit Intolerant PhDemon's Avatar
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    Some thoughts on this are posted here: title for this part is not correct


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  4. #3  
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    It's basically a soft way of introducing people to the notion that "theory" as used in science is not the same thing as the vague variety of other meanings in the dictionary. Remember this site is about science but it's not labelled for scientists only.

    Posting in this section is often the first time some people get a clear explanation, gently put or otherwise, to the idea that the word theory has One Meaning And No Other in science rather than the half dozen meanings available in the dictionary.

    Let's face it. If you're familiar with your own subject but not well versed in a particular field, it's sometimes hard to pick the difference between hypotheses and theories when people are talking about "advances" in a topic that's new to you. Theoretical physics is the obvious candidate here, but the same thing goes for any area of science if you're not well read and up to date.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
    "nature is like a game of Jenga; you never know which brick you pull out will cause the whole stack to collapse" Lucy Cooke
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