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The Dome: An Unexpectedly Simple Failure of Determinism
John D. Norton
Philosophy of Science
Vol. 75, No. 5, Proceedings of the 2006 Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science AssociationPart II: Symposia PapersEdited by Cristina Bicchieri and Jason Alexander (December 2008), pp. 786-798
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.1086/594524
Page Count: 13
You can always find the topics here!Topics: Newtonianism, Indeterminism, Mass, Idealization, Kinetics, Physics, Determinism, Velocity, Curvature, Laws of Motion
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Newton’s equations of motion tell us that a mass at rest at the apex of a dome with the shape specified here can spontaneously move. It has been suggested that this indeterminism should be discounted since it draws on an incomplete rendering of Newtonian physics, or it is “unphysical,” or it employs illicit idealizations. I analyze and reject each of these reasons.
Copyright 2008 by the Philosophy of Science Association. All rights reserved.