Difference between revisions of "Absolute certainty"

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(Blog posts: added Yvain's "Confidence levels inside and outside an argument")
(added "Probing the Improbable" FHI paper)
 
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*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/jr/how_to_convince_me_that_2_2_3/ How to Convince Me That 2 + 2 = 3]
 
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/jr/how_to_convince_me_that_2_2_3/ How to Convince Me That 2 + 2 = 3]
 
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/3be/confidence_levels_inside_and_outside_an_argument/ Confidence levels inside and outside an argument] by [[Yvain]]
 
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/3be/confidence_levels_inside_and_outside_an_argument/ Confidence levels inside and outside an argument] by [[Yvain]]
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==References==
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*{{cite journal
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|title=Probing the Improbable: Methodological Challenges for Risks with Low Probabilities and High Stakes
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|authors=Toby Ord, Rafaela Hillerbrand, Anders Sandberg
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|url=http://arxiv.org/abs/0810.5515
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|year=2008}}
  
 
==See also==
 
==See also==

Latest revision as of 02:33, 20 December 2010

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Possessing absolute certainty in a fact, or Bayesian probability of 1, isn't a good idea. Losing an epistemic bet made with absolute certainty corresponds to receiving infinite negative payoff, according to the logarithmic proper scoring rule.

The same principle applies to mathematical truths. Not possessing absolute certainty in math doesn't make the math itself uncertain, the same way that an uncertain map doesn't cause the territory to blur out. The world, and the math, are precise, while knowledge about them is incomplete.

The impossibility of justified absolute certainty is sometimes used as a rationalization for the fallacy of gray.

Blog posts

References

See also