Profs. Adam Alter and Jonathan Haidt on scientific ideas that are ready for retirement
January 15, 2014
Excerpt from Edge.org -- "The worship of parsimony is understandable in the natural sciences, where it sometimes does happen that a single law or principle, or a very simple theory, explains a vast and diverse set of observations. Newton's three laws really do explain the movements of all inanimate objects. Plate tectonics really does explain earthquakes, volcanoes, and the complementary coastlines of Africa and South America. Natural selection really does explain why plants, animals, and fungi look as they do. But in the social sciences, the overzealous pursuit of parsimony has been a disaster."