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  1. How and How Not to Make Predictions with Temporal Copernicanism.Kevin Nelson - 2009 - Synthese 166 (1):91-111.
    Gott (Nature 363:315–319, 1993) considers the problem of obtaining a probabilistic prediction for the duration of a process, given the observation that the process is currently underway and began a time t ago. He uses a temporal Copernican principle according to which the observation time can be treated as a random variable with uniform probability density. A simple rule follows: with a 95% probability.
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  • The Doomsday Argument Adam & Eve, UN++, and Quantum Joe.Nick Bostrom - 2001 - Synthese 127 (3):359-387.
    The Doomsday argument purports to show that the risk of the human species going extinct soon has been systematically underestimated. This argument has something in common with controversial forms of reasoning in other areas, including: game theoretic problems with imperfect recall, the methodology of cosmology, the epistomology of indexical belief, and the debate over so-called fine-tuning arguments for the design hypothesis. The common denominator is a certain premiss: the Self-Sampling Assumption. We present two strands of argument in favor of this (...)
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  • An Empirical Critique of Two Versions of the Doomsday Argument – Gott's Line and Leslie's Wedge.E. Sober - 2003 - Synthese 135 (3):415-430.
    I discuss two versions of the doomsday argument. According to "Gott's Line", the fact that the human race has existed for 200,000 years licences the prediction that it will last between 5100 and 7.8 million more years. According to "Leslie's Wedge", the fact that I currently exist is evidence that increases the plausibility of the hypothesis that the human race will come to an end sooner rather than later. Both arguments rest on substantive assumptions about the sampling process that underlies (...)
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  • Too Early? On the Apparent Conflict of Astrobiology and Cosmology.Milan M. Ćirković - 2006 - Biology and Philosophy 21 (3):369-379.
    An interesting consequence of the modern cosmological paradigm is the spatial infinity of the universe. When coupled with naturalistic understanding of the origin of life and intelligence, which follows the basic tenets of astrobiology, and with some fairly incontroversial assumptions in the theory of observation selection effects, this infinity leads, as Ken Olum has recently shown, to a paradoxical conclusion. Olum's paradox is related, to the famous Fermi's paradox in astrobiology and “SETI” studies. We, hereby, present an evolutionary argument countering (...)
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  • Copernican Reasoning About Intelligent Extraterrestrials: A Reply to Simpson.Samuel Ruhmkorff & Tingao Jiang - 2019 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 50 (4):561-571.
    Copernican reasoning involves considering ourselves, in the absence of other information, to be randomly selected members of a reference class. Consider the reference class intelligent observers. If there are extraterrestrial intelligences (ETIs), taking ourselves to be randomly selected intelligent observers leads to the conclusion that it is likely the Earth has a larger population size than the typical planet inhabited by intelligent life, for the same reason that a randomly selected human is likely to come from a more populous country. (...)
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  • Forecast for the Next Eon: Applied Cosmology and the Long-Term Fate of Intelligent Beings. [REVIEW]Milan M. Ćirković - 2004 - Foundations of Physics 34 (2):239-261.
    Cosmology seems extremely remote from everyday human practice and experience. It is usually taken for granted that cosmological data cannot rationally influence our beliefs about the fate of humanity—and possible other intelligent species—except perhaps in the extremely distant future, when the issue of “heat death” (in an ever-expanding universe) becomes actual. Here, an attempt is made to show that it may become a practical question much sooner, if an intelligent community wishes to maximize its creative potential. We estimate, on the (...)
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  • Philosophy of Cosmology.Chris Smeenk - 2013 - In Robert Batterman (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Physics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 607-652.
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  • Philosophical Implications of Inflationary Cosmology.Joshua Knobe, Ken Olum & Alexander Vilenkin - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (1):47-67.
    Recent developments in cosmology indicate that every history having a nonzero probability is realized in infinitely many distinct regions of spacetime. Thus, it appears that the universe contains infinitely many civilizations exactly like our own, as well as infinitely many civilizations that differ from our own in any way permitted by physical laws. We explore the implications of this conclusion for ethical theory and for the doomsday argument. In the infinite universe, we find that the doomsday argument applies only to (...)
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  • Privileged, Typical, or Not Even That? – Our Place in the World According to the Copernican and the Cosmological Principles.Claus Beisbart & Tobias Jung - 2006 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 37 (2):225-256.
    If we are to constrain our place in the world, two principles are often appealed to in science. According to the Copernican Principle, we do not occupy a privileged position within the Universe. The Cosmological Principle, on the other hand, says that our observations would roughly be the same, if we were located at any other place in the Universe. In our paper we analyze these principles from a logical and philosophical point of view. We show how they are related, (...)
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  • The Doomsday Argument and the Self–Indication Assumption: Reply to Olum.Nick Bostrom & Milan M. Ćirković - unknown
    In a recent paper in this journal, Ken Olum attempts to refute the Doomsday argument by appealing to the self-indication assumption, the idea that your very existence gives you reason to think that there are many observers. In contrast to earlier refutation attempts that use this strategy, Olum confronts and try to counter some of the objections that have been made against SIA. We argue that his defense of SIA is unsuccessful. This does not, however, mean that one has to (...)
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  • Predictability Crisis in Early Universe Cosmology.Chris Smeenk - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 46 (1):122-133.
    Inflationary cosmology has been widely accepted due to its successful predictions: for a “generic” initial state, inflation produces a homogeneous, flat, bubble with an appropriate spectrum of density perturbations. However, the discovery that inflation is “generically eternal,” leading to a vast multiverse of inflationary bubbles with different low-energy physics, threatens to undermine this account. There is a “predictability crisis” in eternal inflation, because extracting predictions apparently requires a well-defined measure over the multiverse. This has led to discussions of anthropic predictions (...)
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  • The Copernican Principle, Intelligent Extraterrestrials, and Arguments From Evil.Samuel Ruhmkorff - forthcoming - Religious Studies:1-21.
    The physicist Richard Gott defends the Copernican principle, which claims that when we have no information about our position along a given dimension among a group of observers, we should consider ourselves to be randomly located among those observers in respect to that dimension. First, I apply Copernican reasoning to the distribution of evil in the universe. I then contend that evidence for intelligent extraterrestrial life strengthens four important versions of the argument from evil. I remain neutral regarding whether this (...)
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  • How to Predict Future Duration From Present Age.Bradley Monton & Brian Kierland - 2006 - Philosophical Quarterly 56 (222):16-38.
    The physicist J. Richard Gott has given an argument which, if good, allows one to make accurate predictions for the future longevity of a process, based solely on its present age. We show that there are problems with some of the details of Gott's argument, but we defend the core thesis: in many circumstances, the greater the present age of a process, the more likely a longer future duration.
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  • Probabilistic Reasoning in Cosmology.Yann Benétreau-Dupin - 2015 - Dissertation, The University of Western Ontario
    Cosmology raises novel philosophical questions regarding the use of probabilities in inference. This work aims at identifying and assessing lines of arguments and problematic principles in probabilistic reasoning in cosmology. -/- The first, second, and third papers deal with the intersection of two distinct problems: accounting for selection effects, and representing ignorance or indifference in probabilistic inferences. These two problems meet in the cosmology literature when anthropic considerations are used to predict cosmological parameters by conditionalizing the distribution of, e.g., the (...)
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  • Philosophical Implications of Inflationary Cosmology.Joshua Knobe, Ken D. Olum & And Alexander Vilenkin - 2006 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 57 (1):47-67.
    Recent developments in cosmology indicate that every history having a non-zero probability is realized in infinitely many distinct regions of spacetime. Thus, it appears that the universe contains infinitely many civilizations exactly like our own, as well as infinitely many civilizations that differ from our own in any way permitted by physical laws. We explore the implications of this conclusion for ethical theory and for the doomsday argument. In the infinite universe, we find that the doomsday argument applies only to (...)
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  • Many Worlds and Schrodinger's First Quantum Theory.Valia Allori, Sheldon Goldstein, Roderich Tumulka & Nino Zanghi - 2011 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (1):1-27.
    Schrödinger’s first proposal for the interpretation of quantum mechanics was based on a postulate relating the wave function on configuration space to charge density in physical space. Schrödinger apparently later thought that his proposal was empirically wrong. We argue here that this is not the case, at least for a very similar proposal with charge density replaced by mass density. We argue that when analyzed carefully, this theory is seen to be an empirically adequate many-worlds theory and not an empirically (...)
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  • On Being a Random Sample.David Manley - manuscript
    It is well known that de se (or ‘self-locating’) propositions complicate the standard picture of how we should respond to evidence. This has given rise to a substantial literature centered around puzzles like Sleeping Beauty, Dr. Evil, and Doomsday—and it has also sparked controversy over a style of argument that has recently been adopted by theoretical cosmologists. These discussions often dwell on intuitions about a single kind of case, but it’s worth seeking a rule that can unify our treatment of (...)
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  • Rational Temporal Predictions Can Underlie Apparent Failures to Delay Gratification.Joseph T. McGuire & Joseph W. Kable - 2013 - Psychological Review 120 (2):395-410.
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  • Self-Location and Causal Context.Simon Friederich - 2016 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 93 (2):232-258.
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  • Neural Scaling Laws for an Uncertain World.W. Howard Marc & H. Shankar Karthik - 2018 - Psychological Review 125 (1):47-58.
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  • Sleeping Beauty: A Simple Solution.R. Weintraub - 2004 - Analysis 64 (1):8-10.
    I defend the suggestion that the rational probability in the Sleeping Beauty paradox is one third. The reasoning in its favour is familiar: for every heads-waking, there are two tails-wakings. To complete the defense, I rebut the reasoning which purports to justify the competing suggestion – that the correct probability is half – by undermining its premise, that no new information has been received.
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  • Conflict Between Anthropic Reasoning and Observation.K. D. Olum - 2004 - Analysis 64 (1):1-8.
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  • What, Precisely, is Carter's Doomsday Argument?Randall G. McCutcheon - manuscript
    Paying strict attention to Brandon Carter's several published renditions of anthropic reasoning, we present a ``nutshell'' version of the Doomsday argument that is truer to Carter's principles than the standard balls-and-urns or otherwise ``naive Bayesian'' versions that proliferate in the literature. At modest cost in terms of complication, the argument avoids commitment to many of the half-truths that have inspired so many to rise up against other toy versions, never adopting posterior outside of the convex hull of one's prior distribution (...)
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  • The Doomsday Argument and the Number of Possible Observers.Ken D. Olum - 2002 - Philosophical Quarterly 52 (207):164-184.
    If the human race comes to an end relatively shortly, then we have been born at a fairly typical time in the history of humanity; if trillions of people eventually exist, then we have been born in the first surprisingly tiny fraction of all people. According to the 'doomsday argument' of Carter, Leslie, Gott and Nielsen, this means that the chance of a disaster which would obliterate humanity is much larger than usually thought. But treating possible observers in the same (...)
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  • Cosmological Forecast and Its Practical Significance.Milan M. Ćirković - 2002 - Journal of Evolution and Technology 12 (1).
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  • The Myth and the Meaning of Science as a Vocation.Adam J. Liska - 2005 - Ultimate Reality and Meaning 28 (2):149-164.
    Many natural scientists of the past and the present have imagined that they pursued their activity according to its own inherent rules in a realm distinctly separate from the business world, or at least in a realm where business tended to interfere with science from time to time, but was not ultimately an essential component, ‘because one thought that in science one possessed and loved something unselfish, harmless, self-sufficient, and truly innocent, in which man’s evil impulses had no part whatever’, (...)
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  • Agencies, Capacities, and Anthropic Self-Selection.Milan M. Cirkovic - 2004 - In Margaret A. Simons, Marybeth Timmermann & Mary Beth Mader (eds.), Philosophical Writings. University of Illinois Press. pp. 27.
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  • Blurring Out Cosmic Puzzles.Yann Benétreau-Dupin - 2015 - Philosophy of Science 82 (5):879–891.
    The Doomsday argument and anthropic reasoning are two puzzling examples of probabilistic confirmation. In both cases, a lack of knowledge apparently yields surprising conclusions. Since they are formulated within a Bayesian framework, they constitute a challenge to Bayesianism. Several attempts, some successful, have been made to avoid these conclusions, but some versions of these arguments cannot be dissolved within the framework of orthodox Bayesianism. I show that adopting an imprecise framework of probabilistic reasoning allows for a more adequate representation of (...)
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  • Reconsidering the Inverse Gambler’s Fallacy Charge Against the Fine-Tuning Argument for the Multiverse.Simon Friederich - 2019 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 50 (1):29-41.
    Does the claimed fine-tuning of the constants of nature for life give reason to think that there are many other universes in which the constants have different values? Or does the inference from fine-tuning to a multiverse commit what Hacking calls the inverse gambler’s fallacy? The present paper considers two fine-tuning problems that seem promising to consider because they are in many respects analogous to the problem of the fine-tuned constants. Reasoning that parallels the inference from fine-tuning to a multiverse (...)
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  • Three Aspects of Typicality in Multiverse Cosmology.Feraz Azhar - unknown
    Extracting predictions from cosmological theories that describe a multiverse, for what we are likely to observe in our domain, is crucial to establishing the validity of these theories. One way to extract such predictions is from theory-generated probability distributions that allow for selection effects---generally expressed in terms of assumptions about anthropic conditionalization and how typical we are. In this paper, I urge three lessons about typicality in multiverse settings. Because it is difficult to characterize our observational situation in the multiverse, (...)
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  • Www.Nickbostrom.Com.Nick Bostrom - unknown
    When our measurement instruments sample from only a subspace of the domain that we are seeking to understand, or when they sample with uneven sampling density from the target domain, the resulting data will be affected by a selection effect. If we ignore such selection effects, our conclusions may suffer from selection biases. A classic example of selection bias is the election poll taken by the Literary Digest in 1936. On the basis of a large survey, the Digest predicted that (...)
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  • Gott's Doomsday Argument.Bradley Monton & Sherri Roush - unknown
    Physicist J. Richard Gott uses the Copernican principle that “we are not special” to make predictions about the future lifetime of the human race, based on how long the human race has been in existence so far. We show that the predictions which can be derived from Gott’s argument are less strong than one might be inclined to believe, that Gott’s argument illegitimately assumes that the human race will not last forever, that certain versions of Gott’s argument are incompatible with (...)
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  • Freak Observers and the Simulation Argument.Lyle Crawford - 2013 - Ratio 26 (3):250-264.
    The simulation hypothesis claims that the whole observable universe, including us, is a computer simulation implemented by technologically advanced beings for an unknown purpose. The simulation argument (as I reconstruct it) is an argument for this hypothesis with moderately plausible premises. I develop two lines of objection to the simulation argument. The first takes the form of a structurally similar argument for a conflicting conclusion, the claim that I am a so-called freak observer, formed spontaneously in a quantum or thermodynamic (...)
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  • The Risk That Humans Will Soon Be Extinct.John Leslie - 2010 - Philosophy 85 (4):447-463.
    If it survives for a little longer, the human race will probably start to spread across its galaxy. Germ warfare, though, or environmental collapse or many another factor might shortly drive humans to extinction. Are they likely to avoid it? Well, suppose they spread across the galaxy. Of all humans who would ever have been born, maybe only one in a hundred thousand would have lived as early as you. If, in contrast, humans soon became extinct then because of the (...)
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  • Decision Makers Calibrate Behavioral Persistence on the Basis of Time-Interval Experience.Joseph T. McGuire & Joseph W. Kable - 2012 - Cognition 124 (2):216-226.
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  • Fine Tuning Explained? Multiverses and Cellular Automata.Francisco José Soler Gil & Manuel Alfonseca - 2013 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 44 (1):153-172.
    The objective of this paper is analyzing to which extent the multiverse hypothesis provides a real explanation of the peculiarities of the laws and constants in our universe. First we argue in favor of the thesis that all multiverses except Tegmark’s “mathematical multiverse” are too small to explain the fine tuning, so that they merely shift the problem up one level. But the “mathematical multiverse" is surely too large. To prove this assessment, we have performed a number of experiments with (...)
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  • Conflict Between Anthropic Reasoning and Observation.Ken D. Olum - 2004 - Analysis 64 (1):1–8.
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