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  1. Finetuned Cancellations and Improbable Theories.James D. Wells - 2019 - Foundations of Physics 49 (5):428-443.
    It is argued that the \ cancellation model is a good proxy for discussions of finetuned cancellations in physical theories. XYCM is then analyzed from a statistical perspective, where it is argued that a finetuned point in the parameter space is not abnormal, with any such point being just as probable as any other point. However, landing inside a standardly defined finetuned region has a much lower probability than landing outside the region, and that probability is invariant under assumed ranges (...)
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  • Naturalness, Extra-Empirical Theory Assessments, and the Implications of Skepticism.James D. Wells - 2019 - Foundations of Physics 49 (9):991-1010.
    Naturalness is an extra-empirical quality that aims to assess plausibility of a theory. Finetuning measures are often deputized to quantify the task. However, knowing statistical distributions on parameters appears necessary. Such meta-theories are not known yet. A critical discussion of these issues is presented, including their possible resolutions in fixed points. Both agreement to and skepticism of naturalness’s utility remains credible, as is skepticism to any extra-empirical theory assessment that claims to identify “more correct” theories that are equally empirically adequate. (...)
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  • The Variety of Explanations in the Higgs Sector.Michael Stöltzner - 2017 - Synthese 194 (2).
    This paper argues that there is no single universal conception of scientific explanation that is consistently employed throughout the whole domain of Higgs physics—ranging from the successful experimental search for a standard model Higgs particle and the hitherto unsuccessful searches for any particles beyond the standard model, to phenomenological model builders in the Higgs sector and theoretical physicists interested in how the core principles of quantum field theory apply to spontaneous symmetry breaking and the Higgs mechanism. Yet the coexistence of (...)
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