Something Had to Happen -- The Problem of Specification Stephen Jay Gould, among others, has offered this objection. It is true that the anthropic settings of the physical constants is antecedently very unlikely. However, whatever value these constants had taken would also have been, from one point of view or another, extremely unlikely. Unlikely things happen all the time. Every time a hand of poker is dealt out, the exact constitution of the hands involved is extremely unlikely. The exact position of the molecules in this room at the present time is an astronomically unlikely arrangement. This objection raises a fundamental problem of statistical inference: the problem of specification. If every outcome is equally unlikely, how is it that at some times we are able to exclude chance as an explanation, instead preferring the hypothesizing of some causal mechanism? The general answer to this problem would seem to go something like this. A result is specified when it conforms to a very simple pattern, a pattern that can be specified by a simple rule or
This is the end of the preview. Sign up
access the rest of the document.
This note was uploaded on 11/09/2011 for the course PHI PHI2010 taught by Professor Jorgerigol during the Fall '09 term at Broward College.