Anthropic Bias: Observation Selection Effects in Science and Philosophy

New York: Routledge (2002)
  Copy   BIBTEX

Abstract

_Anthropic Bias_ explores how to reason when you suspect that your evidence is biased by "observation selection effects"--that is, evidence that has been filtered by the precondition that there be some suitably positioned observer to "have" the evidence. This conundrum--sometimes alluded to as "the anthropic principle," "self-locating belief," or "indexical information"--turns out to be a surprisingly perplexing and intellectually stimulating challenge, one abounding with important implications for many areas in science and philosophy. There are the philosophical thought experiments and paradoxes: the Doomsday Argument; Sleeping Beauty; the Presumptuous Philosopher; Adam & Eve; the Absent-Minded Driver; the Shooting Room. And there are the applications in contemporary science: cosmology ; evolutionary theory ; the problem of time's arrow ; quantum physics ; game-theory problems with imperfect recall ; even traffic analysis. _Anthropic Bias_ argues that the same principles are at work across all these domains. And it offers a synthesis: a mathematically explicit theory of observation selection effects that attempts to meet scientific needs while steering clear of philosophical paradox.

Links

PhilArchive



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,998

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles

Nick Bostrom, Anthropic bias: Observation selection effects in science and philosophy, Routledge, New York, 2002, xiii +224 pp. Price US $69, hardcover, ISBN 0415938589. [REVIEW]W. Meijs - 2005 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 36 (3):586-589.
Confirmation in a Branching World: The Everett Interpretation and Sleeping Beauty.Darren Bradley - 2011 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 62 (2):323-342.
Everettian Confirmation and Sleeping Beauty: Reply to Wilson.Darren Bradley - 2015 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 66 (3):683-693.
Selection Biases in Likelihood Arguments.Matthew Kotzen - 2012 - British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 63 (4):825-839.
Bayesianism And Self-Locating Beliefs.Darren Bradley - 2007 - Dissertation, Stanford University

Analytics

Added to PP
2015-12-06

Downloads
1 (#1,902,155)

6 months
1 (#1,473,216)

Historical graph of downloads

Sorry, there are not enough data points to plot this chart.
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Nick Bostrom
Oxford University

Citations of this work

Philosophy of Cosmology.Chris Smeenk - 2013 - In Robert Batterman (ed.), Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Physics. Oxford: Oxford University Press. pp. 607-652.
Modal Realism and Anthropic Reasoning.Mario Gomez-Torrente - forthcoming - Australasian Journal of Philosophy.
The Mathematical Universe.Max Tegmark - 2007 - Foundations of Physics 38 (2):101-150.

View all 86 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references