Has chaos been explained?

British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 52 (4):683-700 (2001)
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Abstract

In his recent book, Explaining Chaos, Peter Smith presents a new problem in the foundations of chaos theory. Specifically, he argues that the standard ways of justifying idealizations in mathematical models fail when it comes to the infinite intricacy found in strange attractors. I argue that Smith's analysis undermines much of the explanatory power of chaos theory. A better approach is developed by drawing analogies from the models found in continuum mechanics.

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Jeffrey Koperski
Saginaw Valley State University

Citations of this work

Dynamical Systems Theory and Explanatory Indispensability.Juha Saatsi - 2017 - Philosophy of Science 84 (5):892-904.
Terra incognita: Explanation and reduction in earth science.Maarten G. Kleinhans, Chris J. J. Buskes & Henk W. de Regt - 2005 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 19 (3):289 – 317.
Chaos.Robert Bishop - 2015 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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References found in this work

How the laws of physics lie.Nancy Cartwright - 1983 - New York: Oxford University Press.
How the Laws of Physics Lie.Malcolm R. Forster - 1985 - Philosophy of Science 52 (3):478-480.

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