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Stable regularities without governing laws?

Filomeno, Aldo (2019) Stable regularities without governing laws? Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics. ISSN 1355-2198

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Abstract

Can stable regularities be explained without appealing to governing laws or any other modal notion? In
this paper, I consider what I will call a 'Humean system' -- a generic dynamical system without guiding
lawsd -- and assess whether it could display stable regularities. First, I present what can be interpreted as
an account of the rise of stable regularities, following from Strevens (2003), which has been applied to
explain the patterns of complex systems (such as those from meteorology and statistical mechanics).
Second, since this account presupposes that the underlying dynamics displays deterministic chaos, I
assess whether it can be adapted to cases where the underlying dynamics is not chaotic but truly random -- that is, cases where there is no dynamics guiding the time evolution of the system. If this is so, the
resulting stable, apparently non-accidental regularities are the fruit of what can be called statistical
necessity rather than of a primitive physical necessity.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Filomeno, Aldoaff18@pitt.edu0000-0001-8027-528X
Keywords: Laws of nature Physical necessity Non-accidental regularities Dynamical systems Complex systems Method of arbitrary functions
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Depositing User: Dr. Aldo Filomeno
Date Deposited: 21 Apr 2019 12:52
Last Modified: 21 Apr 2019 12:52
Item ID: 15820
Journal or Publication Title: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics
Publisher: Elsevier
Official URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.shpsb.2019.03.001
Subjects: General Issues > Scientific Metaphysics
Specific Sciences > Complex Systems
General Issues > Laws of Nature
Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Statistical Mechanics/Thermodynamics
Date: April 2019
ISSN: 1355-2198
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15820

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