Skip to Main content Skip to Navigation
Conference papers

Recurring models and sensitivity to computational constraints

Abstract : Abstract : Why are some models, like the harmonic oscillator, the Ising model, a few Hamiltonian in quantum mechanics, Poisson equation, or Lokta-Volterra equations, repeatedly used within and across scientific domains, whereas theories allow for much more modeling possibilities? Some historians and philosophers of science have already proposed plausible explanations. For example, Kuhn and Cartwright point to a tendency toward conservatism in science and Humphreys emphasizes the importance of the intractability of what he calls "templates". In this paper, we investigate more systematically the reasons for this remarkable interdisciplinary recurrence. To this aim, we describe in more details the phenomenon we focus on and review competing potential explanations. We disentangle the various assumptions underlying these explanations and propose assessment criteria. Finally, we argue in favor of a specific explanation based on sensitivity to computational constraints and assess its relationships with the other analyzed explanations. – Why are some models repeatedly used within and across scientific domains? Examples of such a striking phenomenon are the harmonic oscillator, the Ising model, a few Hamiltonian in quantum mechanics, Poisson equation, or Lokta-Volterra equations. Even though theories allow for much more modeling possibilities, such models and combinations of them have been incredibly successful in many domains. This phenomenon has already been investigated by a few historians and philosophers of science and is identified as a feature of modeling by scientists.
Complete list of metadatas

https://hal.univ-lorraine.fr/hal-03047483
Contributor : Raphaël Derobe <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, December 8, 2020 - 9:00:49 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, December 9, 2020 - 3:34:08 AM

Identifiers

  • HAL Id : hal-03047483, version 1

Citation

Cyrille Imbert, Anouk Barberousse. Recurring models and sensitivity to computational constraints. Workshop Philosophy of Applied Mathematics, Maison de la recherche, May 2016, Paris, France. ⟨hal-03047483⟩

Share

Metrics

Record views

4