Quantitative Parsimony

@article{Nolan1997QuantitativeP,
  title={Quantitative Parsimony},
  author={Daniel Nolan},
  journal={The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science},
  year={1997},
  volume={48},
  pages={329 - 343}
}
  • Daniel Nolan
  • Published 1 September 1997
  • Philosophy
  • The British Journal for the Philosophy of Science
In this paper, I motivate the view that quantitative parsimony is a theoretical virtue: that is, we should be concerned not only to minimize the number of kinds of entities postulated by our theories (i. e. maximize qualitative parsimony), but we should also minimize the number of entities postulated which fall under those kinds. In order to motivate this view, I consider two cases from the history of science: the postulation of the neutrino and the proposal of Avogadro's hypothesis. I also… 
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  • 2003
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The Quest for Ontological Parsimony 1. the Use of Parsimony in Philosophy
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Hereafter, I use " parsimony " and " ontological simplicity " interchangeably, to refer to the kind of simplicity that consists in limiting the number of (kinds of) things posited by a theory, where
Properties are Potatoes? An Essay on Ontological Parsimony
The technique of cost/benefit analysis is standard fare in contemporary ontology: we measure how a theory performs along a variety of dimensions (simplicity, coherence with intuitions etc.) and then
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