Eötvös University, Budapest

Pázmány P. sétány 1/A
Budapest, Hungary
Phone/Fax: (36-1) 372 2924
The web site of the seminar:
Philosophy of Science Seminar
Room 6.54 (6th floor)  Monday 4:00 PM


 4 June


It seems, many of the usual participants of the seminar will be abroad in the first week of June (Bled, Ringberg, etc.). So, there is no lecture scheduled for this Monday!

 11 June 4:00 PM 6th floor 6.54Language of presentation: English
Don Ihde
Department of Philosophy, SUNY, Stony Brook

Epistemology Engines

   The history of science is filled with important theories and discoveries based upon observations of technologies, for example, thermodynamics comes from the steam engine as historians claim.  I shall examine several cases of lifeworld practices which relate to scientific developments, including cannon warfare and ballistics, railway schedules and clocks for special relativity, etc.  But the focus will be upon technologies which become
explicit models for knowledge production.  In the first case, I shall examine the role of the camera obscura for early modern epistemology and then the 'return of the book of life' for contemporary epistemology.

 18 June 4:00 PM 6th floor 6.54Language of presentation: English
Barry Loewer
Philosophy, Rutgers University, New York

David Lewis' Humean Account of Chance

 David Lewis formulated a principle (he calls it "the Principal Principle") that he claims tells how chances (and beliefs concerning chances) should guide belief. The principle is that if the chance at t of A's occurring is x then your credence at that A will occur should be x as long as you don't possess any inadmissible information. The principle is intuitive and explains a lot of statistical practice. However Lewis thinks it is incompatible with his favorite theory of the nature of chance and more generally with a metaphysical doctrine called "Humean Supervenience." I argue that Lewis is mistaken about this. Further more I show that while there can be no "justification" of the principle that shows that following it will lead to successful results one can provide a kind of "rationale" for the principle based on Lewis' account of the nature of chance.

I would like to thank you all, the lecturers and the audience, 
your participation and the stimulating atmosphere of the seminars! 
See you in September!
L. E. Sz.

The 60-minute lecture is followed by a 10-minute break. Then we hold a 30-60-minute discussion. The language of the presentation is indicated in the following way:
English, except if all participants speak Hungarian
The participants may comment on the talks and are encouraged to initiate discussion through the Internet. The comments  should be written in the language of the presentation.

The organizer of the seminar: László E. Szabó (email: