Occam’s Razor THIS! The Question.

What’s the deal with Occam’s Razor, anyway?

I thought I had a pretty good handle on it at first.

My impression was that when you were forming a hypothesis, you applied it to make sure you were reducing the number of testable steps needed.

However, I’ve seen it increasingly used as a kind of “truth machine” for matters artistic, theological, and psychological. They’ll use it to back up their statements, explaining that theirs is the least complex and therefore by virtue of Occam’s Razor, it’s true.

I’ve seen people claim they used Occam’s Razor to “figure out” who was a Cylon on Battlestar Galactica, for Pete’s sake!

(In case my confusion over this is lost on anyone, the choice regarding who on Battlestar Galactica was a Cylon was made by human beings writing a work of fiction.)

Occam’s Razor is useful, but only so far when dealing with things of a certain nature.

Here’s a little example of what I mean.

You see this:


A little while you come back, and you see this:


What happened between the two shots?

Answer in the next post.


About paulgude

Paul Gude writes small books, makes stupid music, draws silly pictures, and does weird things on stage.
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