[FOM] Question about theoretical physics

Arnold Neumaier Arnold.Neumaier at univie.ac.at
Thu Mar 7 03:26:36 EST 2013

On 03/06/2013 06:10 PM, Joe Shipman wrote:
> There must be a book which explains the details, otherwise how does anyone learn how to do this?

By reading specialized papers that one can retrieve from one such paper 
by a systematic literature search (now much easier than 10 yars ago).

And each science has not only the written tradition but also the oral 
one, communicated through training within a group of scientists.

Even in mathematics and logic, much of the skill is communicated on the 
metalevel, not on the level of formalized published statements.

> What you have said makes the situation seem much more unsatisfactory.

It is just the discrepancy between theory and practice visible 
everywhere on the research level, not only in physics.

Real life is always much more unsatisfactory than the wishes of people,
especially of logically minded ones. But it is the real life where one 
competes with others, and where results are evaluated by the community 
for their significance.

Arnold Neumaier

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