Try This: Thought experiments

How many of you have ever heard of thought experiments?

For those of you who don’t know, a thought experiment is basically an imaginary scenario that people like philosophers, scientists, economists, mathematicians, physicists, historians and so on, use to investigate the nature of things, how things work and how a particular scenario might play out.

Most thought experiments are verbal, where a person is told a scenario and they imagine how they would react or how the situation would play out. Many thought experiments are accompanied with diagrams to make sense of it, or as is the case with me, most of the time confuse you even more.

If you want to know more about thought experiments you can check out this article from the website plato.stanford.edu, titled “Thought Experiments”.  The article goes into much more detail and even talks about the history of thought experiments.

You can also check out this youtube video, which explains what a thought experiment is, quite nicely and is what helped me understand it better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Like the video said, the whole point of any thought experiments is to work out how something works, how a scenario would play out and how you may act or react if you were put in a particular scenario.  While these things may not actually happen, they still help because they help us objectively look at a scenario and think about what would happen or what we would do.  They also help us decide what to do if for some reason we were put into that kind of situation.

Now lets look at some well-known thought experiments and how they might apply to the real world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Out of the three I find the trolley problem to be the most disturbing, because in both cases I am responsible for at least one person dying, not a comfortable situation.

Now I would like say something, this isn’t a proper article explaining what thought experiments are, because they can get very complicated. This is just a post from someone who found out about this and thought it was interesting and decided to share that online.

With that said, I hope you liked this post and that maybe I’ve sparked your interest on thought experiments as well. So give yourself a mental workout and give them a try. You can check out this article from io9.gizmodo.com titled, “9 Philosophical Thought Experiments That Will Keep You Up at Night” written by George Dvorsky, or you can search for more on the internet. Anyway, thanks for reading and I hope you have a good day.

 

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