Testing Hypotheses: Prediction and Prejudice

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Science  14 Jan 2005:
Vol. 307, Issue 5707, pp. 219-221
DOI: 10.1126/science.1103024

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Observations that fit a hypothesis may be made before or after the hypothesis is formulated. Can that difference be relevant to the amount of support that the observations provide for the hypothesis? Philosophers of science and statisticians are both divided on this question, but there is an argument that predictions ought to count more than accommodations, because of the risk of “fudging” that accommodations run and predictions avoid.

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