Philosophy of Science

Working scientists usually take for granted a set of basic assumptions that are needed to justify the scientific method: (1) that there is an objective reality shared by all rational observers; (2) that this objective reality is governed by natural laws; (3) that these laws can be discovered by means of systematic observation and experimentation.[citation needed] Philosophy of science seeks a deep understanding of what these underlying assumptions mean and whether they are valid.
The belief that scientific theories should and do represent metaphysical reality is known as realism. It can be contrasted with anti-realism, the view that the success of science does not depend on it being accurate about unobservable entities such as electrons. One form of anti-realism is idealism, the belief that the mind or consciousness is the most basic essence, and that each mind generates its own reality.[19] In an idealistic world view, what is true for one mind need not be true for other minds.
There are different schools of thought in philosophy of science. The most popular position is empiricism,[citation needed] which claims that knowledge is created by a process involving observation and that scientific theories are the result of generalizations from such observations.[20] Empiricism generally encompasses inductivism, a position that tries to explain the way general theories can be justified by the finite number of observations humans can make and the hence finite amount of empirical evidence available to confirm scientific theories. This is necessary because the number of predictions those theories make is infinite, which means that they cannot be known from the finite amount of evidence using deductive logic only. Many versions of empiricism exist, with the predominant ones being bayesianism[21] and the hypothetico-deductive method.[22]

Karl Popper c. 1980s
Empiricism has stood in contrast to rationalism, the position originally associated with Descartes, which holds...