How to make the so-called "Flat Earth Theory" an actual scientific theory.

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El Cid

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  • ...And the truth shall set you free.
Firstly, I'd like to explain the difference between a hypothesis, theory, and law.

Source:  http://chemistry.about.com/od/chemistry101/a/lawtheory.htm

A hypothesis is an educated guess, based on observation. Usually, a hypothesis can be supported or refuted through experimentation or more observation. A hypothesis can be disproven, but not proven to be true.

A scientific theory summarizes a hypothesis or group of hypotheses that have been supported with repeated testing. A theory is valid as long as there is no evidence to dispute it. Therefore, theories can be disproven. Basically, if evidence accumulates to support a hypothesis, then the hypothesis can become accepted as a good explanation of a phenomenon. One definition of a theory is to say it's an accepted hypothesis.

A law generalizes a body of observations. At the time it is made, no exceptions have been found to a law. Scientific laws explain things, but they do not describe them. One way to tell a law and a theory apart is to ask if the description gives you a means to explain 'why'.
 
Example: Consider Newton's Law of Gravity. Newton could use this law to predict the behavior of a dropped object, but he couldn't explain why it happened.



The Flat Earth Theory is not a theory; in fact, it is not even a hypothesis.  A hypothesis and a theory must be testable.  Science is more than just a word meaning "physics, biology, chemistry, and other things I learned in school about that type of thing."

Science is a study of the natural world, but it is not simply guessing.  It is not religion, or philosophy.  It is something different.

The philosophy of science is that you have to be able to prove it.  If it's not provable, it's not science.  This is what science is.  Science is anything that can be proven.

In their attempt to prove things, scientists devise experiments.  This word is also perhaps more than you think.  An experiment is set up in a way such that a hypothesis can be proven.

Here is an example of an experiment.  You want to figure out whether eating at McDonald's every day will make you fat.  Your hypothesis:  "Eating at McDonald's every day will eventually make you get fat."

So, in order to test your hypothesis, you create a simple experiment:  you will have two people.  You will tell one of them to eat at McDonald's every day, and you will tell the other not to.  Wait for a while, and eventually you will see:  the first person will begin to get fat.  The other will not.  This proves your hypothesis true.

But what if the second person gets fat too?  This will prove that people just always get fat, and therefore you can discard the hypothesis.  Of course, you have to make sure that both people have about the same metabolism, about the same health to begin with; otherwise, who knows?  Maybe that was the reason that one got fat and the other didn't.



In order for something to be a theory, there must be a method to either prove or disprove it.  Currently, FET is not even very well-organized and developed enough to be sure whether something does prove or disprove it.  So then, my first step in my guide to you on how to make FET a theory, is as follows:

1.  Organize the thoughts of FET, into one, or possibly several, definite models, with clear explanations and mathematics on the theory's properties.  Explain how phenomena such as bendy light come into effect.  Publish your theory in a scientific journal, or somewhere else where it will get attention.

Then:

2.  Devise possible experiments to prove or disprove the theory.


Now, I should warn you.  You seem to be on this path already:  you change your model to fit the measurements.

If you do this so much that no measurement will ever be able to disprove FET, then it is automatically no longer a theory.  A theory must be testable.

Assuming you make your theory such that it is testable, I give you a final commandment:

3.  Explain why your theory explains the universe better than the current model, and show that it is more accurate.  Show the benefits to be had to adopt this theory.
« Last Edit: November 02, 2011, 05:08:09 PM by El Cid »