Scientific Revolutions and the Explosion of Scientific Evidence

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Fahrbach, Ludwig
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Scientific realism, the position that successful theories are likely to be approximately true, is threatened by the pessimistic induction according to which the history of science is full of suc- cessful, but false theories. I aim to defend scientific realism against the pessimistic induction. My main thesis is that our current best theories each enjoy a very high degree of predictive success, far higher than was enjoyed by any of the refuted theories. I support this thesis by showing that both the amount, and quality, of scientific evidence has increased enormously in the recent past, resulting in a big boost of success for the best theories.