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bekishore : einstein   14

What exactly did Einstein mean by 'Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler'? - Quora
To be technical, the only way of knowing for sure what Einstein meant by this is to ask him, and he's dead. So we're out of luck on this one.

However, since Einstein's job was to think of scientific theories that explained things we see in nature, it's likely that he was paraphrasing Occam's Razor. In other words, the best theory (in science or philosophy) is the simplest one that still explains observations.

Example: Question: Who put eggs in my refrigerator?

Hypothesis A: someone in my household put eggs in there after buying them from the supermarket.

Hypothesis B: a gang of hens snuck into the house, managed to open the refrigerator, laid a dozen fresh eggs in there, and vanished without leaving a trace.

Hypothesis C: in fact, no one put any eggs in the refrigerator.

A explains all observations and is quite simple.

B explains all observations, but is complicated and raises unanswered questions about how chickens can operate handles and doorknobs. (not simple enough)

C is very simple but does not explain why there are eggs in the refrigerator. (too simple)

Which is the best hypothesis, in your opinion?

By the way, Einstein's original statement can be found here:

It can scarcely be denied that the supreme goal of all theory is to make the irreducible basic elements as simple and as few as possible without having to surrender the adequate representation of a single datum of experience.

It seems that someone after Einstein paraphrased his statement into one that was too simple to be understood!
einstein  2018-06-04 
june 2018 by bekishore

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