Problem of Induction in Engineering

Reading Henry Petroski’s To Engineer is Human. Excellent passage here:

The past success of an engineering structure confirms the hypothesis of its function only to the same extent that the historical rising of the sun each morning has reassured us of a predictable future…. [For example] the structural soundness of the Brooklyn Bridge only proves to us that it has stood for over one hundred years; that is will be standing tomorrow is matter of probability, albeit high probability, rather than one of certainty.

2 Responses to “Problem of Induction in Engineering”

  1. troy

    I will borrow that, thanks.


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