anthropic principle

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Related to Anthropic reasoning: Anthropic principle, Anthropic argument

anthropic principle

(an-throp -ik) A principle that was put forward in the 1960s by R. Dicke and maintains that the presence of life in the Universe places constraints on the ways in which the very early Universe evolved: the possible initial conditions are limited to those that give rise to an inhabited Universe, i.e. what we observe must be restricted by the conditions necessary for our presence as observers.

anthropic principle

[an′thräp·ik ′prin·sə·pəl]
(astronomy)
The assertion that the presence of intelligent life on earth places limits on the many ways the universe could have developed and could have caused the conditions of temperature that prevail today.
References in periodicals archive ?
To make anthropic reasoning quantitative (and hence more scientific), one must specify the a priori probabilities of the various constants of nature, and the conditional probability that intelligent life will emerge which is capable of "observing" a universe characterized by those constants.
It is worth noting that there are multiple foundational problems that bedevil anthropic reasoning (such as how to define an "observer" (5)) and even if these are overcome, there are good reasons to doubt that the probabilities needed to carry out the Bayesian inferences can ever be made accurate enough to be of value to science.
Anthropic reasoning is controversial among both theistic and atheistic scientists, and raises a host of difficult questions for both camps.
But in fact, Guth and others argue, applying anthropic reasoning to the multiverse allows calculations of some observable properties of the known universe, otherwise inexplicable.
Anthropic reasoning suggests, then, that humans should occupy a bubble with something like a typical intensity of dark energy--based on the average dark energy expected for all the bubbles where life would be possible.
David Gross, a Nobel laureate and director of the Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of California, Santa Barbara, argues passionately against anthropic reasoning every chance he gets.