Certainty


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Certainty

 

a term used in probability theory, logic, epistemology, and law (theory of legal proof). In philosophical and logical-methodological investigations it is most frequently used to characterize knowledge that is valid, conclusive, or indisputable and also as a synonym for truth. In experimental natural science the term “certainty” frequently designates events and judgments that are regarded as empirically confirmed by special experiments or, more broadly, by the social and productive practice of men.

The term acquires a somewhat specialized meaning in probability theory. In so-called subjective, or personal, probability, certainty is most frequently interpreted as a concept reflecting the subject’s confidence in the correctness of his evaluation of the probability that a particular event will occur. From this point of view certainty also expresses the extent of a given individual’s knowledge about the conditions and factors contributing to or counteracting the occurrence of events. In this sense, with the exception of extremely idealized or oversimplified cases, certainty includes a considerable element of uncertainty, inasmuch as exhaustive knowledge about such conditions and factors is practically unobtainable.

A. I. RAKITOV

References in periodicals archive ?
Law scholars from various jurisdictions present research from a range of substantive areas regarding the meaning, possibility, and desirability of legal certainty in the context of a rapidly changing global society.
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Now, no one is killed in the first 12 verses of Galatians, but Paul's certainty is no less real.
With the optional learner certainty feature enabled, an assessment question is presented and then learners are prompted to select how certain they are that their answer is correct.
But something is wrong; the more certainty industry demands from our elected governments, the less certainty we seem to have about our rights as citizens, and about environmental health and quality of life.
F there is one thing that Ifrustrates businesses about government policy more than anything else it is the lack of certainty over long-term policies.
While it may be that some executives in government and business seek the false security of certainty in making decisions, I would disagree that this is also true of scientists.
THE long-term recovery of the economy will be helped by greater certainty in the public finances.
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