
617How to expect a surprising examSynthese 194 (8): 31013133. 2017.In this paper, we provide a Bayesian analysis of the wellknown surprise exam paradox. Central to our analysis is a probabilistic account of what it means for the student to accept the teacher's announcement that he will receive a surprise exam. According to this account, the student can be said to have accepted the teacher's announcement provided he adopts a subjective probability distribution relative to which he expects to receive the exam on a day on which he expects not to receive it. We sh…Read more

119Deceptive updating and minimal information methodsSynthese 187 (1): 147178. 2012.The technique of minimizing information (infomin) has been commonly employed as a general method for both choosing and updating a subjective probability function. We argue that, in a wide class of cases, the use of infomin methods fails to cohere with our standard conception of rational degrees of belief. We introduce the notion of a deceptive updating method and argue that nondeceptiveness is a necessary condition for rational coherence. Infomin has been criticized on the grounds that there ar…Read more

34On the a priori and a posteriori assessment of probabilitiesJournal of Applied Logic 11 (4): 440451. 2013.We argue that in spite of their apparent dissimilarity, the methodologies employed in the a priori and a posteriori assessment of probabilities can both be justified by appeal to a single principle of inductive reasoning, viz., the principle of symmetry. The difference between these two methodologies consists in the way in which information about the singletrial probabilities in a repeatable chance process is extracted from the constraints imposed by this principle. In the case of a posteriori …Read more

22Judgments of symmetry lay at the heart of the classical theory of probability. It was by direct appeal to the symmetries exhibited by the processes underlying simple games of chance that the earliest theorists of probability were able to justify the initial assumptions of equiprobability which allowed them to compute the probabilities of more complex events using combinatorial methods, i.e., by simply counting cases. Nevertheless, in spite of the role that symmetry played in the earliest writing…Read more
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Areas of Interest
Epistemology 
General Philosophy of Science 