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  • Print publication year: 2021
  • Online publication date: January 2021

4 - The Standard Fine-Tuning Argument for the Multiverse

from Part II - Fine-Tuning for Life and the Multiverse


The most-discussed objection against this argument is that it commits the inverse gambler's fallacy, originally identified by Ian Hacking. This fallacy consists in inferring from an event with a remarkable outcome that there have likely been many more events of the same type in the past, most with less remarkable outcomes. I discuss several suggested analogs to the problem of the fine-tuned parameters. Ultimately, as I argue, established standards of rationality may just not allow one to decide whether the standard fine-tuning argument for the multiverse commits the inverse gambler’s fallacy or not. Some of the considerations in this chapter, as explained along the way, are relevant to the debate about the Fermi paradox.