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Le destin des formalismes : à propos de la forme des plantes - Pratiques et épistémologies des modèles face à l'ordinateur

Abstract : After the "mathematical laws" (19th century) and the "mathematical models" (1930's), sciences known as "not-exact" resorted to digital simulations (1950's) then to informatics' simulations (1970's). With that, several reasons: the complexity of their objects, the evolution of physics (which is a reference) with its new formalisms, the joint evolution of the techniques of calculation (material and formal), finally the emergence of computer and the advanced languages. However, modelling then simulation imposed revaluations of the epistemic role reserved for the formalisms since the mechanics. To trace back a part of the history of sciences and techniques of modelling, an integrative and understanding history is necessary. With this standpoint, particularly receptive to philosophies of the time and to ontologies of the actors, as to the technical constraints of the formalisms, the instruments and the institutions, one can see three great periods in the recent fortune of formalizations of the plants: an uproot compared to the traditional assumption which states that the mathematical laws are founded on the reality (1922-1937); a spreading of the formalisms and an expansion of theoretical and pragmatic models (1938-1967); finally a convergence between formalisms and between axiomatics around the pluriformalized informatics' infrastructures (since 1967). Thus, our historical and epistemological thesis is this one: the computer, after having amplified the dispersion of the formalisms, tends to neutralize it by offering a new ground of experimentation. The rejection of the faithful representations (iconoclasm) of current epistemologies is to be rectified in-depth.
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Contributor : Franck Varenne <>
Submitted on : Friday, March 18, 2005 - 4:59:02 PM
Last modification on : Friday, November 6, 2020 - 4:48:18 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, November 25, 2016 - 9:05:33 AM


  • HAL Id : tel-00008810, version 2



Franck Varenne. Le destin des formalismes : à propos de la forme des plantes - Pratiques et épistémologies des modèles face à l'ordinateur. Histoire. Université Lumière - Lyon II, 2004. Français. ⟨tel-00008810v2⟩



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