Occam’s Razor (sometimes spelled “Ockham”)

William of Ockham was a 14th-century English logician, theologian and Franciscan friar and although Occam’s Razor bears his name, it is suspected that he did not originate it, only that he repeated it repeatedly!

Occam’s Razor is the principle that “entities must not be multiplied beyond necessity.”

The popular interpretation of this principle is that the simplest explanation is usually the correct one. However, this is often confused, as the ‘simple’ “is really referring to the theory with the fewest new assumptions.” Occam’s Razor is also referred to as the law of parsimony, law of economy or law of succinctness, and has also inspired expressions such as “parsimony of postulates”, the “principle of simplicity”, the “KISS principle” (Keep It Simple, Stupid).

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