the maxim that assumptions introduced to explain a thing must not be multiplied beyond necessity.
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Origin of Occam's razor
First recorded in 1900–05; after William of Occam
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British Dictionary definitions for occam's razor
a variant spelling of Ockham's razor
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Science definitions for occam's razor
Ockham's razor (ŏk′əmz)
A rule in science and philosophy stating that entities should not be multiplied needlessly. This rule is interpreted to mean that the simplest of two or more competing theories is preferable and that an explanation for unknown phenomena should first be attempted in terms of what is already known. Occam's razor is named after the deviser of the rule, English philosopher and theologian William of Ockham (1285?-1349?).
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