Read the passage given below and solve the questions based on it.
Deborah Mayo is a philosopher of science who has attempted to capture the implications of the new experimentalism in a philosophically rigorous way. Mayo focuses on the detailed way in which claims are validated by experiment, and is concerned with identifying just what claims are borne out and how. A key idea underlying her treatment is that a claim can only be said to be supported by experiment if the various ways in which the claim could be as fault have been investigated and eliminated. A claim can only be said to be borne out by experiment, and a severe test of a claim, as usefully construed by Mayo, must be such that the claim would be unlikely to pass it if it were false. Her idea can be explained by some simple examples. Suppose Snell’s law of refraction of light is tested by some very rough experiments in which very large margins of error are attributed to the measurements of angles of incidence and refraction, and suppose that the results are shown to be compatible with the law within those margins of error. Has the law been supported by experiments that have severely tested it? From Mayo’s perspective the answer is “no” because, owing to the roughness of the measurements, the law of refraction would be quite likely to pass this test even if it were false and some other law differing not too much from Snell’s law true. An exercise I carried out in my school-teaching days serves to drive this point home. My students had conducted some not very careful experiments to test Snell’s law. I then presented them with some alternative laws of refraction that had been suggested in antiquity and mediaeval times, prior to the discovery of Snell’s law, and invited the students to test them with the measurements they had used to test Snell’s law; because of the wide margins of error they had attributed to their measurements, all of these alternative laws pass the test. This clearly brings out the point that the experiments in question did not constitute a severe test of Snell’s law. The law would have passed the test even if it were false and one of the historical alternatives true.
The author’s use of Snell’s law of refraction to illustrate Mayo’s perspective can best said to be