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May 15th, 2016, 12:01 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Incomprehensible View Post
Something I've never understood about theoretical math concepts is that they're unprovable. How can anyone determine that the formulas for concepts like speed and acceleration and infinitesimal limits actually reflect what happens in the real world?
Mathematics is not about absolute truth. A lot of mathematical concepts are not originally derived from the natural, physical world. Hardy was (in)famous for saying that his work in number theory was completely useless (although later generations found applications cryptography and genetics).

Whether derivatives correspond to actual physical laws is the job of scientists, who apply mathematics to try to characterise and explain their findings in rigorous, testable terms.
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