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Response to laconicsax (Reply #13)

Sun Apr 1, 2012, 05:49 PM

14. What was that famous quote?


"If I can't see very far it's because giants are standing on my shoulders."

Science is a wonderful, but it needs stuff to work on, and that stuff is all the product of idle speculation. Speculation always comes before systematic evaluation.

People who believe that science is a monotonic march, asymptotic at all times to ultimate truth have only been spectators to the process. The plodders who add the next decimal point to the constants already known create that appearance, but they are a different class of scientist from the creative ones who make the breakthroughs with their imaginative flights of fancy orthogonal to convention. Copernicus was NOT standing on the shoulders of Ptolemy when he kicked geocentrism's ass!

"There are two possible outcomes: If the result confirms the hypothesis, then you've made a measurement. If the result is contrary to the hypothesis, then you've made a discovery." --Enrico Fermi

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