Peter Medawar Quotes.
The purpose of scientific enquiry is not to compile an inventory of factual information, nor to build up a totalitarian world picture of natural Laws in which every event that is not compulsory is forbidden. We should think of it rather as a logically articulated structure of justifiable beliefs about nature.
Is the Scientific Paper a Fraud?
I cannot give any scientist of any age better advice than this: the intensity of a conviction that a hypothesis is true has no bearing over whether it is true or not.
Scientific reasoning is a dialogue between the possible and the actual, between proposal and disposal between what might be true, and what is in fact the case.
The USA is so enormous, and so numerous are its schools, colleges and religious seminaries, many devoted to special religious beliefs ranging from the unorthodox to the dotty, that we can hardly wonder at its yielding a more bounteous harvest of gobbledygook than the rest of the world put together.
The bells which toll for mankind are – most of them, anyway – like the bells of Alpine cattle; they are attached to our own necks, and it must be our fault if they do not make a cheerful and harmonious sound.
It is a common failing-and one that I have myself suffered from-to fall in love with a hypothesis and to be unwilling to take no for an answer. A love affair with a pet hypothesis can waste years of precious time. There is very often no finally decisive yes, though quite often there can be a decisive no.
If a scientist were to cut his ear off, no one would take it as evidence of a heightened sensibility.
An experiment not worth doing is not worth doing well.
I believe in intelligence, and I believe also that there are inherited differences in intellectual ability, but I do not believe that intelligence is a simple scalar endowment that can be quanitified by attaching a single figure to itвЂ”an I.Q. or the like.
The human mind treats a new idea the same way the body treats a strange protein; it rejects it.
Scientists who think science consists of unprejudiced data-gathering without speculation are merely cows grazing on the pasture of knowledge.
If a person is A) poorly, B) receives treatment intended to make him better, and C) gets better, then no power of reasoning known to medical science can convince him that it may not have been the treatment that restored his health.
It can be said with complete confidence that any scientist of any age who wants to make important discoveries must study important problems. Dull or piffling problems yield dull or piffling answers. It is not enough that a problem should be “interesting”.