Double Helixes and Double Crosses (was: Favorite NON-fiction)

Gaertk at aol.com Gaertk at aol.com
Wed Jan 29 14:21:03 PST 2003

In a message dated 1/28/2003 9:07:10 PM Eastern Standard 
Time, Philip Hart <philiph at SLAC.Stanford.EDU> writes:

> Both the models presented below are too simplistic.  In my 
> field (particle physics) there are experimentalists who 
> build machines just to see what's out there

I don't consider "Let's see what happens when I do this" to 
be part of the Scientific Method.  Scientific discovery, yes, 
but (IMO) the methodolgy doesn't start until "I wonder why it
did that?"

> and others who build machines to check theoretical 
> predictions; and theorists who make theories based on data 
> and some who make theories based on aesthetics. 

Calling something a "theory" when you have NO data to support
it is, to me, presumptious and unscientific.

> I happen to be looking for something nobody (including me) 
> expects to find using an experiment designed to test a 
> 30-year-old theory. 

I don't see any conflict between this and the methodology I