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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index G > Thomas Gold Quotes

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Thomas Gold
(22 May 1920 - 22 Jun 2004)

Austrian-British-American astronomer.


Science Quotes by Thomas Gold (1 quote)

In no subject is there a rule, compliance with which will lead to new knowledge or better understanding. Skilful observations, ingenious ideas, cunning tricks, daring suggestions, laborious calculations, all these may be required to advance a subject. Occasionally the conventional approach in a subject has to be studiously followed; on other occasions it has to be ruthlessly disregarded. Which of these methods, or in what order they should be employed is generally unpredictable. Analogies drawn from the history of science are frequently claimed to be a guide; but, as with forecasting the next game of roulette, the existence of the best analogy to the present is no guide whatever to the future. The most valuable lesson to be learnt from the history of scientific progress is how misleading and strangling such analogies have been, and how success has come to those who ignored them.
— Thomas Gold
'Cosmology', in Arthur Beer (ed.), Vistas in Astronomy (1956), Vol. 2, 1722.
Science quotes on:  |  Experiment (543)  |  History Of Science (53)  |  Knowledge (1128)  |  Progress (317)  |  Scientific Method (155)  |  Scientific Progress (12)  |  Understanding (317)


See also:
  • 22 May - short biography, births, deaths and events on date of Gold's birth.
  • The Deep Hot Biosphere: The Myth of Fossil Fuels, by Thomas Gold. - book suggestion.

Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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