Occasionally Quotes (5 quotes)
It is a good principle in science not to believe any “fact”—however well attested—until it fits into some accepted frame of reference. Occasionally, of course, an observation can shatter the frame and force the construction of a new one, but that is extremely rare. Galileos and Einsteins seldom appear more than once per century, which is just as well for the equanimity of mankind.
Laws and institutions are constantly tending to gravitate. Like clocks, they must be occasionally cleansed, and wound up, and set to true time.
Much of the work we do as scientists involves filling in the details about matters that are basically understood already, or applying standard techniques to new specific cases. But occasionally there is a question that offers an opportunity for a really major discovery.
Occasionally and frequently the exercise of the judgment ought to end in absolute reservation. It may be very distasteful, and great fatigue, to suspend a conclusion; but as we are not infallible, so we ought to be cautious; we shall eventually find our advantage, for the man who rests in his position is not so far from right as he who, proceeding in a wrong direction, is ever increasing his distance.
Occasionally he stumbled over the truth but he always picked himself up and hurried on as if nothing had happened.