Excerpt from How to Deal With Human Nature in Business: A Practical Book on Doing Business by Correspondence, Advertising, and Salesmanship
The words science and scientific have been used so much as advertising catchwords, in loose and illegitimate senses, that it is well for us to begin by considering just what is the true scientific method, and how far the knowledge of any subject is or may become a science.
The scientific method follows these well-defined steps:
1. Hypothesis. The scientist makes the best guess that he can. He is a real student, an artist in study, a professional studier, and he sees something that looks like a great discovery. An hypothesis is the name for a serious guess by a brilliant mind.
2. Experiment and test. The very essence of modem science is trying out that which seems like a great discovery. What seems is often false. We are deceived in our very best impressions. We have not looked at the thing closely enough, we are deceived as to its relative importance, its proportions, because we are too near to it or too far from it, or there is some practical defect in its working which we overlooked at first. The wiser a man is, the more likely he is to know that there are many times when he can not avoid error. Science is what we know, and the only way to know anything is to test it, to try it here and try it there. When its appearance remains the same after we have looked at it from many different sides, only then do we begin to know that it is as it looks.
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