Famous Scientists Quotes -4- Theories should be treated like mistresses.

As already mentioned in my previous post, last week took place a team brainstorming session in the lab.

lightbulb-ideaIt actually made me realize how much we (the scientist) love to think about crazy ideas and theories, and sort of fall in love with them, and stick with them no matter what.

Gut feelings, or just enticing perspectives are enough to make us believe things are half-true even tough we don”t have any/poor data supporting it.

And then, I though about what I read in Sydney Brenner’s biography, one of his many funny quotes : “Theories should be treated like mistresses. One should never fall in love with them and they should be discarded when the pleasure they provide is over.”

Despite the machism underlying this sentence, I have to admit I kind of like it. And there is definitively some underlying truth in it.

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