Neil deGrasse Tyson

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The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it.

Neil deGrasse Tyson

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Carl Sagan

sagan

There are many hypotheses in science which are wrong. That’s perfectly all right; they’re the aperture to finding out what’s right. Science is a self-correcting process. To be accepted, new ideas must survive the most rigorous standards of evidence and scrutiny.
Quoted in Donald R. Prothero and Carl Dennis Buell, Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why it Matters(2007), 3.

Thomas Henry Huxley

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Common sense is science exactly in so far as it fulfills the ideal of common sense; that is, sees facts as they are, or at any rate, without the distortion of prejudice, and reasons from them in accordance with the dictates of sound judgment. And science is simply common sense at its best, that is, rigidly accurate in observation, and merciless to fallacy in logic.

Thomas Henry Huxley

The Crayfish: an Introduction to the Study of Zoölogy (1880), 2. Excerpted in Popular Science (Apr 1880), 16, 789.

Good one from the Hux there.

Carl Sagan

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Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known.
Carl Sagan
In Larry Chang, Wisdom for the Soul: Five Millennia of Prescriptions for Spiritual Healing (2006), 561, but without source reference.
What a tease!
I do hear many astronomers say that everyone has waited for s paradigm shift for so long it feels unerving. Maybe they’re finally right; they’re finished?

Carl Sagan

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The truth may be puzzling. It may take some work to grapple with. It may be counterintuitive. It may contradict deeply held prejudices. It may not be consonant with what we desperately want to be true. But our preferences do not determine what’s true. We have a method, and that method helps us to reach not absolute truth, only asymptotic approaches to the truth—never there, just closer and closer, always finding vast new oceans of undiscovered possibilities. Cleverly designed experiments are the key.
In ‘Wonder and Skepticism’, Skeptical Enquirer (Jan-Feb 1995), 19, No. 1.

Thomas Henry Huxley

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Any one who has studied the history of science knows that almost every great step therein has been made by the “anticipation of Nature,” that is, by the invention of hypotheses, which, though verifiable, often had very little foundation to start with; and, not unfrequently, in spite of a long career of usefulness, turned out to be wholly erroneous in the long run

Thomas Henry Huxley