> You have made an incorrect statement. Scientists
> work to understand theories by trying to disprove
> them. When they succeed, the theory is discarded
> and a new one tried.
Ray: Experimental scientists develop hypotheses within an established set of supported findings we call a paradigm. The hypotheses attempt to support, refine, or extend the theory through experimental findings. If the findings are supported, the underlying theory could be restated to reflect the changes.
If the study fails to reject the null hypothesis, the underlying theory might be re-examined. If the hypothesis is tested repeatedly and the findings fail to reach significance, it might lead to a rejection of the underlying theory, and the development of an alternative theory--complete with a new or revised methodology and testable hypotheses. If the new hypotheses are affirmed, we have established a new paradigm and gone through a paradigm shift that we can call a scientific revolution.
Jock: Theories that have not yet been disproved are
> accepted provisionally as useful. Theories that
> have no mechanism for disproving them (such as
> string theory or gods) can be examined, but are
> ultimately meaningless and putting belief into
> them is useless wanking.
Ray: mostly agree.