It’s always more engaging for a student when you talk about the experiment, because there’s a narrative to it. It’s not just a fact. It’s a discovery … we never talk about failures, and we should talk about them all the time.
“… people don’t like ambiguity. They don’t like to hear ‘We don’t know.’ And scientists pick up on that, and don’t like to say ‘We don’t know’ … In the book, I talk about this idea of ‘negative capability,’ which is a phrase the poet John Keats thought up as a literary state of mind, but I would say it’s a scientific state of mind, too. It’s the ability to remain in mysteries and unknowns without any irritable reaching or grasping. But people don’t like that, generally. They’d rather not be in doubt. Is it this or is it that?”