Mike Gazzaniga on the scientific process

"This whole idea that you write up an experiment laying out all methods and questions you’re going to answer beforehand; it’s nonsense. That’s not the way it works. You’re just trying whatever it is you’re trying; you don’t know what’s going to happen, and then whoosh! — the thing pours right out there and generates the next questions, questions you never would have thought of before."

- Michael S. Gazzaniga in the New York Times

A recent edition of the daily published brief extracts from journalist Benedict Carey's interview with Mike Gazzaniga, Professor of Psychology and the Director for the SAGE Center for the Study of Mind at the University of California Santa Barbara. Gazzaniga, who has studied extensively how different halves of the brain carry out their jobs, waxed lyrical on various topics, including how to secure a mentor, the excitement of working at midnight in the lab, and martini time at Caltech. We liked the above quote best, because it shatters the illusion that long-term science plans can actually be planned scientifically.

You can read all the extracts here.