chapter
2 Pages

Conclusions

Faraday was not a pure empiricist, of course. He had a variety of theoretical expectations at the outset-expectations that were altered by the experimental outcomes but which were, for him, never absent. And, as noted earlier, Faraday was using a "confirm early, disconfirm late" heuristic. In effect, he was perfectly able to ignore some of the outcomes; unlike the purely empirical network, Faraday did not treat all outcomes with the same seriousness. This leads us to an important conclusion: in the particular epistemological environment that Faraday developed, some means of ignoring the unsuccessful experiments was necessary. Had Faraday not had a set of strong theoretical expectations, he would have had to have had a confirmation "bias".