At the roots of scientific research and of the advancement of knowledge there is an old methodological dilemma: philosophers have always found it difficult to explain how knowledge can emerge and develop from a natural state of ignorance. In one of Plato’s dialogues, Meno challenges Socrates by asking him (Meno 80d-81a):

Meno: And how will you investigate, Socrates, that of which you know nothing at all? Where can you find a starting-point in the region of the unknown? Moreover, even if you happen to come full upon what you want, how will you ever know that this is the thing that you did not know?