Occam’s razor

Ock·ham’s razor also Oc·cam’s razor  (ŏkəmz)

n. A rule in science and philosophy stating that entities should not be multiplied needlessly. This rule is interpreted to mean that the simplest of two or more competing theories is preferable and that an explanation for unknown phenomena should first be attempted in terms of what is already known. [After William of Ockham.]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition

I wrote a while back about how one of our cordless phone extensions wasn’t holding a charge. I spent a lot of time looking for replacement handsets for our occamsomewhat old cordless system. Then I realized, “You know, you could just replace the battery.” Which I did. And which worked.

Last week I was finishing my walk when the audio on my iPod started to give out. I thought, “Well, it is quite an old iPod. I may need to replace it.” Then I remembered that earlier in the week I had seen bare wire on the cord near the plug, which I had covered with electrical tape. I tried another set of earphones. The iPod was fine.

I need to introduce Occam’s razor into my thinking earlier in the process.


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