A Pocket Guide to Scientific Literature

This guide is indispensable for interpreting scientific literature, for many phrases have hidden meanings. You might also want to use it when writing papers yourself, of course...

"It has been long known..."
I haven't bothered to check the references.

"It is known..."
I believe.

"It is believed..."
I think.

"It is generally believed..."
My colleagues and I think.

"There has been some discussion..."
Nobody agrees with me.

"It can be shown..."
Take my word for it.

"It is proven..."
It agrees with something mathematical.

"Of great theoretical importance..."
I find it interesting.

"Of great practical importance..."
This justifies my employment.

"Of great historical importance..."
This ought to make me famous.

"Some samples were chosen for study."
The others didn't make sense.

"Typical results are shown."
The best results are shown.

"Correct within order of magnitude."
Wrong.

"The values were obtained empirically."
The values were obtained by accident.

"The results are inconclusive."
The results seem to disprove my hypothesis.

"Additional work is required."
Someone else can work out the details.

"It might be argued that..."
I have a good answer to this objection.

"The investigations proved rewarding."
My grant has been renewed.