The Importance of Theory

Note

In this chapter, I use the term theory to represent “general propositions used as principles” and not “conjectures or proposals.”

A number of major disciplines (and their associated design methodologies) have some type of theoretical basis. Structural engineers design an unlimited variety of structures using the theories of physics. Composers create beautiful symphonies and orchestral pieces using the concepts found in music theory. The automobile industry uses aerodynamics theories to design more fuel-efficient automobiles. The airplane industry uses the same theories to design airplane wings that reduce wind drag.

These examples demonstrate that theory is relevant and very important. The chief advantage ...

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