You want to have a mind that’s open enough to accept radical new ideas, but not so open that your brains fall out.
The above sentiment in particular echoes this beautiful definition of science as “systematic wonder” driven by an osmosis of empirical rigor and imaginative whimsy.
The complete checklist:
1. How reliable is the source of the claim?
2. Does the source make similar claims?
3. Have the claims been verified by somebody else?
4. Does this fit with the way the world works?
5. Has anyone tried to disprove the claim?
6. Where does the preponderance of evidence point?
7. Is the claimant playing by the rules of science?
8. Is the claimant providing positive evidence?
9. Does the new theory account for as many phenomena as the old theory?
10. Are personal beliefs driving the claim?
This "Baloney Detection Kit" is brought to you by Brain Pickings.