A statement of fact (which, by the definition of statement, must be true or false) whose truth of falsehood isn't yet known.

It becomes a theorem once it is proven (i.e. proven true), or a contradiction (odd choice of words here), once proven false.

Inductive Reasoning is most often used to form a conjecture. It is not generally regarded as substantive proof.*

A conjecture offers as statement as true. It does not prove it or offer an explanation. When the conjecture is proved, it becomes a law (science) or a theorom (math). Conjectures for the most part are the conclusions drawn from inductive reasoning.

An example of a conjecture would be, "The sum of any two odd numbers is even," if determined by inductive reasoning (3 + 1 = 4, etc.).

*The exception is a special type of deductive reasoning called an inductive proof.

Con*jec"ture (; 135?), n. [L. conjectura, fr. conjicere, conjectum, to throw together, infer, conjecture; con- + jacere to throw: cf. F. conjecturer. See Jet a shooting forth.]

An opinion, or judgment, formed on defective or presumptive evidence; probable inference; surmise; guess; suspicion.

He [Herodotus] would thus have corrected his first loose conjecture by a real study of nature. Whewell.

Conjectures, fancies, built on nothing firm. Milton.

 

© Webster 1913.


Con*jec"ture, v. t. [imp. & p.p. Conjectured (?); p.pr. & vb.n. Conjecturing.] [Cf. F. conjecturer. Cf. Conject.]

To arrive at by conjecture; to infer on slight evidence; to surmise; to guess; to form, at random, opinions concerning.

Human reason can then, at the best, but conjecture what will be. South.

 

© Webster 1913.


Con*jec"ture, v. i.

To make conjectures; to surmise; to guess; to infer; to form an opinion; to imagine.

 

© Webster 1913.

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