Here’s Richard Feynman describing the scientific method to his students:

First, we guess. Then we compute the consequences of the guess to see: if this is right, what would it imply? Then we compare the results to nature. If it disagrees with experiments, it’s wrong. In that simple statement is the key to science. It doesn’t make a difference how beautiful your guess is, how smart you are, who made the guess or what his name is. If it disagrees with experiments, it’s wrong.

Every product is a hypothesis. We start with a guess: I think this will work, I think this will be better, I think this is true. And we build something to test that guess. Then we learn something, and we try again. This formula doesn’t preclude art or creative choice or instinct or boldness at any point along the way. But it’s a place to start, and it’s a method to return to, to ground what we’re doing.