Originally posted by Kerrie
but wasn't copernicus ridiculed because of his hypothesis? wasn't he the one who studied and gathered the evidence for it?

Yes, but that is not what makes a method of inquiry "pseudoscientific".
i think what we need to realize overall is that our science is a:
WORK IN PROGRESS
therefore, an incomplete process, therefore more wonderful discoveries out there to understand...

And we do realize it. In fact, we
brag about it. Science is selfcorrecting, and it is through selfcorrection that our ideas about the universe come ever closer to The Laws of the universe (which are undoubtedly not the same as the equations we currently know).
Here is what makes a theory "scientific".
1. It must be consistent.
That is, for no statement X should it be possible to deduce both X and NOT X from the axioms of the theory.
2. It must be valid.
That is, its claims must be correctly derived via logic and, if applicable, mathematics.
3a. It must be satisfiable.
That is, it must make claims that are subject to empirical investigation. If a theory is analytically false, then it is known to be trivially false with no need for investigation.
3b. It must be falsifiable.
That is, it must make claims that, if false, will show the theory to be false. If a theory is analytically true, then it is known to be trivially true with no need for investigation.
Points 3a and 3b can be summed up as:
3. It must be contingent.
That is, it must be contingent on the outcome of experimental investigations.