Although not the explicit goal, the best science can really be seen as refining ignorance. Scientists, especially young ones, can get too obsessed with results. Society helps them along in this mad chase. Big discoveries are covered in the press, show up on the university’s home page, help get grants, and make the case for promotions. But it’s wrong. Great scientists, the pioneers that we admire, are not concerned with results but with the next questions. The highly respected physicist Enrico Fermi told his students that an experiment that successfully proves a hypothesis is a measurement; one that doesn’t is a discovery. A discovery, an uncovering ― of new ignorance. The Nobel Prize, the pinnacle of scientific accomplishment, is awarded, not for a lifetime of scientific achievement, but for a single discovery, a result. Even the Nobel committee realizes in some way that this is not really in the scientific spirit, and their award citations commonly honor the discovery for having "opened a field up," “transformed a field,” or “taken a field in new and unexpected directions.”
Source: Ignorance: How It Drives Science By Stuart Firestein · 2012
Does "a measurement" mean "the act of measuring" or does it mean "extent, size, etc., ascertained by measuring."?