Given a working hypothesis, as abduced in the previous post, the next phase of inquiry uses deductive inference to expand the implied consequences of the abductive hypothesis, with the aim of testing its truth. For this purpose, the inquirer needs to think of other things that would follow from the consequent of his precipitate explanation. Thus, he now reflects on the Case just assumed:
- Case : The Current situation is just Before it rains.
He looks up to scan the sky, perhaps in a random search for further information, but since the sky is a logical place to look for details of an imminent rainstorm, symbolized in our story by the letter we may suppose that our reasoner has already detached the consequent of the abduced Case, and has begun to expand on its further implications. So let us imagine that our up-looker has a more deliberate purpose in mind and that his search for additional data is driven by the new-found, determinate Rule:
- Rule : Just Before it rains, Dark clouds appear.
Contemplating the assumed Case in combination with this new Rule leads him by an immediate deduction to predict an additional Fact:
- Fact : In the Current situation Dark clouds appear.
The reconstructed picture of reasoning assembled in this second phase of inquiry is true to the pattern of deductive inference.