To see what he could see
The key quote is misrepresented by the box that appears because it only has half of it. In full it would be: "Facts are stupid things until brought in connection with some general law." I doubt, though, whether any instructor or student would have enough patience today to allow the student to work this all out on his own. The student would complain that the teacher isn't teaching and the teacher would think the student is too thick to realize the point without being pointed directly to it.