Pertaining to a method of problem solving in which solutions are discovered by evaluation of the progress made toward the final solution, such as a controlled trial and error method. An exploratory method of tackling a problem, or sequencing of investigation, experimentation, and trial solution in closed loops, gradually closing in on the solution. A heuristic approach usually implies or encourages further investigation, and makes use of intuitive decisions and inductive logic in the absence of direct proof known to the user. Thus, heuristic methods lead to solutions of problems or inventions through continuous analysis of results obtained thus far, permitting a determination of the next step. A stochastic method assumes a solution on the basis of intuitive conjecture or speculation and testing the solution against known evidence, observations, or measurements. The stochastic approach tends to omit intervening or intermediate steps toward a solution. Contrast with stochastic and algorithmic.