First, Holmes is the first scientific detective. Second, all of his cases ended up solved so therefore there are no flaws in his method. Well after researching in and out of books and web sites, I finally found the “true” way Holmes solved crimes. The site I found such spectacular information is Sherlockian.Net. This sight was helpful and it made me understand most of the stories by Conan Doyle.
The way Holmes began most investigations was by finding an alternative and providing against it. This step is comparable to the popular saying, “don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” Holmes never once only had one thought of what happened. What made Sherlock great was that all the possibilities were relevant to him. Nothing could ever slip by him. If something out of the ordinary did happen it was not a surprise to him.
Then comes the step of finding data. Holmes once said, “It is a capital mistake to theorize without data.” You should never come up with theories and then try to support them. You must always find facts and then come up with theories. My thoughts are that you go in the wrong direction if you do it ass backwards. Not only will the crime take longer to solve but it also could never be solved.
As soon as Holmes had all of his data and theories in order he determined what he had, what he needed, where it must be. This is all based upon the experience of ones self. Detectives get this part done, not just regular civilians. For an example in the Adventure of the Speckled Band, Holmes connected the crime with the bed being nailed down under a useless ventilator. There is no way in hell everybody could easily do that. I am trying to say that Holmes was a natural or even a great detective. That pretty much sums up all of his work.
You can forget about the golden rule. That rule is to never guess. Guessing only makes you tied down. You need hard-boiled facts, solid theories, and all that other good stuff to solve a crime. Guessing is the number one sin in crime solving.
Finally, I think that Holmes approached all his crimes in a fictional way. Do not get me wrong; Holmes was an expert at it. He never flopped and failed to do his job. What I mean by fictional is that Sherlock Holmes is a great entertainer not a great detective. I know most fans would cut my throat for saying that but it is true. I love reading detective books but only for entertainment purposes. I do not read them to sharpen up any skills of detection and I know that real detectives have the same views. Real life detectives take there time and do everything by some book somebody wrote. If they were true Sherlockians they could do it all by sitting down, smoking a pipe, and just thinking about the whole darn thing. That is what I love about Holmes!