We don't always get it right first time and can more often than not spend a lot of time at the trial and error stage. But the more we discover what doesn't work the nearer we are to finding out what does.
The light bulb is one of those things which wasn't right first time. Edison, on his journey of discover was commiserated with by a colleague because of a lack of results (or at least the right one) and replied 'I have gotten a lot of results! I know several thousand things that won’t work' (Dyer & Martin, 2010).
We all know several thousand things that don't work, from war to wooly pants but as long as we keep working on them (not the wooly pants - ther're a non-starter) we might finally get the result we want.
(Like the energy saving light bulb and climate talks that actually produce results.)
Dyer, FL. and Martin, TC. (1910) 'Edison: His Life and Inventions', Vol 2, Chapter 24: Edison’s Method in Inventing, p.616, Harper & Brothers, New York