Sensors can do this too. In fact, Si operates very much through this way. Actually what you're describing is
Intuitives, on the other hand, have to learn something once in order to apply it to different things that don't seem to have much in common at first glance, but due to being Ne or Ni users, they gained enough experience to know where something leads to.
Of course Sensors can take leaps forward. We're all functions. We develop them over our lives. We use them and use only adds stress (like Te is adding stress for you right now in this discussion and it's obvious to me).
I think that the sensor way is less efficient, because you cant take a leap forward, you first need to have a concrete and clear idea of what it is in order to trust it. In other words, if you still consider me vague then point proven.