‘The Half-Life of Facts’ with Samuel Arbesman

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Has every fact we’ve ever known undergone revision or reversal?

It’s a provocative and consequential idea, and one that complexity scientist Samuel Arbesman argues has some truth to it — even if he wouldn’t state it that strongly. On today’s episode of So to Speak: The Free Speech Podcast, we talk with Arbesman about his 2012 book, The Half-Life of Facts: Why Everything We Know Has an Expiration Date.

If facts about our world are constantly shifting, shouldn’t the protection of free speech — the right to openly question the world and all we believe about it — become even more critical? We explore what, if any, implications Arbesman’s argument has for those who care about free speech and open inquiry.

Show notes:

“Undiscovered Public Knowledge” by Don R. Swanson

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