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Matthew

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  • The Half-life of Facts: Why Everything We Know Has an Expiration Date

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Samuel Arbesman
    • Narrated By Sean Pratt
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (65)
    Performance
    (54)
    Story
    (56)

    New insights from the science of science Facts change all the time. Smoking has gone from doctor recommended to deadly. We used to think the Earth was the center of the universe and that Pluto was a planet. For decades, we were convinced that the brontosaurus was a real dinosaur. In short, what we know about the world is constantly changing. But it turns out there’s an order to the state of knowledge, an explanation for how we know what we know.

    Davin V. Jones says: "Author misrepresents what an actual 'fact' is."
    "Misleading title"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Is there anything you would change about this book?

    I would have liked it to include more incidents and information about how things we take to be facts cease being so. The book was far more about the accretion of new facts and how we can predict that than it was about the retirement of old facts that are no longer considered true. Of the discussion that there was about facts going away, it was more about facts that were not actually proven to be errors...they tended to just become obsolete and irrelevant but still basically true.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Nassim Nicholas Taleb
    • Narrated By David Chandler
    Overall
    (1965)
    Performance
    (847)
    Story
    (842)

    Maverick thinker Nassim Nicholas Taleb had an illustrious career on Wall Street before turning his focus to his black swan theory. Not all swans are white, and not all events, no matter what the experts think, are predictable. Taleb shows that black swans, like 9/11, cannot be foreseen and have an immeasurable impact on the world.

    Kenneth says: "Brilliant, Obnoxious, Narcissistic, Brilliant"
    "Great ideas, mixed presentation"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    I am glad I listened to this book because it was cited by a couple other authors whose work I enjoyed (Apparently this book is somewhat influential). But while the central ideas and themes were very interesting, the presentation frequently was not. The author does not have Malcolm Gladwell's gift for writing, and sometimes comes across as trying too hard to be like him.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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