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At first I found myself eating this program up. I started out with some really top-notch segments, and found it fascinating listening. But as I got into my second month I found too many interviews of authors merely selling their books, rather than actual reportage on the topic. I also tend to find Jim Fleming's questions rather obvious, pointing his interviewees into painfully obvious answers. Still, when it's good, it's great.
I have listened to many programs on the radio, and subscribed to a few on Audible. To the Best of My Knowledge is, show after show, undeniably one of the best, most charming, most interesting, and most engaging shows, radio or otherwise out there. Do yourself a favor and buy one or two if you are skeptical. I have yet to hear a bad episode
I've been subscribing to TTBOOK for months now, and I have to say that I (generally) enjoy the show.
There are some segments that are as boring as bat-droppings ... but I'd say I find about 80% of the segments worth listening to.
I use the program as a 'diversion' as I take my daily walk - and sometimes I have to keep walking until an item finishes - the perambulatory equivalent of what NPR calls a 'driveway moment', I guess.
It's certainly more consistent than This American Life, and is timeless when compared to ATC or Morning Edition - which date badly if you don't listen with a day or so of broadcast.
Overall, I'd put it at around 4 stars.
At the risk of gushing, I love this program. The style is simple--a series of interviews with engaging people based on a particular theme--but somehow it manages to be informative, thought-provoking, entertaining and often quite moving. The interviewers are thoughtful and informed without ever being pedantic, and the interviewees are articulate and richly varied in background, interest, profession and voice. And it's a great deal--two hours of really good talk radio a week. Absolutely worth trying, and worth searching the archives, too--the breadth of topics is amazing.
I have been listening to this program for nine months now. I have found almost every program to contain interesting information. I certainly don?t agree with everything said, but I find the diversity of views fascinating. Often I find myself saying, ?I never thought of this in that way.? This program has broadened my outlook on life; it has challenged my thinking; it has confirmed my thinking in ways I wouldn?t have thought of. I have become a more thoughtful person as a result of listening to TTBOOK. If you are a person who enjoys having your thinking stretched and offered diverse topics for consideration, then this program will keep you coming back for more.
I have thoroughly enjoyed the myriad content provided by To the Best of Our Knowledge for over a year. However, this month, they started repeating several episodes that I have heard before. Not just one here and there, but every edition now is a repeat.
Still great if you haven't heard them before, but irritating if you have.
I find this program entertaining and informative. Not every show. I probably won't download the current "Pro Wrestling" show. But I can't wait to listen to several segments on the new "Road Warrior" program. Being a cancer victim, I found the recent show on "Cancer" both informative and sensitive. The topics are wide ranging and well presented in the short segment format. I'm glad I tried it.
Must like the main characters, be intelligently written and feel like I learned something at the end.
A highly rec. radio show, especially for downloaders like me because it doesn"t outdate (unlike any NPR episode) and has a greater intellectual depth than most. (e.g. American Life). The major critiques you may read are that they mainly inverview book authors. This is true, but not for sales pitches, rather because these people have someting interesting to say and can add more depth and flavor to an interview than impromtu subjects or news related clips. All in all the best radio show for variety, human interest and with good depth. No not all episodes will interest you 8/10 are very good.
What I like best about TBOK is that they make me interested in a topic, so that learning something isn't painful at all. I can safely say that I have learned more from TBOK over the years, than any other radio program.
The only weakness of the show, in my mind, is that it is pretty much just talking. They hardly ever (never?) do any in-field recording or other more creative kind of radio journalism. Probably this has somethign to do with budget but it would be nice.
If you like "This American Life" then you will like "To the best of our knowledge". Each download contains two programs. A program explores a theme in interviews and music. Recommend downloading in format 3 or 4 to preserve the fidelity of the music.
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