John Verdon originally shared this post:
This is a great book and a perfect complement to ‘Reinventing Discovery’. Weinberger explores the concept of knowledge as it became defined in practice within the age of the limited resources of ‘paper’. How paper required intense processes and structures of filtering in order to fit what was known or posited into the limited space of paper texts. This gave us a powerful illusion that the world was ‘knowable’. Science published primarily results that were confirming hypotheses – and the vast experiments and efforts that resulted in ‘negative’ results had no room in the finite space. Despite the fact that a great deal of utility could be derived from being able to look at results that were less successful in confirming hypotheses. Weinberger explodes the epistemic fiction of the data-information-knowledge pyramid for what it is – a fiction arising from the economic framework that would have knowledge endorse a control hierarchy.
What the Internet now enables is the disclosing of everything – positive and negative. This reveals the tremendously ‘contested’ nature of all knowledge – reveals the larger unknowability of the world/universe. What science is – is not certain knowledge, but rather a paradox of both more robust theories and an even vaster horizon of unknowns. No matter how much we know – the horizon of the unknowns recedes faster to vaster spaces. I highly recommend this book – for anyone interested in knowledge and the digital environment.
Amazon.com: Too Big to Know: Rethinking Knowledge Now That the Facts Aren't the Facts, Experts Are Everywhere, and the Smartest Person in the Room Is the Room (9780465021420): David Weinberger: Books