Brilliant Blunders: From Darwin to Einstein - Colossal Mistakes by Great Scientists That Changed Our Understanding of Life and the Universe

Mario Livio
342
July 19, 2021
N/A

I’m not going to give this book a rating because I didn’t like it, but it’s not the book’s fault. It just wasn’t for me, really.

This book is about when famous scientists make mistakes. For example, Darwin misunderstood some critical aspect of heredity. And someone else got the age of the Earth wrong. When this happened, big scientific arguments ensued. Letters were exchanged. Conference presentations were made. Symposiums and summits were attended.

And they eventually worked things out. The book is about these mistakes, and the process it took to get them fixed. In that sense, it’s sort of like a description of the social environment in which scientists operate.

But here’s the thing: you have to really like science to get into this. I mean, you would have to really like to science to even get into the problems and theories themselves. Then like science more to be interested in the mistake. And like science even more to be interested in the sometimes soap opera-level drama it took to fix the mistakes.

And I’m not that person. Like I said, this isn’t the books fault. It’s just not my jam.

I skimmed a lot of this. I have a general idea of the problems and the processes that ensued to fix them, but a lot of the details were lost on me.

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