The more you know, the better, right? Not necessarily. In this talk, Tarun describes how ignorance is often a virtue when it comes to understanding the world.
We, humans, only have coarse-grained access to our surroundings; there is an unfathomable amount of information that our senses simply cannot detect. But this partial access to the world is not merely a limitation on our knowledge. It enables us to make predictions, construct explanations and exercise causal control.
Lack of information can be a resource, Tarun argues, because it can give us access to emergent patterns in nature that would be otherwise invisible. He discusses three valuable consequences of limited access to information — it can enable unifying explanations of otherwise disparate phenomena, it can render otherwise unpredictable systems predictable, and it can reveal more robust causal relations.
About the speaker: Tarun Menon is a part of the Philosophy group, School of Arts and Sciences, Azim Premji University. He specialises in the philosophy of science, with a particular interest in how one reconciles the often esoteric scientific image of the world with our ordinary everyday perception of the world.