Knowledge Half-Life

The concept of Knowledge Half-Life was introduced around 50 years ago by Fritz Machlup. In short, it is the time taken before half the available knowledge becomes obsolete.

Until 1900, human knowledge doubled approximately every century. Today, this half-life is estimated to be about half a day!

I would like to challenge this thinking. In that, it is not just the growth of knowledge that we must consider, but also the loss of known Knowledge.

With our growing reliance on technology, we are switching from generational knowledge transition through apprenticeship and mastery towards knowledge consumption via technological solutions. This shift is making the loss more significant and less apparent.

With every upgrade of the underlying technological solutions some knowledge is lost. This is a serious impediment for our society.

To maximise knowledge, we must minimise the current trajectory of loss.

SAM (SmarterApproach® Methodology) a sustainable circular technology, is the first step towards saving knowledge.

Let’s discuss and collaborate to build a better future,

Sally M Solaymantash