Radiolab Episode: The Cataclysm Sentence

  • I was just making dinner and was listening to a RadioLab episode entitled The Cataclysm Sentence. Here's the blurb:

    One day in 1961, the famous physicist Richard Feynman stepped in front of a Caltech lecture hall and posed this question to a group of undergraduate students: “If, in some cataclysm, all of scientific knowledge were to be destroyed, and only one sentence was passed on to the next generation of creatures, what statement would contain the most information in the fewest words?” Now, Feynman had an answer to his own question - a good one.


    I think you'll find Feynman's answer* satisfying from an Epicurean perspective (if you don't know it already). Just had to share. Enjoy.


    *His answer had to do with passing on the atomic theory and I immediately thought of Lucretius and his "passing on" the atomic theory to the Renaissance.

  • I don't have time to listen at the moment but I am hoping it will have something to do with "nothing can be created from nothing!" ;-)


    Ha! I just listened and I see what you mean! My suggestion wasn't right, but the connection is obvious! :-)