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What Are You Reading?

books
reading_list
forever_learning
#1

Continuation from my previous venture, the 52 Books in 52 Weeks thread, but I am going to start a bit smaller :wink:

What are you reading? Why do you read? DO you read? Why or why not? What kind of books do you like (genre, subject, etc.)?

All of this and more should be in this thread.

Here is what’s on my plate:

Non-Fiction:
Know This
Now Write!
The Elements of Style

SciFi:
Shadow & Claw
The Forbidden Door

Fantasy:
The Halfling’s Gem
Proven Guilty

Graphic Novel:
Punisher War Journal
Bloodborne: The Death of Sleep

The above links go to GoodReads, for those of you participating in abstaining from Amazon :wink:

Geez, AdminDev, do you regularly read four to six books at a time?

Yes! The simple analogy to this is, you can watch several T.V. shows at a time, or play several video games at a time, why not read several books at a time? :thinking:

Why read books, in this age of Control + F and Tl;Dr?

You will be a better thinker, coming up with ideas quickly, contributing to projects and meetings, as well as live a more fulfilled life. Reading is shown to build on skills such as introspection, empathy, and critical thinking.

There are a ton of other benefits as well:

There are people like George R.R. Martin, Bill Gates, and Ray Bradbury that attribute their success to being voracious readers. Ray Bradbury couldn’t afford to go to college, so he read every book in his local library. That seemed to have worked out pretty well for him :wink:

Bill Gates spends several weeks a year locked up in a cabin with nothing but books. Despite what you think about his former company, you can’t argue against his success.

A Note on the Definition of Time:

I’ve come across many, many people in this world that ask me “How do you have time?!” – Coworkers, friends, family, managers, classmates, random strangers on the Internet, and even some of you. “How do you have time to read a book a week?”

The answer is pretty simple, I don’t lie to myself. I used to say “I don’t have time for this” with respect to studying, reading, exercising, gaming, and pretty much anything else I wanted to do but made an excuse. Then, I quit hitting snooze and quit rescheduling my alarm. Just like that I have an extra hour and a half. Then, I set my alarm for an hour earlier, boom, two and a half hours. I quit playing on the Internet during my lunch break, now I have three and a half hours. After work, what did I do?

Make dinner: 1 hour
Movies/T.V./Video Games/Internet: 4 to 6 hours.

Assuming I didn’t watch any movies or T.V., I didn’t play any video games, and I didn’t spend any time browsing on L1T, YouTube, Discord, Slack, etc. I would have an extra 7.5 to 9.5 hours PER DAY to dedicate to a goal, project, or hobby.

However, I didn’t do that. I like movies, T.V. shows (a handful), and I like yous guys. So, I bust out the discipline clock, and I set timers. 42 minutes of Internet time a couple of times a day, an hour of T.V. or Movie time (obviously movie times go longer), and that leaves me with 3 or 4 hours of read/study/project/lab time per day.

So, unless you get less than four hours of sleep per day and you’re worked to the bone every minute in between, I expect you to be some sort of innovator/inventor or a CEO of a startup. Considering you’re on here reading this, I call BS :wink: Make time. Don’t wait for motivation, just start doing it. Get your alarm clock, find your discipline, and get after it – My man Jocko.

Timestamp’d

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#2

I only managed to finish one book this year so far, Peter Jordanson’s 12 rules for death, the chaos poison.

Started reading Brave New World, but it was like a month since I last picked it up, maybe this is a call to get back into it, it’s short anyways.

Yeah, I’ll try and do that.

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#3

I’ve heard of this one :thinking: Might check it out. I’m conditioned to view anything with a number in the title as click bait :joy: I should break out of that habit.

Great book! If you like stuff like that, definitely check out Catch 22 and 1984.

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#4

That is what made me want to read BNW. To be honest don’t like the way it’s written, the BNW I mean. The 1984 is a masterpiece

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#5

Maybe Animal Farm, then? Still really good.

Brave New World is written very sporadically. Catch-22 is kind of the same way, but I enjoyed it.

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#6

I droped Kafka’s The Castle for the same reason, didn’t like the writing style.

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#7

Just started The Coddling of the American Mind by Greg Lukianoff and Jonathan Haidt.

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#8

Unfortunately haven’t taken the time to read as much as i’d like the last few months, I do have a few i read a bit in now and again, leaves me with some food for thought when I have the opportunity to just sit and let my mind wander.

I prefer to read non fiction mostly, some fiction I’ve really enjoyed, especially Umberto Eco.

Sun Tzu - The Art of War
Sayings of Lao Tzu
Vril Compendium Vol 1-12
Electromagnetic Theory Vol 1-3

Last two i finished, which I really enjoyed was.
Lost Science
Technological Slavery

Started reading a while ago, put down, but without a question will pick up again.
How To Travel with a Salmon

Before someone has a fit about Technological Slavery and who wrote it. Yes I know what he did, No I don’t condone what he did, but I do enjoy entertaining an idea that’s not my own. A nice thing with this writer, is that he’s done his research, and every claim made, is documented. Another of his books is not too bad either.

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#9

I definitely find myself having to put the phone down and stop screwing around on L1 but when i do my current reads are The Flight of the Eisenstein (book 4 of the Horus Heresy series) and I’m currently working through the 27 volume manga series Claymore

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#10

can-we-believe-the-bible
First time was the King James version but now I stick to the new international version, I also read a lot of reading plans/topics on the youversion bible app with a friend of mine, diving into the theology of it, never really done with it as you get something different every time you read it.

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#11

Before someone has a fit about Technological Slavery and who wrote it. Yes I know what he did, No I don’t condone what he did, but I do enjoy entertaining an idea that’s not my own.

Gasp. Shock. Horror!

It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. --Aristotle

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#12

Starting “What Doesn’t Kill Us”, just recently found the Wim Hof Method and what to learn more.

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#13

Currently reading
non fiction:
Ai-superpowers - China, Silicon Valley and the new world order. Written by Kai Fu Lee.
A fantastic look into why google, groupon, facebook and other western companies tech or otherwise, failed. Hint - it wasn’t about censorship. Kai-Fu Lee was ceo of google china.

Lean Start-up - Eric Ries. Talks about what questions to ask yourself if you want to start a business and what not to do. Was recommended to me by a close friend of mine that is a founder of a succesful blockchain company in my homeland. Not gonna argue with someone like that.

4-hour work week - tim ferriss. Among other things talks about fear setting and aking yourself to think about what’s really keeping you from getting what you’re after. Also talks about outsourcing and automating tasks.

Fiction:
Snow Crash - Neil Stephenson. Cyberpunk novel. One of the best fiction books I’ve ever read. Was recommended by many famous and business people.

Zorba the Greek - Nikos Kazantzakis. A fun and deeply spiritual novel about inner happiness, pleasure and peace. Just like the one above was recommended by many people. Beautiful book.

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#14

I was in Munich on his workshop last april. Dude and his family are incredibly fun and friendly :smiley:
There’s a documentary on youtube by Vice around 40 minutes long and he also has an app you can download, if you didn’t know that already :slight_smile:

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#15

Right now I’m reading Trotsky’s biograhy of Stalin. Communists may be terrible economists and evil murderous monsters but they tend to be good writers. (I strongly recommend Karl Marx’s biography of Lord Palmerston, the British foreign secretary throughout the Victorian era).

https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1853/palmerston/

Trotsky of course was driven from power and ultimately murdered at Stalin’s behest, but he works hard trying to maintain a meticulous and academic approach to Stalin’s biography, using all available records of those who knew him (many were murdered and attempts to totally erase their testaments from the historical records were attempted, sometimes with success).

The validity of the biography ultimately is proven in that the final assessment was borne out in Stalin’s behavior long after Trotsky was dead. For Trotsky the great puzzle of Stalin’s personality was how he managed to take control over the apparatus of power when he showed so little talent or ability in it’s creation. A ruthless silent anger and suspicion of everyone and a relentless drive to dominate while avoiding personal risk seems to have been his recipe for success. The source of this ruthlessness, this smiling veiled anger and suspicion seems to have been the relentless abuse he was subjected to by his drunken alcoholic father from his earliest age, and the stubborn resolve the natural disposition of a Caucasus peasant.

It was a successful strategem for seizing control of a political apparatus but it proved to be disastrous in the face of total war from outside. His tendency to retreat into indecisive solitude in the face of high risk situations demanding decisive and creative administrative exercise of power while being utterly mistrustful of those around him, especially those with the greatest intellects and force of personality, (that is those that could challenge his need for authority and control ) meant that the people most capable of defending the USSR and ultimately his own power were being thwarted and murdered even as he was being crushed to death in the peril of war.

But beyond Stalin himself Trotsky provides the best history I’ve read yet, not just of the October Revolution but also of the failed Revolution of 1905 and it’s consequences. It’s interesting to see how in the despair that fell over the revolutionary movement in its aftermath, with many abandoning the metier of revolutionary, Stalin was able to ascend beyond his abilities simply by sheer tenacity thus becoming part of the select cadre of die hards.

It also clarifies the development of the revolutionary movement from this era with the growing split between the proletariat Bolsheviks and the bourgeois Mensheviks. The Bolshevik party ascended to power almost in spite of its leadership as the revolutionary committees, the Soviets just spontaneously rose up from among the lower orders of factory workers and sailors and soldiers to a degree that even Lenin himself was surprised by it and at first didn’t know how to deal with it. In the end Lenin’s genius was to embrace it instead of trying to subvert or crush it as many of the more bookish intellectuals of the revolutionary movement would have it. They were almost outraged at the idea of non intellectuals of the lower orders rising up spontaneously and trying to influence the direction of their revolution. In contrast to this, Lenin saw the appearance of Soviets as a irresistible popular wave the Bolsheviks could ride to power. Of course there were problems even in this ultimately as it left out the agrarian peasant class who fundamentally were given to petite bourgeois aspirations of land ownership. The inability of Lenin or any party leader to address this fundamental and all important fact would prove catastrophic both for the peasant class and the USSR itself.

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#16

I just finished re-reading Ultimate Spider-Man again. Bendis will always have a special spot in my heart.

I’m currently reading Salvatore’s series “War of the Spider Queen” for some reason I have never read it before and I can’t believe it has taken me this long to read it.

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#17

Recently I finished Catch - 22, Neuromancer and One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich .

Currently reading The World of Ice & Fire: The Untold History of Westeros and the Game of Thrones .

It is my sleeping pill.

Yes.

I tend to go for the fantasy / sci-fi books. It is generally easy to read and gets your imagination going.

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#18

Saw him on JRE first, but it wasn’t til I watched the vice, yes theory and Sky Life videos that I started really getting interested.

Didn’t know about the app, thanks. I wish I had the money to take the classes or go to a workshop!

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#19

If you’re interested in LEAN, I can recommend The Toyota Way: 14 Management principles. LEAN is merely a bastardized version of TPS, where the human factor has been replaced by a number. Worked at Danfoss in production when they introduced LEAN, and it didn’t make any sense, the workday got from manageable to horrible. So I decided to educate myself a bit. The book can be found as pdf with a bit of googling, although it belongs on the shelf if you’re into efficiency and leadership philosophy.

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#20

hehe, beware of hyper ventilation :stuck_out_tongue:

Can only agree with you Aristotle quote. Shame there aren’t many with that perception.

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