This book was a super quick read. It is clearly aimed at children (something they make clear at the beginning) and to someone who is already reasonably logical and a "list person" it was a little on the rudimentary side. Stepping outside of my head for a moment, it is a great primer on problem solving and thinking logically. It is especially interesting how in all of the "case studies" the subjects end up going through a re-frame, where they get to challenge their assumptions and correct them based on new information. This would be a great addition to school (and board room) curriculum.
This book was very thought provoking. I expected it to be more of a Dawkinian approach to squash religion with science, and was pleasantly surprised to find that it has a much more even-handed approach to the traditional dichotomy, making a real concerted effort to bridge the divide. The book basically centers around the attention and orientation centers of the brain, and the principle that certain events/behaviors can deafferent them (or shut them down), providing an extra-sensory experience. As opposed to taking a radical scientific standpoint (i.e. this proves there is no god) the authors suggest that perhaps during these mystical "altered states" (which we all attain periodically in varying degrees) we are in fact perceiving a truer reality than our own. Their arguments are often driven by conjecture, although still backed by scientific evidence, and make for great contemplation.
I really liked this book (as I do most by Mr. Godin). This one really struck a personal nerve with the discussions of efficiency and commoditization of employees and work, as one of the things I am involved in as a technologist is that very thing. It also gave name to the nameless fear that I confront (and I suspect we all do) in the face of change : "the resistance". Basically, the most important thing an employee or individual can contribute is "emotional labor", or involvement and personal stake in the products of their work. I get to continue to be a linchpin in all areas of my life by being my best, following my heart, and overcome my own personal resistance to change!
This book was great fun. As a random pickup at the library, I didn't expect much but it actually spoke to me on several levels. Firstly, the writing was fun and quick to read : the book does not bury the reader under dense text. Secondly, I truly felt a kindred spirit in the author's story. While I did not drop out of school, I very much understood and related to much of his thoughts and feelings (and methodologies) regarding learning and education. What is most interesting is that I didn't even realize that he was involved in software testing when I picked up the book, I just thought a book about well educated pirates would be interesting :-)
This book was great! I unwisely read the wikipedia entry on the book before reading it, so I pretty much knew what was going on anyways but I still liked the story. I am always fascinated with the diverse "end of the world by our own hand" stories that warn humanity at large to mend its ways. There were common cyberpunk / capitalism run amok themes in this book including the explicit segregation of haves/havenots, the rampant exploitation of basically everything in the pursuit of profits, rampant dehumanization through technology, etc. Certainly a must-read if you are into this sort of thing.I would have given it 4.5 stars because I didn't really like the ending, although if I had read the book in a group I probably would have liked the discussions we could have had.
I really like this Dan Pink guy. The entire book is premised around the idea that human behavior is governed by an operating system (or operating systems) and that too many individuals and organizations are running a legacy version of Motivation 2.0. Mr. Pink recommends an upgrade to Motivation 3.0, which, like Maslow's higher-level needs - centers around self actualization in the form of autonomy, mastery, and purpose. He closes the book with a variety of resources for engaging type I individuals (those operating from intrinsic vs. type X - or extrinsic - forces) on a single and organizational level. I want to buy this book for everyone I know.
This book did not do it for me, so I actually stopped and gave it back to LVCC. It had some interesting ideas and I learned a little about ballet, but in general it is too heavy on the "this is my story" and too light on the "this is the theory behind my lesson" for my taste. I may get to come back to it some day.
I had read inside straight a while ago (the first in the latest Wild Cards trilogy) and grabbed this from the library for escape reading. Unfortunately, I was a little disoriented as I missed a book between that one and this one, although Kings is written with enough recap that I think I eventually caught up. Most of the action took place in Africa, and the plot was a little heavy handed, although the Radical was an interesting character.
Another masterpiece from the brothers Heath, Switch provides a great analogy of the human decision making and motivation systems, complete with Elephants, Riders, and Paths. More importantly, it also includes a set of instructions to manipulate those elements to guide and change behaviors, recipes for success in both modifying activity in others and in oneself.