Here is what I read this week. Some of the articles/posts may require a subscription to read them. I also share my recommended reads on Pocket for anyone who wants to follow along there.
The numbers in parentheses following each book represent: (a) the nth book I’ve finished reading this year, and (b) the mth book I’ve finished reading since January 1, 1996.
- The Sum of All Fears by Tom Clancy (13/1141). I think this one finally sated my desire for thrillers. When I finished it, I felt completely worn out (in a good way) and ready to move on to other things.
- The Man from the Future: The Visionary Life of John von Neumann by Ananyo Bhattacharya (14/1142). Last spring, I read about dozen books on the history of computing and von Neumann kept appearing again and again. So when I saw this new biography on von Neumann, I jumped on it. It is an interesting bio in that it is less about the man than the ideas and concepts he fostered: mathematics, quantum mechanics, his involvement in the atomic bomb program, computers and computing, artificial life. I have a fascination with smart people, and he has to be one of the smartest people ever to live in the 20th century.
- Analogia: The Emergence of Technology Beyond Programmable Control by George Dyson. This is an example of what I call a “bridging book”–a book that will take a day or two to read, that takes on some of the concepts from The Man from the Future and gives me some additional insights before I start the next book, which is a big one on an entirely different subject. (Actually, I may squeeze in one more book after this and before the big one.)
- Debt of Honor by Tom Clancy. Like I said, The Sum of All Fears sated me on the thriller for now. I started Debt of Honor but I could tell that I was read to move on to other things.
- A Short History of Ireland, 1500-2000 by John Gibney. I’m just giving up temporarily, until I am close to our trip, when I will be in a better mental place to focus on the history of Ireland.
- “It’s time to start…” – Melanie Novak by Melanie Novak (blog, 2/27/22). A typically funny post from Melanie on parental advice.
- The West’s Plan to Isolate Putin: Undermine the Ruble by Patricia Cohen and Jeanna Smialek (NY Times, 2/28/22)
- Very Quick Thoughts on Brandon Sanderson’s Mega Kickstarter by John Scalzi (Whatever, 3/1/22). I watched this happen. I randomly came across the live stream on Twitter. All I can say is, good for Brandon. As of this morning, with 26 days to go, the Kickstarted is up to more than $23 million. Brandon is one of those hard-working writers who really impresses me. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed his Stormlight Archive. Moreover, he is a machine when it comes to writing, and for him to squeeze in four “secret” books over the last two years among everything else he writes is simply astounding.
- A Bad Day, and a Bad Look – JoeBlogs by Joe Posnanski (JoeBlogs, 3/2/22). #sports/baseball.
- The Game I Love Is Losing Me by Ken Burkhalter (Blog, 3/3/22). My pal Ken has a lot to say about baseball today. I empathize with his frustration. I expressed my own frustration recently as well. #sports/baseball
- Billy Watson, Child Actor in ‘Mr. Smith Goes to Washington’ and ‘In Old Chicago,’ Dies at 98 by Mike Barnes (Hollywood Reporter). What a remarkable life! I love obits like this. #obituary
- Show Us Your Work by Seth Godwin (Seth’s Blog, 3/5/22). “Show your work” was something I learned well from my 7th grade science teacher, and I think Seth captures another reason why there is value in this.
- Write Plain Text Filesby Derek Sivers (blog, 3/2/22). A good overview of the value of plain text files. #theme/theory-of-notes
- Calm Under Pressure: Here’s Another Example by James Fallows (Breaking the News, 3/4/22). Another great piece on staying calm and level-headed under pressure–using avaition as an example.
- Caps and Taxes by Joe Posnanski (JoeBlogs, 3/4/22) #sports/baseball
- Obsidian Roundup: Dashboards, Dataview Tips, by Eleanor Kongo (Obsidian Riundup, 3/5/22)
Any recommendations for books, articles or posts I should read? Let me know in the comments?
Written on March 5, 2022.
Did you enjoy this post?
If so, consider subscribing to the blog using the form below or clicking on the button below to follow the blog. And consider telling a friend about it. Already a reader or subscriber to the blog? Thanks for reading!