Reading List

The Secret of Our Success: How Culture Is Driving Human Evolution, Domesticating Our Species, and Making Us Smarter

I literally can not wait to get a physical edition of this book. Joe’s ideas will be talked about in future in a similar way we talk about Einstein’s today.

Against the Grain: A Deep History of the Earliest States

Civilization, a different line on cultural evolution, stuff on why grain states did better due to earlier taxation.

Freakonomics Rev Ed: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

I just haven’t got to this yet.

The Productivity Project: Accomplishing More by Managing Your Time, Attention, and Energy

Working in the information age….

Who Owns the Future

Interested due to my hypothesis that much of information technology is not making us more productive and more than likely the opposite.

The Moral Consequences of Economic Growth

A contrarian view on this topic.

Military Misfortunes: The Anatomy of Failure in War

The Person and the Situation: Perspectives of Social Psychology

A slightly older book. I am interested in learning more about the fundamental attribution error. This book seems to have some insight into the genesis of that work.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life

Book by a blogger on the same subject. I’m interested in reading about the downsides of the power of positivity and ‘living your passion’.

Faith Versus Fact: Why Science and Religion Are Incompatible

Looks like an interesting point of view. I remain agnostic on the topic.

A field guide to lies  Another book in the cognitive bias, critical thinking category.
It’s becoming harder to separate the wheat from the digital chaff. How do we distinguish misinformation, pseudo-facts, distortions, and outright lies from reliable information? Levitin groups his field guide into two categories—statistical information and faulty arguments—ultimately showing how science is the bedrock of critical thinking.

Irresistible: The Rise of Addictive Technology and the Business of Keeping Us Hooked

Following the line of what the internet, smart phones and other devices are doing to our brains. Looks interesting

Mistakes Were Made (but Not by Me)

Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts. Looks like this may have some good stuff on cognitive bias.

Risk, Chance, and Causation

The press and other media constantly report news stories about dangerous chemicals in the environment, miracle cures, the safety of therapeutic treatments, and potential cancer-causing agents. But what exactly is actually meant by “increased risk”—should we worry if we are told that we are at twice the risk of developing an illness? And how do we interpret “reduced risk” to properly assess the benefits of noisily touted dietary supplements?
Demonstrating the difficulty of separating the hype from the hypothesis, noted epidemiologist Michael Bracken clearly communicates how clinical epidemiology works. Using everyday terms, Bracken describes how professional scientists approach questions of disease causation and therapeutic efficacy to provide readers with the tools to help them understand whether warnings of environmental risk are truly warranted, or if claims of therapeutic benefit are justified.
           (Gary Taubes also wrote Why We Get Fat And What To Do About It   – Well worth the read)