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It’s been a while since we had our last one of these.
What are you reading at the moment? Finished anything good recently?

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    RCN Series, book four. Fun, light reading.

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      Ah man, i binged most of that series on audible, I tend to really enjoy Drake.

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        oh … first time i see someone interested in hermes trismegistus … any link to your research ??? (mine is metamn.io/gust)

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        I am reading Missing Microbes and it is really fascinating. Some of the things I already knew from other books, but there is a lot of new information. I am more and more fascinated by all the things that live in and on and all around us.

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          • The Hobbit, by J.R.R. Tolkien. I read it 15+ years ago, so I decided to pick it up again.
          • The World As It Is, by Ben Rhodes. A memoir of a senior advisor to President Obama, I am envious of his writing abilities.
          • Bulletproof SSL and TLS, by Ivan Ristić. I have to update code that deal with TLS private keys and certificates at work, and I need a stronger understanding of the different components so that I don’t accidentally fuck up.
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            Thinking in PostScript for no reason other than I want to think in PostScript.

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              That sounds like a good reason!

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              In order of me actively reading them (limited to technical books):

              I thought about reading up something on APL, can anyone recommend something?

              Sadly I don’t have the time to properly read non-technical books, but I read the Stranger a few weeks back and it was quite nice. I’m planning to start reading some Freud again and I have to finish Aristotle’s On Interpretation sometime soon (my Kindle says I’m at 13% for a white now). Going skiing soon, so maybe I’ll also read Siddhartha again.

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                I’m planning to start reading some Freud again

                I can recommend Unauthorized Freud. While he can be credited with indirectly starting the field of Psychology, much of what he claims has been shown to be a construct of his own mind, that is, the things that haven’t been outright proven experimentally.

                That is, don’t stop reading Freud, just take everything he says with a hefty lump of rock salt.

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                  Well yeah, of course. I’m not reading him to start my own Psychiatry, but to understand the concepts and ideas he helped popularise, which were (I believe) without doubt very influential on the intellectual development of the 20th (and to a degree 21st) century.

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                  Siddhartha is a beautiful book, one that can be re-read many times.

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                  I’ve just finished Arundhati Roy’s The Ministry of Utmost Happiness (which is brilliant) and about to get into Haruki Murakami’s 1Q84 (I haven’t read any of his books before).

                  I’ve also finished Naomi Klein’s This Changes Everything, which I think should be essential reading for everyone. It shows how dire the climate crisis is, how hellbent the industry and governments are to keep burning fossil fuels until the Earth becomes uninhabitable, and how it all came about. She also describes the resistance movement.

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                    I am useless at reading physical books, so I signed up with Audible and I will get through the big stack of untouched physical books I have one way or another.

                    I’m currently listening to Bad Science by Ben Goldacre, because I hate hippies and quacks and I can never have enough ammunition to crush them in debate.

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                      I go both ways on them. Currently the pendulum is swung towards “I would rather own an awkward physical book than have a convenient ebook under hostage by Amazon/Apple/Google”, but sometimes it swings back to “how many kindles would these 120ft of bookshelves hold”.

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                      I’ve got two books in progress:

                      • “Sense & Sensibility” by Jane Austen
                      • “Elantris” by Brandon Sanderson (rereading)

                      I also recently finished reading “Oathbringer” by Brandon Sanderson, and it left me hungry for more.

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                        I recently finished the first book of the Mistborn series. I’m going through other books at the moment, but I cannot wait to get back to Sanderson, he really grabbed me in The Final Empire and never let me go.

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                          Mistborn is great story, I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’d recommend the Stormlight Archive if you like his style of suspense/action writing. You may find what I found, which is that Sanderson’s ability to write incredibly rich action scenes only got better after Mistborn.

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                            I’ve never read any of his despite repeated, strong recommendations from people I trust. Must sort that out soon…

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                            Ah i just finished Oathbringer (and then Mistborn). I have the nice leather copy of Elantris but i haven’t read it yet (I might wait till i finish the mistborn sequels.)

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                              I usually tell folks unsure about Sanderson’s novels that Elantris is a great way to see if you like his writing style, because it’s one of his shorter books. If you’re willing to commit more time, Mistborn and Stormlight Archive are the way to go

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                                I stumbled into the Way of Kings so i definitely did it “wrong” but i was hooked anyways lol, although it took me a while to get into it.

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                                  Nah, there’s no right or wrong haha. The order of reading the books is just my recommendation.

                                  I’ll be vague here just to avoid spoilers; there’s an amazing assassin fight scene early in Way of Kings, and that’s the scene that got me hooked on Sanderson

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                                    Nice. The end of TWOK was pretty spectacular to me having never experienced the end of a Sanderson book before.

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                            Currently:

                            • the Business Model Generation
                            • the Fine Art of Dressing With Economy
                            • Bullshit Jobs
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                              I’m so, so afraid of reading Bullshit Jobs. Too close to home.

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                                I’ve been working in the industry for 15 years and have only had one gig that fit the bullshit definition, though another may fit at a stretch. In Graeber’s taxonomy it was Duct Taping.

                                Now I’ve worked at plenty of places where my job is to fix the team’s problems, I’m ok with that. Usually it comes with a side order of showing the team what behaviours cause the problems and suggesting different ways of working.

                                In this one place, that was off the cards. They had solved all problems by hiring, so had too many people to build anything like a consistent set of values, principles and practices. They also had a toxic culture that saw anyone who was clever enough to meet “the hiring bar” as an expert software engineer who was on a god-given mission to change the world, so beyond most criticism.

                                They hired people to build the thing, people to fix the thing, people to fix the fixes, people to find other things to fix, and so on.

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                              listening: The Swerve: How the World Became Modern

                              personal reading: starting The Master and Margarita

                              career reading: probably going to pivot from SICP to Clean Architecture

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                                I partly grew up in the UK, where the culture is that one must be quite sophisticated to read Russian literature.

                                When I started dating my current girlfriend — who is Russian — I boasted that I had just finished reading The Master and Margarita.

                                She gleefully responded with “Oh! I really enjoyed that book when I read it as a child!”

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                                  The Russian school curriculum always struck me as ridiculous. I seriously doubt that children can truly comprehend Crime and Punishment, War and Peace, Fathers and Sons, or Master and Margarita (I certainly didn’t, although I loved Master and Margarita). Whole layers of meaning would simply go unrecognised and unexamined.

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                                  The Master and Margarita is one of my favourite books, hope you enjoy it!

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                                  • Practical Common Lisp
                                  • Liars and Outliers by Bruce Schneier
                                  • Book 2 of the Wheel of Time.

                                  I’m enjoying all of these. Also finally ordered Soul of A New Machine based on recent posts here, it’s been on my to read list for a while.

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                                      PIT-11

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                                        I read this every year as well, but always when I’m finishing I don’t know if I should laugh or cry!

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                                          We talking about pit or every year reeding this same comment? ;D

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                                        I’m blowing through The Rust Programming Language, and really enjoying it. I haven’t tried to write any Rust code yet, but I probably will at some point. Either way, it’s always fun wrapping my head around a new language.

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                                          Currently going through Linkers & Loaders by John R. Levine.

                                          Really enjoying it, the explanations are pretty straightforward.

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                                            Fire Season by Philip Connors which is making me homesick as I used to work as a wildfire fighter and grew up in the wilderness.

                                            Off of that I’m starting his second book and The Dharma Bums by Kerouac waiting to be read. Not read any Kerouac before.

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                                              • Man and His Symbols - Jung et al.
                                              • Solo (junior novel adaptation of the film; my 10yo’s favourite book that I had to read :))

                                              I recently finished The Fault in Our Stars (Green) and Nausea (Sartre)

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                                                samuel butler: erewhon

                                                written in ~1870 as a responsse to darwin’s fresh theories the “book of machines” chapter is sensational. even more, highly actual.

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                                                    I love Blindsight but man alive, is that book ever grim.

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                                                    Trying to finish The Little Typer

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                                                        Just started Making Games For The Atari 2600 from 8bitworkshop.

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                                                          Kubernetes in Action for work. Programming Rust, still, also for work (although less pressingly…). I’m also working on Shark’s Fin and Sichuan Pepper: a Sweet-Sour Memoir of Eating in China and The New Asian City: Three-Dimensional Fictions of Space and Urban Form.

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                                                              Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport and Walden by Thoreau.

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                                                                I’ve started Walden as well. That whole initial introduction kind of hits you in the teeth a bit, all about working so hard for someone else and for so little, etc… forgot the book at home, but the book I’m reading now makes reference to it.

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                                                                I’m really enjoying The Rust Programming Language, and it is clearing up my mental model of Rust and how to write it.

                                                                How To Write Short is interesting, but I feel like it does drone on a bit. Sometimes I wish it was just a bad example followed by a fix to it, but I understand why it wasn’t written exclusively like that. Having a problem-solution framework might make the reader use the text as a checklist of sort, instead of encouraging a reader to think cleverly about short text.

                                                                The Monster Baru Cormorant follows The Traitor Baru Cormorant which was such an excellent book. Unfortunately quite a lot of books passed between my reading of the first and the second, so I’m slightly lost. Fortunately the author wrote a summary of the first book for those reading the second: What You Need to Know Before Reading Seth Dickinson’s The Monster Baru Cormorant

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                                                                  Fortunately the author wrote a summary of the first book for those reading the second

                                                                  I wish more people did this! Maybe my memory is just terrible but I’ve been bitten by this a few times in extended series.

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                                                                  Right now:

                                                                  From From El Greco to Goya by Janis Tomlinson. Pretty good overview of the Spanish Golden Age and beyond.

                                                                  Recently finished:

                                                                  Hyperfocus by Chris Bailey. This is the book I wanted Deep Work to be - to the point, readable in two sittings, no fluff, and a lot of actionable advice. If you want to learn about focus, start with this!

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                                                                    • Practical Common Lisp
                                                                    • Liars and Outliers by Bruce Schneier
                                                                    • Book 2 of the Wheel of Time.

                                                                    I’m enjoying all of these. Also finally ordered Soul of A New Machine based on recent posts here, it’s been on my to read list for a while.

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                                                                      Non-fiction:

                                                                      Battle of Wits: The Complete Story of Codebreaking in World War II by Stephen Budiansky. I’m not very far in but so far it’s very good. The author is a mathematician as well as an historian and so his explanations of cryptography and cryptanalysis are very solid, with appendices provided for those who want more technical detail.

                                                                      Structures: Or Why Things Don’t Fall Down by J.E. Gordon. I’ve fallen off in the middle of this book once before, and am not sure why because it’s very accessible and interesting! Determined to finish it this time.

                                                                      Fiction:

                                                                      I just finished The Wrong Side of Goodbye by Michael Connelly. I love the Bosch books and I won’t apologise :)