I decided to start publishing the literature I am reading and to kick it off, I want to revisit books that I have read in 2013. Unfortunately there were not many of them, but since I strongly believe in the education, I am always trying to push myself a little bit further.
In 2013 I have managed to read the following books, without the actual order:
1. Freakonomics – Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner A very thought-provoking and animating book about the usage of analytics and economics. This is a kind of book that you either love or hate. Some points presented in that book might provoke a very strong reaction from the more conservative groups, but I would personally argue to try to view this book not as a promotional or message-delivering source, but simply an analytical example.
The examples are very socially-focused, ranging from Chicago criminals and up to the methods and results of parenting methods. For anyone working Business Intelligence area or for the one aspiring to move into it – this would serve as a great example of different views.
2. SuperFreakonomics – Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner – second book of Levitt and Dubner, written a couple of years later. Even more sensitive topics, thought-provocative.
This book made me think much more about the economy, its influence, advantages & deficiencies. I am definitely looking to learn more about it in the years to come.
3. Innovators Dilemma – Clayton M. Christensen – This is an amazing book talking about innovation cycles, or better life cycles of enterprises. The example of the Storage industry is really beyond amazing: one can see how one generation of enterprises is taking over one cycle of products but when the next cycle is coming – the most firms are already dying. It does not matter what you are building: an enterprise, a social club or even software – you need to understand how the innovation cycle function.
A lot of very influential authors have referred to this book, such as Steve Jobs for example. Disruptive Innovation rules. :)
4. Outliers: The Story of Success – Malcolm Gladwell – the first book that I have read which considers successful people from a correct point of view by using the concrete data. Being at the right moment at the right place takes a lot of work.
This book helped me to view some of the situations with more critical point of view. Especially in the kids life, timing might be decisive and understanding it is very critical for being able to support my own children development.
Recommended for Data professionals with kids :)
5. Blink – Malcolm Gladwell This books focuses on the human ability to make decision in a matter of nano-seconds, and it puts the arguments very eloquently. It goes deep into the past of the humanity and looks into how human race build our decision process, and what drove us forward to become us who we are. Brilliant decision makers are very different from the losers or are they ?
A very recommended reading for everyone.
6. The first global village – Martin Page – awesome book by an english journalist who moved to Portugal. This one describes the Portuguese history from an outsider perspective and it is pointing to a lot of very interesting facts of my country history.
I would argue with a lot of stuff written there, but nevertheless it is a very educational read.