What I’ve Been Reading Lately

I had to do some rearranging of my books, as reading Annals of the Former World along with Superintelligence was really proving to be a bit too much. I figured it would make more sense to read through Superintelligence as I hadn’t gotten too far into Annals.

I finished The Restaurant at the End of the Universe and enjoyed it, although not as much as The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Still, it was a great “zone out” book and one I’ll probably revisit in the future. On to the third book, once I can get my hands on a copy.

I actually made really good progress on Superintelligence and now I’m about halfway through the book. The first 3 chapters are really jargony and somewhat dense, and it was hard for me to orient myself and keep track of all the details. But after all that it gets drastically easier and I find myself not making as many notes in my notebook (right under the book in the picture) as I did with the first few chapters. I should be wrapping this book up sometime in the next couple of weeks. Go me!

The Physics of Everyday Things is a new arrival to the library and one that intrigued me. I took physics classes in undergrad for my degree, but I was really, really bad at it (extra ironic given that I somehow ended up as the secretary for my school’s Society of Physics Students chapter for some reason…). I do want to have a better grasp of physics, and I figured this book would be a good book to do that (or at least, explain the concepts that eluded me in university). This is a good book to do that, in simple and non-threatening language. Bonus: the diagrams in the book look hand-drawn and definitely have that “Physics 101 lecture” quality to them. I’ll probably be putting this book in to the kids’ school, probably around middle or early high school.

Underneath that is Tesla’s autobiography which is short but 100% better than Margaret Cheney’s biography. Unsurprisingly it talks mostly about his inventions but does give a little more information about his life. I definitely should have started with his autobiography first. There are some other Tesla biographies out there that I’ll give a whirl to, because it would be really nice to find a really well-written biography of him.

Quirky is … I’m kind of disappointed, actually. The writing is really quite good but it’s not in the format I was expecting. There’s been a run on Edison biographies at the library, which is who I wanted to read about right after reading Tesla to see how Edison thought about Tesla. This book talks about eight different people who are all inventors, entrepreneurs, geniuses, and just outside the norm; including Edison and Tesla. What I was hoping is that each chapter was devoted to one person, so I could just read the stuff about Tesla and Edison. What it actually is that the author points out common traits and shows how it appears in each person’s life. It flows really well. It can start with Tesla, segue into Steve Jobs, talk about Marie Curie, and end up with an example from Elon Musk. Which is great and a really good way of illustrating the “quirky” characteristics of each. But it isn’t what I’m looking for at the moment. The index is really in-depth and I can pull out some information about Edison, but I think I’ll have to wait until all the Edison biographies are back.

I’ll probably come back to this book because I do want to read it all the way through; but probably later on in the year.

Not pictured, because it’s a Kindle book:This book actually does double-duty for me. I want to learn about Scrum because it’s part of my long-term plan and I think that it can be beneficial to include in my homeschool. I’ve done a little bit with Peanut based on what I’ve read from this book as well as the official Scrum guide available online. The results have been OK – a little mixed which I think is due to the fact that I need to do some tweaking and more reading. I’ll write a post later once I (think) I have it understood to the point where I can use it in homeschooling, I’m not trying to become a Scrum master or anything at this point in my life.

2 Replies to “What I’ve Been Reading Lately”

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