Knowing I’d have a bit of a vacation this winter, I wanted to get in a bit of reading. I decided to pick my books differently this year. Instead of just seeing whatever was at the top of the NYT list, or some cool looking sci-fi, I decided to let the Silicon Valley folks pick out my books. The list is a mixture of texts found on the lists of Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and others from a Business Insider article that gathered recommendations from many in the tech industry.
Army of None, by Paul Scharre - This book will either inspire you about the future of AI as it applies to war, or it will be serious nightmare fuel. There’s so much here that’s thought provoking as there are no easy answers. Moreover, a lot of the morally thorny issues have yet to be resolved globally. It’s a really cool book, but there are many areas where it repeats itself. Even with the repetition, I’d recommend it.
Bad Blood, by John Carreyrou - This is the the story of the rise and fall of start up, Theranos. I haven’t yet finished it but it’s a nice peek into start up culture and the cult of personality. Most of it seemed like any other story of a ship run amok, but the sections related to the board were particularly interesting. I’ve often wondered what it means to be on a board, and I feel I got a glimpse. More than anything, though, it feels like a cautionary tale for investors and board members. The author implies a lack of proper oversight by the board contributed a great deal to the problems the company faced.
21 Lessons for the 21st Century, by Yuval Noah Harari - It’s billed as providing a framework for working through worry. Working in IT, there’s always something to worry about, so I’m really looking forward to this one.
The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism, by Olivia Fox Cabane - This is described as being about humanizing leaders. I usually like leadership books, so this could be enjoyable. As an introvert, I’m curious to find some new tools to have at my disposal.
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, by Yuval Noah Harari - The description says it’s an approachable text about human history. It sounds like a heck of a magic trick if the author pulls this off. Based on how many people seem to recommend the book, I’m expecting this to be a page turner.
15 books world-famous CEOs think everyone should read in their lifetime - Business Insider
5 books I loved in 2018 - Bill Gates