CR 71 – My top 5 books of 2015

My top five books read in the last year in no particular order. Please share your top books of the year.

Each book shares the common link of seeking to find a way to communicate to an audience through understanding and empathy.
From kings to kids and everything in-between.

top_5_books_2015

Hitchcock: A Definitive Study of Alfred Hitchcock by Francois Truffaut

“The art of creating suspense is also the art of involving the audience, so that the viewer is actually a participant in the film” – Alfred Hitchcock


Wolf Hall:
A Novel by Hilary Mantel

“He thinks, Gregory is all he should be. He is everything I have a right to hope for: his openness, his gentleness, the reserve and consideration with which he holds back his thoughts till he has framed them. He feels such tenderness for him he thinks he might cry”


The 42nd Parallel
(U.S.A. Trilogy Book 1) by John Dos Passos

‘I want to rise with the ranks, not from the ranks,’” said Mac.


Nonviolent Communication
 by Marshall B. Rosenberg, Arun Gandhi

“Classifying and judging people promotes violence”
“When we are in contact with our feelings and needs, we humans no longer make good slaves and underlings.”
“Expressing our vulnerability can help resolve conflicts.”
“Depression is the reward we get for being “good.”


Unconditional Parenting
 by Alfie Kohn

“Over many years, researchers have found that “the more conditional the support [one receives], the lower one’s perceptions of overall worth as a person.”

“People who, as a rule, don’t think their value hinges on their performance are more likely to see failure as just a temporary setback, a problem to be solved. They also seem less likely to be anxious or depressed.”

“My friend Danny recently summarized what he’s learned from years of fatherhood: “Being right isn’t necessarily what matters.”

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The end of drug discovery?

Chas Bountra, professor of translational medicine at Oxford University, says: “We don’t understand enough about human disease or enough about the mode of action of existing drugs. Take paracetamol for example. We all take it but we don’t know how it works, we don’t know what the site of action of paracetamol is.

Read more

Source : BBC

#19 Collected Reading

Quote of the week

“To describe a problem is part of the solution. This implies: not to make creative decisions as promoted by feeling but by intellectual criteria. The more exact and complete these criteria are, the more create the work becomes. The creative process is to be reduced to an act of selection. Designing means : to pick out determing elements and combining them.”

-Karl Gerstner


1.What Jaron Lanier Thinks of Technology Now

“These arguments have proved popular. The book has received admiring reviews in the Times and (twice) in The New York Review of Books. In the months after “Gadget” was published, Lanier lectured at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center, travelled to Seoul to speak at a major conference about innovation, and made Time’s list of the hundred “most influential people in the world.” At the South by Southwest Interactive conference, in Austin, in March of 2010, Lanier gave a talk, before which he asked his audience not to blog, text, or tweet while he was speaking. He later wrote that his message to the crowd had been: “If you listen first, and write later, then whatever you write will have had time to filter through your brain, and you’ll be in what you say. This is what makes you exist. If you are only a reflector of information, are you really there?”

Technology, USA, Culture, Design

Source :The New Yorker

2. Blog Archive Better (and more) Social Bonuses

“While they were purchasing a gift for a teammate, they also became more interested in their teammate and were happier to help them further in multiple other ways.”

Business, USA, Culture, collaboration

Source : Dan Ariely


3. Handmade hashtag. Impromptu bulletin board gives positive voice to riot-struck Londoners

“My immediate neighbour was drawn to the A4 sheet saying ‘we should be producers, not just consumers’.”

Culture, Community, London, Public, Memorial

Source :Eye Magazine

4. Examining the Limitations of a Neoliberal Safety Net: Romney’s Unemployment Insurance Savings Accounts

“rightfully in my humble opinion, ignore this because the government isn’t doing what the government is best at – absorbing risks.  All the government is doing is setting the stage for the individual to confront the entirety of their economic risks by themselves.”

Economics, USA, Culture, Policy

Source : Rortybomb

5. The Motorcycle Gangs

“they know it—and that is their meaning; for unlike most losers in today’s society, the Hell’s Angels not only know but spitefully proclaim exactly where they stand.”

Gangs, Culture, Media, USA, politics

Source : The Nation

Hope you like this collection. Please comment, share and most of all enjoy.

– Kaushik

#16 Collected Reading – Thinking about the present

Thinking about the present

A collection of thoughts around thinking, work and how to be in the present. 

“Today is a gift.
That is why they call it the present.”

-Eleanor Roosevelt

1. Distraction

“Finally, it is generally agreed that no activity can be successfully pursued by an individual who is preoccupied – no rhetoric or liberal studies – since the mind when distracted absorbs nothing deeply, but rejects everything which is, so to speak , crammed into it.” – Seneca

Distraction, Culture, Self

Source :On the Shortness of Life

2. Collective Rationality

“The commission gave me the a wonderful opportunity to test my favorite hypothesis about collective rationality, which is that if you put people of strongly opposing views in a room together, and infuse their discussion with data, background studies, and unhurried time for debate, it is possible to bridge seemingly irreconcilable positions among the members of the group.” – Jeffery Sachs

Thinking, Collaboration, Global, Facts

Source : The End of Poverty


3. Ithaca

“Always keep Ithaca fixed in your mind
To arrive there is what you are destined for.
But don’t hurry the journey at all.
Better if it lasts for many years,
So you’re old by the time you reach the isle,
Wealthy with all you have gained on the way
And not expecting Ithaca to make you rich”

-C.P Cavafy

Journey, Life, Culture

Source : The Age of Absurdity

4. Ego

“The man who can center his thoughts and hopes upon something transcending self can find a certain peace in the ordinary troubles of life which is impossible to the pure egoist.” – Bertrand Russell

environment,global,policy

Source : The Conquest of Happiness

5. The Individual

“An individual who has to make things for the use of others, and with reference to their wants and their wishes, does not work with interest, and consequently cannot put into his work what is best in him.” – Oscar Wilde

– Collected reading editorial note : This quote when taken on face value can seem silly. My interpretation of it is that individuals are not disconnected from society’s needs and as such understand them as part of their own reality. Therefore, by solving your own problems you also contribute to solving the issues of many fellow citizens through your own particular lens on culture.

Individuality, Creativity, Work

Source : The Soul of Man Under Socialism

Hope you like this collection. Please comment, share and most of all enjoy.

– Kaushik

#12 Collected Reading July 10rd, 2011

Introduction : Sherlock Holmes and the design process

After reading a collection of  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes short stories and novels,  I was struck by how much the process of detection has in common with the process of design. I have picked out some of the best quotes which illustrate these ideas.

1.The Adventure of the Blanched Soldier

“A confederate who foresees your conclusions and course of action is always dangerous, but one to whom each development comes as a perpetual surprise, and to whom the future is always a closed book, is indeed an ideal helpmate.”

Collaboration

Source :The Adventure of the Blanched Soldier

2.The Hound of the Baskervilles

“The detection of types is one of the most elementary branches of knowledge to the special expert in crime, though I confess that once when I was very young I confused the Leeds Mercury with the Western Morning News. But a Times leader is entirely distinctive, and these words could have been taken from nothing else.”

Typography

Source : The Hound of the Baskervilles


3. Silver Blaze 

“See the value of imagination,” said Holmes. “It is the one quality which Gregory lacks. We imagined what might have happened, acted upon the supposition, and find ourselves justified. Let us proceed.” 

Imagination, Hypothesis

Source : Silver Blaze

4. The Reigate Puzzle

“It is of the highest importance in the art of detection to be able to recognize, out of a number of facts, which are incidental and which vital. Otherwise your energy and attention must be dissipated instead of being concentrated.”

Curation

Source : The Reigate Puzzle

5. The Valley of Fear

“The temptation to form premature theories upon insufficient data is the bane of our profession.

Listening

Source : The Valley of Fear

Hope you like this collection. Please comment, share and most of all enjoy.

– Kaushik