Last year I did a rundown of the books I read in 2012, mostly as I wanted to play with infogr.am. But also, let’s face it, because my propensity to navel-gaze craves occasional indulgence. This year I repeat the experiment in a yearly roundup of my reading habits…
2013 was a good year for reading, I read 52 books in total, way more than the 40 I read last year and averaging out at one a week. 2013 was also the year where I started reading e-books as much as paper ones. I have always read from the screen of course, but I am now almost as likely to sit down with a PDF or ePub as with a paper book. Maybe not in the bath.
Favourite books of 2013
A tricky choice this, but in the end I went for "Bandit Algorithms for Website Optimization". A bit left-field, I know, but I enjoyed it for a couple of reasons. It was brief and it touched on a whole new area of algorithims that I hadn’t even thought about before.
2013 was a year of Charles Stross reading for me, so this had to go to one of his — the fantastic steam/cyber punk romp the Bloodline feud.
Maia Ramnath’s Decolonizing Anarchism was fascinating, particularly as a history of resistance in South Asia.
I massively enjoyed Rowan Moore’s accessible meditation on architecture, Why We Build. It made me think differently about buildings.
To read in 2014
Now that I have gone and set the bar at a book a week, I suppose that 2014 will be a busy year. Books that I have stacked up include.
- The world until yesterday, by Jared Diamond — Diamond investigates how indigenous people approach human problems like medcine, language and conflict and what we can learn from them.
- Intensive science and virtual philosophy, by Manuel DeLanda — A dive into the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze which the blurb promises makes sense. We shall see.
- GÃ¶del’s Proof, by Nagel and Newman — It’s about GÃ¶del’s proof that there are propositions that are not provable within any system and it is namechecked in GÃ¶del, Escher, Bach. High praise indeed.
- Happy City, by Charles Montgomery — bit of a random choice, it asks What makes a good city.
- Resistance to Ecocide, by Stephanie McMillan — A comic book about saving the planet. I like the tagline
Six friends. One planet. Two months to save it.