2017 Book Recommendations:

Scale: The Universal Laws of Growth, Innovation, Sustainability, and the Pace of Life in Organisms, Cities, Economies, and Companies: The physics behind biology, cities, economics and companies. Do they grow, scale and die by the same math equations? New insights that are enlightening and delightful.

Lying : One of my favorite one hour reads about intellectual honesty. I wish more people were this honest!

Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst: Among the best insights into our brain and behavior. A top of the charts for me for this year, along with Scale.

Homo Deus: A History of Tomorrow: Not that I agree with all of it, but it is still mind-bending speculation about our future as a follow-up to a previous favorite, Sapiens. It’s directionally right.

Eating the Big Fish: How Challenger Brands Can Compete Against Brand Leaders: Brand building for entrepreneurs trying to upset the incumbents. One of the few “how to” books I enjoyed.

The Brand Flip: Why customers now run companies and how to profit from it (Voices That Matter): Wish all books maximized learning per hour of reading time. A very well done book on branding and new brand values. It will be the death of many incumbents.

Dunk Tank Pink: And Other Unexpected Forces That Shape How We Think, Feel, and Behave: Fun read about our biases and how our brain functions.

Case Against Sugar : Not surprising but explicit description of the American psych on sugar and fat by the sugar industry. I would not have believed this much influence is possible.

Your Brain On Music: The. Science of a Human Obsession: Fascinating though older book.

Against Empathy: The Case for Rational Compassion: Surprising, but will feel very obvious to the rationalists. A good case against too much empathy.

McMafia: A Journey Through the Global Criminal Underworld: Fun though older book.

From Bacteria to Back and Back: The Evolution of Minds: Another of my favorites this year. Long but worth every page.

The Last Days of Night: I don’t read fiction, but this almost historical fiction is fun especially for Silicon Valley types.

Astrophysics for people in a hurry: Great, very quick overview of astrophysics. Easily accessible.

The Master Algorithm: How the Quest for the Ultimate Learning Machine Will Remake Our World: If you want speculation about what the master AI might need (one view). For a slightly more technical read, I’d suggest Ian Goodfellows Deep Learning.

Mindfulness in Plain English : Easy access to meditation

Other People’s Money: Inside the Housing Crisis and the Demise of the Greatest Real Estate Deal Ever Made: Not very far from the truth on the financial services industry though the authors biases come through. Not all correct (in my view), but still worth reading.

entrepreneurship zealot, grounded technology optimist, believer in the power of ideas