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    1. What are you reading these days?

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Previous topics Previous topics are listed in the wiki.

      14 votes
    2. Data Dictatorships: The Arms Race to Hack Humankind (my latest book)

      As many of you know, my book Data Dictatorships has just come out and I believe the timing couldn't be better. For the last year I’ve been banging my head against the wall trying to understand the...

      As many of you know, my book Data Dictatorships has just come out and I believe the timing couldn't be better.

      For the last year I’ve been banging my head against the wall trying to understand the complexity of our current situation with the technological disruption. And this book contains all the answers I have found along the way.

      Forget about fake news, election interferences or being watched on the Internet. The reality is much more chaotic, complex and dreadful than that.

      The truth is that data has become the raw materialization of power, and this is making dictatorships more efficient than ever before. Few dare to say it, but liberal democracy is likely going to die. (At least as we know it.)

      But I believe if we start global conversations about this, maybe we can change things. And these conversations could start as small as a thread in this forum.

      I hope you can find the time to check out the content of this book. And it would be great if we could start a threat talking about these threats we’re facing.

      I know this might be perceived as spam for a lot of people. And that's fair. But I'm not trying to sell anything. In fact, I'm giving it away for free (the digital version.)

      If you just want to grab a free copy, here’s the electronic version for free. I believe that the ideas discussed in this book are so important that I’m willing to give it away for free. So here’s the link–download it, share it, but please let’s start a conversation about this:

      EPUB:
      https://borjamoya.com/books/Data-Dictatorships_The-Arms-Race-to-Hack-Humankind-Borja-Moya.epub
      MOBI:
      https://borjamoya.com/books/Data-Dictatorships_The-Arms-Race-to-Hack-Humankind-Borja-Moya.mobi

      And of course, if you’d like the paperback version here or just read more info about the book, go here: https://borjamoya.com/DataDictatorships

      I hope you enjoy my small contribution to the world.

      PS. My book has gotten to the front page of Hacker News, you can also join the conversation there: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21417319

      6 votes
    3. What are you reading these days?

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Previous topics Previous topics are listed in the wiki.

      26 votes
    4. What are you reading these days?

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Previous topics Previous topics are listed in the wiki.

      12 votes
    5. Is Tolkien's prose really that bad?

      Recently I was reading through a discussion on Reddit in which Tolkien's writing and prose were quite heavily criticised. Prior to this I'd never seen much criticism surrounding his writing and so...

      Recently I was reading through a discussion on Reddit in which Tolkien's writing and prose were quite heavily criticised. Prior to this I'd never seen much criticism surrounding his writing and so I was wondering what the general consensus here is.

      The first time I read through The Lord of the Rings, I found myself getting bored of all the songs and the poems and the large stretches between any action, I felt that the pacing was far too slow and I found that I had to force myself to struggle through the book to get to the exciting parts that I had seen so many times in the films. Upon reading through The Lord of the Rings again recently my experience has been completely different and I've fallen in love with his long and detailed descriptions of nature, and the slower pacing.

      Has anyone else experienced something similar when reading his works? Are there more valid criticisms of his prose that extend beyond a craving for the same high-octane action of the films?

      13 votes
    6. What are you reading these days? #29

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Notes We're coming up on #30! Exciting! Previous...

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit.

      Notes

      We're coming up on #30! Exciting!

      Previous topics

      Previous topics are listed in the wiki.

      12 votes
    7. Book Review - Turn Of Mind by Alice LaPlante

      Turn of Mind is a mystery. It's for the most part written in journal format. Interestingly it's a journal that sits in the house of a person with Alzheimer's disease. Jennifer White was an...

      Turn of Mind is a mystery. It's for the most part written in journal format. Interestingly it's a journal that sits in the house of a person with Alzheimer's disease.

      Jennifer White was an orthopedic surgeon in Chicago. Once brilliant, Dr. White is now in the later stages of the disease and the journal is written in by family members and housekeepers to help her remember who she was and who she is. A fractured portrait emerges of a cold and strong minded woman who has had a full life that she remembers in bits and pieces. Amidst the pages is mention of a neighbor, Amanda, who has been murdered. Slowly things come together for the reader while Dr. White's disease progresses into confusion.

      Yet she still has moments of lucidity, remembering the details of her profession, where she was considered one of the best and most respected hand surgeons in the country. Her deterioration is something she's at times very aware of, and it is this that makes the book so powerful.

      The narrative often lapses into Jennifer's past memories of both her parents and her children. This adds authenticity to her mental condition but also made me impatient for what seemed to be more important details. As Jennifer is interviewed by police officers and pulled into interaction with her grown son and daughter, we can begin to understand the horror of this disease, especially regarding how hard it is to trust people who may be trying to manipulate the sufferer for their own purposes.

      I'd put this near the top of my list for books enjoyed in 2019. It brings to mind The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time by Mark Haddon, narrated by an Aspberger's spectrum person. Turn of Mind is a hard book to read, but it's even harder to put down once you get into it.

      4 votes
    8. What are you reading these days? #28

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Notes I'm finally going to update the wiki today,...

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction or poetry, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit.

      Notes

      I'm finally going to update the wiki today, hopefully. FYI.

      Previous topics

      Previous topics will be ARE listed in the UPDATED wiki!!! as soon as I update it.

      14 votes
    9. What are you reading these days? #26

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Notes Hi everyone! I'm @acdw, I'm taking over this thread...

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit.

      Notes

      Hi everyone! I'm @acdw, I'm taking over this thread from @cadadr. This is my first one, and I'm excited for the discussion!

      If anyone has any suggestions about how to run this thread, please feel free to PM me (I don't want to clog up this thread with suggestions). If there's enough messages, I'll start a thread to discuss them publicly.

      Previous topics

      Previous topics are listed in the wiki.

      21 votes
    10. Which books are the "bible" of your discipline?

      I recall when I took biology in high school, we used the well-regarded Biology textbook, written by Campbell. Another example might be Kernighan & Ritchie's The C Programming Language. My...

      I recall when I took biology in high school, we used the well-regarded Biology textbook, written by Campbell. Another example might be Kernighan & Ritchie's The C Programming Language.

      My discipline is Electrical Engineering, focused in integrated circuit design. I find that there are often a few competing textbooks, and some of them are stronger in their explanations. Razavi's Design of Analog CMOS Integrated Circuits for example, is considered the best at explaining complex topologies using intuition, rather than complete mathematical rigor.

      A book you find many junior electrical engineering students posessing is Sedra & Smith's Microelectronics, which in my honest opinion, is great for explaining operational amplifiers and simple topologies of single transistor amplifiers, but the latter chapters are much better explained (and notated) by a multitude of other authors, Razavi included.

      The reason I ask is because I was considering taking a biochemistry course, and they use a hefty looking text that also has a highly descriptive name as other "bibles," simply called Principles of Biochemistry.

      16 votes
    11. What are you reading these days? #27

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit. Notes Sorry this is posted so late! I would've posted it...

      What are you reading currently? Fiction or non-fiction, any genre, any language! Tell us what you're reading, and talk about it a bit.

      Notes

      Sorry this is posted so late! I would've posted it tomorrow, even, but I'm working all day so I won't have the chance. I'll make sure and bump this thread Sunday, so we can talk about our reading. I'll set an alarm for next time!

      Previous topics

      Previous topics will be listed in the wiki as soon as I update it.

      9 votes
    12. What do you think the first sentence of this poem means? | Fiddler Jones by Edgar Lee Masters

      THE EARTH keeps some vibration going There in your heart, and that is you. And if the people find you can fiddle, Why, fiddle you must, for all your life. What do you see, a harvest of clover? Or...

      THE EARTH keeps some vibration going
      There in your heart, and that is you.
      And if the people find you can fiddle,
      Why, fiddle you must, for all your life.
      What do you see, a harvest of clover?
      Or a meadow to walk through to the river?
      The wind’s in the corn; you rub your hands
      For beeves hereafter ready for market;
      Or else you hear the rustle of skirts
      Like the girls when dancing at Little Grove.
      To Cooney Potter a pillar of dust
      Or whirling leaves meant ruinous drouth;
      They looked to me like Red-Head Sammy
      Stepping it off, to “Toor-a-Loor.”
      How could I till my forty acres
      Not to speak of getting more,
      With a medley of horns, bassoons and piccolos
      Stirred in my brain by crows and robins
      And the creak of a wind-mill—only these?
      And I never started to plow in my life
      That some one did not stop in the road
      And take me away to a dance or picnic.
      I ended up with forty acres;
      I ended up with a broken fiddle—
      And a broken laugh, and a thousand memories,
      And not a single regret.

      I've always loved this poem. To me, it's about a man, loved by many, that recognizes his responsibilities, but can't help but forgo them to go and have fun with friends and loved ones (in short, anyways). The first line, however, has always intrigued me, and I can never land on a meaning for it. I think it's basically saying that in your heart is your true character (your soul), and that will never change. Or maybe it's saying that everyone has that "vibration" in their heart that yearns for enjoyment. What do you think?

      4 votes