Weekly Books

Years ago I started reading a book a week. Here’s a list of some with short takeaway ideas.

Side Reading

  • Where Good Ideas Come From
    Ideas form in complex interactions with other interested minds.
  • Poke the Box
    Test the box. Something might happen you didn’t expect.
  • 13.5 Do the Work
    It hurts less to create than to find reasons not to create.
  • The Greatest Secret in the World
    Slow change is sure change.
  • The Road
    Only read something because you like it.
  • An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
    Does a distorted machine know it is distorted?
  • On the neurobiology of hallucinations
    Any process we label might have very complex and separate causes.
  • Copying and Evolution of Neuronal Topology
    When thinking intelligence, think replicators.
  • Tao Te Ching
    There is a purpose in motivelessness. Watching the world unfold can be worthwhile.
  • The Multidimensional Spectrum of Imagination
    Imagination and perception exist on a continuum.
  • Hypnotic Suggestion Reduces Conflict
    What you perceive is influenced by suggestion.
  • Neural Basis of Predicting the Outcomes of Imagined Actions
    Imagining is an action you can choose to do.
  • Learning What to Ignore
    Changing the topology and weights of an neural network at different time scales works better.
  • The Gita of Oppenheimer
    In duty, fate, and faith, we can find peace for our actions.

Weekly Books

Title: Takeaway

  • You Can Find A Way
    There is no problem that cannot be solved if you think big enough.
  • The Richest Man in Babylon
    Love work and you will love life.
  • The Letters of Vincent van Gogh
    Many perceptive people have lived. There is much insight in the past.
  • Tough Guys Don’t Dice
    Making food is awesome. Stories about food are also great.
  • A Beautiful Mind
    A mind cannot always tell when it is broken.
  • The Way to Wealth
    Your wealth is up to you.
  • Power Sleep
    You can optimize your rest. It’s very worthwhile.
  • Mind, Life, and Universe
    The biggest questions have the most potential to change how you look at reality.
  • The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
    Basically, have good character and good things will flow toward you. It’s rare and valuable.
  • The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail
    There are ways of getting across ideas. Step one is to believe in them.
  • Edgar Allan Poe Short Stories
    Fear is the mind-killer. Twists are awesome.
  • Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
    If you let yourself become something, you won’t want to go back.
  • Godel, Escher, Bach
    Math that edits itself has limitless expansions.
  • Critical Path
    The ineffable can only be hinted at, not explained. Trying will paint beautifully wordy pictures.
  • Self-Reliance
    Make yourself wholesome, and give yourself peace. You deserve it.
  • The Meaning of It All
    Keep your mind open. Try new things, and you’ll get closer to the truth.
  • The Myth of Self-Help
    Don’t force yourself to do something.
  • Why Can’t I Change?
    Understand human evolution when trying to motivate yourself.
  • The Little Prince
    When you actively give love, you begin to passively feel love.
  • Dinosaur Habitat
    It’s fun and interesting to daydream.
  • The Essential Gandhi
    When you say something, back it up.
  • The Full Facts Book of Cold Reading
    People jump to conclusions, it’s natural. That’s why we’re successful, but it can be hacked.
  • Neuromancer
    A painted picture can always be more detailed, as can the interpretations.
  • The Power of Less
    Setting limits makes you focus on doing what works. That’s very helpful.
  • Anything You Want
    You set the rules of your life and work. Only work on what makes you happy.
  • Jonathan Livingston Seagull
    You are unlimited and perfectable. Keep growing, keep learning.
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People
    You must love others. Give and you will receive.
  • Siddhartha
    Slow down. You will change in time.
  • Prodigal Genius – Tesla
    Even people with powerful imaginations need to focus on creating FOR others, not AT others.
  • How to Solve It
    There is a structure to how to solve problems. And you can learn it. You can make it better.
  • Man’s Search for Meaning
    Life is like a dictionary where you write the definitions.
  • The Ego Tunnel
    The feeling of having a self is a pattern, not a part.
  • Warped Passages
    You are more flexible after you bend your mind.
  • Pollyanna
    Look for the good and you find happiness.
  • Change Your Brain, Change Your Life
    You are your brain. Think and act with care.
  • The Winning Life – An Introduction to Buddhist Practice
    Choose to love and be happy.
  • Treasure Island
    Classics are good, insightful reads. It’s like traveling in time to a story in a story.
  • We Are All Weird
    We are all normal. Give specific people good feelings.
  • Illusions
    The meaning of life is to learn and have fun. Believe what’s fun.
  • End Malaria
    Good ideas are infinite. Good action is scarce, so do.
  • Read This Before Our Next Meeting
    Have a purpose and definite action after a meeting, otherwise you’re wasting your time.
  • The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs
    Design for the big picture.
  • The Transall Saga
    Deep wounds grow you. Remember that.
  • The War of Art
    Give credit to your fear and it will overpower you. Fear is fake.
  • Next
    Put likable characters in your story. Here’s looking at you, HPMoR!
  • The Dragons of Eden
    Myths can provide insight into humanness.
  • Zarrella’s Hierarchy of Contagiousness
    Test your work. Nothing need be left to chance.
  • The Prophet
    Let yourself be. Be what you say.
  • The Invisible Gorilla
    Your expectations change your interpretations. And expectations are inherent to thinking.
  • The Hedgehog and the Fox
    If what you create is better than what exists, it will be noticed, even if it isn’t perfect.
  • How I Died
    Stories are infinite and deep and moving.
  • Creative Mind
    You can make stuff up as you go along and it can still be insightful.
  • Thinking In Complexity
    Patterns can interact on intermediate levels and become vastly different patterns over time.
  • Focus
    When you focus you will enjoy and create more and better.
  • The Importance of Being Earnest
    There is much good in the classics, much wit and joy.
  • I Am A Strange Loop
    Go to a higher level. Realize your thinking is self-determined and not under your control. That reduces worry and longing.
  • The Flinch
    Fear can be beaten. It’s a story, and every story is malleable.
  • Making Ideas Happen
    Everything you want to do is a project. Assign each energy and find what actions move it forward.
  • Introduction to Bioinformatics
    Even poorly conveyed and complex ideas can be understood if you take it step by step.
  • Molecular Biology for Computer Scientists
    Everything is simple when broken down.
  • Scribes – The Lord’s Dog
    Different perspectives teach insight and wisdom.
  • Uncertainty
    Train your attention. Exercise, it reduces anxiety. Create certainty anchors. Surrond yourself with good people. Have a growth mindset.
  • Falling While Sitting Down
    Be careful what you tell yourself, you reinforce it.
  • How To Be Remarkable
    You choose to be remarkable. Be a great person.
  • Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
    Every person from history was an actual person, with daily concerns and human ideas just like you.
  • The Tower
    Create something for others every day. Make the world better.
  • Getting Things Done
    Trust your system and you reduce stress. High level overviews help.
  • Stop Stealing Dreams
    Systems need to consider why they exist and focus on core principles.
  • Laws of the Jungle
    There is always more than one way to make something work. What’s popular probably isn’t what’s best.
  • The Start-Up of You
    Treat your life as a precious opportunity. Protect and foster it.
  • A Whole New Mind
    Humans think in stories. Play to that and you will succeed.
  • The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership
    Always focus on multiplying the efforts of others.
  • Reality Is Plastic
    Confidence and conviction and congruence are most important in shifting another’s reality.
  • The Sacred Depths of Nature
    Humans are physical animals, intimately connected with the universe. Revere this mysterious and wonderful truth.
  • Alice in Wonderland
    Your imagination will enlighten you with unknown secrets if you let it run wild.
  • Unlimited Power
    What you believe you can do changes what you can do. Model the best to be the best. Understand your values.
  • Catch That Collie
    There are things to learn in the teachings directed at kids.
  • The Art of Persuasion
    Good communication stems from believing you have something to learn and something to offer.
  • Gabriel
    The truth will set you free, if you have the courage to believe.
  • The Evolution of Lisp
    Math will blow your mind infinitely if you let it.
  • Charles Darwin Autobiography
    The best way to employ your life is to add a little to Natural Science.
  • Reality is Plastic – Reloaded
    Beginners have innocent eyes and fresh perspectives that all can learn from.
  • Ellimist
    Incredible ideas, incredibly elegant storytelling. That’s what matters.
  • Sphere
    Your greatness lies in imagination.
  • Through the Looking Glass
    Life is but a dream.
  • The Pursuit of God
    Be meek and thou is exalted.
  • A.I.s
    Minds are intricately woven with sensation.
  • Fine Structure
    Reality is a fractal, up and down.
  • The Five People You Meet in Heaven
    All stories are intimately connected.
  • Moby-Dick
    The world is created in your mind, so guard your mind carefully.
  • A Mathematician’s Apology
    A man’s defense of his subject is a defense of himself.
  • The On-Purpose Person
    Everything has a natural purpose. You’re part of everything.
  • The Gifts of Imperfection
    By accepting that you’re good enough as you are, you live more authentically and wholeheartedly.
  • Godel’s Proof
    A system that can have systems inside can never paint the whole picture.
  • The Effortless Life
    Life can be effortless if you carry no expectations and only do what you love.
  • Tuesdays With Morrie
    Revel in the emotion until you can accept it and detach from it if need be.
  • Imagine
    From slow to long, from alone to together, cherish your opportunities to create.
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower
    Sometimes the best perspective is in losing your perspective.
  • One, Two, Three, Infinity
    Playing with numbers is extraordinarily helpful.
  • The Time Keeper
    Time is made special by limitations.
  • 50 Physics Ideas You Really Need to Know
    Physics is still full of mystery.
  • Contact
    There is a structure to communication. All beings devour information.
  • Honoring the Self
    Even if the self is illusion it is persistent and should be cultivated in a healthy manner.
  • Vital Lies, Simple Truths
    There is only illusion. It affects all levels of existence.
  • This Book is Full of Spiders
    Our world we see through shadows. It might be better to see more patterns.
  • How We Decide
    Emotions are a powerful decider when guided by experience.
  • Phi
    Consciousness is integrated information.
  • Life of Pi
    God tells the stories; we live them.
  • The Boxes
    You never know exactly why you do something.
  • Count Zero
    Tales can be twisted into themselves over time and space.
  • Oneironautics
    Being lucid is a difficult yet rewarding skill.
  • Lucid Living
    Awareness constructs your reality. What you see is your perception of what’s there.
  • The Lucid Dreamer
    The waking life is but a way to perceive another dream.
  • Lucid Dreaming – Gateway to the Inner Self
    It’s best to not assume the world is a certain way. It hampers your thinking.
  • Bhagavad Gita
    Renounce the fruits of action and you will have peace.
  • The Art and Science of Spirals
    Spirals exist in an understandable way.
  • Life
    Evolution is ruled by chance and yet beauty emerges from it.
  • The Zen Experience
    Zen breaks down the illusion between ego and the world.
  • The Power of Charm
    Being charming is about seeing the world through another’s eyes.
  • The Darwin Experience
    Darwin demonstrates that compound change can lead to an important body of work.
  • QED
    Things are only counter-intuitive if your intuition is counter.
  • MetaGame
    Games can always be more complex. The future is always unpredictable.
  • Jumper
    You can’t escape from yourself.
  • Mogworld
    A procedurally generated simulation might be indistinguishable from reality.
  • Reflex
    Two is better than one. Synergy can work miracles.
  • Subliminal
    The brain is automatically biased even if the conscious mind is trying to be objective. Also, being optimistic can be helpful.
  • Human
    Humans ponder life and animals live life.
  • Bus Stop on a Strange Loop
    Sometimes the only way forward is back.
  • Impulse
    Different characters have different feelings.
  • So Good They Can’t Ignore You
    Master rare and valuable skills, cash them in for control. Use projects to fine-tune a mission.
  • Exploring the World of Lucid Dreaming
    If a sense of identity can be transcended, a deeper awareness will result.
  • Ready Player One
    Good wins in the end because it cooperates.
  • Nexus
    Connection is unstoppable.
  • Avogadro Corp
    Sophisticated systems can be hard to kill.
  • AI Apocalypse
    Stories must be believable to be enjoyable.
  • The Crystal Spheres
    There may be a good reason we don’t hear from aliens.
  • Wool
    If you live in a story long enough you start to dream in that story.
  • Stories of Your Life and Others
    Seeing the future doesn’t necessarily make it not worth living.
  • The Plagiarist
    All that is left when you are gone are the minds that you have influenced.
  • The Hurricane
    An unlooked avenue can often change the adjacent possible in ways literally unimaginable.
  • Transhumanist FAQ
    Humanity’s future may be bright or may burn out.
  • The Martian
    Much improvisation means much life.
  • Kill Screen #2
    Video games, like all art, have deep lessons.
  • Constellation Games
    All civilizations use games to explore art in profound ways.
  • NaNoWri War Z
    The human mind is capable of incredible output.
  • Futurity
    A timeline may be altered if it prevents stopping the alterations.
  • Half Way Home
    It is from emergent mutations that our free will is born.
  • Kill Screen #6
    The past of games can inform us even now.
  • The Book of Undoing
    Awareness is not a noun, it is a verb. The story of you is a part of this awareness happening.
  • Shift
    Different viewpoints offer different knowledge.

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