Years ago I started reading a book a week. Here’s a list of some with short takeaway ideas.
- 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.
- 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Incredible ideas, incredibly elegant storytelling. That’s what matters.
Your greatness lies in imagination.
- Through the Looking Glass
Life is but a dream.
- The Pursuit of God
Be meek and thou is exalted.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Things are only counter-intuitive if your intuition is counter.
Games can always be more complex. The future is always unpredictable.
You can’t escape from yourself.
A procedurally generated simulation might be indistinguishable from reality.
Two is better than one. Synergy can work miracles.
The brain is automatically biased even if the conscious mind is trying to be objective. Also, being optimistic can be helpful.
Humans ponder life and animals live life.
- Bus Stop on a Strange Loop
Sometimes the only way forward is back.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Different viewpoints offer different knowledge.