December 31, 2008

The Year in Cities

Another meme, this one first encountered at Uncertain Principles. Oddly, because I was actually in one of the cities at the same time as that blog's author.

So, the cities (besides Toronto) I spent the night in during 2008:

  • Montreal, QC (3x, including Web 2.You)
  • Research Triangle Park, NC (Science Blogging Conference)
  • Pittsburgh, PA (ASEE annual conf)
  • Ste-Agathe, QC (vacation)
  • Waterloo, ON (Science in the 21st Century conference)
  • Ottawa, ON (Xmas break)

Not much of a travel year, but that's just fine with me.

December 30, 2008

A year of books

I did this last year and it seemed like an interesting and maybe even useful thing to continue this year.

Trends in my reading this year? Lots and lots on science and technology, especially on the impacts of those on intellectual culture. A great year, in that respect, with Shirky's Here Comes Everybody leading the way. Not so much fiction, and especially sf, this year. This'll be corrected by the Sunburst reading I do this year and next (not recorded here, see below), but I think I just needed a break.

Overall, the total number of books I'm reading this year is the highest it's been in quite a long time. Why? Well, honestly, I think it's because of the variety. I used to read mostly fiction, mostly fantastic fiction, and I think I was just getting bogged down by the sameness of it all. Lately, since my sabbatical especially, I'm just reading much wider. And that's made my reading wider and more interesting to me. And this results in me reading more.

So, without further ado, here's a list of all the books I've read this year with links to my reviews:

  1. Ambient Findability by Peter Morville
  2. Year's Best Fantasy 6 edited by David G. Hartwell & Kathryn Cramer
  3. Slide by Ken Bruen & Jason Starr
  4. Farthing by Jo Walton
  5. The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2007 edited by Richard Preston & Tim Folger (Series Editor)
  6. The Keeper by Sarah Langan
  7. A Century of Noir edited by Mickey Spillane and Max Allan Collins
  8. Einstein: A Life by Walter Isaacson
  9. Hardboiled America: Lurid Paperbacks And The Masters Of Noir by Geoffrey O'Brien
  10. Supercrunchers: Why Thinking-By-Numbers is the New Way To Be Smart by Ian Ayres
  11. Tin Roof Blowdown by James Lee Burke
  12. 40 Days and 40 Nights: Darwin, Intelligent Design, God, Oxycontin, and Other Oddities on Trial in Pennsylvania by Matthew Chapman
  13. Year's Best SF 11 edited by David G. Hartwell & Kathryn Cramer
  14. Infected by Scott Sigler
  15. Pyramids by Terry Pratchett
  16. Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations by Clay Shirky
  17. Free as in Speech and Beer: Open Source, Peer-to-Peer and the Economics of the Online Revolution by Darren Wershler-Henry
  18. The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google by Nicholas Carr
  19. The Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages
  20. Big City, Bad Blood by Sean Chercover
  21. Complications: A Surgeon's Note on an Imperfect Science by Atul Gawande
  22. Best New Horror 17 edited by Stephen Jones
  23. Forty Signs of Rain by Kim Stanley Robinson
  24. The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet by Daniel J. Solove
  25. The Best of Technology Writing 2007 by Steven Levy
  26. The Sum of All Fears by Tom Clancy
  27. Wrinkles in Time: Witness to the Birth of the Universe by George Smoot and Keay Davidson
  28. The End of the Beginning by Harry Turtledove
  29. Clapton: The Autobiography by Eric Clapton
  30. The Ruins by Scott Smith
  31. Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill
  32. Comrades of War by Sven Hassel
  33. Solomon's Vineyard by
  34. Pursuit of Genius: Flexner, Einstein, and the Early Faculty at the Institute for Advanced Study by Steve Batterson
  35. Archimedes to Hawking: Laws of Science and the Great Minds Behind Them by Clifford Pickover
  36. Why Darwin Matters: The Case Against Intelligent Design by Michael Shermer
  37. Triptych by Karen Slaughter
  38. Dark Crusade by Karl Edward Wagner
  39. Little Girl Lost by Richard Aleas
  40. The Wraparound Universe by Jean-Pierre Luminet
  41. Once You're Lucky, Twice You're Good: The Rebirth of Silicon Valley and the Rise of Web 2.0 by Sarah Lacy
  42. Bad Moon Rising by Jonathan Maberry
  43. The Canon: A Whirligig Tour of the Beautiful Basics of Science by Natalie Angier
  44. The Best American Science Writing 2008 edited by Sylvia Nasar & Jesse Cohen (series editor)
  45. Heat: An Amateur's Adventures as Kitchen Slave, Line Cook, Pasta-Maker, and Apprentice to a Dante-Quoting Butcher in Tuscany by Bill Buford
  46. The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2008 edited by Jerome Groopman and Tim Folger (series editor)
  47. The Quantum Ten: A Story of Passion, Tragedy, Ambition, and Science by Sheilla Jones
  48. The Dime Detectives: a Comprehensive History of the Detective Fiction Pulps by Ron Goulart
  49. Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff
  50. Content: Selected Essays on Technology, Creativity, Copyright, and the Future of the Future by Cory Doctorow
  51. God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher Hitchens
  52. Mafiaboy: How I Cracked the Internet and Why It's Still Broken by Michael Calce and Craig Silverman

I should mention that there are a significant number of books I've read that aren't on the list. I'm not recording the books I read for the Sunburst Awards as I don't think the list of books actually submitted for consideration are made public anywhere.

One book that I did read that's not on the list is The Open Laboratory: The Best Science Writing on Blogs 2007, edited by Reed Cartwright and Bora Zivkovic. Since I was on the advance screening panel of judges for the book, I did read all the posts that are reprinted in it during the judging period at the end of 2007; I also ordered and received the book in 2008. But I never actually cracked the cover and re-read all the posts during 2008. I did re-read a few, but not all.

Notable non-fiction, in no particular order:
  • Here Comes Everybody by Clay Shirky
  • The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2008 edited by Jerome Groopman and Tim Folger (series editor)
  • Content by Cory Doctorow
  • The Canon by Natalie Angier
  • Einstein: A Life by Walter Isaacson

Notable fiction, in no particular order (Note that this doesn't include Sunburst books, which would make the list quite different):
  • The Keeper by Sarah Langan
  • Tin Roof Blowdown by James Lee Burke
  • Green Glass Sea by Ellen Klages
  • The Ruins by Scott Smith
  • Triptych by Karen Slaughter

As a side note, I really do love reading other people's lists of books they've read. So, those of you who are so inclined (and who are odd enough to actually record each and every book they read during the year), consider this a meme and consider yourselves tagged.

Review-wise, I still have to figure out what to do with the growing backlog of annual essay collections that I haven't reviewed yet. I may end up doing a mass review with one-liner comments at some point. Of books that deserve full-length treatment, I still have Groundswell, Doctorow's Content and Mafiaboy, but it might be a while before I get to any of those. FWIW, I probably won't be reading too many non-Sunburst books for at least a few more months.

(I've been recording every book I read since 1983 and on my other blog I've been occasionally transcribing the list on a year by year basis. I've stalled of late, but I'll probably do a few more during the holidays this year. This list will also be re-posted there eventually.)

December 21, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: The London Times

Books from the Science, Nature and Gardening lists. This list is particularly interesting since it's not centred on the US publishing industry.

  • In Defence of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan

  • The Wisdom of Birds: An Illustrated History of Ornithology by Tim Birkhead

  • Consider the Birds: Who They are and What They Do by Colin Tudge

  • Southern England: The Geology and Scenery of Lowland England by Peter Friend

  • The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science by Richard Holmes

  • Dry Store Room No 1: The Secret Life of the Natural History Museum by Richard Fortey

  • The Making of Mr Gray's "Anatomy": Bodies, Books, Fortune, Fame by Ruth Richardson

  • Bedlam: London and Its Mad by Catharine Arnold

  • Bad Science by Ben Goldacre

December 18, 2008

The Twittermonster has claimed another victim

Just a couple of weeks ago I was talking with a colleague here at York and I remember him mentioning, "You know, I just don't get Twitter."

I remember agreeing, and even stating something to the effect that hell would freeze over before I joined Twitter. I also distinctly remembering thinking to myself that such a definitive statement was sure to prove my undoing.

No sooner had I decided that I was never going to join Twitter than I seriously began to think about what it is and what it can be used for. And the more I thought about it, the more I began to think that I needed to give it a try.

Today, while at a meeting where only a couple of people showed (holidays, strike, etc.) we were talking about creating dynamic presences for academic libraries on the Web. Of course, Friendfeed and Twitter both figured prominently in those discussions.

Needless to say, combine all those with a rather uneventful desk shift (between the Cupe 3903 strike and normal December slowness, it's dead here), and I decided to take the plunge.


Follow me, tweet me, whatever. It should be interesting.

(And more to follow on creating dynamic web presences for the York Libraries...)

IEEE Women in Engineering Magazine

A relatively new magazine from the IEEE, one that I just heard about the other day in the most recent What's New @ IEEE in Libraries. It looks very interesting and has the potential to be a great showcase for issues surrounding women in engineering and science in general.

There have been three issues so far: v1i1, v2i1 and v2i2.

From the Letter from the Editor, Karen Panetta, in the first issue.

The goal of this magazine is to be your resource for helping to attract, retain, and sustain women in the engineering and science fields. For parents and educators, IEEE Women in Engineering Magazine will showcase the exciting career opportunities in the IEEE fields of interest and provide you with access to successful outreach activities that will help encourage children to pursue engineering. The magazine will also provide networking and career support whether you are a student, young or seasoned professional, or reentering the workforce.


Oftentimes, I am met with questions about the need for the existence of groups such as WIE. Less than 30% of all engineers are women, with the majority of this number falling in the chemical and biomedical engineering fields. Electrical engineering and
computer engineering still continue to be the most underrepresented engineering fields for women. The attrition of women in the electrical engineering profession also shows that women are leaving the discipline at extremely high rates. Women are a valuable untapped resource that makes up 50% of the world’s workforce. This, coupled with the fact that there are so few women pursuing engineering, is evidence that a problem exists and demands action. Furthermore, we often forget that places in the world still exist where women are not allowed to pursue education, never mind the possibility of pursuing an engineering career. There are countries that have IEEE chapters, yet women are still not permitted to present their work due to cultural issues. IEEE WIE is committed to overcoming the barriers that have kept women from pursuing and advancing in their careers.

I couldn't have said it better myself!

Some highlights from the first three issues:

Best Science Books 2008: The Economist

Here are some books from the business, history and science categories of The Economist's list.

  • The Logic of Life: The Rational Economics of an Irrational World by Tim Harford

  • Grown Up Digital: How the Net Generation is Changing Your World by Don Tapscott

  • The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science by Richard Holmes

  • American Rifle: A Biography by Alexander Rose

  • The Big Necessity: The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters by Rose George

  • The Princeton Companion to Mathematics edited by Timothy Gowers, June Barrow-Green and Imre Leader

  • Bad Science by Ben Goldacre

  • The Sun and the Moon: The Remarkable True Account of Hoaxers, Showmen, Duelling Journalists, and Lunar Man-Bats in Nineteenth-Century New York by Matthew Goodman

  • Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein

  • Fatal Misconception: The Struggle to Control World Population by Matthew Connelly

  • Gang Leader for a Day: A Rogue Sociologist Takes to the Streets by Sudhir Venkatesh

December 17, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: Some Best Business Books lists

Some of the Best Business Book lists I'm seeing definitely have books on them that would interest either the library crowd, the science crowd or both. In general, these lists are very interesting because the books are about placing technology in a social or organizational context.

Here's some highlights from a couple of the lists.

Business Week

  • Hell's Cartel: I.G. Farben and the Making of Hitler's War Machine by Diarmuid Jeffreys

  • Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely

  • The Gridlock Economy: How Too Much Ownership Wrecks Markets, Stops Innovation, and Costs Lives by Michael Heller

  • Hot, Flat, and Crowded: Why We Need a Green Revolution--and How It Can Renew America by Thomas L. Friedman

  • Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell

Financial Times

  • Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth and Happiness
    by Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein

  • The Logic of Life: Uncovering the New Economics of Everything
    By Tim Harford

  • Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell

  • Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy by Lawrence Lessig

Fast Company

  • The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures by Dan Roam

  • The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google by Nicholas Carr

  • Earth: The Sequel: The Race to Reinvent Energy and Stop Global Warming by Fred Krupp and Miriam Horn

  • Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently by Gregory Berns

  • The Pixar Touch: The Making of a Company by David A. Price

December 16, 2008

Social Networks that make me scratch my head

Sometimes things just don't seem to make sense to me. Social networks seem to sprout like mushrooms on a damp log and I wonder if they're used, useful and sustainable.

Nature Blogs

Take Blogs as a first example. It's supposedly a place where users can keep up to date on what's going on in the science blogosphere, but to my mind it's not very good. It mostly features Nature's own blogs with only cursory coverage of everything else. At least on the home page. The Browse Blogs and the Top Stories pages are a little better, but not much. Really, the other two Nature blog aggregators, Scintilla and Postgenomic, are both way better. It's hard to imagine them needing two, never mind three. You can also log in with your Nature Network password and suggest new blogs or moderate new blogs that others are suggesting.

What were they thinking? Fortunately, they have let us peak into their inner workings.

First, a post on Nascent:

We launched a new blogs portal on earlier this week. It's part of a general overhaul of blogging at NPG which amongst other things involves link backs from articles to the blog posts writing about them (bloggers get traffic, our readers get conversation around papers - works for us both) and improving the blogging experience for users on Network.

It also seems that they use Scintilla as the engine. They also point out that the list of blogs in moderated by the community and that it is connected to Nature Network, something that is new and interesting.

Also, there are a couple of conversations on FriendFeed (1,2):
As Euan says:
Yeah, Nature Blogs should eventually match Postgenomic in functionality. Essentially NPG IT can't support Postgenomic for various reasons. Nature Blogs is a cleaner rewrite anyway (and more stable: needed for the link backs work). IMHO we should open source the code, but we'll see.

Also from Euan:
We'll be using it to put link backs on our papers - if you write about a paper publishing in an NPG journal on your blog and you're in the blogs index then you get a link back from the article itself. The blogs index is open to other publishers too to use as a spam free whitelist.

Overall, it does seem that the Nature folks have interesting and useful plans for the new site, that it does and will have functionality and integration that will surpass and perhaps replace both Postgenomic and Scintilla. I just find it odd that they didn't make that more clear from the beginning and more obvious on the Nature Blogs site itself. This is a transitional life form, in a way, and we are just waiting for the right features to evolve. Really only a little head scratching involved.

Library Networking Group

Considerably more head scratching involved is the case of Library networking Group, a kind of join venture of the Ontario Library Association and Networking Groups, Inc that is being promoted quite heavily by OLA (I've gotten at least 4 or five emails from OLA about this).

From their promotional emails:
Welcome to Canada’s newest online community for Library Professionals - the Library Networking Group.

The Library Networking Group is a collaboration between Networking Groups, Inc. and the Ontario Library Association to bring full social networking to library staff, library trustees and those who support libraries of all kinds everywhere. It is a new meeting space in which you and your colleagues initiate and join in dialogues and other collaborations through forums, blogs, articles, podcasts and more. It is a straightforward and easy way to share ideas and practice with your fellow subject matter generalists and specialists in the library community.

Share ideas and ask questions while establishing new contacts and increasing your networks. Membership is free.

What’s in it for you

The Library Networking Group gives you instant access to hundreds of individuals with a passion for libraries. This professional networking site can unlock new opportunities for you and your colleagues to further your knowledge, to meet developing attitudes and trends that are shape our outlook, even improve skills through the sharing of best practices.

It looks really interesting. It has blogs, forums, podcasts, groups and even recent articles by well known authos from various publications. In conception, it reminds me of Nature Network or even the Palinet Leadership Network. In a very good way. Here's a place that librarians can gather and share their experiences.

What's the epic fail? It's all behind a registration wall. Sure, registration is free and appears fairly painless if somewhat intrusive. But nobody can read any of it unless they're registered.

I had a brief email conversation with a couple of people involved in the LibraryNG project and here's what I had to say about that:.

These were my intial thoughts:
Just to let you know, I did go to the site and was extremely disappointed that none of the content is available without registration. I would never join a site like that or recommend it to anyone else.

The profession needs to be open and transparent and the bloggers and others that contribute to the site deserve to have their thoughts be part of the open professional record, both to be part of the larger professional conversation and to be recognized for their contributions.

You should take a look at the Nature Network site as I think it has a better model for participation. Anyone can read but only the registered can blog, comment or participate in forums.

Walled garden professional social networks are the wrong path and I don't think that they'll be attractive enough to be sustainable.

My second email was in reponse to someone from Neworking Groups, Inc, who emailed me back to mention that some of the other communities they've designed are fine with the restrictions. This is what I had to say:
First of all, to compare to the other community sites you have might not be applicable. Although I don't know those communities that well, I suspect that your site wasn't an entry into a community with already many hundreds of active bloggers and commenters. Check here for a list of *active* library community bloggers.

And just one of the FriendFeed librarian rooms.

This is an open, vibrant community with lots of back and forth and discussion. Taking a librarian and putting their ideas behind a wall, any wall, will hurt their "brand" and "reputation" building because the most important thought leaders in the field are already out in the open. Being behind the wall means that far fewer people in the community will be able to read them and comment.

Same with articles and forums. Your article writers and other contributors will want the broadest audience possible.

As for the fear of spam and email pirates, access to personal information can still be behind the sign-on barrier and subject to the privacy profile of the members.

I think two good examples of mostly open communities are Nature Network for
scientists and the Palinet Leadership Network, which is a librarian community.

In Nature Network, anybody can read anything, but you have to be signed up to blog or comment.

I have to admit, the thing that surprises me the most about this is that OLA didn't see the problem with having this kind of closed social network and that it would not be as advantageous to the careers and reputations of their members as an open one. Many of the arguments for open access apply to this case as well. So the arguments we would use to promote open access to faculty have to be the same arguments we would use to advocate for open discussion within our own community.

Needless to say, I haven't signed up for LibraryNG yet. If any of you out there have, I'd be interested to hear what you have to say.

December 13, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: Library Journal

Wow, another disappointing list:

  • The Last Flight of the Scarlet Macaw: One Woman's Fight To Save the World's Most Beautiful Bird by Bruce Barcott

  • Where the Wild Things Were: Life, Death, and Ecological Wreckage in a Land of Vanishing Predators by William Stolzenburg

  • Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us) by Tom Vanderbilt

Library Journal did a dedicated scitech last year and I hope they do it again later on for 2008.

December 11, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: Booklist

Here's the Top 10 Sci-Tech Books for 2008:

  • The Big Necessity: The Unmentionable World of Human Waste and Why It Matters by Rose George

  • Beyond the Zonules of Zinn: A Fantastic Journey through Your Brain by David Bainbridge

  • Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach

  • Farm Sanctuary: Changing Hearts and Minds about Animals and Food by Gene Baur

  • Fruitless Fall: The Collapse of the Honeybee and the Coming Agricultural Crisis by Rowan Jacobsen

  • Mirroring People: The New Science of How We Connect with Others by Marco Iacoboni

  • The Parrot Who Thought She Was a Dog by Nancy Ellis-Bell

  • The Telephone Gambit: Chasing Alexander Graham Bell’s Secret by Seth Shulman

  • Thousand Mile Song: Whale Music in a Sea of Sound by David Rothenberg

  • The Universe in a Mirror: The Saga of the Hubble Space Telescope and the Visionaries Who Built It by Robert Zimmerman

December 8, 2008

Interview with Michael Nielsen

No, not me interviewing Michael Nielsen (although I'll probably get around to it one of these days).

It's my older son Sam who is in grade 10. It's for a Career Studies assignment because he's thinking that theoretical physicist is a possible career path. Check out the interview here.

Recently, I had to do an interview of someone who was on, or had been on, a similar career path to the one we want to pursue (being in grade 10, there's some growing up left to do, but it doesn't feel right to say 'when we grow up'). I've been thinking theoretical physicist as of late (have I mentioned that before?) and I was hoping to interview someone who's... in theoretical physics. At first, it seemed like a hopeless journey; how could I reach someone who's in physics and actually convince them to do an interview? I didn't even know where to start to find a physicist, unless one counts asking my dad. Of course, he said something along the lines of 'Michael Nielsen! He was a physicist and is now writing on the future of science as a whole. He's famous and his career path is extremely relevant.' My curiosity was piqued.

Best Science Books 2008: No Love for Science

Here's some more from the Fimoculus list, these ones notable for not having any science books mentioned when you would think that they could find at least one:

As I see more science-free lists, I'll probably just add them here. Fortunately, I do have a bunch of great lists to blog about over the next few days.

Update 2008.12.13:

Update 2008.12.21:
  • NPR -- no science list or any science books appearing on any of the other lists.

  • Slate -- the medical editor chose Stalking Irish Madness by Patrick Tracey but it seems too marginal for me to count as a science book

December 6, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: The Globe and Mail Gift Books

After the depressing LA Times, one of my favourite annual lists -- Globe and Mail Gift Books. There's an incredible array of fantastic suggestions here, both from the scitech world and arts, culture and history. There's tons of stuff here that I wouldn't mind finding under the tree in a few weeks.

Here's the science-y ones from the History, Nature and Miscellaneous categories:

  • The Atlas of Exploration Foreword by John Hemming

  • Animals: A Visual Encyclopedia edited by Carrie Love and Caroline Stamps

  • Mission Space: A Full-Throttle Tour of the Universe by Carole Stott

  • Hubble: Imaging and Time by David Devorkin and Robert W. Smith

  • Antarctica: Secrets of the Southern Continent by David McGonigal

  • The Owl and the Woodpecker: Encounters with North America's Most Iconic Birds by Paul Bannick

  • Arctic Visions: Pictures from a Vanished World by Fred Bruemmer

  • Aviation Canada: The Pioneer Decades by Larry Milberry

  • Cool Stuff Exploded: Get Inside Modern Technology by Chris Woodford

And here's some really cool-looking ones from the various categories (hint, hint):
  • Battle at Sea: 3,000 Years of Naval Warfare by R. G. Grant

  • Horror Cinema Edited by Jonathan Penner and Steven Jay

  • Marvel Chronical: A Year by Year History Foreword by Stan Lee. Afterword by Joe Quesada

  • Strange and Stranger: The World of Steve Ditko by Blake Bell

  • Historical Atlas of Toronto by Derek Hayes,

  • The Beer Book Edited by Tim Hampson

  • Drinks: Enjoying, Choosing, Storing, Serving and Appreciating Wines, Beers, Cocktails, Spirits, Aperitifs, Liqueurs, and Ciders by Vincent Gasnier

December 5, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: Los Angeles Times + Book Covers

Wow, the most catastropically disappointing list so far. A major paper like the LA Times can't find even one science book worth mentioning. The only one close is a nature title. From the non-fiction list:

  • The Saga of the Wild Horse in the American West by Deanne Stillman

Interestingly, there are science fiction and mystery lists, something many other papers don't bother with.

On a more cheerful note, Joseph Sullivan's list of the best book covers of the year does have a few really nice examples from science books.

Friday Fun: A Super-Geeky Christmas List

Nuff said.

The one that most intrigues me:

Space opera cookie cutters – I recommend a rocket ship, stars and a moon. And spacey sprinkles. ’Cause I’m one of those feminists who likes to bake. Plus you can spread the geek gospel more easily with holiday food.

December 4, 2008

Best Science Books 2008: Christian Science Monitor

Decent list:

  • The Telephone Gambit: Chasing Alexander Graham Bell's Secret by Seth Shulman

  • Overtreated: Why Too Much Medicine Is Making Us Sicker and Poorer by Shannon Brownlee

  • In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto by Michael Pollan

  • The Numerati by Stephen Baker

Friedman's Hot, Flat and Crowded and Gladwell's Outliers are two marginal science books that seem to be getting a lot of mentions.

(Thanks for Mita for pointing me to this site!)