Reading List

October 2017 · 4 minute read

Despite being able to count the books I read cover to cover on my fingers, I enjoy reading. There is no contradiction there, I simply lack the ability to commit to a long text. The same goes for writing - you would be hard-pressed to find anything over 2000 words signed by me.

I have the patience to read through boring articles as long as they are short - something a lot of people wouldn’t stand for. For these people, as well as for my future self, I started curating timeless articles worth reading from all around the web. The articles below are in no particular order spare the order that I decided to add them chronologically as I saw fit for one reason or another.

I hope that you will enjoy these as much as I did.

Last updated on the 15th of October 2017

Forer effect

http://skepdic.com/forer.html

Why do astrologists seem so dead on about us? The answer is vagueness.

Psychologist Bertram R. Forer (1914-2000) found that people tend to accept vague and general personality descriptions as uniquely applicable to themselves without realizing that the same description could be applied to just about anyone.

The Mystery of S., the Man with an Impossible Memory

http://www.newyorker.com/books/page-turner/the-mystery-of-s-the-man-with-an-impossible-memory

The neuropsychologist Alexander Luria’s case study of Solomon Shereshevsky helped spark a myth about a man who could not forget. But the truth is more complicated.

The Man Who Couldn’t Stop Giving

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2015/05/the-man-who-couldnt-stop-giving/389531/

A story about a man who, following a stroke, became a “pathological giver”.

How to Win Friends and Influence People

http://images.kw.com/docs/2/1/2/212345/1285134779158_htwfaip.pdf

This one is an outlier on this list as it is a book and not an article. But if anything fits the bill for timelessness, this is it.

Yes, Google Uses Its Power to Quash Ideas It Doesn’t Like—I Know Because It Happened to Me

http://gizmodo.com/1798646437

A testament to the chronic abuse of power by Google. This article was posted shortly after a Google-funded think-tank scholar got fired for citizing the giant.

Why Is Silicon Valley So Awful to Women?

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/04/why-is-silicon-valley-so-awful-to-women/517788/

Regardless on where you stand on women in tech and sexism, this is a well-written article discussing what it is like for women in Silicon Valley. Meritocracy fails when bias comes into play. In my opinion, anybody who advocates the dismantling of this system should have shoe thrown at them; but we need to look for ways to reduce bias in all areas of our lives - even more so in the professional sphear.

Have Smartphones Destroyed a Generation?

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/has-the-smartphone-destroyed-a-generation/534198/

Being a “post-Milennial” myself, I see first hand how much smartphones have altered by generation (myself included) in terms of not only lifestyle, but mindset too. This analyses the issue far better than I ever could.

The Sugar Wars

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/01/the-sugar-wars/508751/

Pure, White and Deadly: Science can’t prove it and the industry denies it, but Gary Taubes is convinced that the sweet stuff kills.

How to Sleep

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/01/how-to-sleep/508781/

Should you drink more coffee? Should you take melatonin? Can you train yourself to need less sleep? A physician’s guide to sleep in a stressful age.

What’s a Canadian?

http://www.torontosun.com/2017/09/02/whats-a-canadian

Questioning the meaning of dual-citizenship by suggesting that one can really only belong to a single country.

michael crichton: why speculate?

http://larvatus.com/michael-crichton-why-speculate/

A very well written and articulated critique of the speculatory nature of modern media. Written with a dash of cynical humor.

The Murray Gell-Mann Amnesia effect

https://seekerblog.com/2006/01/31/the-murray-gell-mann-amnesia-effect/

The Gell-Mann effect goes hand-in-hand with the above article. In short, it speaks of our tendency to believe people who sound credible even with evidence that they speak nonsense.

Tech Giants, Once Seen as Saviors, Are Now Viewed as Threats

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/12/technology/tech-giants-threats.html

A story about about how Google and Facebook shifted from being seen as saviors to threats. The tech giants have set a precedent by shutting down The Daily Stormer and are suffering greatly from it. The public now at large sees that they are biased and how much power they have over who gets a say.

Silicon Valley Is Not Your Friend

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/10/13/opinion/sunday/Silicon-Valley-Is-Not-Your-Friend.html

A more verbose article on the same topic as the above.

Why The Web Won’t Be Nirvana

http://www.newsweek.com/clifford-stoll-why-web-wont-be-nirvana-185306

A guy from 1995 is writing about why the internet will not live up to the hype (which it has). Interesting arguments and great to think about: What went right? What went wrong?


I am constantly on the look-out for new great articles to read. If you come across any, send me an email to slava@knyz.org. I would be extremely greatful.