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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sketchgrad » March 14th, 2016, 5:55 am


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yo wrote:I just started the "Expanse" series by James S A Corey. It is pretty addictive. Apparently it is now a SciFy channel show as well. Haven't seen the show, but the first book is awesome.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0047Y ... s_rw_dp_sw


I'm currently reading this now and getting in to it.

I'm going to hold off on the TV show though as I recently read The Martian by Andy Weir and it was difficult to not imagine Matt Damon after seeing the movie beforehand.

After that I plan to read:

- The Three Body Problem by Cixin Liu
- Station 11 by Emily St John Mandel
- Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
- The Man in the High Castly by Philip K Dick
- World War Z by Max Brooks

All seem to be highly recommended. I'm especially excited to read The Three Body problem, from what I heard it is about Aliens invading Earth but written from the perspective of China after the cultural revolution which is obviously different from most Sci-Fi being written from a Western perspective. Tested/Adam Savage did a good podcast review of it so as mentioned I'm excited to get in to it after Leviathan Wakes (first expanse book).

Re: What are you reading?

Postby yo » March 14th, 2016, 10:54 am

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Sketchgrad, I'm into book 4 now on the Expanse series. Chewing through it. I don't plan to watch the show. I saw a clip and the characters just did't hold up to what I imagined them to be :-)

Re: What are you reading?

Postby cwatkinson » March 14th, 2016, 11:07 am

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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sketchgrad » March 15th, 2016, 7:14 am


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yo wrote:Sketchgrad, I'm into book 4 now on the Expanse series. Chewing through it. I don't plan to watch the show. I saw a clip and the characters just did't hold up to what I imagined them to be :-)


Ah I wasn't aware there were more than three books in the series! I'll have to see how I feel after finishing the first, I'm only a quarter in at the moment and have so many other books on my list before I fully commit to reading all the expanse books.

As mentioned The Third Body problem seems to be highly recommended and perhaps you'd like it too.

Re: What are you reading?

Postby yo » March 16th, 2016, 3:47 pm

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I'll definitely check it out! Thanks for the recco.


There are currently 5 books in the Expanse series and I hear a book 6 is due out soon!

Re: What are you reading?

Postby AndyMc » March 21st, 2016, 11:21 pm

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Currently reading "How to win friends and influence people", which is mostly common sense for friendly human interaction, but great for outlining the basics of avoiding an argument and steer an otherwise disagreeable person to your favour.

Also reading "The Fools Errand" from the Tawny Man Trilogy by Robin Hob, which is the follow on series from the Farseer Trilogy. I'd recommend giving these a shot if you enjoy fantasy reading, they become very addictive!
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Sketchgrad » March 22nd, 2016, 8:53 am


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HelenGreene wrote:I don't like reading.


I didn't like reading either. Much preferred watching some groundbreaking TV or a great movie and considered myself more of a "visual" person. The thought of picking up a book in my evenings or weekends never even crossed my mind.

BUT I found myself moving and having a half hour train ride in the morning and a half hour in the evening. Theres only so many times you can shuffle your iPod and gaze out of the window so I ordered a few books that were recommended and now I enjoy my train rides because I can read.....and I also sometimes continue with the book before bed or at the weekend :wink:

Re: What are you reading?

Postby Mr-914 » August 1st, 2016, 11:15 am

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I just finished "Re-inventing Collapse" by Dmitry Orlov. It was OK. A little too conspiratorial, pessimistic and "Walking Dead" for me.

Someone on the boards had mentioned "Managing the Design Factory" by Donald Reinertsen. I'm about 80 pages in now and my mind is blown. I had no idea there were strong logical arguments to be made in managing product development. I wish I had this toolbox 10 years ago to help make my arguments. It's fun to when one's life experiences lead to the same conclusions as advanced theoretical models.

BTW: Not an easy read for a designer. The author is from engineering and so he tosses a lot of maths with little explanation of what it means. Be prepared.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Mr-914 » October 4th, 2016, 11:12 am

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Loved "Managing the Design Factory". I wish I had read this 10 years ago. Lots of stuff I knew from experience, but great to get theory behind it.

Just finished Douglas Rushkoff's "Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus". As someone who has read all his books, it's a continuation of the themes he explored in Life, Inc. and Present Shock. I always enjoy his writing so much that I don't mind if the content isn't too novel to me.

I'm 3 chapters into "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance". So many people have suggested this book to me that when a colleague told me he could loan me a copy, I jumped at it. Similar to "design factory", I wish I had read this years ago. I feel like Robert Pirsig is how designers feel and John, his traveling companion, is how business people feel. I can't wait to enjoy the rest of the book and see where it all goes.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby NURB » October 7th, 2016, 2:53 pm

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Just starting 747, by Joe Sutter. Didn't realize the book existed until Sutter passed several weeks ago. The guy basically watched Boeing being born in front of his eyes as a child, then went on to run the team that developed the unthinkable (at the time) 747. Pretty interesting read so far. Heavy on the engineering side. A bit, but still cool if you're into aircraft at all.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby slippyfish » October 17th, 2016, 2:00 pm

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Mr-914 wrote:I'm 3 chapters into "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance". So many people have suggested this book to me that when a colleague told me he could loan me a copy, I jumped at it. Similar to "design factory", I wish I had read this years ago. I feel like Robert Pirsig is how designers feel and John, his traveling companion, is how business people feel. I can't wait to enjoy the rest of the book and see where it all goes.


Its kind of 1970's touchy-feely and engenders a righteous response from the reader, a la Atlas Shrugged does with college freshmen (disclaimer, that was me at one time) - but the arguments and advocacy for a thing called Quality should resonate with any good designer. Loved the bit about the aluminum beer can shim.

I'm reading 'Understanding Industrial Design' by King and Chang (ex-IDEO ID guys). The book is targeted toward UX designers (or other collaborators) to learn about ID. I'm finding it useful and enlightening, like how reading a history of your own country written by a foreigner can be enlightening (for example - De La Démocratie en Amérique by Tocqueville, or The Right Nation by Micklethwait.)
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby yo » October 17th, 2016, 2:08 pm

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hmm, I'm going to have to give that King/Chang book a read and pass it on to my peers.

Re: What are you reading?

Postby slippyfish » October 17th, 2016, 4:14 pm

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yo wrote:hmm, I'm going to have to give that King/Chang book a read and pass it on to my peers.


I'm trying to burn through it and pass it on to my group at work. Definitely recommended - the authors write quite well (for designers!) and the examples and stories they use to communicate design topics like using all senses, and understanding the spectrum between hard controls and on-screen interfaces are all contemporary and relevant.
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Re: What are you reading?

Postby Mr-914 » November 22nd, 2016, 8:06 am

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I'm 30 pages into The Innovator's Dilemma by Clayton Christensen. I feel like 2016 is my year to find books that I wish I had read 10 years ago.

The thing the book reminds me most of is repeated comments by Yo about how designers qualify ideas versus marketing/sales/etc. I don't know if this summary will make sense, but I'm going to try: the premise is that best management practices work great at increasing performance within a product architecture. However, those best practices actively discourage innovating on the product architecture.

In any case, I think designers do a better job at seeing those architecture shifts. A good example that I see all the time in Canada is manufacturers thinking the advantage of Asian manufacturing is cost. I've seen these manufacturers invest millions in new machinery, hundreds of thousands in consultants and training and then they drop their margins. At the same time, some new entrant manufacturers a high end product in Asia and takes a huge profit. In other words, the domestic manufacturer focuses on performance (in this case, cost per unit) but misses out on the bigger change (because of the diversity of suppliers in Asia, you don't need to sink millions into machinery and tooling to make a new product).

Back to the book though, I'm anxious to see what the author suggests for management changes to see if corresponds to my thinking on the subject.
Ray Jepson

"The key to success in this business is to find a boss who doesn't care." - Mike Rowe

Re: What are you reading?

Postby amunta » November 22nd, 2016, 4:43 pm


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I just finished Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut. It was a pretty interesting story about a dystopian future where pretty much all jobs have been automated and the New World is being run by engineers. The fact that it was written in 1952 blows my mind.

Highly recommend it to all you ID-ers/manufacturers out there

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