Books shelved under “Economics”

18 reviews found

  1. Book cover for Flash Boys

    Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt

    by Michael Lewis

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    As some of you may be aware, one of my many hats at my day job involves being a math teacher. I try to cover as much financial literacy as I can manage, regardless of the course I’m teaching, because this is a fundamentally important topic in our society. So I’m always looking to learn more about how finances actually work in our society. We hear a lot about the “stock market,” but what does…

  2. Book cover for How Music Got Free

    How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, the Turn of the Century, and the Patient Zero of Piracy

    by Stephen Richard Witt

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, the Turn of the Century, and the Patient Zero of Piracy was published in 2015, and I was a little worried that being three years old would already render it obsolete. Fortunately, I was wrong. Stephen Witt’s explanation of the rise of mp3 and the transition from CDs to digital stores to streaming, along with the corresponding piracy, is clear and detailed and incredibly fascinating. This…

  3. Book cover for Weapons of Math Destruction

    Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy

    by Cathy O'Neil

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    The profile of the term “Big Data” has risen recently. Yet, like so many buzzwords, people often don’t fully grasp the significance of the term. “Big Data” is more than the nebulous connotation of corporations collecting our information, and perhaps packaging and selling it—although it is that. It is, in fact, about how corporations quantify everything we do, even the information we don’t realize we’re leaking out into the world, and then use that data…

  4. Book cover for Trekonomics

    Trekonomics: The Economics of Star Trek

    by Manu Saadia

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Money is one of humanity’s most clever and enduring technologies. It is a brilliant way of transferring value across vast distances and decentralizing our economy. Barter makes sense on a hyperlocal, neighbourly scale, but you can’t run a vast industrial economy on it. As Niall Ferguson chronicles in his excellent The Ascent of Money, increases in numismatic sophistication were vital in increasing the range of trade and our abilities to innovate and provide services…

  5. Book cover for For the Win

    For the Win

    by Cory Doctorow

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I don’t much like economics. I like Cory Doctorow’s metaphor here in For the Win of the economy like a train: most people have no idea where it’s going, or whether the driver is even still alive; while economists speculate on all of this, some people pay attention to them while others just ignore them entirely and watch the scenery go by.

    I don’t much like economics, but I guess I should admit that the…

  6. Book cover for Life Inc

    Life Inc: How Corporatism Conquered the World, and How We Can Take It Back

    by Douglas Rushkoff

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Neuromancer remains one of the most influential science-fiction books I’ve read. It’s the kind of book that influenced me even before I had read it by influencing books and TV shows and movies that I then read or watched. However, it’s not William Gibson’s imagination of cyberspace that sticks with me. Rather, it’s his vision of a future dominated by corporations, one where governments are atrophied entities and one’s life and prosperity are dependent upon…

  7. Book cover for How Not to Be Wrong

    How Not to Be Wrong: The Hidden Maths of Everyday Life

    by Jordan Ellenberg

    5 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I math for a living. I mathed, both amateurly and professionally, at school. I math quite a bit. And as a math teacher, I like reading "pop math" books that try to do for math what many science writers have done for science. So picking up How Not to Be Wrong was a no-brainer when I saw it on that bookstore shelf. I’ve read and enjoyed some of Jordan Ellenberg’s columns on Slate and elsewhere…

  8. Book cover for The Art of Thinking Clearly

    The Art of Thinking Clearly

    by Rolf Dobelli

    1 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    This book is the dead tree equivalent of a BuzzFeed post. Its title could be “I Got 99 Cognitive Biases But a Psychology Degree Ain’t One.” Or maybe not.

    Rolf Dobelli enumerates 99 thinking errors, or cognitive biases, in The Art of Thinking Clearly, dispensing as he does tips for leading a more rational, less error-prone life. Anyone who has done even the least amount of reading in this subject will recognize many of…

  9. Book cover for Shop Class as Soulcraft

    Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work

    by Matthew B. Crawford

    2 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I always regret not being more handy than I am. The feeling I get when wielding a screwdriver is the closest I can come to understanding what people mean when they say, “I just can’t do math!” It always bothers me when people insist upon this, as if mathematical skill is something that you either have or you do not. But when I am reduced to basic manipulation of the physical world, I understand their…

  10. Book cover for Prisoner Of The State

    Prisoner Of The State

    by Zhao Ziyang

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I’m not exactly up on the Chinese history; it’s not a subject that we covered much in school. Most of what I know comes by way of hazy pop culture references and exposure via the slightly counterfactual nature of science fiction and historical fiction. Moreover, having been born and raised subsequent to the Cold War and the height of anti-communist sentiment in the West, not to mention just after the Tienanmen Square incident, the history…

  11. Book cover for Thinking, Fast and Slow

    Thinking, Fast and Slow

    by Daniel Kahneman

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I kind of want to cut this book in half, praise the first part, and stick the second part in some corner to gather dust. Not that the second part is bad, mind you; the entire book is well-written and obviously the product of someone who knows their field. There’s just a lot of it. Thinking, Fast and Slow is kind of like a guest who shows up to your party and then dazzles everyone…

  12. Book cover for Dead Aid

    Dead Aid: Why Aid Is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way for Africa

    by Dambisa Moyo

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Africa is this huge, Africa-shaped continent south of Eurasia and kind of east of South America. It’s well known for many reasons, such as elephants, lions (but not tigers or bears), and cheetahs. It’s the place where modern hominins evolved … yet now, millions of years later, it is one of the most impoverished places on Earth. Of course, I’m speaking broadly here. As anyone who has actually done much work on or in Africa…

  13. Book cover for Macrowikinomics

    Macrowikinomics: Rebooting Business and the World

    by Don Tapscott

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Full disclosure: I received this book in a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. Loves me the free books.

    In Wikinomics, Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams argue that the Internet has irrevocably altered the way corporations and businesses will interact and develop new products and services. The proprietary, closed models of research and design are obsolete and must be replaced by mass collaboration with outside talent. Companies that do not embrace this new ethic of…

  14. Book cover for Wikinomics

    Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything

    by Don Tapscott

    3 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Full disclosure: I received this book for free, though it was on my to-read list already.

    I first heard about Don Tapscott on CBC's Spark, where Nora Young interviewed him about the Net Generation and "digital natives." They also have an interview about MacroWikinomics, the sequel to Wikinomics, which I will be reading soon.

    Tapscott intrigued me. According to Wikipedia, he was born in 1947. Yet he talks about the effects of…

  15. Book cover for Free

    Free: The Future of a Radical Price

    by Chris Anderson

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    At the beginning of Free, Chris Anderson presents a generalized dichotomy toward "Free." Some—mostly the older users—are suspicious of Free and insist they will have to pay somewhere down the line. Many younger users, on the other hand, think that Free, on the Internet at least, is a truism. Anderson says his goal is to convince us that neither camp has it completely right and that the truth lies somewhere in the middle.

    This…

  16. Book cover for The Ascent of Money

    The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World

    by Niall Ferguson

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    Long have I regarded the economy as a fickle, fictitious construct of humanity. If we disappeared, it would disappear (although its effects on the environment would remain). However, that's a very naive view to take, and not a particularly helpful one. So I set out to learn more about the economy the way we're told to learn about things in school: begin at the beginning. The Ascent of Money is an attempt to recount the…

  17. Book cover for Remix

    Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy

    by Lawrence Lessig

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I'd recommend Remix to anyone who creates content, whether as part of their day job or simply as a hobby in their basement. Lawrence Lessig takes the complicated issues surrounding modern copyright and explains them in terms laypeople can comprehend. Moreover, he makes a compelling argument from an economic standpoint as to why less copyright could lead to more profit.

    My favourite quotation from this book is:

    Copyright law has got to give up its

  18. Book cover for The Numerati

    The Numerati

    by Stephen Baker

    4 out of 5 stars

    Reviewed

    I agree with those reviewers who found this book somewhat less awesome than they initially anticipated. Coming from a math background, and as surrounded by technology as I am, I think that the book would have had more of an impact with me if I knew less about these issues already. And that's why I'm giving it such a high rating: it does a good job educating, and I like that in a book.

    Stephen…