Reading highlights from Q4 2020

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3 min, 436 words

I read a lot of books throughout the year, but rarely write anything up after finishing them. While I don't think I have enough to say about any one book after my first read, I want to capture a sentence or two about them to look back on, and to share with others. If I mention a book here that you want to talk about send me a message.

Q4 2020 List

  • Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
    • I've been really interested in the idea of quality and how we achieve it in what we build. Everybody uses a different definition of "good", and I enjoyed the exploration of the topic in this book.
  • Blockchain Chicken Farm
    • Having grown up in rural kentucky and working in industrial chicken farming, then pivoting to writing software after high school this was a fantastic read. A lot to reflect on, the shared humanity, and the audacity of the software industry shined beginning to end.
  • Subprime Attention Crisis
    • A good exploration of the dangers in the ad based internet economy. While the ad industry has made a lot of tools available to those who couldn't afford them outright, I think we can do better than the current ad economy. While shrinking sectors can hurt, I think we need to be careful not to accidentally lead individuals to believe we need to maintain the ad economy at the invasive scale we are at today.
  • Understanding Computation
    • As advertised. Computational theory using Ruby. I enjoyed the read and will probably revisit Part II sometime. It is a big book covering a wide range of topics and I don't think I internalized Part II enough.
  • The Hardware Hacker
    • A collection of articles from "bunnie" relaying his experience and some philosophies while manufacturing in the open. The term shanzhai has popped up here and in other reading over the last few years.
  • Angular Development with Typescript, Second Edition
    • What it sounds like. Reading this for work, and it was helpful as I got going with Angular.
  • Programming Typescript
    • What it sounds like. A good read after going through the docs at
  • Vader Down
    • Vader being Vader. Fun short read.
  • Shadowfall
    • This popped up as new at the library, and I was a few chapters in when I realized I had missed the first book in a series. So far I like it. It's in the same vein as rogue squadron, and the author is working to write characters in a complicated environment. Curious to see how the series wraps up and if the character arcs land.