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Old 22-03-19, 23:48   #1001
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Duncan F*****g Stewart
 
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You seem to be suggesting that Sam Harris knows stuff! Would love to hear Harari speak, that guy just gets stuff on an unbelievably deep level.
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Old 23-03-19, 05:05   #1002
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You seem to be suggesting that Sam Harris knows stuff! Would love to hear Harari speak, that guy just gets stuff on an unbelievably deep level.
Just a coincidence you mentioned Harari really but i do quite enjoy his stuff to be fair so some bias there I'm sure.
He gets great guests so irrespective if you like him or loathe him personally, he's worth a listen.

There's been some cross over of guests with other podcasts like Joe Rogan as an example but it's a better conversation overall imo.

Krauss, DeGrasse Tyson, Weinstein all better with him imo plus he gets the likes of Bostrom, Gessan, Kahneman, Deutsch and Dennett.

Some of his politics mainly around Israel-Palestine and his approach to addressing religion is not something I'd agree with but I don't think they pop up remotely often enough to impede the conversations.

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Old 24-03-19, 23:51   #1003
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The Harry Dresden series, Keane! On the second one in a week. They are totally mindless great fun.
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Old 25-03-19, 11:13   #1004
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Just finished Barbarian Days by William Finnegan. It takes me ages to read a book these day and this was no different but it was absolutely my favorite read in a long time.

It is basically a memoir of a guys life in surfing, and you probably will enjoy it more if you like to surf and the water and what not, but it is so beautifully written and passionate I think it would be hard for anyone not to really enjoy it.
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Old 25-03-19, 12:04   #1005
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Read another couple Sherlock Holmes books, really good. Finished Espedair Street, great writing and character creation, just the subject matter wasn't for me. Liked the story overall, just not gripping me to get there.


However, I have just started "The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle" and this book is the opposite, completely gripping, love it so far. The audio version is fantastic. It's about a murder that takes place at an isolated British mansion wedding, with a twist. The day is replayed 7 times, each day you are reliving the events from the point of view of a different person (kindof ), can you solve who did it?
This book was amazing, my favourite I've "read" in a long time. Audiobook was an excellent choice for it. Agatha Christie meets Groundhog Day meets Quantum Leap.
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Old 25-03-19, 22:16   #1006
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This book was amazing, my favourite I've "read" in a long time. Audiobook was an excellent choice for it. Agatha Christie meets Groundhog Day meets Quantum Leap.
Interesting new Chrome feature on Android: if you tap that bolded title, even though it's not a link, but as it's in quotations, then Google searches for it and gives you a link for the book in a little window under your current window.
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Old 26-03-19, 12:09   #1007
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Hmm, doesn't do that for me. Crappy old chrome!
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Old 11-04-19, 21:21   #1008
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Listening to Surveillance Valley by Yasha Levine about the us military funded creation of the internet and how the surveillance was baked in from the start.
Hitting the google chapter now, looking forward to the ammo for when lads in the bbv are creating themselves over the latest non issue google have “solved”

Think I’ll cancel audible for good when I’m done, I just don’t absorb as much, waste of time for novels I’ve found but easy to drift off even with simple enough non fiction
Just about finishing this now. It's not the conspiracy nonsense I thought it might be. Pretty excellent and fascinating. Thanks.

Keep the recommendations coming psv!
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Old 11-04-19, 21:34   #1009
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While we're chatting - The Laundry Files were recommended to me by someone I don't trust. But he was more effusive than normal about how brilliant the series is. Anyone read the series?
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Old 11-04-19, 21:58   #1010
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I've followed PSVs thoughts on Audible, I've echoed similar in the past, I handed back a number of books and exchanged them for what I assume are easier to listen to non-fiction.
Example I got Bertrand Russell's History of Western Philosophy but its 40 hours and I know I can't engage with a book such as that for that long while driving. Blanket rule for me is an audiobook must be less than 10hours ie less 1 week of commuting.

Some I've read recently for anyone interested

I put down Marx & Marxism as I felt it began to dive quite deeply in Marx's ideology and I felt I didn't know quite enough. I read the Communist Manifesto in between which helped but a better understanding of someone like Hegel & Marx's other writings would be helpful. I'll definitely return though.

Little history of Philosophy by Nigel Warburton is a chronological account of western philosophy, everything from Socrates to Singer and it stirred some interest in various philosophers. It's interesting to read the conflicting thoughts and idiosyncrasies of various philosophers, Stuart Mill was a child prodigy who's utilitarian ideology was built upon the foundations of his teacher Jeremy Bentham. Overall a great introduction to a variety of minds.

I'm just finished reading The Prince by Machavelli, it's excellent and lays the foundation for much of political science. The term associated with him has negative connotations and rightly so as his thoughts are quite devious but he basically wrote the foundations of the political playbook in <100 pages. It's well worth a read.

Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday was fine, concept is good but I didn't get much from it to be honest. Not bad but would give it a miss.

Perhaps not of interest to most but Mindfulness in Plain English is an excellent book for those who might be interested in pursuing something like that. It's a very easy read but not worth it unless it's a topic that interest you.

I'm about to finish Lost Connections by Johann Hari. Basically a book on causes of depression especially those which extend into the social & environmental. Definitely some interesting thoughts, though nothing particularly profound but interesting collated together with some research to back up the anecdotal.

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Old 12-04-19, 08:50   #1011
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After re-reading the first two Hyperion books (just as good 2nd time around I feel, though the first is far better than the second), I've started into the Culture series for a 2nd time. Read Consider Phlebas and Player of Games already, 1/3 through the Use of Weapons. Really loved Player of Games and am already excited about the future novels as I've forgotten almost all plot lines (apart from the amazing manufactured hell one).

I'm still working through Richard Branson's 2nd autobiography, but it isn't anywhere as gripping as his original one AND as it is a hard copy, it is much harder to find the time to read while messing about putting an almost toddler to bed each night - reading e-books much more convenient at present. Real pity as I keep on buying hard copy books and have some amazing ones lined up, who knows when I'll get the time.
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Old 12-04-19, 10:25   #1012
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After re-reading the first two Hyperion books (just as good 2nd time around I feel, though the first is far better than the second), I've started into the Culture series for a 2nd time. Read Consider Phlebas and Player of Games already, 1/3 through the Use of Weapons. Really loved Player of Games and am already excited about the future novels as I've forgotten almost all plot lines (apart from the amazing manufactured hell one).

I'm still working through Richard Branson's 2nd autobiography, but it isn't anywhere as gripping as his original one AND as it is a hard copy, it is much harder to find the time to read while messing about putting an almost toddler to bed each night - reading e-books much more convenient at present. Real pity as I keep on buying hard copy books and have some amazing ones lined up, who knows when I'll get the time.
Not following up with the 2 endymion ones? they're brilliant on a reread also.such a lovely story
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Old 12-04-19, 12:17   #1013
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Not following up with the 2 endymion ones? they're brilliant on a reread also.such a lovely story
Definitely will, they are already loaded onto my tablet (use Aldiko book reader app) but just wanted a break after the Hyperion ones as I found the second one fairly intense.
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Old 15-04-19, 21:56   #1014
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Was fairly sure Keane had recommended Born to Run on here, but must have been somewhere else.

On the 24th well-chosen book so far this year and it's so far above everything else. What a story. I'd nearly go so far as to suggest that you have to read this book.
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Old 15-04-19, 22:22   #1015
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Was fairly sure Keane had recommended Born to Run on here, but must have been somewhere else.

On the 24th well-chosen book so far this year and it's so far above everything else. What a story. I'd nearly go so far as to suggest that you have to read this book.
Isn't it magic? I'm well overdue a long update here as I hadn't mentioned it, but I just wrote a one liner about it on Goodreads when I finished it.

I just stumbled upon it by chance as it was available on audiobook from the library. I was captivated from start to finish.

Incidentally, for those of us in Ireland at least, the standard of service provided by libraries now - including (but far from limited to) audiobooks straight to the phone - is astounding. If you aren't signed up or haven't called in lately it's well worth your while.
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Old 16-04-19, 10:46   #1016
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I didn't mention Prisoners of Geography that I thought was excellent. Don't know how I forgot to mention it tbh.
It may not be as interesting to those well versed in international politics, war and the history of colonialism but lots of interesting insights:
Spoiler

On a side note, a Vietnamese friend I work with mentioned that he felt there was a political bias at play that I didn't quite pick up on.
Retrospectively I get it but interesting if anyone else who reads it picks it up.
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Old 16-04-19, 11:40   #1017
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I didn't mention Prisoners of Geography that I thought was excellent. Don't know how I forgot to mention it tbh.
It may not be as interesting to those well versed in international politics, war and the history of colonialism but lots of interesting insights:
Spoiler

On a side note, a Vietnamese friend I work with mentioned that he felt there was a political bias at play that I didn't quite pick up on.
Retrospectively I get it but interesting if anyone else who reads it picks it up.
I presume there are a lot of maps and diagrams in that? I unthinkingly bought it on Audible but have been avoiding it in order to read it instead.
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Old 16-04-19, 12:11   #1018
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I presume there are a lot of maps and diagrams in that? I unthinkingly bought it on Audible but have been avoiding it in order to read it instead.
No, you would expect that but it just shows one map at the start of the each section which isn't very detailed.

To be honest, one criticism I would have of the book is that it should be visualised a tad more throughout the chapter.

You could take a look at the accompanying PDF and see the maps. IMO you'd lose very little of the book without the visuals.
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Old 16-04-19, 13:46   #1019
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I read it last year, really enjoyed it. Some things I had never thought about. I actually listened to it and needed no maps tbh.
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Old 25-04-19, 09:59   #1020
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I know Keane read "Your money or your life", has anyone else? Has anyone followed through with the admin?

I like the general idea of it, and I find that few people are conscious of their spending and most would gain a lot from reading it. I'd a friend who went through some major life changes, and what I found fascinating was that no matter what his income was he'd go through it in a week, with pretty much the same level of happiness. I think very few people really think about the utility of money, we're really not built to think that way.

I think the endgame in the book is a little idealistic, particularly in the current investing environment, there's no way you can live off bonds these days. I'd worry too if large swathes of people followed the advice, highly productive people drive the world forward, we don't want them checking out decades ahead of their time, at least wait until we've figured out fusion.
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