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pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2013-04-05 15:21
Since there usually is not more than one book
a year one wants to shout about so I'll won't specify a year this time.
So far the winner is Liespotting by Pamela Anderson. (ehrm Meyer).
Yes, I am a sucker who thought there is something useful to glean from it.

Apart from the howlers
"The USA economy looses seven GDP percent
annually from deception."
But how much does it gain?

Eckman's lie detection rate is 95%
That one is easy. What is the
sure sign that salesman is lying?
His lips are moving


And. My favourite Dilbertism:

"One way an auditor might suggest combating a Millennial's personal isolationism would be to encourage managers to help each team member to strategize a medium-term career development plan."

The book can be summarized in
two paragraphs, nay, two words.
"People lie".

There is nothing of a substance in there.
Same old trite misconceptions.
Money and time irretrievably lost.

"Allez, circulez, rien à voir ici."

вакансия "Программист Психологической службы" -але! у нас ошибко! не работает бля-бля-бля -вы хотите об этом поговорить?

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2013-05-02 11:05
Not one, but two.
I mean I have read
Drop Dead Healthy
by A. J. Jacobs, thought WTF?
then forgot and then read
The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.
(Fool me twice...)

And these totally crappy books
started me thinking.

Don't we have a case of cognitive
dissonance here? When those books
are positioned as written
by totally average people who are looking for fulfilling one's life,
AND
live near Central Park in Manhattan?

If they were, say, engaging
in some extreme activities and then
writing down their experiences then
it would be interesting.

But all Jacobs dares is
to buy for 49.95$ a board to shit
in crouching position
and to meditate watching the sleep
button of his iMac (he forgot to
mention its price).

Gretchen, herself, is "alas, running pretty close to efficiency"
and then promotes
the singing in the toilet.

That's it.

Being so full of oneself and wanking in
front of the mirror (AKA blogging) is it the disease of late 2010 or what?

And if you (like me) think that there just might be some usable info there, you will
be disappointed, like I was.

вакансия "Программист Психологической службы" -але! у нас ошибко! не работает бля-бля-бля -вы хотите об этом поговорить?

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2013-05-02 11:05
< Update >
Guess, who
is the dad-in-law of Gretchen Rubin?

вакансия "Программист Психологической службы" -але! у нас ошибко! не работает бля-бля-бля -вы хотите об этом поговорить?

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2013-12-16 13:51
And this year winner is Science delusion by Rupert Sheldrake
The title resonates (alas not morphically) with some other title.

I don't recall precisely how I stumbled into this personage.
(Either it was some talk "banned" by TED or unbanned Google talk).

The premise of the book is sort of nice. Those scientists draped
in their ebony towels have lost the sense of reality, and most
importantly, adventure.

They don't see what's happening under their own noses.
And then it pours, the facts that science is unable to explain.
Like that Indian woman (he got her name wrong, but totally)
which substitutes on prana only.
The mathematician with IQ of 126 and virtually no brain.
...

And everything is explainable by morphic fields.

It was entertaining at the beginning, and moreover,
my credo is "know (the face of) thy enemy."

But, but. When the quick Google check amply demonstrates the
shoddiness of his facts (he wasn't able even to get a name
of Stentor roeseli right). When his rants are becoming a bit repetitive.
When he gives a free will to the electrons...

Nah. Avoid.

BTW, the story with the woman feeding on prana. Some bastards
made her vomit, and found some bits of popadum in there.
Bon appétit!

вакансия "Программист Психологической службы" -але! у нас ошибко! не работает бля-бля-бля -вы хотите об этом поговорить?

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2014-03-25 11:22
There was some masochistic pleasure in reading
Pink's Drive.
But I have decided to stop.
Avoid by all means.
Pop-psychology at it's worst. I should have suspected that
much, when he quoted Maslow.

The summary:
the new century brought
Motivation 3.0
(internal motivation)
Before that there was Motivation 2.0
(factory motivation since nineteenth century, i.e. cash incentives]
And before that
Motivation 1.0 (animal instincts, i.e. sex).

Thus all the creations of the past (books, drawings, games)
are only illusions.
Since the Drive book wasn't written yet.
And thus the internal motivation couldn't happen.


The advice peddled is stolen from the immortal
Dogbert's Top Secret Management Handbook
---
You might be tempted to try to keep employees satisfied in order to
maintain productivity. That's not easy. Employee satisfaction can be
expensive, sometimes even unhygienic. There is only one germ-free
and economical alternative to addressing the employee satisfaction
issue. See if you can locate it on this list:

EMPLOYEE SATISFACTION ALTERNATIVES
1. Increase salaries.
2. Improve the working environment.
3. Do an employee satisfaction survey and ignore the results.

Choice 3 is the correct answer. But be careful how you design the
employee satisfaction survey. If you allow the employees to say
what's really bothering them, they might expect you to change
something; i.e., expect you to do work, and that would pretty much
hose all the benefits of this approach.
...
If your employees are fixated on selfish short-term goals such as food,
shelter, and happiness, that is exactly the time when skilful manage-
ment is most needed. Your challenge is to convince the employees to
focus on long-term goals, such as their manager's career.
---

I do like the gang of Daniel Kahneman, Dan Ariely, Mark Twain, etc.
But, I prefer to read their books by far.

OFFENDERS WILL BE TERMINATED

AndyM


Total Posts: 2308
Joined: Mar 2004
 
Posted: 2014-03-26 11:49
Why??! What possessed you?

I used to be disgusted; now I try to be amused...

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2014-03-26 13:44
I was driven by the curiosity.

OFFENDERS WILL BE TERMINATED

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2014-07-02 16:29
Hacking For Beginners – Manthan Desai

The guy knows even less than I do.
And tries to promote himself, his site, Vishnu
and himself.

Most of the stuff there is about Windows XP.
(The book is written in 2010)

One of the most daring stuff was to rename
crap.exe to rose.jpg.
Well, a turd by any other name will stink just as bad.
Avoid.

OFFENDERS WILL BE TERMINATED

Cheng


Total Posts: 2814
Joined: Feb 2005
 
Posted: 2014-07-02 16:44
Didn't you read the Amazon reviews ? Or is it some kind of masochistic pleasure that drives you to wade through this stuff Evil Grin ?

"Don't try to run there's no way to survive / A vicious surrender I'll eat you alive / No one is safe until I get my fill / All hear my warning I'm king of the kill"

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2014-07-02 17:22
Is that shit sold on Amazon? I found it through quite a circuitous route.
Didn't bother to check it's presence there.

> Or is it some kind of masochistic pleasure that drives you to wade through this stuff

There is a bit of that, true.
But the Amazon reviews aren't extremely informative either. No, sahib.

< EDIT > I can't say that this thread is often updated.

OFFENDERS WILL BE TERMINATED

jslade


Total Posts: 1064
Joined: Feb 2007
 
Posted: 2014-07-04 00:09
"But the Amazon reviews aren't extremely informative either. No, sahib."

The secret to useful amazon reviews; find someone who is good at it and ignore everyone else. For example, NP's own Bachelier is pretty good:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/pdp/profile/A3CKPNSGA7JOLK/

"Learning, n. The kind of ignorance distinguishing the studious."

Rashomon


Total Posts: 166
Joined: Mar 2011
 
Posted: 2014-07-30 06:55
As is NP's own Aaron Brown.

"My hands are small, I know, but they're not yours, they are my own. And they're, not yours, they are my own." ~ Jewel

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2014-12-20 11:26
Shantaram by Roberts.
"Based on true story" (My ass.)

There are 500 5 stars reviews and 50 one star reviews on Amazon.
Go figure.

SubHessian remake of some or another original book.
A cool ex-heroin addict finding an enlightenment at India
within 900 pages of bad prose.

Avoid. Even if you are stuck in a desert plane with no other book.
Better read safety instructions.

Disclaimer: Hermann Hesse is a great writer.

OFFENDERS WILL BE TERMINATED

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2015-12-11 14:33
This year winner is The Truth by Neil Strauss.

An Odyssey of a guy who wanted to work out
how to be faithful to his Ingrid (This one?)

( New Frankeistein 1974)
I was skimming over sort of hot excerpts about orgies in Paris.
(Hi, Nonius!)
so decided to try the whole shit.
Naw, avoid.

Some nice one liners, like this one

> Then again, no matter what your point of view may be, you can
> always find someone with a Ph.D to support it

most probably stolen.
That's it.

I doubt it's veracity, I disliked its characters. I learned nothing.
And, yes, he comes back to his Solveig.

It's funny how there are definite circles of celebrities hanging
(and jerking) together, and often, you like the guy (say, Sam Harris)
you like the guys he likes (Christopher Hitchens and so on).

Being naturally curious, I started widening the net, and got
interested in Tim Ferriss (do not read his books!) and the gang he interviews
(like Arnold Schwarzenegger, Adam Scott),
but the rest of his gang as a whole sucks.
They just promote each other and themselves (Mutual Admiration Society.)

Neil is just one of these fakers. The fucker.


I do have a winner for the other category.
But haven't finished it yet.

I saw a dead fish on the pavement and thought 'what did you expect? There's no water 'round here stupid, shoulda stayed where it was wet.'

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2016-06-01 10:40
The Dice man by Rhinefart.

You have got everything in it. Sex, drugs, and psychoanalysis.

The premise, the protagonist (psychoanalyst) decides to spice
up his life by introducing the randomness by throwing (up) the
dice. And so it goes. Cliché after cliché after cliché...
I was interested whether it will work out into some twist.
No. Never.
Only if when writing the book the author were using the dice himself,
it might have salvaged something.

By the way, if you haven't read the short story by Borges,
"Lottery of Babylon."
I implore you to do it now.

I saw a dead fish on the pavement and thought 'what did you expect? There's no water 'round here stupid, shoulda stayed where it was wet.'

Dizzy


Total Posts: 245
Joined: May 2006
 
Posted: 2016-06-01 11:55
pj: I haven't read the book, but at least it is said to have inspired some decent 80s music, if nothing else. Smiley

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cT3I_dlnNHE

"Although the code snippet makes taking over the earth look fairly easy, you don't see all the hard work going on behind the scenes." - Programming F#, Chris Smith

polysena


Total Posts: 1039
Joined: Nov 2007
 
Posted: 2016-06-01 13:47
Ah pj I disagree with you on the Dice man, which I found interesting as a thought experiment.. pushes serendipity to its extreme. I have heard that the author has lived his life by these standards and even created something like a "group" of followers. Read the article telegraph on George Cockcroft
" But now The Dice Man is selling more copies than ever before. "Yes, and it is in print in more countries now. It is very strange. But it is still a cult book and not a best-selling book. It sells enough to make the publishers happy.""

By the way I had read Borges before and liked very much.
And agreed pj at times the book is a bit boring or.. but still fascinating about "surrending to the power of fate in an absolute"...
"Does he still consult the dice?

"At my age I am too stuck in the mud to use it for what young people should and do use it for. On the other hand, in theory, I have liberated myself . . . and there is not much left to discover." "



Poly

Свобода - это то, что у меня внутри. (Ленинград и Кипелов - "Свобода") Кому то очень больно, а кому то заебись (Серебряная свадьба)

pj


Total Posts: 3316
Joined: Jun 2004
 
Posted: 2016-08-18 11:43
Dean Radin's Supernormal.

Who doesn't want to believe (for youngsters it is X-Files reference.)
I do. So I plunged in there.

Somehow, I was reminded of
quip by Henri Broch about the diminishing of psi powers
in history. We had moving Easter Island statues,
then chairs, then bending spoons, and now we try to see
the results in the quantum level.

Exact!
Here Dean presents the single photon quantum entanglement experiments.
Which were analyzed unmercifully in here.

My two cents. The quantum entanglement
phenomenon does not require
a living consciousness!
A device can be used just as successfully, you, moron. Angry

Further on the author argues that since there are zillions of recorded paranormal phenomena
(UFOs, crop circles (!) etc.) there must be something in that.
Yeah, since are thousands of three dollar bills circulating
around, some of them should be acceptable in Wall Mart.

Aslo some intriguing anecdotes. Which are, as he stresses himself, anecdotes.

What bugged me most was a bait-n-switch technique.
For example he talks about levitation and then he presents the meta-analysis for the
feeling of being stared at. What?

As the aforementioned reviewer said, if he weren't reaching
for
the stars, maybe there would be some genuine dollar bills lying around.

Finally, my conclusions were:
If the book has an endorsement by Deepak Chopra, avoid.

< EDIT >
Previously a part of my rant has been eaten by Cthulhu (or a Phat Phinger Monster.)

I saw a dead fish on the pavement and thought 'what did you expect? There's no water 'round here stupid, shoulda stayed where it was wet.'
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