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  • 50 Books to Understand Everything

    Definitive List of 50 Books to Understand Everything in the Universe

    The “Vitruvian Man” approach to building knowledge, wisdom, and foresight.

    ...
    A few weeks ago I put up a note on my LinkedIn (see above) about books that can form the building blocks to our understanding of just about everything there is to know in this universe. Essentially, I wanted to understand why are we the way we are and why have our social, political and biological systems evolved into what they are today.

    The response was so good that it took me over a month to get this post together with the top 50 of the over 100+ recommendations.
    Full list is at the google doc here.
    I call it my “planet-scale meta-intelligence” book-list. Why planet-? To imply that all knowledge that has ever existed in the history of mankind is compressed into these 50 books. Why meta-? It certainly won’t teach you quantum mechanics or calculus — that’s too specific — but it’ll tell you why those tools were needed, when, and the part they played to get us to where we are today.
    ...
    https://medium.com/swlh/definitive-l...e-6d04f1a08533
    Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
    TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
    Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

  • #2
    Bit light on philosophy, but then I just skimmed the list. I would also say it's a list of just about everything there is to know in this universe that we know about so far

    I just ordered some Spinoza, Freud, and Hegel. I heard them referenced, even if as a joke, so often I figured its about time to read what it's all about.
    Wisdom is personal

    Comment


    • #3
      I just stick to the Hitchhiker's Guide and keep an eye on where my towel is
      Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe (H G Wells)
      Mit der Dummheit kaempfen Goetter selbst vergebens (Friedrich von Schiller)

      Comment


      • #4
        IMHO this is a list of easy, popular reads that are good. I think that only the bolded were great:

        I've read:

        -parts of "The Selfish Gene"

        -Principles, Ray Dalio

        -Poor Charlie's Almanac

        -Crossing the Chasm

        -Innovator's Dilemma

        -parts of Black Swan

        -Only the Paranoid Survive

        -Parts of Tipping Point

        -Thinking Fast and Slow

        -My Years with General Motors

        -Man's Search for Meaning


        -Influence

        -Social Intelligence

        -parts of Manufacturing Consent
        Zhitomir-Berdichev, West of Kiev: 24 Dec 1943-31 Jan 1944
        Stalin's Favorite: The Combat History of the 2nd Guards Tank Army
        Barbarossa Derailed I & II
        Battle of Kalinin October 1941

        Comment


        • #5
          I consider this as a start point for discussion and alternate selections. Must admit that most on the list are new to me but also of interest.
          Obviously the list could be expanded, especially from a military history perspective.
          For example, I'd place Sun-Tzu's "Strategy of War" here.
          I've read Jared Diamonds "Guns, Germs, and Steel" and can see it's value, but he has another book or two I'd recommend.

          After looking over the link author's suggested list, I'd encourage others to add to it. For example, recently reading some R.A. Heinlein ("Requiem...") there are some older titles he suggests that I'll present here eventually that might also be useful.
          Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
          TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
          Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

          Comment


          • #6
            Interestingly, there isn't a single book on that list on warfare or conflict...

            On strategy in a single volume I'd recommend either

            Michael Handel's Masters of war or Edward Luttwak's Strategy The Logic of War and Peace

            One that I think should be read in this day and age by everyone given the extremes of environmentalism and things like Gorebal Warming is

            William Baxter's People or Penguins The case for optimal pollution

            It is the classic from which to debate these subjects. It also demolishes entirely the "Zero tolerance" mentality that has gripped the environmental movement showing how utterly stupid the idea of eliminating all pollution really is.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by G David Bock View Post
              Definitive List of 50 Books to Understand Everything in the Universe

              The “Vitruvian Man” approach to building knowledge, wisdom, and foresight.

              ...
              A few weeks ago I put up a note on my LinkedIn (see above) about books that can form the building blocks to our understanding of just about everything there is to know in this universe. Essentially, I wanted to understand why are we the way we are and why have our social, political and biological systems evolved into what they are today.

              The response was so good that it took me over a month to get this post together with the top 50 of the over 100+ recommendations.
              Full list is at the google doc here.
              I call it my “planet-scale meta-intelligence” book-list. Why planet-? To imply that all knowledge that has ever existed in the history of mankind is compressed into these 50 books. Why meta-? It certainly won’t teach you quantum mechanics or calculus — that’s too specific — but it’ll tell you why those tools were needed, when, and the part they played to get us to where we are today.
              ...
              https://medium.com/swlh/definitive-l...e-6d04f1a08533
              Thanks for the effort.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by warmoviebuff View Post

                Thanks for the effort.
                FWIW, my only effort here is having found the article/list and posting a brief copy-paste of some of it's content(written by another) and the link.
                Whiskey for my men, and beer for my horses.
                TANSTAAFL = There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
                Bock's First Law of History: The Past shapes the Present, which forms the Future. *

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by T. A. Gardner View Post
                  Interestingly, there isn't a single book on that list on warfare or conflict...

                  On strategy in a single volume I'd recommend either

                  Michael Handel's Masters of war or Edward Luttwak's Strategy The Logic of War and Peace ...
                  Not surprising as the emergence of warfare is predicated on a number of other conditions. It would not be one of the base elements needed to understand the universe we live in.

                  Any metaphor will tear if stretched over too much reality.

                  Questions about our site? See the FAQ.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by GCoyote View Post

                    Not surprising as the emergence of warfare is predicated on a number of other conditions. It would not be one of the base elements needed to understand the universe we live in.
                    It is one of the fundamental things you need to operate in society. That is how to function in conflict. That goes for business, disagreements with your neighbor, or anything else not just open warfare.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      [QUOTE=T. A. Gardner;n5040155]Interestingly, there isn't a single book on that list on warfare or conflict...

                      On strategy in a single volume I'd recommend either

                      Michael Handel's Masters of war or Edward Luttwak's Strategy The Logic of War and Peace

                      After reading your post I went searching for those 2 books. The price on both brand new is through the roof!.. I already own Clausewitz, Machiavelli, and Sun Tzu. But through searching I found this new book with an odd title that became available just a few months ago. Its called
                      Strategy Strikes Back: How Star Wars Explains Modern Military Conflict

                      https://www.amazon.com/Strategy-Stri...ZWGFHZYBQ7HY7W


                      The book already has 53 reviews almost all of them 5 stars!?!..... very strange for a "professional" military strategy book to be based on the Star Wars books and movies.

                      Theo mir ist die munition ausgegangen ich werde diesen ramman auf wiedersehen uns in walhalla

                      Comment

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