Category: Book Reviews

Book Review: Weapons of Math Destruction

Today’s book review is Weapons of Math Destruction, How big data increases inequality and threatens Democracy, by Cathy O’Neil. Cathy O’Neil is a data scientist, with a PhD in mathematics, who blogs here. She has built models, and also tried to deconstruct them for those affected by them. This book is a thoughtful examination of the uses…

Book Review: Superforecasting

Today’s book review is Superforecasting: The art and science of Prediction, by Philip E Tetlock and Dan Gardner. When I explain my work as an actuary to people not involved in finance, I explain that I work out how much money the insurance company needs to set aside from the premiums it receives to make sure…

Book Review: Lost Enlightenment

Today’s book review is a bit different for this blog – the book is a fairly dense history of a part of the world that doesn’t get much attention these days. It is Lost Enlightenment: Central Asia’s Golden Age from the Arab Conquest to Tamerlane, by S Frederick Starr. I bought this book after becoming fascinated by the…

What did I read in 2015?

I’ve written up my annual page about what I read in 2015 here. This year there was a lot of history, inspired by my travels. In this post, I’m just mentioning the books that I enjoyed the most. First, The Innovators: How a Group of Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution, by Walter Isaacson A very…

What did I read in 2014?

I’ve written up my annual page about what I read in 2014 here. In this post, I’m just mentioning the books that I enjoyed the most. First, The Wife Drought, by Annabel Crabb. I reviewed that one here, and you can see I really enjoyed it. It’s my pick for the year. Second, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, by…

Book Review: The Power of Noticing

Today’s book review is The Power of Noticing: What the Best Leaders See, by Max H Bazerman, Harvard Business School Professor. Bazerman is a scholar of decision making, and is Co-Director of the Harvard Kennedy’s School Centre for Public leadership. His thesis is that fundamentally that if you become better at noticing the unexpected, the surprising,…