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notes of the last couple of days

this font is interesting. still not sure if i like it or if it fits. roboto mono. i almost like the "chunky" feel of it, but i'm not sure if this is a result of poor rendering or something else.

should learn more about Fonts - just noticed that Iosevka is written in code - not a font development application. this is interesting to me - would love to learn more about creating my own font in the future. maintainimg my own color scheme is enough though for now - there are better projects for me to work on now that aren't user facing or design-based in this same way.

poor feedback

Poor feedback from readers a catalog of public junk emails. it's wonderfully interesting to dig through all of these. i'll post some of my own soon.

designing better file organization

Designing better file organization around tags, not hierarchies File Systems this article is very well written, but regardless of the details i absolutely agree with the core tenets - hierarchies simply are not as expressive as tag and object graphs, and it's often incredibly difficult to understand how to force a system to fit a single file hierarchy. building a file system in the future that exposes a command like 'zfs' or 'btrfs', but one to configure and reconfigure the standard file system based on all of these types, sounds fantastic - and the idea of digging through a file system by orienting it in different ways is reminiscent of Labyrinth | A Ravensburger Brand in a way, movind and shifting all of these walls and hallways until a system that fits properly is found. "git as a file system" is really interesting and solves so many problems with mutability, but only as explicitly managed. another idea to play with in Joss, where joss should and must be a game, because it's far harder to learn and develop programs that aren't games and hold them to the same level of feeling, quality and usability. i wonder how such a program can encourage the developer to inspect their system - to learn more about systemctl, for example, or to martial logic into structured data that's manipulated throughout the lifetime of the repl or program. ipfs is fascinating. so much further reading here

various recommendations from the internet

i have far too many recs and things to go through floating around now, but here are lots more that i've seen or received:

nick arner

Nick Arner

Books Posted at — Sep 6, 2021

These are by no means a comprehensive list of books I own or have read; but are ones that I own and have read that related to my work. Sharing in the hope of finding new ones to read and sparking interesting and productive conversations.


Architectural Intelligence - Molly Wright Steenson tells of how designers and architects were influential in the early days of computing.

A Pattern Language - Architect Christopher Alexander’s most well-known work; also inspired a generation of programmers working on Object-Oriented Programming. Focuses on common patterns in architecture and the built environment, and how to use them to create livable spaces.

Chambers For A Memory Palace - A series of letters between two authors on the topic of place-making.

Experiencing Architecture - Collection of examples of architectural design throughout human civilization.

How Buildings Learn - Stewart Brand’s classic text on how the usage of buildings changes over time.

How Architecture Works: A Humanist’s Toolkit - Provides a framework for understanding architecture both as a form of art, and an everyday occurrence that enables people to live comfortably.

Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth - Fuller’s seminal work on our relationship to the Earth and how we can build in a healthy way.

  1. Buckminster Fuller: World Man - Fuller’s previously un-published 1966 Kassler lecture at Princeton University School of Architecture

The Language of Cities - An exploration of what cities are; how we live with and identify with them.

The Poetics of Space - Discusses how humans relate to common spaces (attics, cellars, drawers, living rooms, etc).

The Timeless Way of Building - Another Alexander book; this one focuses on the idea that the best living spaces and built environments are built organically based on common human needs.

Tools of the Imagination - A collection by the National Building Museum covering 250 years of design tools and technologies for builders

Towards a New Architecture - Le Corbusier’s manifesto advocating for modern architecture.

Artificial Intelligence

Understanding Computers and Cognition: A New Foundation for Design - An approach to understanding what computers can and cannot do, and that relationship to human cognition and language.

What Computers Still Can’t Do: A Critique of Artificial Reason - Philosopher Hubert Dreyfus' 1972 manifesto argues that disembodied machines cannot achieve consciousness.

Society of Mind - Marvin Minsky’s text on his theory of natural intelligence.

Creation: Life and How To Make It - Steve Grand, creator of the game Creatures, discusses the nature of artificial life.

The Computer and The Brain - Johnny von Neuman’s last published (and unfinished) work covering the nature of the human brain and its relation to computational machines.

Computer Graphics

Visual Computing - Two Silicon Graphics, Inc. alumni discuss computers' ability to generate and display images, and that relationship to art and human psychology and perception.

Computers and the Imagination : Visual Adventures Beyond the Edge - Examination of how computers have transformed visualization.

Image Objects - Chronicles the history of the field of computer graphics through the stories of several objects that played a part in its history.

A Biography of The Pixel - Alvy Ray Smith, co-founder of Pixar; tells the story of how computers can be used to display images.

Creative Code

Code as Creative Medium - Golan Levin and Tega Brain provide pedagogic exercises for instructors teaching creative coding.

HOLO Issue One and Two - Collection of notable media arts work and artist profiles.

Maeda @ Media - Designer and artist John Maeda shares his work combining computer programming and graphic design from his days working at the MIT Media Lab.


The Storm Of Creativity - Covers the stages of the creative process, with examples from practicing artists, architects, poets, and others.

Flow - Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s groundbreaking work on “psychology of optimal experience”.

Creativity - Csikszentmihalyi’s follow up book; on the nature of creativity.

Art and Fear - Moving meditations on “doing the work” in the face of loneliness or discouragement. Directed towards young artists early in their career, but the lessons are all equally applicable regardless of your domain.


B is for Bauhaus - Wide ranging work on the objects and concepts of modern design

Design as Art - Artist and Designer Bruno Munari makes the case that all of the designed objects that people use should be beautiful, functional, and accessible.

Designing for People - A classic work providing an overview of Industrial Design.

Digital Design Theory - A collection of essays from the 1960’s to the present covering the intersection of technology and design.

Thoughts On Design - Graphic designer Paul Rand makes the case that all areas of design should simultaneously be useful and beautiful.

Notes on The Synthesis of Form - Yet another Christopher Alexander book; focused on evolutionary design.

The Beauty of Everyday Things - Japanese folk-craft pioneer Soetsu Yanagi similar to Munari, that everyday objects that people use should be created with reverence and respect.

The Language of Things - A work exploring the common traits between beautiful objects such as “…an iPhone, an anglepoise lamp, a Picasso, a banknote, an Armani suit…”.

The Laws of Simplicity - John Maeda discusses how good design can sometimes involve making complex things simple to use and interact with; and may involve removing things rather than adding new features.

The Shape of Design - A meditation on the pleasure of making things for others.

Visual Thinking - Rudolf Arnheim argues against the idea that language goes before perception, and makes the case that artistic creation is a method of perceiving the world.

The Visual Display of Quantitative Information - Edward Tufte’s seminal work on the characteristics of good information visualization displays.


Audio Cyclopedia - A book from my grandfather (a radio broadcast engineer of 50 years)’s library; everything you could want to know about all variety of audio equipment.

Dictionary of Electronics - Very handy desk reference.

Engineer’s Notebook: Integrated Circuit Applications - A classic text (also from. my grandfather’s library) written by the legendary Forrest R. Mims III.

Understanding Electronics - Another, more introductory textbook outlining theory through understanding practical components

Grob Basic Electronics - A standard electronics textbook.

Human-Computer Interaction

A Small Matter of Programming - A sadly out of print book exploring the difficulties around end-user programming and application development. (You should absolutely tell Stripe Press that you would like to see them re-issue this, by the way…)

Abstracting Craft - Another sadly out of print book I was lucky to snag at a used bookstore. Focuses on computation as a medium for working and crafting in, rather than a set of tools.

Affective Computing - The creator of the term, MIT Media Lab academic Rosalind Picard, expands upon her foundational text on the subject.

Computational Interaction - A collection of papers about the area of study of the title; using machine learning, signal processing, and control theory to improve interaction between humans and computers.

Cybernetic Creativity - Discusses the nature of creativity and its relationship to computation.

Designing Interactions - The Bible of the field; extensive interviews and analysis of practitioners and products.

Enchanted Objects - David Rose imagines a more humane version of the Internet of Things, where everyday objects can anticipate and serve our needs.

Interface Culture - Wide ranging work tying today’s computer interfaces to Victorian novels, early cinema, and Medieval urban planning.

Interfacing Thought: Cognitive Aspects of Human-Computer Interaction - Chapters on the relationship between human cognition and the use of computers.

Leonardo’s Laptop - Far reaching work calling for people to expect more from their computers; causes the reader to wonder what da Vinci may have been able to accomplish with a computer.

Mindstorms - Seymour Papert’s classic work on making computing accessible to children.

Plato and The Nerd - Discusses how computers, given their powerful ability to simulate the real world, can evolve a co-partnership with their human creators.

The Best Interface Is No Interface - Golden Krishna makes the case that interfaces should disappear; a call to arms for ambient computing.

The Humane Interface - Jef Raskin (father of the Macintosh project at Apple) outlines the qualities of what good user interfaces look and behave like.

Tools for Thought - Howard Rheingold discusses the pioneers of computing who believed in the field’s potential to transform and enhance human thought and capability.

**Miscellaneous **

Finite and Infinite Games - A bit of a Silicon Valley trope; but one of my favorite books. Encourages the reader to think of our interactions with others as positive-sum (an infinite game; where the goal is to keep playing) and a finite game (zero-sum, where the purpose is to “win” in finality).

The Craftsman - Beautiful meditation on craftsmanship across a variety of disciplines - the desire to a job well for it’s own sake.


On Photography - Susan Sontag’s evocative collection of essays on the philosophy of photography.

Understanding a Photograph - John Berger once again with a series of essays on the history and nature of photography as a new medium for artistic expression.

Why Photography Matters - Meditation on how photography is not only an artistic medium, but also a way to know about the world around us.


Mind in Motion: How Action Shapes Thought - Barbara Tversky makes the case that “movement and our interactions in space, not language, are the true foundations of thought”.

Supersizing the Mind - Andy Clark argues that the act of thinking is not just confined to what happens in our head, but also in the way we move and interact with the world and objects around us.

Where the Action Is - Delves into the psychology underpinning Human-Computer Interaction.

Gesture and Speech - Demonstration that the hand and brain work together to shape cognition.

The Hand: How Its Use Shapes the Brain, Language, and Human Culture - Overview of how the human hand has shaped our cognitive, emotional, linguistic, and psychological development.

Hand and Mind - Shows that gestures do not only impact what people say, but also inform how people think.

Hands - Discusses the evolutionary history of the human hand, including its relationship to tool-making and tool-usage.

Metaphors We Live By - Presents the idea that metaphor is a basic building block to how people understand ourselves and the world around us.


The Medium is The Message - Seminal work by Marshall McLuhan on “The New Media”.

The NewMedia Reader - Collection of foundational papers and texts on early computing, interfaces, and associated media and technologies.

Tools for Conviviality - Ivan Illich makes the case for access to tools that enable personal fulfillment, not just productivity.

Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man - McLuhan’s discussion of hot and cool media, and their relationship to the humans that created them.


Designing Sound - Sound designer Andy Farnell walks readers through the principles of synthesis for sound design with practical exercises using PureData

Electronic and Experimental Music - Traces the history of music made with machines from musique concrète to hip-hop sampling.

Embodied Music Cognition and Mediation Technology - Presents an argument that embodied cognition provides a framework for thinking about the tools that we use to make and create music.

Kraftwerk: Future Music from Germany - Covers the history of the iconic German electronic band, including discussion of their broader impact on more mainstream music and culture.

Musical Gestures - Collection of essays on the relationship between gestures and music.

Signal Processing

An Introduction to Information Theory - Explanatory work on the field without the heavy math.

Software Engineering

Code: The Hidden Language of Computer Hardware and Software - Explains how computers work from a bottoms-up approach; from the hardware level up to the application layer.

Geek Sublime - A software engineer discusses the relationship between programming and Sanskrit.

Hackers and Painters - Y-Combinator co-founder Paul Grahm’s series of essays on the nature of hackers and their relationship to their work.

Working in Public - Nadia Eghbal researches the motivations of open-source software development

Operating System Concepts - “The Dinosaur Book”; textbook on operating systems.

The C Programming Language - Classic Kernighan and Ritchie text.

Learn Objective-C on the Mac - One of my first programming books; how I learned to first write iOS software

The Design of the Unix Operating System - Provides an overview of the internal structure of Unix and its relationship to the computer programmer.

Concepts of Programming Languages - academic textbook on programming language theory

Technology History

A Mind at Play - Biography of the Father Of Information Theory, Claude Shannon.

Bootstrapping - Chronicles Douglas Englebart and his work at the Stanford Research Institute that culminated in The Mother of All Demos; which ushered in a new era of how people thought about using computers.

Being Digital - A time capsule of what technology prediction looked like in 1995, written by MIT Media Lab co-founder Nicholas Negropante.

Crystal Fire - Chronicles the history of the transistor; from its origins in research, to invention, to impact on everything in our world today.

Dealers of Lighting - Covers the sweeping technological achievements (and foibles) of Xerox PARC.

Make It New: A History of Silicon Valley Design - Dives into the history of the relationship between designers and the nascent technological hub that would become known as Silicon Valley.

Showstopper! - The story of a team at Microsoft’s journey to ship a brand new Operating System - WindowsNT.

Steve Jobs - Walter Issacson writes about the life and work of Apple co-founder Steven P. Jobs.

In the Beginning Was the Command Line - Sci-fi author Neil Stephanson takes us on a tour of how we used to use computers prior to the GUI.

Peripheral Vision - Tells the story of collaboration between visual artists and computer scientists at Bell Laboratories.

Soul of a New Machine - Tracy Kidder follows a team at Data General racing to get the Eclipse MV/8000 computer to market.

The Big Score - Michael S. Malone writes a sweeping tale of the origins of Silicon Valley from the founding of Hewlett-Packard to the rise of Apple.

The Little Kingdom - The first book documenting Apple Computer.

The Media Lab - Whole Earth Catalog creator Stewart Brand shares a window in the Media Lab during a residency at the institution.

The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Storey - Michael Lewis' chronicle of Silicon Valley Legend Jim Clark.

The One Device: The Secret History of The iPhone - Members of the original iPhone team share their stories.

What the Dormouse Said - An exploration of the relationship between the 60’s counterculture and early computing pioneers.


An Essay on Typography - A short work by Eric Gill argues that a “a good piece of lettering is as beautiful a thing to see as any sculpture or painted picture”.

The Elements of Typographic Style - Defines several typographic terms and concepts, as well as surveys the field for five and a half centuries of history.

Thinking with Type - Visual guide to typographic concepts; underscoring typography’s role in visual communication.

Typography: A Manual For Design - Swiss typographer Emil Ruder’s visual guide to typographic concepts.

© Copyright Nicholas Arner, 2022 |

bret victor's bookshelf

https://theinternate.com/2016/04/03/brett-victors-bookshelf.html The Internate Bret Victor's bookshelf

On January 5, 2016 Bret Victor tweeted a picture of his bookshelf. I’ve catalogued all of the books, by topic, below. They cover a wide variety of subjects, and I think they’re really interesting if you are a fan of Bret’s work. Comics

Understanding Comics by Scott McCloud Reinventing Comics by Scott McCloud Making Comics by Scott McCloud Graphic Storytelling and Visual Narrative by Will Eisner (published by W. W. Norton & Company) Graphic Storytelling and Visual Narrative by Will Eisner (published by Poorhouse Press) Expressive Anatomy for Comics and Narrative by Will Eisner Comics and Sequential Art by Will Eisner DC Comics Guide to Coloring and Lettering Comics by Mark Chiarello and Todd Klein Faster Than a Speeding Bullet by Stephen Weiner How To Draw Comics The Marvel Way by Stan Lee and John Buscema The Visual Language of Comics by Neil Cohn Perspective! for Comic Book Artists by David Chelsea The Comics of Chris Ware by David M. Ball and Martha B. Kuhlman Chris Ware by Daniel Raeburn Krazy Kat by George Herriman and Patrick McDonnell and Peter Maresca


The Illusion of Life: Disney Animation by Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas How to Make Animated Films by Tony White Grammar of the Film Language by Daniel Arijon 3D Art Essentials by Ami Chopine 3D Animation Essentials by Andy Beane

Game design

Chris Crawford on Game Design by Chris Crawford Racing the Beam by Nick Montfort How to Do Things with Videogames by Ian Bogost Homo Ludens by Johan Huizinga Theory of Fun for Game Design by Raph Koster


The Non-Designer’s Type Book by Robin Williams The Splendor of Islamic Calligraphy by Abdelkebir Khatibi and Mohammed Sijelmassi The Elements of Typographic Style by Robert Bringhurst Type by Simon Loxley Calligraphy by Arthur Baker

Interface design

About Face by Alan Cooper and Robert Reimann The Art of Interactive Design by Chris Crawford Designing Interactions by Bill Moggridge The Art of Human-Computer Interface Design by Brenda Laurel The Humane Interface by Jef Raskin

Industrial design

Human Engineering Guide for Equipment Designers by Wesley Woodson and Donald W. Conover Designing for People by Henry Dreyfuss Cradle to Cradle by Michael Braungart and William McDonough The Design of Everyday Things by Don Norman Small Things Considered by Henry Petroski

Visual design

Understanding Color by Linda Holtzschue Interaction of Color by Josef Albers and Nicholas F. Weber The Nature and Art of Workmanship by David Pye Logic and Design by Krome Barratt A History of Graphic Design by Philip B. Meggs Universal Principles of Design by William Lidwell and Kritina Holden The Non-Designer’s Design Book by Robin Williams The Nature and Aesthetics of Design by David Pye

Visual thinking

Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards Visual Thinking by Rudolf Arnheim Art and Visual Perception by Rudolf Arnheim The Elements of Dynamic Symmetry by Jay Hambidge The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception by James J. Gibson Laws of Seeing by Wolfgang Metzger and Lothar Spillmann On the Rationalization of Sight by William Mills Ivins and Jean Pelerin The Back of the Napkin by Dan Roam Unflattening by Nick Sousanis

Information design

The Visual Display of Quantitative Information by Edward R. Tufte Envisioning Information by Edward R. Tufte Visual Explanations by Edward R. Tufte Beautiful Evidence by Edward R. Tufte Graphic Discovery by Howard Wainer Show Me the Numbers by Stephen Few Information Dashboard Design by Stephen Few Playfair’s Commercial and Political Atlas and Statistical Breviary by William Playfair The Elements of Graphing Data by William S. Cleveland Visualizing Data by William S. Cleveland Semiology of Graphics by Jacques Bertin Visual Complexity by Manuel Lima The Book of Trees by Manuel Lima and Ben Shneiderman Information Graphics by Robert L. Harris Graph Design for the Eye and Mind by Stephen M. Kosslyn The Grammar of Graphics by Leland Wilkinson and D. Wills Cartographies of Time: A History of the Timeline by Daniel Rosenberg and Anthony Grafton On the Map by Simon Garfield Exploratory Data Analysis by John W. Tukey Cartographic Relief Presentation by Eduard Imhof The Collected Works of John W. Tukey. Volume I by John W. Tukey and William S. Cleveland The Collected Works of John W. Tukey. Volume IV by John W. Tukey and L.V. Jones The Collected Works of John W. Tukey. Volume V by John W. Tukey and William S. Cleveland


Introduction to Architecture by Francis D. K. Ching and James F. Eckler A Visual Dictionary of Architecture by Francis D. K. Ching How Buildings Learn by Stewart Brand How to Read Bridges by Edward Denison and Ian Stewart Notes on the Synthesis of Form by Christopher Alexander The Death and Life of Great American Cities by Jane Jacobs and Jason Epstein A Pattern Language by Christopher Alexander and Sara Ishikawa The Timeless Way of Building by Christopher Alexander


The Mother Tongue by Bill Bryson Language Myths by Laurie Bauer and Peter Trudgill Stein on Writing by Sol Stein Maps of the Imagination by Peter Turchi The Devil’s Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce The Art of Description by Mark Doty All The Fun’s In How You Say A Thing by Timothy Steele The Careful Writer by Theodore M. Bernstein Roget’s Thesaurus by Princeton Language Institute Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary by Merriam-Webster

Music theory

Harmonic Experience by W. A. Mathieu On the Sensations of Tone by Hermann Helmholtz Temperament by Stuart Isacoff How Equal Temperament Ruined Harmony by Ross W. Duffin Choreo-graphics by Ann Hutchinson Guest Traces Of Dance by Paul Virilio and Valerie Preston-Dunlop


Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath Getting More by Stuart Diamond Switch by Chip Heath and Dan Heath Why We Buy by Paco Underhill Influence by Robert B. Cialdini


The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton M. Christensen The Essential Drucker by Peter F. Drucker Peopleware by Tom DeMarco and Tim Lister The Design of Design by Frederick P. Brooks Jr. The Mythical Man-Month by Frederick P. Brooks Jr.


Computer Lib by Theodor H. Nelson ??? The Last Whole Earth Catalog by Stewart Brand Whole Earth Epilog by Stewart Brand The Next Whole Earth Catalog by Stewart Brand The Millennium Whole Earth Catalog by Howard Rheingold Whole Earth Software Catalog by Stewart Brand What to Do After You Hit Return by People’s Computer Company My Computer Likes Me When I Speak in Basic by Robert Albrecht


Understanding Media by Marshall McLuhan Narrative across Media by Marie-Laure Ryan The Bias of Communication by Harold Innis The Printing Press as an Agent of Change by Elizabeth L. Eisenstein Media and Symbols by D. R. Olson

The New Medium

Hamlet on the Holodeck by Janet H. Murray Computers as Theatre by Brenda Laurel Computer Lib by Theodor H. Nelson Literary Machines by Theodor H. Nelson Mirror Worlds by David Gelernter ??? Data Management Human Interface: Where People and Computers Meet by Richard A. Bolt Libraries of the Future by J. C. R. Licklider Future Libraries by R. Howard Bloch and Carla Hesse Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard From Memex To Hypertext by James M. Nyce and Paul Kahn Artificial Reality 2 by Myron K. Krueger Software Takes Command by Lev Manovich Augmenting Human Intellect by D. C. Engelbart


How Children Fail by John Holt How Children Learn by John Holt Learning All The Time by John Holt The End of Education by Neil Postman What’s Math Got to Do with It? by Jo Boaler How to Survive in Your Native Land by Jack Herndon Mindstorms by Seymour A. Papert The Children’s Machine by Seymour Papert The Connected Family by Seymour Papert Changing Minds by Andrea diSessa Getting It Wrong from the Beginning by Kieran Egan The Educated Mind by Kieran Egan Thought and Language by Lev S. Vygotsky Mind in Society by Lev S. Vygotsky Toward a Theory of Instruction by Jerome Bruner On Knowing by Jerome Bruner Actual Minds, Possible Worlds by Jerome Bruner Life in Classrooms by Philip W. Jackson What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy by James Paul Gee Dumbing Us Down by John Taylor Gatto A Different Kind of Teacher by John Taylor Gatto Weapons of Mass Instruction by John Taylor Gatto The Underground History of American Education by John Taylor Gatto

Embodied thinking

Where Mathematics Come From by George Lakoff and Rafael Nuñez Cognition in the Wild by Edwin Hutchins The Hand by Frank R. Wilson The Hand Owner’s Manual by Roy A. Meals I Am a Strange Loop by Douglas R. Hofstadter Evocative Objects by Sherry Turkle The Inner Game of Tennis by W. Timothy Gallwey Impro by Keith Johnstone Descartes’ Error by Anthony Damasio Being There by Andy Clark Where the Action Is by Paul Dourish Simulation and Its Discontents by Sherry Turkle Shop Class as Soulcraft by Matthew B. Crawford

The mind

Frames of Mind by Howard Gardner Origins of the Modern Mind by Merlin Donald Gödel, Escher, Bach by Douglas R. Hofstadter The Large, the Small and the Human Mind by Roger Penrose The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind by Julian Jaynes Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi The Master and His Emissary by Iain McGilchrist The Quest for Consciousness by Koch Christof In Search of Memory by Eric R. Kandel The Society of Mind by Marvin Minsky On Intelligence by Jeff Hawkins Mind Wide Open by Steven Johnson The Meme Machine by Susan Blackmore

Concepts and metaphysics

Understanding Computers and Cognition by Terry Winograd and Fernando Flores Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies by Douglas R. Hofstadter Surfaces and Essences by Douglas Hofstadter and Emmanuel Sander Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things by George Lakoff The Symbolic Species by Terrence W. Deacon Metaphors We Live By by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson The Way We Think by Gilles Fauconnier and Mark Turner Origins of Human Communication by Michael Tomasello

Creativity and ideas

Common as Air by Lewis Hyde Making Ideas Happen by Scott Belsky The Gift by Lewis Hyde Where Good Ideas Come From by Steven Johnson The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron Good Work by Howard E. Gardner and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi The Act of Creation by Arthur Koestler

Scientific creativity

How to Solve It by G. Polya Induction and Analogy in Mathematics by G. Polya Patterns of Plausible Inference by G. Polya Mathematical Discovery by G. Polya And Suddenly the Inventor Appeared by Genrich Altshuller Art of Doing Science and Engineering by Richard W. Hamming Creating Scientific Concepts by Nancy J Nersessian The Engelbart Hypothesis by Valerie Landau, Eileen Clegg, and Douglas Engelbart What Engineers Know and How They Know It by Walter G. Vincenti

Philosophy of Science

Falling for Science by Sherry Turkle The Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas S. Kuhn The Road since Structure by Thomas S. Kuhn What Is This Thing Called Science? by Alan F. Chalmers Scientific Discovery by Patrick W. Langley and Herbert A. Simon Against Method by Paul Feyerabend The Origins of Knowledge and Imagination by Jacob Bronowski Reliable Knowledge by John M. Ziman The Sciences of the Artificial by Herbert U. Simon Science in Action by Bruno Latour Laboratory Life by Bruno Latour and Steve Woolgar

Technology and culture

What Technology Wants by Kevin Kelly Out of Control by Kevin Kelly The Nature of Technology by W. Brian Arthur Amusing Ourselves to Death by Neil Postman Technopoly by Neil Postman Convergence Culture by Henry Jenkins Here Comes Everybody by Clay Shirky Small Pieces Loosely Joined by David Weinberger Remix by Lawrence Lessig Code by Lawrence Lessig The Future of Ideas by Lawrence Lessig Computers and Society by Richard W. Hamming The Coming of the Body by Herve Juvin Condition of Man by Mumford Lewis The Identity of Man by Jacob Bronowski Interface Culture by Steven A. Johnson Computer Power and Human Reason by Joseph Weizenbaum The Computer Age by Joel Moses Michael L. Dertouzos Science and Human Values by Jacob Bronowski ??? From Satori to Silicon Valley by Theodore Roszak The Cult of Information by Theodore Roszak The Clock Of The Long Now by Stewart Brand Engines of Creation by Eric Drexler Free Software Free Society by Richard Stallman Superintelligence by Nick Bostrom Science Is Not Enough by Vannevar Bush I Seem to Be a Verb by R. Buckminster Fuller Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth by R. Buckminster Fuller Utopia or Oblivion by R. Buckminster Fuller Synergetics by R. Buckminster Fuller


EcoCities by Richard Register The Ecology of Commerce by Paul Hawken The World Without Us by Alan Weisman Sustainable Energy by David JC MacKay Don’t Even Think About It by George Marshall Our Choice by Al Gore


No Logo by Naomi Klein Deschooling Society by Ivan Illich Tools for Conviviality by Ivan Illich The Omega Seed by Paolo Soleri Confessions of an Economic Hit Man by John Perkins Born to Buy by Juliet B. Schor The Naked Ape by Desmond Morris The Savage Mind by Claude Lévi-Strauss The Disappearance of Childhood by Neil Postman The Meaning of Human Existence by Edward O. Wilson Seeing like a State by James C. Scott Reassembling the Social by Bruno Latour The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell

Cultural history

A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn Guns, Germs, and Steel by Jared M. Diamond Collapse by Jared Diamond Lies My Teacher Told Me by James W. Loewen Thinking in Time by Richard E. Neustadt and Ernest R. May Centuries of Change by Ian Mortimer

History of math

Mathematics and Its History by John Stillwell Ways of Thought of Great Mathematicians by H. Meschkowski A Concise History of Mathematics by Dirk J. Struik Journey through Genius by William Dunham A History of Chinese Mathematics by Jean-Claude Martzloff King of Infinite Space by Siobhan Roberts Chaos by James Gleick The Lady Tasting Tea by David Salsburg Henri Poincaré by Jeremy Gray Henri Poincaré by Ferdinand Verhulst Emergence of the Theory of Lie Groups by Thomas Hawkins The Equation That Couldn’t Be Solved by Mario Livio Science Awakening by B. L. Van Der Waerden Mathematics by Morris Kline

History of numbers and notation

The Universal History of Numbers by Georges Ifrah Zero by Charles Seife An Imaginary Tale by Paul J. Nahin Gamma by Julian Havil Number Words and Number Symbols by Karl Menninger Enlightening Symbols by Joseph Mazur Numbers by Heinz-Dieter Ebbinghaus et al. Before Writing, Volume I by Denise Schmandt-Besserat Before Writing, Volume II by Denise Schmandt-Besserat The History of Counting by Denise Schmandt-Bessert

1st Person Historical Math

Euclid’s Elements by Euclid The Geometry by René Descartes An Introduction to Mathematics by Alfred North Whitehead Symbolic Logic by Lewis Carroll Mathematical Logic by Stephen Cole Kleene An Investigation of the Laws of Thought by George Boole A Mathematician’s Apology by G. H. Hardy The World of Mathematics Volume 1 by James R. Newman The World of Mathematics Volume 2 by James R. Newman The World of Mathematics Volume 3 by James R. Newman The World of Mathematics Volume 4 by James R. Newman

Math (Misc)

Mathematics by A. D. Aleksandrov and A. N. Kolmogorov Elementary Mathematics from an Advanced Standpoint: Geometry by Felix Klein Elementary Mathematics from an Advanced Standpoint: Arithmetic, Algebra, Analytics by Felix Klein Nonlinear Dynamics and Chaos by Steven H. Strogatz Visual Complex Analysis by Tristan Needham Visual Complex Functions by Elias Wegert On Numbers and Games by John H. Conway Winning Ways for Your Mathematical Plays by Elwyn R. Berlekamp and John H. Conway Surreal Numbers by Donald E. Knuth Flatland by Edwin A. Abbott DIV, Grad, Curl, and All That by Harry M. Schey Measurement by Paul Lockhart Pearls of Discrete Mathematics by Martin Erickson Indiscrete Thoughts by Gian-Carlo Rota Discrete Thoughts by Mark Kac, Gian-Carlo Rota, Jacob T. Schwartz ???

Geometric Algebra

Geometric Algebra for Computer Science by Leo Dorst and Daniel Fontijne Geometric Algebra for Physicists by Chris Doran and Anthony Lasenby Linear and Geometric Algebra by Alan Macdonald Vector and Geometric Calculus by Alan Macdonald Clifford Algebra to Geometric Calculus by David Hestenes and Garret Sobczyk

Groups & Symmetry

Visual Group Theory by Nathan Carter The Symmetries of Things by John H. Conway and Heidi Burgiel Groups and Their Graphs by Israel Grossman and Wilhelm Magnus Regular Polytopes by H. S. M. Coxeter Symmetry by Hermann Weyl Symmetry by Roy McWeeny


The First Six Books of the Elements of Euclid by Oliver Byrne ??? Turtle Geometry by Harold Abelson and Andrea diSessa The Geometry of Art and Life by Matila Ghyka The Fractal Geometry of Nature by Benoit B. Mandelbrot New Horizons in Geometry by Tom Apostol and Mamikon Mnatsakanian Regular Polytopes by H. S. M. Coxeter

Geometric Construction

Graphic Statics by Seibert Fairman, Chester Sherman Cutshall Engineering Descriptive Geometry by Frank William Bartlett Practical Geometry and Engineering Graphics by W. Abbott History of Engineering Drawing by P.J. Booker The History and Development of Nomography by Dr. H. A. Evesham and Brenda Riddell The design of diagrams for engineering formulas and the theory of nomography by Laurence I. Hewes

Probability and Artificial Intelligence

Theory of Probability by Harold Jeffreys Probability Theory by E. T. Jaynes Data Analysis by Devinderjit Sivia Probabilistic Graphical Models by Daphne Koller and Nir Friedman Perceptrons by Marvin Minsky and Seymour A. Papert Machine Learning by Tom M. Mitchell Heuristics by Judea Pearl

Systems & Modeling

The Systems Bible by John Gall General Principles of Systems Design by Gerald M. Weinberg and Daniela Weinberg An Introduction to General Systems Thinking by Gerald M. Weinberg Theory of Modelling and Simulation by Bernard P. Zeigler Dynamics of Physical Systems by Robert H. Jr. Cannon Introduction to Engineering Design by T.T. Woodson The Nature of Mathematical Modeling by Neil Gershenfeld Alternate Realities by John L. Casti Living Control Systems III by William T. Powers Six Degrees by Duncan J. Watts Emergence by Steven Johnson Cybernetics by Norbert Wiener The Human Use Of Human Beings by Norbert Wiener Selected Papers of Norbert Wiener by Norbert Wiener

Signal Processing

Signals and Systems by Alan V. Oppenheim and Alan S. Willsky Discrete-Time Signal Processing by Alan V. Oppenheim and Ronald W. Schafer Multirate Systems And Filter Banks by P. P. Vaidyanathan

Information theory

Elements of Information Theory by Thomas M. Cover and Joy A. Thomas An Introduction to Analog and Digital Communications by Simon Haykin and Michael Moher Introduction to Data Compression by Khalid Sayood Information and Randomness by Cristian S. Calude Grammatical Man by Jeremy Campbell


3D Computer Graphics by Alan Watt 3D Math Primer for Graphics and Game Development by Fletcher Dunn and Ian Parberry The Nature of Code by Daniel Shiffman

Numerical Analysis

Introduction to Applied Numerical Analysis by Richard W. Hamming Numerical Methods for Scientists and Engineers by R. W. Hamming Convex Optimization by Stephen Boyd and Lieven Vandenberghe

Circuit Design

Fields and Waves in Communication Electronics by Simon Ramo and John R. Whinnery Analog Integrated Circuit Design by David Johns and Kenneth Martin Analysis and Design of Analog Integrated Circuits by Paul R. Gray and Paul J. Hurst Analog Circuit Design by Bob Dobkin and John Hamburger Digital Integrated Circuits by Jan M Rabaey Logic Synthesis by Srinivas Devadas and Abhijit Ghosh Introduction to VLSI Systems by Carver Mead and Lynn Conway Analog VLSI and Neural Systems by Carver Mead

Architecture of Operating Systems

Computer Architecture by John L. Hennessy and David A. Patterson The Architecture of Symbolic Computers by Peter M. Kogge The Design of the UNIX Operating System by Maurice J. Bach Modern Operating Systems by Andrew S. Tanenbaum Capability-based computer systems by Henry M Levy Hard Real-Time Computing Systems by Giorgio C. Buttazzo

History of Science

The Discoverers by Daniel J. Boorstin Hidden Histories of Science by Robert B. Eds. Silvers The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Science by E. A. Burtt The Man Who Saw Through Time by Loren C. Eiseley A History of Mechanical Inventions by Abbott Payson Usher The Clockwork Universe by Edward Dolnick Longitude by Dava Sobel John Von Neumann by Norman MacRae A Force of Nature by Richard Reeves Tesla by Margaret Cheney The Mystery of Metamorphosis by Frank Ryan A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson Genius by James Gleick Francis Crick by Matt Ridley Warmth Disperses and Time Passes by Von Baeyer, Hans Christian Suspended In Language by Jim Ottaviani and Leland Purvis A Feeling for the Organism by Evelyn Fox Keller The Birth Of The Modern by Paul Johnson Great Physicists by William H. Cropper The Codex Leicester by Leonardo da Vinci ??? Clocks And Culture by Carlo M. Cipolla Lunar Men by Jenny Uglow The Making of the Atomic Bomb by Richard Rhodes The Victorian Internet by Tom Standage Wind Wizard by Siobhan Roberts Faraday, Maxwell, and the Electromagnetic Field by Nancy Forbes and Basil Mahon Einstein by Walter Isaacson Bell Laboratories innovation in telecommunications, 1925-1977 by Roland Mueser The Maxwellians by Bruce J. Hunt Oliver Heaviside by Paul J. Nahin Renaissance Engineers from Brunelleschi to Leonardo da Vinci by Paolo Galluzzi Laser by Nick Taylor John Dalton and the Atom by F Greenaway The Copernican Revolution by Thomas S. Kuhn

First person historical science

Discourse On Bodies In Water by Thomas Salusbury Operations of the Geometric and Military Compass by Galileo Galilei Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems by Galileo Galilei The Principia by Isaac Newton Faraday’s Experimental Researches in Electricity by Michael Faraday Faraday as a Discoverer by John Tyndall A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field by James Clerk Maxwell The Scientific Papers of James Clerk Maxwell, Vol. I by James Clerk Maxwell Modern Views of Electricity by Sir Oliver Lodge Treatise on Light by Christiaan Huygens The Collected Works of J. Willard Gibbs Vol. I by J. Willard Gibbs The Collected Works of J. Willard Gibbs Vol. II by J. Willard Gibbs Calculating Engines by Charles Babbage The Value of Science by Henri Poincare The Electron by Robert Andrews Millikan The Theory of Electrons by H. A. Lorentz The Chemical History of a Candle by Michael Faraday Physics and Beyond by Werner Heisenberg Relativity by Albert Einstein The Evolution of Physics by Albert Einstein and Leopold Infeld Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman! by Richard P. Feynman The Character of Physical Law by Richard Feynman Feynman Lectures On Computation by Richard P. Feynman My Inventions by Nikola Tesla The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin The Double Helix by James D. Watson Ph.D. A Life Decoded by J. Craig Venter What is Life? by Erwin Schrodinger The Art of the Soluble by P.B. Medawar Collected Papers by Claude Elwood Shannon Electrons and Holes in Semiconductors by William Shockley

History of computers

The Idea Factory by Jon Gertner History of Semiconductor Engineering by Bo Lojek Revolution in Miniature by Ernest Braun and Stuart MacDonald Engines of Logic by Martin Davis Microcosm by George Gilder Dealers of Lightning by Michael A. Hiltzik The Dream Machine by M. Mitchell Waldrop What the Dormouse Said by John Markoff Where Wizards Stay Up Late by Katie Hafner The Information by James Gleick Hackers by Steven Levy Revolution in The Valley by Andy Hertzfeld Insanely Great by Steven Levy Turing’s Cathedral by George Dyson A Few Good Men From Univac by David E. Lundstrom The Man Who Invented the Computer by Jane Smiley Possiplex by Ted Nelson Geeks Bearing Gifts by Ted Nelson The Soul of A New Machine by Tracy Kidder Tools for Thought by Howard Rheingold Bootstrapping by Thierry Bardini History of Computing in the Twentieth Century by Nicholas Metropolis The UNIX Hater’s Handbook by Simson L. Garfinkel and Daniel Weise Memory Machines by Belinda Barnet A History of Personal Workstations by Adele Goldberg History of Programming Languages by Richard L. Wexelblat History of Programming Languages, Volume 2 by Thomas J. Bergin and Richard G. Gibson The Closed World by Paul N. Edwards From Counterculture to Cyberculture by Fred Turner The Chip by T.R. Reid

Programming languages

APL by Raymond Polivka and Sandra Pakin The Design and Evolution of C++ by Bjarne Stroustrup The Annotated C++ Reference Manual by Margaret A. Ellis and Bjarne Stroustrup The Joy of Clojure by Michael Fogus and Chris Houser Eiffel by Bertrand Meyer Programming Erlang by Joe Armstrong FORTH by W. P. Salman, O. Tisserand and B. Toulout Thinking Forth by Leo Brodie Introduction to Fortran by S.C. Plumb The Little Schemer by Daniel P. Friedman and Matthias Felleisen The Seasoned Schemer by Daniel P. Friedman and Matthias Felleisen The Reasoned Schemer by Daniel P. Friedman and William E. Byrd The Little MLer by Matthias Felleisen and Daniel P. Friedman Programming in Lua by Roberto Ierusalimschy Lucid, the Dataflow Programming Language by William W. Wadge Clause and Effect by William Clocksin Sketchpad by Ivan Edward Sutherland (thanks to Paul McJones for finding this) Smalltalk-80: The Interactive Programming Environment by Adele Goldberg Smalltalk-80: Bits of History, Words of Advice by Glen Krasner Smalltalk-80: The Language and its Implementation by Adele Goldberg and David Robson The TeXbook by Donald E. Knuth TeX: The Program by Donald E. Knuth Metafont: The Program by Donald E. Knuth Viewpoint: Toward a computer for Visual Thinkers by Scott Kim Visual Grammars for Visual Languages by Fred Lakin


How to Design Programs by Matthias Felleisen and Robert Bruce Findler Design Patterns by Erich Gamma, Richard Helm, Ralph Johnson, John Vlissides The Art of the Metaobject Protocol by Gregor Kiczales and Jim des Rivieres Elements of Programming by Alexander A. Stepanov and Paul McJones Concepts, Techniques, and Models of Computer Programming by Peter Van Roy and Seif Haridi Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs by Harold Abelson and Gerald Jay Sussman Types and Programming Languages by Benjamin C. Pierce Essentials of Programming Languages by Daniel P. Friedman and Mitchell Wand Advanced Compiler Design and Implementation by Steven Muchnick Introduction to Algorithms by Thomas H. Cormen and Charles E. Leiserson Hacker’s Delight by Henry S. Warren Programming Pearls by Jon Bentley Coders at Work by Peter Seibel Computation by Marvin Lee Minsky Purely Functional Data Structures by Chris Okasaki The Space and Motion of Communicating Agents by Robin Milner Superdistribution by Brad J. Cox A Small Matter of Programming by Bonnie A. Nardi Basic Category Theory for Computer Scientists by Benjamin C. Pierce


The Feynman Lectures on Physics, Vol. I by Richard P. Feynman The Feynman Lectures on Physics, Vol. II by Richard P. Feynman The Feynman Lectures on Physics, Vol. III by Richard P. Feynman Six Easy Pieces by Richard P. Feynman New Foundations for Classical Mechanics by David Hestenes Structure and Interpretation of Classical Mechanics by Gerald Jay Sussman and Jack Wisdom A Guide to Feynman Diagrams in the Many-Body Problem by Richard D. Mattuck and Physics The Universe in a Nutshell by Stephen W. Hawking The Illustrated “A Brief History of Time” and “The Universe in a Nutshell” by Stephen W. Hawking Relativity Visualized by Lewis Carroll Epstein Collective Electrodynamics by Carver A. Mead The Quark and the Jaguar by Murray Gell-Mann The Science of Radio by Paul J. Nahin Dreams of a Final Theory by Steven Weinberg The Sun, The Genome, and The Internet by Freeman J. Dyson From Being to Becoming by Ilya Prigogine


On Growth and Form by D’Arcy Wentworth Thompson The Red Queen by Matt Ridley Genome by Matt Ridley The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins Biopunk by Marcus Wohlsen Monkeyluv by Robert M. Sapolsky Biocosm by James N. Gardner Human Universals by Donald Brown The Stuff of Life by Mark Schultz and Zander Cannon The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins

bill buxton

revolutionary computer interface designer and researcher https://www.billbuxton.com/ https://www.microsoft.com/buxtoncollection

history of smalltalk

Programming Languages http://worrydream.com/EarlyHistoryOfSmalltalk/




[[Scientific management]], for all its pretensions, was less about determining ideal working methods and more about shattering this tremendous source of worker power. By breaking apart each work process into carefully scrutinized component tasks, Taylor had cracked the secret of labor’s advantage, thereby giving management complete mastery over the productive process. The modernizing terminology of “science” and “efficiency” masked the prerogatives of discipline and control of workers. In political economist Harry Braverman’s estimation, “Taylor raised control to an entirely new plane when he asserted as an absolute necessity of adequate management the dictation to the worker of the precise manner in which work is to be performed.”

— Gavin Mueller, Breaking Things at Work

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