The best technology books

Who picked these books? Meet our 153 experts.

153 authors created a book list connected to technology, and here are their favorite technology books.
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Book cover of The Culture of Time and Space, 1880-1918

Sonia A. Hirt Author Of Zoned in the USA: The Origins and Implications of American Land-Use Regulation

From the list on time, space, and modern urbanism.

Who am I?

I love cities and I teach about them. I was born in the capital of Sofia, Bulgaria, and landed in the US (mostly by chance) in 1993. Spent most of my professional life in US academia (Michigan, Virginia Tech, Harvard, Maryland, and now Georgia). I never stopped wondering how cities change and why American cities look and function so differently than European cities. So, I wrote a few books about cities, including Iron Curtains; Gates, Suburbs and Privatization of Space, which is about changes in East European Cities after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Sonia's book list on time, space, and modern urbanism

Discover why each book is one of Sonia's favorite books.

Why did Sonia love this book?

This is a breathtaking exploration of how ideas of time and space changed between the 1880s and World War I. Stephen Kern’s mastery of all genres of the arts and literature and throughout the Western world—Europe, Russia, and the US—is beyond belief. No matter who is your favorite intellectual of this era, s/he is right in the narrative. We learn of the massive changes in culture that we owe to this momentous period of time, changes that are still very much with us today.

By Stephen Kern,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Culture of Time and Space, 1880-1918 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Stephen Kern writes about the sweeping changes in technology and culture between 1880 and World War I that created new modes of understanding and experiencing time and space. To mark the book's twentieth anniversary, Kern provides an illuminating new preface about the breakthrough in interpretive approach that has made this a seminal work in interdisciplinary studies.


By Marion Zimmer Bradley,

Book cover of Darkover

Marie Judson Author Of Braided Dimensions

From the list on fantasy and fantasy sci fi with mind powers.

Who am I?

This set of books helped to form my character and my sense of possibility. I think the same passion for these stories and ideas has led me to study the unconscious and dreams. I also am passionate about the earth and caring for nature; the Elven magic deepened my sense of its sacredness while stretching my mind into the fun of creating magical realms. I think it’s a moral code but also a playful way of thinking and being. Other ways I’ve continued from these works, coupled with my love of language, is an extensive study of the Ancient Futhark, the runes, which have magical power in Tolkien’s Middle Earth. 

Marie's book list on fantasy and fantasy sci fi with mind powers

Discover why each book is one of Marie's favorite books.

Why did Marie love this book?

This book carried a concept of shared thought that enchanted me. Colonists find themselves marooned on a planet of simple technologies. At a certain season, a flower sends pollen through the air that causes special connective telepathy and healing powers. They form a society based on royal families but there’s a group that melds minds which is beautifully depicted. This series raised in me a fascination with the idea of closeness of mind and connection. Amid the challenges of a primitive society blended with increasing amounts of outer, technologically advanced influence as their planet is eventually discovered, the mind is shown to still be the most powerful. 

By Marion Zimmer Bradley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Darkover as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This omnibus features two classic, long-unavailable Darkover novels-Darkover Landfall and Two to Conquer-in one volume for the first time.

More from Less

By Andrew McAfee,

Book cover of More from Less: The Surprising Story of How We Learned to Prosper Using Fewer Resources--And What Happens Next

Alessio Terzi Author Of Growth for Good: Reshaping Capitalism to Save Humanity from Climate Catastrophe

From the list on the relationship between the economy and nature.

Who am I?

As an economist at the European Commission, Adjunct Professor in Paris, former fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and now a first-time author, I thrive at the intersection of academia, think-tanks, and policy-making. My academic soul leads me to seek answers to the big questions: what is economic growth and how does it relate to the success of civilization, to science and technology, to people’s wellbeing, and to nature. My practical focus leads me to draw the policy implications of all this for how we ought to fight climate change. My critics accuse me of being an optimist. I take it as a compliment: the future of humanity is in our hands.

Alessio's book list on the relationship between the economy and nature

Discover why each book is one of Alessio's favorite books.

Why did Alessio love this book?

All of McAfee’s work is a testament to the power of human ingenuity and technology in changing the world.

This important book marks no exception, addressing the key problem of managing scarce natural resources in spite of a growing human population and economy. In the process, McAfee challenges some widely-held views, such as the idea that ‘you cannot have an ever-growing economy on a finite planet.’

As a matter of fact, you can and the book shows that since the mid-1990s the US economy has continued to expand while extraction of the 72 raw materials tracked by the US Geological Survey, from aluminum to timber, has diminished (even when considering imports).

To me, More from Less is a testament to the power of technical progress.

By Andrew McAfee,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked More from Less as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'Everyone knows we're doomed by runaway overpopulation, pollution, or resource depletion, whichever comes first. Not only is this view paralysing and fatalistic, but, as Andrew McAfee shows in this exhilarating book, it's wrong... More from Less is fascinating, enjoyable to read, and tremendously empowering' Steven Pinker
Bestselling author and co-director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy Andrew McAfee says there's a new reason for optimism: we're past the point of 'peak stuff' - from here on out, it'll take fewer resources to make things, and cost less to lead a comfortable life.

This turn of events invalidates the…

We Have Been Harmonized

By Kai Strittmatter,

Book cover of We Have Been Harmonized: Life in China's Surveillance State

Dori Jones Yang Author Of When the Red Gates Opened: A Memoir of China's Reawakening

From the list on China today.

Who am I?

A Seattle-based author, I have written eight books, including When the Red Gates Opened: A Memoir of China’s Reawakening, about the eight years I spent as Business Week’s reporter covering China, 1982-1990. In it, I give readers an inside look at China’s transformation from Maoism to modernity. A fluent speaker of Mandarin, I have traveled widely in China for over forty years and befriended Chinese people at many levels of society, leading me to a strong belief in the importance of direct cross-cultural communication and deepened mutual understanding.

Dori's book list on China today

Discover why each book is one of Dori's favorite books.

Why did Dori love this book?

Frankly, it makes me squirm to recommend this book, but it’s a topic we Americans need to understand better. Under Xi Jinping, China has expanded its use of surveillance cameras and begun a “social credit” system to track people who are—and aren’t—following the rules. Kai Strittmatter, who reported from China for a leading German newspaper for more than a decade, relies on strong research and concludes that China is Orwellian. And yet, most Chinese citizens I know do not feel watched and oppressed. I’m eager to get back to China to judge for myself.

By Kai Strittmatter,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked We Have Been Harmonized as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Named a Notable Work of Nonfiction of 2020 by the Washington Post

As heard on NPR's Fresh Air, We Have Been Harmonized, by award-winning correspondent Kai Strittmatter, offers a groundbreaking look, based on decades of research, at how China created the most terrifying surveillance state in history. 

China’s new drive for repression is being underpinned by unpre­cedented advances in technology: facial and voice recognition, GPS tracking, supercomputer databases, intercepted cell phone conver­sations, the monitoring of app use, and millions of high-resolution security cameras make it nearly impossible for a Chinese citizen to hide anything from authorities. Commercial transactions, including food…

Microeconomic Theory

By Andreu Mas-Colell, Michael D. Whinston, Jerry R. Green

Book cover of Microeconomic Theory

Felix Munoz-Garcia Author Of Advanced Microeconomic Theory: An Intuitive Approach with Examples

From the list on advanced microeconomic theory.

Who am I?

I am Professor of Economics at Washington State University. My research focuses on applying Industrial Organization to polluting industries and other regulated markets. I analyze how firms strategically respond to environmental regulation, including their output and pricing decisions, their investments in clean technologies, and mergers decisions, both under complete and incomplete information contexts.

Felix's book list on advanced microeconomic theory

Discover why each book is one of Felix's favorite books.

Why did Felix love this book?

This is still regarded as the Microeconomics “bible” among PhD students at top programs.

Most students often say they “had to suffer” this book (typically known as MWG) after being able to fully understand its details years later (hopefully before completing their PhD degrees!). While relatively technical in some chapters, it is extremely useful to get used to writing style of journal articles.

Detailed exposition of general equilibrium theory.

By Andreu Mas-Colell, Michael D. Whinston, Jerry R. Green

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Microeconomic Theory as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

Diversed In Stem

By Richard S T Gilliam,

Book cover of Diversed In Stem: When We Believe, We Achieve

Tiffani Teachey Author Of What Can I Be? STEM Careers from A to Z

From the list on engaging kids in STEM.

Who am I?

As a Sr. Mechanical Engineer, STEM advocate, TEDx international speaker and international best-selling author of children's books, I have a deep expertise and passion for inspiring young minds in the world of science, technology, engineering, and math. Through my books, including What Can I Be? STEM Careers from A to Z and the STEM Crew Kids Adventures series, I aim to introduce kids to diverse STEM careers and empower them to pursue their dreams fearlessly. My background in engineering and dedication to youth mentorship drives me to promote STEM education and underrepresented voices. I believe in the power of books to spark curiosity and open doors to endless possibilities for future innovators and problem-solvers.

Tiffani's book list on engaging kids in STEM

Discover why each book is one of Tiffani's favorite books.

Why did Tiffani love this book?

This book is an inspiring and easy-to-read children's book that encourages self-belief and diverse representation in STEM careers.

Through illustrations and stories, it showcases 10 children from different backgrounds, demonstrating that anyone can visualize themselves in a successful STEM path. The book emphasizes collaboration among children from diverse backgrounds for collective success. Its empowering message instills hope and motivation, teaching young readers that possibilities are limitless with self-belief.

Diversed In STEM is a must-read to nurture young minds' passion for STEM and foster an inclusive and bright future in the field.

By Richard S T Gilliam,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Diversed In Stem as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When we believe, We Achieve!

“Diversed In STEM” Premium is an inspiring and easy to read children’s book. This book contains new STEM coloring pages from each amazing character. Along with affirmations from each character showing their believe in thyself.

This book teaches children about different possible STEM Careers. And with the help of illustrations and stories, your child will learn that no matter what background you are from you can visualize yourself in a particular STEM Career. This book portrays the life of 10 different children with diverse backgrounds and qualities. As well as a teacher who helps teach…

The Genius of China

By Robert Temple,

Book cover of The Genius of China: 3,000 Years of Science, Discovery, and Invention

Bret Hinsch Author Of The Rise of Tea Culture in China: The Invention of the Individual

From the list on Chinese history that will surprise you.

Who am I?

I’ve dedicated my life to the study of Chinese history. I received a Ph.D. in History and East Asian Languages from Harvard and have spent my career teaching Chinese history at universities in Taiwan. I am the author of eleven books and many academic articles and book reviews about Chinese history. As an American who has spent decades lecturing about Chinese history in Mandarin to Taiwanese students, I have an uncommon perspective on the subject.  

Bret's book list on Chinese history that will surprise you

Discover why each book is one of Bret's favorite books.

Why did Bret love this book?

This book is full of “wow” moments. The author describes the history of numerous inventions to show the ingenuity of Chinese civilization. Some of these inventions are well known, like paper and the compass. But most of them come as a surprise. Until about two hundred years ago, China was far ahead of the rest of the world in most types of technology. In some respects, such as agricultural tools and steel smelting, China was two thousand years ahead of Europe. When you read this book, you will realize that for most of history, Europe was like a marginal third-world society and China was the center of things.  

By Robert Temple,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Genius of China as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Revised, full-color illustrated edition of the multi-award-winning, international bestseller that charts the unparalleled and astounding achievement of ancient China

• Brings to life one hundred Chinese “firsts” in the fields of agriculture, astronomy, engineering, mathematics, medicine, music, technology, and warfare

• Based on the definitive work of the world’s most famous Sinologist, Joseph Needham (1900-1995), author of Science and Civilisation in China

• Organized by field, invention, and discovery for ease of reference

Undisputed masters of invention and discovery for 3,000 years, the ancient Chinese were the first to discover the solar wind and the circulation of the blood and…

Book cover of The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism

Benjamin M. Friedman Author Of Religion and the Rise of Capitalism

From the list on economics, religion, and society.

Who am I?

I’m an economist, now in my fiftieth year as a professor at Harvard. While much of my work has focused on economic policy – questions like the effects of government budget deficits, guidelines for the conduct of U.S. monetary policy, and what actions to take in response to a banking or more general financial crisis – in recent years I’ve also addressed broader issues surrounding the connections between economics and society. Several years ago, in The Moral Consequences of Economic Growth, I examined the implications of our economy’s growth, or stagnation, for the social, political, and ultimately moral character of our society. My most recent book explores the connections between economic thinking and religious thinking.

Benjamin's book list on economics, religion, and society

Discover why each book is one of Benjamin's favorite books.

Why did Benjamin love this book?

Bell, one of the greatest sociologists of the twentieth century, argues that having the right culture is essential for capitalism (or any other economic or political system) to flourish – and I certainly agree. But he goes further: he worries that over time the economic gains that capitalism delivers end up undermining the cultural conditions that allow capitalism to flourish in the first place. His book is about the role of culture more broadly, not religion in particular, but religion certainly fits within the overall argument.

By Daniel Bell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

With a new afterword by the author, this classic analysis of Western liberal capitalist society contends that capitalism,and the culture it creates,harbors the seeds of its own downfall by creating a need among successful people for personal gratification,a need that corrodes the work ethic that led to their success in the first place. With the end of the Cold War and the emergence of a new world order, this provocative manifesto is more relevant than ever.

The Now Habit

By Neil Fiore,

Book cover of The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play

Liisa Kyle Author Of You Can Get it Done: Choose What to Do, Plan, Start, Stay on Track, Overcome Obstacles, and Finish

From the list on to boost your productivity.

Who am I?

In order to earn my Ph.D. in Psychology before I turned thirty, I had to learn how to be efficient and productive. As a life coach and author of two dozen books, I’ve spent the past twenty years helping people overcome challenges, get things done, and get more out of life. 

Liisa's book list on to boost your productivity

Discover why each book is one of Liisa's favorite books.

Why did Liisa love this book?

I recommend this book to my coaching clients and friends and family members because it provides clear, practical, effective advice for getting things done without beating yourself up. Using Fiore’s “Unschedule” is so motivating and positive, you avoid feeling guilt-ridden or otherwise miserable with yourself. My favorite part? Rewarding yourself with guilt-free play.

By Neil Fiore,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Now Habit as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Learn how to overcome procrastination and enjoy guilt-free play!  One of the most effective programs to combat procrastination, THE NOW HABIT has sold over 100,000 copies, has been translated into 11 languages, and is now revised and updated.

Featuring a new introduction and a new section providing strategies to understand and deal with the role technology plays in procrastination today, THE NOW HABIToffers a comprehensive plan to help readers lower their stress and increase their time to enjoy guilt-free play. Dr. Fiore’s techniques will help any busy person start tasks sooner and accomplish them more quickly, without the anxiety brought…

The Winter Fortress

By Neal Bascomb,

Book cover of The Winter Fortress: The Epic Mission to Sabotage Hitler's Atomic Bomb

Lisa Ballard Author Of Hiking the Adirondacks: A Guide to the Area's Greatest Hiking Adventures, 3rd Edition

From the list on adventure that are utterly entertaining.

Who am I?

I’ve been a ski racer my entire life. I started hiking up mountains as a teenager to get in shape for winter, but I soon found climbing peaks to be as rewarding as skiing down them. When I stand on top of a mountain I feel on top of the world! And I’ve been lucky enough as a travel writer and adventurer to trek in some truly special places, including the Himalayas in Bhutan, the Rainbow Mountains in Peru, and Simien Mountains in Ethiopia, as well as throughout North America. My favorite books are the ones that inspire me to keep exploring.

Lisa's book list on adventure that are utterly entertaining

Discover why each book is one of Lisa's favorite books.

Why did Lisa love this book?

I’m a skier as well as a hiker. This book appeals to both of these outdoor loves, but it goes much deeper.

This is a true story about a small band of Norwegians who ski and hike across the Norwegian wilderness, and nearly freeze to death and starve doing it. Their mission is to sabotage a remote, heavily guarded power plant, where the Nazis are developing heavy water for a nuclear bomb.

In addition to the perils that nature throws at them, these resourceful members of the local resistance must also evade their Gestapo hunters at every snowdrift. It’s a low-odds, high-risk adventure that altered the outcome of World War II.

It’s also engulfed me like the blizzards of the Norwegian winter and taught me how ingenuity, perseverance, and grit are the keys to survival when the odds are overwhelming.

By Neal Bascomb,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Winter Fortress as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It's 1942 and the Nazis are racing to build an atomic bomb. They have the physicists, but they don't have enough 'heavy water' - essential for their nuclear designs. For two years, the Nazis have occupied Norway, and with it the Vemork hydroelectric plant, the world's sole supplier of heavy water. Under threat of death, its engineers push production into overtime. For the Allies, Vemork must be destroyed. But how could they reach the plant, high in a mountainous valley? The answer became the most dramatic commando raid of the war: the British SOE brought together a brilliant scientist and…


By Robert A. Heinlein,

Book cover of Friday

Kfir Luzzatto Author Of Chipless

From the list on realistic science fiction.

Who am I?

As an author who is also a patent attorney and an engineer, I often deal with projects that are the closest thing to science fiction. That is one of the driving forces behind my urge to write science fiction. However, I very much prefer realistic stories that may potentially come true to hard science fiction with intergalactic travel, robots all over, and time machines (although I have written space opera and a few other hardcore SF tales, and must admit having had fun with them). Still, I like realistic science fiction much more. It leaves more room for character development, and I find myself engrossed in it more easily.

Kfir's book list on realistic science fiction

Discover why each book is one of Kfir's favorite books.

Why did Kfir love this book?

Robert Heinlein excels himself in this story narrated in the first person by a young woman, who is not really a human but rather a synthetic person but one you can relate to. Published in 1982, when much of the technology it describes was not yet in the realm of possibility, this book shows us an image of a chaotic world that may well be in our future. Serious issues sprinkled through this book’s pages are hidden between fun, fast action, a bit of licentious behavior, and some absurdity. Fun is guaranteed.

By Robert A. Heinlein,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Friday as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A CAEZIK Notable book. CAEZIK Notables is a series of speculative-fiction books marking important milestones in science fiction or fantasy. Each book published in the series has a new introduction highlighting the book’s significance within the genre.

“A charming protagonist in a story as sleekly engineered as a starship. This one should fly.”―Publishers Weekly

Friday is a secret courier and ardent lover. Employed by a man she only knows of as “Boss”, she is given the most awkward and dangerous cases, which take her from New Zealand to Canada, and through the new States of America’s disunion, all the way…

Book cover of The Machine in the Garden: Technology and the Pastoral Ideal in America

Carroll Pursell Author Of The Machine in America: A Social History of Technology

From the list on technology interacting with American society.

Who am I?

I've been teaching and writing in the field of the history of technology for over six decades, and it's not too much to say that the field and my professional career grew up together. The Society for the History of Technology began in 1958, and its journal, Technology and Culture, first appeared the following year. I've watched, and helped encourage, a broadening of the subject from a rather internal concentration on machines and engineering to a widening interest in technology as a social activity with cultural and political, as well as economic, outcomes. In my classes I always assigned not only original documents and scholarly monographs but also memoirs, literature, and films.

Carroll's book list on technology interacting with American society

Discover why each book is one of Carroll's favorite books.

Why did Carroll love this book?

My admiration for this book is demonstrated by the way in which I quite shamelessly ripped off its title for my own. It has been said that America is the only nation that began perfect and hoped to improve. The engine of that improvement, from the earliest days of the Republic, had been new technologies but by the middle of the pre-Civil War period some Americans began to realize that the “improvement” they had unleashed was beginning to erode the very “perfection” that they had hoped to enshrine in the nation’s foundation. Writers, artists, and creative intellectuals in general are society’s canaries in the mine shaft, and the great names of the American Renaissance—Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Washington Irving, Herman Melville, George Innes, Charles Sheeler, and their colleagues—attempted to describe, understand, and perhaps heal the destructive effects of the machine. As Marx concludes, “what was a grim possibility…

By Leo Marx,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Machine in the Garden as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For over four decades, Leo Marx's work has focused on the relationship between technology and culture in 19th- and 20th-century America. His research helped to define-and continues to give depth to-the area of American studies concerned with the links between scientific and technological advances, and the way society and culture both determine these links. The Machine in the Garden fully examines the difference between the "pastoral" and "progressive"
ideals which characterized early 19th-century American culture, and which ultimately evolved into the basis for much of the environmental and nuclear debates of contemporary society.

This new edition is appearing in celebration…

Book cover of The Art of Stillness: Adventures in Going Nowhere

Yara Zgheib Author Of No Land to Light On: A Novel

From the list on to read while taking a flight.

Who am I?

When I was a child, every year, for Christmas, I would wish for wings, pixie dust, a flying carpet… anything that would make me fly. I will never forget the first time I did: my grandfather and mother took me with them on a trip to Brussels when I was about four. That blue, those clouds, that lightness… I have never stopped chasing them since.

Yara's book list on to read while taking a flight

Discover why each book is one of Yara's favorite books.

Why did Yara love this book?

Really, any book or essay (or scrap of paper!) by Pico Iyer, the master of flight and finding that quiet, blue place above any clouds. The first three books in this list were to make you want to take flight. This is the how-to manual. Start it on the plane, as the engine roars to life, the wheels begin to turn… and go.

By Pico Iyer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Art of Stillness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Part of the TED series: The Art of Stillness

In this age of constant movement and connectedness, when so many of us are all over the place, perhaps staying in one place - and locating everything we need for peace and happiness there - is a more exciting prospect, and a greater necessity than ever before.

Through his extensive interviews with creative geniuses of our day, as well as historical records and his own life experience, acclaimed author Pico Iyer paints a picture of why so many have found such richness in stillness and how - from Marcel Proust to…

Unleash Your Complexity Genius

By Jennifer Garvey Berger, Carolyn Coughlin,

Book cover of Unleash Your Complexity Genius: Growing Your Inner Capacity to Lead

João Rosa Author Of Software Architecture Metrics: Case Studies to Improve the Quality of Your Architecture

From the list on a people first approach to technology.

Who am I?

I’m puzzled by how people and technology evolve—as humankind we created all of these wonders to make our life easier. At the same time, I feel that we are more focus on the technology and processes, rather than people. It drew me to the topic of sociotechnical systems, which fascinates me. I’ve formal education in IT, and everything is binary; however, during my career I was drawn to the intersection of technology and people. My mission in life is to support a new generation of leaders that want to create an organisational environment that puts people in the center! 

João's book list on a people first approach to technology

Discover why each book is one of João's favorite books.

Why did João love this book?

In my quest (you can also call it a professional career), I’m drawn to complexity since we create software for complex problems. There are books on Complexity Science; however, they are very academic. This particular book gives practical advice to cope with complexity. It acknowledges the balance between the emotional and rational sides and why we must bring our full-self to any aspect of our life. The “don’t be emotional, this is work” proves to be a threat to our mental well-being and kills innovation in a company. In the book, the authors explore how to listen to our bodies in the face of complexity in an accessible way.

By Jennifer Garvey Berger, Carolyn Coughlin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unleash Your Complexity Genius as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There is a complexity paradox that we all need to understand. We humans have a natural inclination towards connection, engagement, and creativity - all necessary skills to thrive in complexity. The problem is that the stress caused by uncertainty and ambiguity makes it difficult to tap into this inclination when we need it the most. This book offers a set of practices that help you not only understand complexity but actually hack into your own nervous system to bring your natural capacities back online. By paying close attention to your body, redefining your emotional experiences, and connecting more deeply to…


By Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley,

Book cover of Frankenstein

Noreen Herzfeld Author Of The Artifice of Intelligence: Divine and Human Relationship in a Robotic Age

From the list on the dangerous future of AI.

Who am I?

I’m a theologian who started out as a computer scientist. Teaching classes on AI got me wondering, not just whether we’d ever be able to create a human-like AI, but why we wanted to do so in the first place. It seemed to me that computers were the most helpful when they did the things we are not very good at—crunching big calculations, or exploring Mars—stuff we can’t do. That got me thinking that there might be something spiritual going on, that in a world where we increasingly no longer believed in God or angels, we were lonely. That we didn’t want a tool but a companion.  

Noreen's book list on the dangerous future of AI

Discover why each book is one of Noreen's favorite books.

Why did Noreen love this book?

Who’d expect a book written almost 150 years before computers were invented to be one of the best books to help us think about AI? In Frankenstein, Mary Shelley explores how good motivations can quickly go bad.

Scientist Frankenstein builds a monster with the best of intentions yet fails to foresee what could go wrong and to take the necessary precautions when what he has produced does go wrong. Then he tries to duck responsibility, ending up futilely trying to stop things from getting worse in a desperate bid to stop a chain reaction of destruction. 

Sounds like Silicon Valley? Yup. This is a cautionary tale (and not at all like the Bela Lugosi movies) for our age.

By Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley,

Why should I read it?

38 authors picked Frankenstein as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the BBC's '100 Novels That Shaped Our World'

'That rare story to pass from literature into myth' The New York Times

Mary Shelley's chilling Gothic tale was conceived when she was only eighteen, living with her lover Percy Shelley on Lake Geneva. The story of Victor Frankenstein who, obsessed with creating life itself, plunders graveyards for the material to fashion a new being, but whose botched creature sets out to destroy his maker, would become the world's most famous work of horror fiction, and remains a devastating exploration of the limits of human creativity. Based on the third…

The Exponential Age

By Azeem Azhar,

Book cover of The Exponential Age: How Accelerating Technology is Transforming Business, Politics and Society

Tom Wheeler Author Of From Gutenberg to Google: The History of Our Future

From the list on today’s roadmap to tomorrow.

Who am I?

I have been fortunate to have spent the last 40 years of my professional life dealing with new networks and new technology. From the early days of cable television and mobile communications to the development of digital video and the transmission of data over cable lines and satellite. It was a career topped off with the privilege of being the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) with regulatory responsibly for approximately 1/6th of the American economy (on which the other 5/6s depended). 

Tom's book list on today’s roadmap to tomorrow

Discover why each book is one of Tom's favorite books.

Why did Tom love this book?

Tech analyst and investor Azeem Azhar concisely pulls together his take on how the arc of technology has moved from linear to exponential both in its development as well as its impact on society and business.

Azhar brings great insight into how exponential growth – creating an “exponential gap” – has put strains not only on businesses, but also on government and society writ large. 

By Azeem Azhar,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Exponential Age as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

*2021 Financial Times Best Book of the Year*

A bold exploration and call-to-arms over the widening gap between AI, automation, and big data—and our ability to deal with its effects

We are living in the first exponential age.

High-tech innovations are created at dazzling speeds; technological forces we barely understand remake our homes and workplaces; centuries-old tenets of politics and economics are upturned by new technologies. It all points to a world that is getting faster at a dizzying pace.

Azeem Azhar, renowned technology analyst and host of the Exponential View podcast, offers a revelatory new model for understanding how…

The Black

By Paul E. Cooley,

Book cover of The Black

Sean-Michael Argo Author Of Space Marine Ajax

From the list on blue collar sci-fi and horror.

Who am I?

As a child I grew up around blue-collar type men and women, and as I became an adult I grew to learn that these are the sorts of people who pioneer civilizations, who keep them running once they are built, and who are the ones to brave high-risk labor to bring us the food, shelter, and comforts we often take for granted. Adding a fictional element in the form of aliens, monsters, or the supernatural can put a fine and dynamic point on the life & struggles of such people. I strive for this in much of my military science fiction work and enjoy reading it as an audience member.

Sean-Michael's book list on blue collar sci-fi and horror

Discover why each book is one of Sean-Michael's favorite books.

Why did Sean-Michael love this book?

The Black is my first pick because it most keenly represents what I consider to be Blue Collar sci-fi/horror fiction. The novel takes place on an offshore oil rig, and the characters in the story are various laborers and specialists living and working on the rig. Much care and attention were taken by the author to present characters and situations that ring true to the lived experience of oil rig workers, from the technical aspects of their work to the particulars of life on the rig. This deep dive into the minds, lives, and skills of the blue-collar characters truly hammered home the terror and otherness of the antagonist when it was finally revealed. We often overlook the danger and strangeness of high-risk blue-collar professions, and exploring that in the context of sci-fi/horror genre fiction is tremendously engaging.

By Paul E. Cooley,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Black as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Under 30,000 feet of water, the experimental exploration rig Leaguer has discovered an oil field larger than Saudi Arabia, with oil so sweet and pure, nations would go to war for the rights to it.

But as the team starts drilling exploration well after exploration well in their race to claim the sweet crude, a deep rumbling beneath the ocean floor shakes them all to their core. Something has been living in the oil and it's about to give birth to the greatest threat humanity has ever seen.

The first book in Paul E Cooley's Parsec Award Winning series, The…

The Long View

By Richard Fisher,

Book cover of The Long View: Why We Need to Transform How the World Sees Time

Adam Bulley Author Of The Invention of Tomorrow: A Natural History of Foresight

From the list on harnessing the power of human foresight.

Who am I?

I am a cognitive scientist interested in how the human mind evolved and how it works. My research focuses on how people make decisions about the future, and in recent years I have become increasingly intent on understanding how to best harness our abilities for long-term thinking. Humans may be the most farsighted creatures that have ever existed on this planet. That also means we are uniquely equipped to tackle the big challenges ahead of us—to use our powers of foresight to create a future worth looking forward to. The books I have chosen below show us how we might do it. 

Adam's book list on harnessing the power of human foresight

Discover why each book is one of Adam's favorite books.

Why did Adam love this book?

In The Long View, Richard Fisher provides a kaleidoscopic view of mental time travel. The book dives into the history of long-term thinking and explores its many facets, including the economic forces and political pressures that drive people to focus on the here and now. We learn about the psychology of foresight, but also about how foresight can be channeled by religion, philosophy, and art. Despite the huge range of topics, Fisher pulls together a clear-headed analysis that will serve as a powerful counterweight to the short-termism he aptly diagnoses in the opening sections of the book. Fisher writes for the BBC and has a wonderful newsletter, also called The Long View, which I highly recommend. 

By Richard Fisher,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Long View as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'A beautifully turned, calmly persuasive but urgent book' IAN MCEWAN

'A landmark book that could help to build a much brighter future' DAVID ROBSON

A wide-ranging and thought-provoking exploration of the importance of long-term thinking.

Humans are unique in our ability to understand time, able to comprehend the past and future like no other species. Yet modern-day technology and capitalism have supercharged our short-termist tendencies and trapped us in the present, at the mercy of reactive politics, quarterly business targets and 24-hour news cycles.

It wasn't always so. In medieval times, craftsmen worked on cathedrals that would be unfinished in…

Things That Make Us Smart

By Donald A. Norman, Tamara Dunaeff,

Book cover of Things That Make Us Smart: Defending Human Attributes in the Age of the Machine

Martin Erwig Author Of Once Upon an Algorithm: How Stories Explain Computing

From the list on computer science without coding.

Who am I?

I’m a professor of computer science at Oregon State University. My research focus is on programming languages, but I also work on computer science education and outreach. I grew up in Germany and moved to the United States in 2000. Since computer science is a fairly new and not widely understood discipline, I am interested in explaining its core ideas to the general public. I believe that in order to attract a more diverse set of people to the field we should emphasize that coding is only a small part of computer science.

Martin's book list on computer science without coding

Discover why each book is one of Martin's favorite books.

Why did Martin love this book?

This book is about the design of artifacts that are used by humans. It discusses, in particular, how specific features of cognitive artifacts can support or impede their effective use. The physical artifacts discussed in this book provide concrete illustrations for some abstract computer science notions such as types. I have used some of the examples successfully in talks about computer science for the general audience. A focus of this book is on representations, which plays an important role in many areas of computer science. If you enjoy the examples discussed in this book and like to think about representations, then you are thinking like a computer scientist. 

By Donald A. Norman, Tamara Dunaeff,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Things That Make Us Smart as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In Things That Make Us Smart, Donald A. Norman explores the complex interaction between human thought and the technology it creates, arguing for the development of machines that fit our minds, rather than minds that must conform to the machine.Humans have always worked with objects to extend our cognitive powers, from counting on our fingers to designing massive supercomputers. But advanced technology does more than merely assist with thought and memory,the machines we create begin to shape how we think and, at times, even what we value. Norman, in exploring this complex relationship between humans and machines, gives us the…


By Michelle M. Weil, Larry D. Rosen,

Book cover of TechnoStress: Coping with Technology @Work @Home @Play

Jeff Davidson Author Of Breathing Space: Living and Working at a Comfortable Pace in a Sped-Up Society

From the list on to help you have more breathing space.

Who am I?

I hold the registered trademark as "The Work-Life Balance Expert®," and work with organizations that seek to enhance their productivity by improving the effectiveness of their people. I've spoken to Fortune 50 companies such as IBM, Cardinal Health Group, Lockheed, American Express, the IRS, Wells Fargo, and Westinghouse. My books have been published in 19 languages and have been featured in 68 of the top 75 American newspapers, as well as Time Magazine and the Wall Street Journal. At heart, I'm a simpler living advocate. I believe in giving back to his community and am an active volunteer for Art Space in downtown Raleigh, and the North Carolina Museum of Art.

Jeff's book list on to help you have more breathing space

Discover why each book is one of Jeff's favorite books.

Why did Jeff love this book?

I like this book because the authors have unearthed powerful insights. In one Reuters study, they say, of slightly more than 1,300 business managers in Europe, the U.S., Southeast Asia, and Australia, 33% of managers were suffering ill health as a direct result of information overload. Nearly two-thirds reported that tension with colleagues and diminished job satisfaction were directly related to the stress of information overload. A majority also admitted that their social and personal relationships have suffered as a result of the stress of having to cope with too much information. That kind of information puts in perspective what so many career professionals experience all too often.

The book delves into territory to which we can all relate, citing, for example, that many managers feel increasing technology leads to loss of privacy, information inundation, and erosion of face-to-face contact. And who among us is happy to have to continually…

By Michelle M. Weil, Larry D. Rosen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked TechnoStress as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Are you Cyberphobic? Techno-crazed? If so, you're not alone . . .

"If all the hype about the Information Superhighway makes you want to take the next exit off it, you may be one of a growing subpopulation —people who are cyberphobic." —Los Angeles Times

"Technology has taken over, and there is only one way to stop it: take back control of your own life. Follow the suggestions in this book, and banish the TechnoStress from your life." —Donald A. Norman, Ph.D. Senior Technical Advisor, Hewlett-Packard author of Things That Make Us Smart

Nationally acclaimed Technotherapists Michelle Weil and Larry…