Book: Guns, Germs, and Steel

About the history of human civilization over the last 13,000 years. The books seeks to answer the question of why some societies in the world today are much more powerful than others. The answers to that question are traced back to circumstances at the beginning of civilization. Diamond’s writing is crisp and clear, and his thesis is well-supported, not to mention fascinating. Highly recommended.

Book: Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid

This is a wonderful book, I am glad I finally got around to reading it. Hofstadtder explains his ideas about consciousness and meaning using metaphors drawn from the Incompleteness Theorems of Kurt Gödel, the art of M.C. Escher, and the music of J.S. Bach. Hofstadter isn’t kidding about the “eternal” part either, the book is about 750 pages long.