Lispian Random meanderings on whatever catches my fancy

New Gladwell Title

I’ve been reading the reviews of Malcolm Gladwell’s new book Outliers. I’ve read his other books and enjoyed them. They’re light reading and provide some quick and insightful information on a variety of topics I wouldn’t have the time to discover on my own via a literature search. It’s not that I’m not interested in a given area, but life makes me busy and thus I have to focus on work at work and home life at home and the few free hours I might get I typically spend with friends or wandering the local Chapters.

Gladwell takes interesting topics — such as the notion of  a tipping point — and presents them in an accessible manner. Some bemoan him his ability to get these topics, created by academics, out the door in readable prose. However, to me that’s talent. There’s nothing harder than explaining a complex idea in an accessible manner.

It’s why I’ll be picking up a copy of Outlier. I’m sure it’ll explain a lot of different ideas succinctly and provide me with the relevant links to the original science. I can’t see how this is a lose for anyone. I find it a definite win since I can point non-technical folks to Gladwell’s work while leveraging his bibliography to discover where many of these ideas originated and the research behind them, all without having to spend time doing a literature search myself!

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November 2008
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