In Dr. Michael Shermer’s latest book he claims that we are living in the most moral period of our species’ history. It is a book about moral progress that demonstrates through extensive data and heroic stories that the arc of the moral universe bends toward truth, justice, and freedom. Of the many factors that have come together over the centuries to bend the arc in a more moral direction, science and reason are foremost. The Scientific Revolution led by Copernicus, Galileo, and Newton was so world-changing that thinkers in other fields consciously aimed at revolutionizing the social, political, and economic worlds using the same methods of science. This led to the Age of Reason and the Enlightenment, which in turn created the modern secular world of liberal democracies, civil rights and civil liberties, equal justice under the law, open political and economic borders, and the expansion of the moral sphere to include more people—and now even animals—as worthy of moral consideration. Epic in scope, The Moral Arc is the Cosmos of human history.
From Alex Ross: The American Musicological Society, the Society for Ethnomusicology, and the Society for Music Theory are holding their annual joint meeting in New Orleans this weekend. I've picked ten titles that jumped out at me for whatever reason. I'd like to make clear that these selections are of a playful nature and should in no way reflect upon the fundamental seriousness of the scholars in question. I stress this because, as I've been informed, being singled out by a known practitioner of mere journalism may not boost the prospects of young scholars on the job market.
From Taschen Books: Gleaned from thousands of images, this companion set of books offers the best of American print advertising in the age of the “Big Idea.” At the height of American consumerism magazines were flooded with clever campaigns selling everything from girdles to guns. These optimistic indicators paint a fascinating picture of the colorful capitalism that dominated the spirit of the 1950s and 60s, as concerns about the Cold War gave way to the carefree booze-and-cigarettes Mad Men era. Also included is a wide range of significant advertising campaigns from both eras, giving insight into the zeitgeist of the period. Bursting with fresh, crisp colors, these ads have been digitally mastered to look as bright and new as the day they first hit newsstands.
Mobile First is a short but information-packed book that makes the case for why Web sites and applications should increasingly be designed for mobile first and outlines how Web design teams can make the transition from designing for desktops/laptops to designing for mobile by specifying unique design considerations for mobile Web organization, actions, input, and layout.
From Garr Reynolds: Books that I read (or reread) over the past year that you may want to read as part of your own continuous improvement journey.
From 800 CEO Read: Five years ago, Jack Covert and Todd Sattersten chose The 100 Best Business Books of All Time, reviewing each of their selections and giving them context in both the business and publishing worlds. Since then, thousands of new business books have been published, so they've updated and expanded the book with new, informative sidebars, a fresh introduction, and a closing manifesto. It is available now in both paperback and digital editions.
From strategy+business: Although they cover a wide variety of topics and fields, just about all of the books featured in the seven essays ahead are rife with dissatisfaction. Many of their authors have tracked down root causes of the destruction of economic value and prescribed radical solutions for them. Judging by the fact that the expert essayists we recruited to cull this year’s stack of business books chose these particular titles, it’s fair to assume that they too would welcome change that alters the status quo.
A Fine Line offers a step-by-step overview of the innovation process — from targeting goals to shepherding new products and services to the marketplace — in order to reveal how to arrive at an authentic human design that connects strongly with consumers. With a unique perspective, rich stories, and a global mindset, Esslinger explores business solutions that are environmentally sustainable […]