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Old 07-23-2010, 12:00 AM   #121
Tomes of Deceit
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I'm not really into philosophy. I took this religious studies class where we read Kant (well, I didn't read much of it actually...). I just remember that I thought all this stuff about Categorical Imperative sounded like nothing but the golden rule. My professor made a point of saying "it's not just the golden rule", but whatever subtle distinction there is escaped me.
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:55 PM   #122
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Just went to the INSANE annual book fair here at the HK exhibition centre...literally hundreds of thousnads of little chinese kids running into the place nonstop.

Picked up 3 books cause print is expensive these days :(



I know you hardcore akademmiks will trash on this, but it just seems like a fun little book that doesn't take itself too seriously.



Seems seriously interesting, I'm sure many of you will be interested in this (if you haven't read it already).



Book I have been meaning to read for so long, especially since I watched that Musical Minds docu that someone here threaded a while back. Guy is like a collection of fascinating experiences that merge music and neurology, perhaps the two subjects I am most passionate about.
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:01 PM   #123
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any death metal in there?
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:10 PM   #124
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Haven't read any of them yet, so I have no idea.
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:51 PM   #125
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Hell yea to someone reading this. I saw this guy speak at a symposium last semester and he was very clearly the best at the entire event. Had absolute command of every Q & A session and wouldn't let anyone off the hook with half-witted responses. I talked to him for an hour or so after, simply an amazingly intelligent individual. Watching the man debate people is a high form of entertainment.

Edit: To contribute, I'm reading Ubik by Philip K. Dick at the moment but coupling it with Notes from Underground and Heart of Darkness (each for the fifth or sixth time). I finished Lies Inc. last weekend and was relatively impressed, I've read through most of Dick's catalogue at this point and haven't really found anything I didn't enjoy. As a recommendation, if you haven't read Valis or Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch, do so immediatly.
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:17 PM   #126
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:19 PM   #127
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Great book.

Like The Count of Monte Cristo except in the 25th century, and with some really interesting ideas.
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Old 07-23-2010, 10:27 PM   #128
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Old 07-23-2010, 11:28 PM   #129
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Hell yea to someone reading this. I saw this guy speak at a symposium last semester and he was very clearly the best at the entire event. Had absolute command of every Q & A session and wouldn't let anyone off the hook with half-witted responses. I talked to him for an hour or so after, simply an amazingly intelligent individual. Watching the man debate people is a high form of entertainment.
Yeah, Epstein is great. It's really cool that you got to chat him up for so long!
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Old 07-24-2010, 12:59 AM   #130
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I know I'm late to the party, but years of hearing praise for the series and watching the movie I finally broke down and bought the ultimate collection (I'll buy the sixth book after I'm done).
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Old 07-24-2010, 01:23 AM   #131
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I've never read any Hitchhiker's stuff. Let us know what you think.
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Old 07-24-2010, 03:02 AM   #132
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Good call, man. James Blish is great! Have you read "A Case of Conscience" or the "Black Easter" trilogy? I loved those books when I was a kid. He also has a great space opera called "Cities in Flight".

Also, "Surface Tension" is included in Seedling Stars, isn't it? Great story.
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Old 07-24-2010, 12:49 PM   #133
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Good call, man. James Blish is great! Have you read "A Case of Conscience" or the "Black Easter" trilogy? I loved those books when I was a kid. He also has a great space opera called "Cities in Flight".

Also, "Surface Tension" is included in Seedling Stars, isn't it? Great story.
I've never read anything else this guy's done, but I'll be looking into those.

Surface Tension was awesome and and really imaginative, but I think Seeding Program was my favorite.

Watershed had some really interesting things to say about humanity though.
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Old 07-24-2010, 02:26 PM   #134
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I've never read anything else this guy's done, but I'll be looking into those.

Surface Tension was awesome and and really imaginative, but I think Seeding Program was my favorite.

Watershed had some really interesting things to say about humanity though.
I can't remember the stories that well, but I'm glad you enjoyed them. I've been a fan of his since I could read. What is "Watershed" about? His other books have this sort of funny pessimism about them, in that they often depict particularly bright individuals making some very poor decisions. "Black Easter" is about an arms dealer experimentally unleashing the demons of hell onto the world (black magic is real in this one), and "A Case of Conscience" is about a jesuit priest turned biologist dealing with an extraterrestrial race that may or may not be the result of Satanic creation, which is anathema to his world view. Good stuff all around.

If you like stuff altogether darker and harder to get into, I heartily recommend Peter Watts' "Blindsight", which is a sci-fi book dealing with what happens when mankind first encounters extraterrestrial life, only to discover that no amount of speculation or fantasy could prepare us to even grasp the newcomers. It's a pretty tricky book to read, as Watts is a biology PhD and randomly uses words I didn't understand until I took university level microbiology, but it seriously fucks with your mind once you're done. I quite like it when fiction busies itself as the very edge of our ability to understand things. That's what fiction should do, in my opinion.
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Old 07-24-2010, 03:28 PM   #135
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I can't remember the stories that well, but I'm glad you enjoyed them. I've been a fan of his since I could read. What is "Watershed" about? His other books have this sort of funny pessimism about them, in that they often depict particularly bright individuals making some very poor decisions. "Black Easter" is about an arms dealer experimentally unleashing the demons of hell onto the world (black magic is real in this one), and "A Case of Conscience" is about a jesuit priest turned biologist dealing with an extraterrestrial race that may or may not be the result of Satanic creation, which is anathema to his world view. Good stuff all around.

If you like stuff altogether darker and harder to get into, I heartily recommend Peter Watts' "Blindsight", which is a sci-fi book dealing with what happens when mankind first encounters extraterrestrial life, only to discover that no amount of speculation or fantasy could prepare us to even grasp the newcomers. It's a pretty tricky book to read, as Watts is a biology PhD and randomly uses words I didn't understand until I took university level microbiology, but it seriously fucks with your mind once you're done. I quite like it when fiction busies itself as the very edge of our ability to understand things. That's what fiction should do, in my opinion.
Wow. Very, very interesting. I'll be looking into all these after I read some of the books I just ordered.

Watershed is the last story in The Seedling Stars, when one of the Adapted Men (a walrus/humanoid scientist) is being brought to Earth (now an uninhabitable desert wasteland) to re-seed it and is subject to discrimination by the human crew. Really good.

If you like stuff that's kind of tough to grasp, check out Charles Stross.

He has this book called Accelerando that's Cyberpunk but a bit more involved.

Glasshouse is a book of his that takes place in the future but is based on the Stanford Prison Experiments and is really interesting too.
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Old 07-24-2010, 03:32 PM   #136
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Also, if anyone's interested, I just found Blindsight online for free, here:

http://www.rifters.com/real/Blindsight.htm
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Old 07-24-2010, 09:31 PM   #137
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Just got this for some day-to-day/whenever reads.

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Old 07-24-2010, 10:26 PM   #138
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Jared Diamond's Collapse. It was part of the curriculum in a class I took. Interesting read.



Arne Næss: Økologi, samfunn og livsstil. Et utkast til en økosofi.

Arne Næss is an overlooked philosopher, and his message seems to get more important every decade. To me he is one of the most important philisophers of the 20th century. Remarkably clear about everything he argues, even people who hate philososophy would have no problem understanding him.

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Old 07-24-2010, 10:53 PM   #139
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Old 07-25-2010, 10:02 PM   #140
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I've been re-reading all the Starcraft novels in preparation for the new game. Not the best writing or storytelling around, but that whole universe is incredibly interesting to me, as it's probably my favorite game ever. Liberty's Crusade, Nova, and I, Mengsk are all great, and Queen of Blades is good, but the rest... not so much.
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Old 07-26-2010, 01:06 AM   #141
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Pretty unrelated, but I just got 121 epub books for my iPad. Loads of the books mentioned here, and then some. Will be reading all that shit someday soon.

Plato and a Platypus Walk into a Bar is fucking hilarious so far. Tightly packed and quality jokes, seriously entertaining read.
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:10 AM   #142
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Finished Hyperion and started The Fall of Hyperion. Shit rules.


Also, I heard that Dan Simmons writes pretty sweet horror. Confirm/deny plz.
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:18 AM   #143
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Finished Hyperion and started The Fall of Hyperion. Shit rules.


Also, I heard that Dan Simmons writes pretty sweet horror. Confirm/deny plz.
Can't do either.

Richard Laymon writes fantastic horror though.
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Old 07-28-2010, 12:51 AM   #144
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just got this...hope it's as good as his others
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:01 AM   #145
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Book I have been meaning to read for so long, especially since I watched that Musical Minds docu that someone here threaded a while back. Guy is like a collection of fascinating experiences that merge music and neurology, perhaps the two subjects I am most passionate about.
ouu, I should have let ya borrow that if I knew you wanted to read it haha. That 2nd book looks awesome and I don't care for musick academia
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:17 AM   #146
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i just started so i can't post much a review, but i can say that the HBO miniseries was awesome.
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Old 07-28-2010, 02:21 AM   #147
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Now reading:





Can't do either.

Richard Laymon writes fantastic horror though.


What do you mean "can't do either"?
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Old 07-28-2010, 02:38 AM   #148
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Old 07-28-2010, 06:05 AM   #149
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Also, I heard that Dan Simmons writes pretty sweet horror. Confirm/deny plz.
can't confirm 100%, but i've been reading The Terror on and off for some time (about 300 pages in) and i'd say it's good but a bit it has too much needless stuff. will report back when i'm done
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Old 07-28-2010, 01:52 PM   #150
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What do you mean "can't do either"?
Can't confirm nor deny.

Never read anything by him.
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