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David Heinemeier Hansson

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David Heinemeier Hansson is a Danish programmer, racing driver and the creator of the popular Ruby on Rails web development framework and the Instiki wiki. He is also a partner at the web-based software development firm Basecamp.
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Goliath book cover
The 100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy
Matt Stoller - 2019-10-15
Goodreads Rating
Discover how concentrated financial power and consumerism have transformed American politics and business in this insightful look at the return of authoritarianism and populism to American politics. Matt Stoller explains the historical backstory of this moment and how dangerous forces have emerged. This engaging call to arms offers rich details and crucial steps to take to create a new democracy. A must-read for every thinking American.
David Heinemeier Hansson
@janmikula We don’t have to invent an antitrust regime in a Twitter thread. This is a very well-documented and researched problem. Start with this book to understand its history and what remedies that have worked in the past.      source
Hate, Inc. book cover
Hate, Inc.
Why Today’s Media Makes Us Despise One Another
Matt Taibbi - 2019-10-08
Goodreads Rating
Explore the twisted reality of mainstream media with this turbocharged new book from celebrated journalist Matt Taibbi. Hate Inc. provides an insider's guide to the manipulative tactics used by the press to monetize anger, paranoia, and distrust. Taibbi's rich taxonomic survey of American political journalism's dirty tricks will be an invaluable antidote to the hidden poisons dished up by those we rely on to tell us what is happening in the world. Get ready for a Great Giza Pyramid Complex of invective and digital ugliness heading into the 2020 election season.
David Heinemeier Hansson
Apropos everything, you should read @mtaibbi's Hate Inc book for a good historical summary of media delusions, malpractice, and ill intent from the Iraq War through the financial crisis through Russiagate. Could scarcely be more relevant than right now.      source
The Management Myth book cover
The Management Myth
Debunking Modern Business Philosophy
Matthew Stewart - 2009-08-10
Goodreads Rating
Explores the history of management and offers a withering critique of pseudoscience in management theory, all while providing a clear explanation of why the MBA often amounts to BS. With humor and insight, this book takes readers on a romp through American business thought, illuminating the flaws in traditional management practices along the way.
David Heinemeier Hansson
This reminded me that I needed to recommend the fantastic book The Management Myth by Matthew Stewart. In it, you get the bullshit history of Scientific Management, along with an exposé on just the kind of fraud that its popularizer, F. Winslow Taylor.      source
When Prophecy Fails book cover
When Prophecy Fails
Leon Festinger - 1964-01-01 (first published in 1956)
Goodreads Rating
Exploring the fascinating behavior of individuals in social movements with specific, unfulfilled prophecies, this study sheds light on the psychological and societal impacts of failed predictions. Based on theoretical work and a chance discovery, the book offers a compelling examination of how people react when their beliefs are challenged.
David Heinemeier Hansson
The 1964 book When Prophecy Fails covers this phenomenon in detail: Once a person has been ensnared by a false in-group belief, disconfirmation in the form of facts or events, often lead to more fervent beliefs.      source
Also recommended by
Ben Collins
The Road to Wigan Pier book cover
The Road to Wigan Pier
George Orwell - 2001-04-26 (first published in 1937)
Goodreads Rating
This autobiographical novel from George Orwell depicts his struggles during a time when he was moving from city to city and had just left his job at a bookstore. The book provides an intimate depiction of this difficult period in Orwell's life, and includes a photo featuring the author prominently displayed at his former workplace.
David Heinemeier Hansson
Been reading Orwell’s Road to Wigan Pier, and it’s amazing how much of the abusive ideology revealed in his account of the miners is still present in today’s gig economy. Paying for your own equipment (lamps v cars), no compensation for travel (in mine v between passengers).      source
Also recommended by
Jordan Peterson
The Divide book cover
The Divide
Global Inequality from Conquest to Free Markets
Jason Hickel - 2017-05-04
Goodreads Rating
This thought-provoking book by Jason Hickel challenges the standard narrative surrounding poverty and inequality. Hickel argues that poverty is not simply a natural phenomenon, but a result of broader political forces at play. He proposes abolishing debt burdens in the global South, democratizing global governance, and rolling out an international minimum wage to bridge the divide between the rich and the poor. A must-read for anyone interested in global economic justice.
David Heinemeier Hansson
I implore you to read this book. It’s like opening your eyes after getting unplugged from the matrix. It’s bright and jarring at first, but you’ll want to know.      source
Also recommended by
Aaron Bastani
Bad Blood book cover
Bad Blood
Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup
John Carreyrou - 2018-05-21
Goodreads Rating
This book sheds light on the fascinating rise and fall of a Silicon Valley startup that promised to revolutionize the medical industry. The founder and CEO, Elizabeth Holmes, was hailed as the next Steve Jobs, but her company's technology didn't work. The result? Patients were put in danger and investors lost billions. This gripping story of ambition and hubris is a cautionary tale of the biggest corporate fraud since Enron.
David Heinemeier Hansson
The book “Bad Blood”, about the Theranos fraud, is an indictment not just of Holmes and her co-conspirators, but Silicon Valley culture as a whole. All its worst stereotypes and tendencies animated by dislikable characters. Recommended reading!      source
Why We Sleep book cover
Why We Sleep
Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams
Matthew Walker - 2017-10-03
Goodreads Rating
Discover the power and purpose of slumber with this international sensation of a book. Sleep expert Matthew Walker examines every aspect of our physical and mental well-being, from learning and mood to regulating hormones and preventing diseases like cancer, Alzheimer’s and diabetes. In this “compelling and utterly convincing” read, Walker explains how to improve our lives by harnessing the benefits of sleep.
David Heinemeier Hansson
@noahkrueger @brittballard Check the Why We Sleep book.      source
1984 book cover
George Orwell - 2022-07-01 (first published in 1949)
Goodreads Rating
This influential text from the 20th century delves into a dark and dystopian world unlike any other. Written in 1949 by political satirist George Orwell, the novel portrays a totalitarian society that is both bureaucratic and terrifying. The author's foresight in predicting the future of modern life is remarkable, with themes that are still relevant today. Taking readers through a journey of surveillance, propaganda, and isolation, it is no wonder why 1984 is among the most terrifying novels ever written. A must-read for those seeking a thought-provoking exploration of individuality and the true extent of government control.
David Heinemeier Hansson
Five novels I think about all the time - 1984: States crave control - The Trial: Bureaucracies eats people - The Stranger: Alienation is a vantage point - Animal Farm: Revolutions usually corrupt - Brave New World: Caste systems fence morality      source
The Trial book cover
The Trial
Franz Kafka - 2001-04-09 (first published in 1925)
Goodreads Rating
A bank officer is inexplicably arrested and must defend himself against a charge with no information in The Trial. This existential tale, published posthumously in 1925, delves into the madness of totalitarianism and resonates with chilling truth for generations of readers.
David Heinemeier Hansson
Five novels I think about all the time - 1984: States crave control - The Trial: Bureaucracies eats people - The Stranger: Alienation is a vantage point - Animal Farm: Revolutions usually corrupt - Brave New World: Caste systems fence morality      source
Also recommended by
Kara SwisherSusan J. Fowler
The Undoing Project by Michael Lewis
The Manual by Epictetus
The Daily Stoic by Ryan Holiday
The Myth of the Spoiled Child by Alfie Kohn
The Big Short by Michael Lewis
The New Tsar by Steven Lee Myers
Political Order and Political Decay by Francis Fukuyama
Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty
Turn the Ship Around! by L. David Marquet
Debt by
The Origins of Political Order by Francis Fukuyama
Anxiety Culture by Michael Foley
Drive by Daniel H. Pink
A Guide to the Good Life by William B. Irvine
The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss
The Halo Effect by Phil Rosenzweig
Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl
Fear and Trembling by Soren Kierkegaard
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham
The Effective Executive by Peter F. Drucker
On Writing Well by William Zinsser
On the Shortness of Life by Seneca
Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim
Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson
Domain-Driven Design by Eric Evans
Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture by Martin Fowler
Maverick by Ricardo Semler
An Introduction to General Systems Thinking by Gerald M. Weinberg
The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr.
Refactoring by Martin Fowler
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
Finding Flow by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Smalltalk Best Practice Patterns by Kent Beck
Escape from Freedom by Erich Fromm
Punished by Rewards by Alfie Kohn
Are Your Lights On? by Donald C. Gause
The Stranger by Albert Camus
The Wealth Of Nations by Adam Smith