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Brief Book Brief

Numbers Don’t Lie: 71 Stories to Help Us Understand the Modern World -By: Vaclav Smil

Soooo. Tooling around the rabbit hole and there is a list of books Bill Gates thinks everyone should read. This one seems interesting and turned out to be more than interesting. If you’re bored and exasperated with the divisions and hogwash arguments in the world today…this appears to be a pretty evenhanded study of the world on the back of simple mathematics. And trust me…I despise math. It is a long standing belief that if you torture kids as a teacher of that foul sorcery, you should go to jail. Still, I can’t deny it’s usefulness and those who have survived the torture to be wizards who apply it to the world, I appreciate you. Everyone is lucky I’m not an engineer or theoretical physicist. Good enough I considered downloading his book on economics. We’ll see.

Some quotes from the book:

“Numbers may not lie, but individual perceptions of them differ.”

“Shakespeare’s plays and poems in their entirety amount to 5 megabytes, the equivalent of just a single high-resolution photograph, or of 30 seconds of high-fidelity sound, or of 8 seconds of streamed high-definition video.”

“The Arthur D. Little management consultancy estimates that—based on a vehicle life of 20 years—the manufacture of an EV creates three times as much toxicity as that of a conventional vehicle. This is mostly due to the greater use of heavy metals.”

Recommended. No calculator required.

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