[extropy-chat] Books - Personal favorites, most influential/inspiring, etc.

Jef Allbright jef at jefallbright.net
Wed Apr 18 16:49:32 UTC 2007

On 4/17/07, Anders Sandberg <asa at nada.kth.se> wrote:
> Jef Allbright wrote:
> >> > How about some personal lists of our most influential/inspiring books?
> Aristoi - Walter John Williams
> Cosmos - Carl Sagan
> Gödel, Escher, Bach - Douglas Hofstadter
> Mind Children - Hans Moravec
> Neverness - David Zindell
> Permutation City - Greg Egan
> The Anthropic Cosmological Principle - Barrow and Tipler
> The Transparent Society - David Brin

Excellent list, disappointing to me only that I've already read them.  ;-)

> > It would be wonderful if any and all who engage in discussions of
> > personal identity were familiar with Reasons and Persons, but I was
> > disappointed at what I perceive as Parfit's reluctance to fully
> > embrace the implications of his own work.  Such tentativeness seems to
> > distinguish your thinking from mine as well.  I suspect it is more a
> > matter of temperament than philosophy, assuming you must be (I)NTP on
> > the MTBI, while I'm INTJ.
> Hmm, which implications would that be? If you have a list, I could try to
> talk to him about them (he is literally one flight of stairs upstairs from
> me).

I remember my disappointment with the tentativeness of his
conclusions, but after so many years I don't remember the specifics.
I just retrieved my copy of the book and upon perusing the table of
contents I am surprised anew by its extent.  I'm also reminded that
nearly any idea that feels original to me has been picked up or
synthesized from other sources.

I'll review the book and organize my thoughts and get back to you on
this as quickly as practical.  Who knows, I may find that I see it
differently so many years later.


- Jef

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