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Charlotte A. Hu

Marine photograper, turned Embassy Officer, now USAF Public Affairs

San Antonio, TX, United States | Member Since 2008

37
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 39 reviews
  • 76 ratings
  • 753 titles in library
  • 23 purchased in 2014
FOLLOWING
1
FOLLOWERS
10

  • Quantum: Einstein, Bohr, and the Great Debate about the Nature of Reality

    • UNABRIDGED (14 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Manjit Kumar
    • Narrated By Ray Porter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (539)
    Performance
    (369)
    Story
    (362)

    Quantum theory is weird. As Niels Bohr said, if you aren’t shocked by quantum theory, you don’t really understand it. For most people, quantum theory is synonymous with mysterious, impenetrable science. And in fact for many years it was equally baffling for scientists themselves. In this tour de force of science history, Manjit Kumar gives a dramatic and superbly written account of this fundamental scientific revolution.

    Terezia says: "Biographic facts not explanations."
    "Author Brings Quantum Theory to a Photographer"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love this book because the author uses such wonderfully simplistic description of science and experiments that I can follow him most of the time and most importantly, can feel the tension between Einstein, Bohr, Boern, Schrodinger and others over the entangle debate on the meaning of life, the universe and reality. Adding more depth to my entertainment in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Universe and encouraging me to dig up a text that was hugely popular when I graduated high school: In Search of Schrödinger's Cat: Quantum Physics and Reality.

    This book was fascinating and fun! I do hope they bring Schrödinger's Cat to audible.com soon.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  • Critical Chain: Project Management and the Theory of Constraints

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Eliyahu M. Goldratt
    • Narrated By Alexander Cendese, Rick Adamson, Tavia Gilbert
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (47)
    Performance
    (39)
    Story
    (40)

    A young, untested team of problem solvers challenged with saving their company moves from board room to classroom in search of answers - and finds them through lively, open discourse with their innovative professor. This gripping, fast-paced business novel does for project management what Eliyahu M. Goldratt's other novels have done for production and marketing.

    LosBaz says: "Just alright"
    "Business Fiction - A New Genre"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This book is horrific from a literary perspective - shallow, predictable characters with almost soap-opera like qualities. Please ignore the slow start where these unimpressive characters are introduced.

    This book is brilliant because of the way it weaves a deeper meaning and education of project management into a plausible and interesting plotline, which makes up for the characters that carry it.

    This book is not for the uninitiated. It's chocked full of jargon and concepts that people who have never studied project management would never understand. For those who have had a course or two on project management or even a weeklong seminar and for whom project management is a reality, the book has a clarity and focus that reaches beyond anything I've seen in any period of instruction on the topic. However, you must speak the project management language to follow the gist of the book.

    As someone who has managed projects for years and studied project management, this book helped me achieve a new level of thinking and analysing business models, assumption, problems, workflows and more.

    This book is truly brilliant. Did I start out by saying its bad literature? It is. And it's brilliant!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Woman Who Could Not Forget: Iris Chang Before and Beyond The Rape of Nanking

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 14 mins)
    • By Ying-Ying Chang
    • Narrated By Emily Zeller
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    A moving and illuminating memoir about the life of world-famous author and historian Iris ChangIris Chang's best-selling book, The Rape of Nanking, forever changed the way we view the Second World War in Asia. It all began with a photo of a river choked with the bodies of hundreds of Chinese civilians that shock Iris to her core. Who were these people? Why had this happened and how could their story have been lost to history? She could not shake that image from her head.

    Charlotte A. Hu says: "University Thesis Changed Understanding of WWII"
    "University Thesis Changed Understanding of WWII"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a great, insightful view into the mind and life of a remarkable young student who stumbled onto the thesis most university students only dream of and create a New York Times Best Seller than changed the world's understanding of the horrors of World War II before taking her own life in the aftermath of the incredible controversy and horrific denials resulting from her extraordinary academic research.

    She wrote a work that shook the nation of Japan and the top of which is still considered taboo to mention in Japan or around Japanese. While all the world has been deeply aware of the horrors of Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union's KGB, the Khmer Rouge, a plethora of South and Central American dictators, without the gift of Iris Chang's admittedly nauseating description of torture so remarkable horrible that it makes uncomfortable reading, the world would have gone blissfully on oblivious to one of the world's more horrid historical elements.

    We are all indebted to her. And she and her family paid a dear price for the gem she left humanity. This story tells why and how she endeavored to achieve the dream of so many academicians and authors - to tell a powerful, riveting story that no one could put down.

    Great work. Great woman.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Midnight's Children

    • UNABRIDGED (24 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Salman Rushdie
    • Narrated By Lyndam Gregory
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (587)
    Performance
    (379)
    Story
    (369)

    Salman Rushdie holds the literary world in awe with a jaw-dropping catalog of critically acclaimed novels that have made him one of the world's most celebrated authors. Winner of the prestigious Booker of Bookers, Midnight's Children tells the story of Saleem Sinai, born on the stroke of India's independence.

    Marc-Fr says: "Outstanding book, superb narration"
    "Made Me Feel Shockingly Stupid"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Looking for a way to ease the monotony of the daily commute, I thumbed through the audiobooks on my iPod and settled on Midnight's Children. In about 90 seconds, Salman Rushdie made me feel more stupid than a season of Are You Smarter than 5th Grader? First, he says his favorite Indian authors are Charles Dickens and Jane Austin and he loved the Bombay description Charles Dickens gives. Dickens? In India? Then he says the birth of Midnight's Children started the year Indira Gandhi was indicted for election fraud and then activated emergency powers and began her series of crimes. Indira Gandhi was a dictator? And during that year, so-and-so, the founder of Bangladesh was murdered. The founder of Bangladesh was who? Was assassinated? Maybe I don't read enough.

    This novel is amazing. It simultaneously transports me to a world so completely foreign I might as well be on Mars and prominently reminds me of the pains of poverty and petty politics in Cairo. Funny and disparaging, absurd and painfully real, I love it.

    16 of 17 people found this review helpful
  • Jung: A Very Short Introduction

    • ABRIDGED (3 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By Anthony Stevens
    • Narrated By Tim Pigott-Smith
    Overall
    (229)
    Performance
    (47)
    Story
    (44)

    Anthony Stevens argues that Jung's visionary powers and profound spirituality have helped many to find an alternative set of values to the arid materialism prevailing Western society.

    Edgar says: "Very nice - will not be disappointed"
    "Jung: Normal is the Ideal Aim of the Unsuccessful"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First, I love this book because it's short. I have a million other topics I need to study, but I've always been fascinated by Jung. I should confess that my total understanding of psychology is a college 101 class, so this is really not my world. However, I was offended by the focus on the aberrant and the lack of focus on the health of ordinary people. I was also repulsed by the focus on Freud and his obsession with sex. While sex is clearly a part of life, my life doesn't evolve around it. The course briefly mentioned this enigmatic, foreign figure who seemed to take people more holistically. This book gave me a nice relationship with Jung -- much more than an introduction. I was surprised at the depth and range of a book so short.
    This book is also brings in myth and gossip, rounding out the truly legendary elements of Jung's life. It introduced me to amazing elements of his life, like his own struggles with sanity and his believe that babbling maniacs should be listened to, an idea, which, while counter intuitive, I found compelling. I was also compelled by his idea that by living the experience of failed mental health, he was able to gain a greater insight. He considered his mental failing a great contribution to his research. Amazing!
    I learned about Jung's childhood, his relationship with Freud, his research, his failed mental health and recovery and his return to academia. I learned about concepts like his disagreements with Freud on the meaning of dreams and his ideas about archetypes. The audiobook is only something like 3 hours long. In less than a week of daily commutes, I was able to get a pretty good basic understanding of Jung.
    The audiobook's narration is smooth and I love the narrator's accent. Great read.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Dan Ariely
    • Narrated By Simon Jones
    Overall
    (3628)
    Performance
    (1155)
    Story
    (1159)

    In a series of illuminating, often surprising experiments, MIT behavioral economist Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. Blending everyday experience with groundbreaking research, Ariely explains how expectations, emotions, social norms, and other invisible, seemingly illogical forces skew our reasoning abilities.

    Stephen says: "Well researched, well written, & well read"
    "Compare with Blink"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I made the mistake of reading Predictably Irrational at the same time as I was reading Blink. This is a problem because although both books are great, they advance virtual opposite concepts and both have solid research and sociological/statistical evidence to support their conclusions.
    I often make Blink decisions – like the man I married, but then sometimes I spend extensive time researching. According to Blink, that extensive research may result in the wrong decision, but according to predictably irrational, people often compare apples with apples, or so we think and come out with a conclusion that isn’t logical.
    For example, we purchased 3 properties – 2 rentals and one residence. They are each in a distinct economic sector of the US. One of the rentals was the price of a car, the other, a small down home, and the third in a major metropolitan region. In each case, we pretty much matched the median price for that economic region, based on research about the local housing market, crime trends, flood zones, etc. However predictably irrational says that people tend to pay the same amount for each home regardless of what geographic region it is in and what the local market forces are. So, apparently, we dodged the bullet there, by doing extensive research.
    However, Malcolm contends that people need to listen to their gut and feel a decision. I don’t know that he would argue that this is the only way to make a decision, so much as that we shouldn’t let extensive research and scientific study overwhelm or silence our own intuitive sense of what we know.
    So, the challenge becomes how to blend the two remarkable and contradictory books into a guideline for effective decision making. Regardless of where you come out, I do recommend reading them both in a relatively short time frame, so you can compare the concepts side by side. Fascinating and intriguing ideas in both, doubly so when read together.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Malcolm Gladwell
    • Narrated By Malcolm Gladwell
    Overall
    (7619)
    Performance
    (2359)
    Story
    (2351)

    In his landmark best seller The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell redefined how we understand the world around us. Now, in Blink, he revolutionizes the way we understand the world within. Blink is a book about how we think without thinking, about choices that seem to be made in an instant, in the blink of an eye, that actually aren't as simple as they seem. Why are some people brilliant decision makers, while others are consistently inept?

    Liz says: "encore!"
    "Compare with Predictably Irrational"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I made the mistake of reading Predictably Irrational at the same time as I was reading Blink. This is a problem because although both books are great, they advance virtual opposite concepts and both have solid research and sociological/statistical evidence to support their conclusions.
    I often make Blink decisions – like the man I married, but then sometimes I spend extensive time researching. According to Blink, that extensive research may result in the wrong decision, but according to predictably irrational, people often compare apples with apples, or so we think and come out with a conclusion that isn’t logical.
    For example, we purchased 3 properties – 2 rentals and one residence. They are each in a distinct economic sector of the US. One of the rentals was the price of a car, the other, a small down home, and the third in a major metropolitan region. In each case, we pretty much matched the median price for that economic region, based on research about the local housing market, crime trends, flood zones, etc. However predictably irrational says that people tend to pay the same amount for each home regardless of what geographic region it is in and what the local market forces are. So, apparently, we dodged the bullet there, by doing extensive research.
    However, Malcolm contends that people need to listen to their gut and feel a decision. I don’t know that he would argue that this is the only way to make a decision, so much as that we shouldn’t let extensive research and scientific study overwhelm or silence our own intuitive sense of what we know.
    So, the challenge becomes how to blend the two remarkable and contradictory books into a guideline for effective decision making. Regardless of where you come out, I do recommend reading them both in a relatively short time frame, so you can compare the concepts side by side. Fascinating and intriguing ideas in both, doubly so when read together.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Nicholas Carr
    • Narrated By Paul Michael Garcia
    Overall
    (349)
    Performance
    (192)
    Story
    (189)

    Weaving insights from philosophy, neuroscience, and history into a rich narrative, The Shallows explains how the Internet is rerouting our neural pathways, replacing the subtle mind of the book reader with the distracted mind of the screen watcher. A gripping story of human transformation played out against a backdrop of technological upheaval, The Shallows will forever alter the way we think about media and our minds.

    Roy says: "Is the Internet Turning Our Brains to Mush?"
    "I Disagree: Not Only Elites, More People Read Now"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    First, as appropriate self-disclosure, I should note that the title and description of this book turned me off because I'm a technophile. However, I read books that I feel viscerally opposed to precisely because I feel opposed to them. I don't want my brain to get too narrow.

    Even though I disagree with the concepts presented in this book, I'm giving it 4 stars because I think it adds a valid argument to the overall discussion on the impact of the Internet and it's impact.

    That said, my initial response to a lot of his points was that they were valid. Some of the points in this book are valid. The increasing "drinking from a fire hydrant" feeling of information overload is undeniably real. The problem with this book is that he compares our current life to the "good ol' days" when people read more deeply, wrote more deeply, etc. And even he notes that those were the rich elite. In fact, in the good ol' days, most of the world was illiterate.

    My cousin is a construction work and my brother installs security cameras for a living. Both claim they hated high school and neither could tolerate much more formal education. My brother choked down some university courses because he was able earn GI Bill beer money as a result.

    Still, decades ago, my conversations with them lacked depth and range. Today, my brother is well versed on a wide variety of science, technology, politics, global events. I'm amazed at the conversations I have with both of them and with other family members who eschewed formal education.

    Not only is technology bringing people with little interest in deep reading into the fold, its expanding the reach and range for those of us with an interest in everything. I've always loved to read, but years ago, I had to dedicate a week or two to a good book. Now, with my audible.com empowered iPod, I can consume a book in a day or two. This one included.

    Japanese are surprisingly well-read; at least Tokyoites, owing to the hours they spend in commute on the Metro system. I learned to love my iPod when I was commuting by bus and metro in DC. I don't need a seat. I don't need to focus on bouncing words on a page to read. My iPod keeps dumping ideas into my brain as I step up onto the bus, touch my smart card to pay for the bus, walk down the stairs into the metro, pass through the turnstiles. My reading hours have been expanded to any time when I'm driving, walking, even exercising.

    Sorry, the end result I see is more people with more data in their brains, processing more information and mulling it over in conversations. The world isn't getting more shallow, but it might getting "flat" er. Today, literacy rates throughout the world are climbing, access to a range of information. Globally, it's a good thing on the whole. I'm sure the intellectual elite are still reading just as deeply as ever before.

    Thanks for the idea, though.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Inside Larry's and Sergey's Brain

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 15 mins)
    • By Richard L. Brandt
    • Narrated By Erik Synnestvetd
    Overall
    (10)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (7)

    You've used their products. You've heard about their skyrocketing wealth and "don't be evil" business motto. But how much do you really know about Google's founders, Larry Page and Sergey Brin? Inside Larry and Sergey's Brain skips past the general Google story and focuses on what really drives these men and where they will take Google in the future.

    Charlotte A. Hu says: "Humans at the Top"
    "Humans at the Top"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I like this book because it humanizes the heroes of this drama without getting too deep in the drama. The books gives a lot of detail about how Larry and Sergey created their pet project and how it came to rule our lives, it doesn't gloss over complaints, but doesn't delve too deeply in the soap opera elements of unhappy former employees, etc.

    This book talks a lot about the business strategy and the future of the Internet, search and the potential impact on our lives, noting that experts say search is less than 5% solved. It adds that the linked connection to create a better search engineer that Larry and Sergey designed wasn't unique and they would have created some kind of business regardless.

    The book goes through a lot of they key players and key events not only in the lives of the Google twins, but also in the evolution of what is becoming a key element in the lives of most humans on the planet -- the evolving Internet.

    I like the detail and next to What Would Google Do, this is my favorite Google book. Good stuff

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Googled: The End of the World as We Know It

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 57 mins)
    • By Ken Auletta
    • Narrated By Jim Bond
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (259)
    Performance
    (107)
    Story
    (107)

    In Googled, esteemed media writer and critic Ken Auletta uses the story of Google's rise to explore the inner workings of the company and the future of the media at large. Although Google has often been secretive, this book is based on the most extensive cooperation ever granted a journalist, including access to closed-door meetings and interviews with founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, CEO Eric Schmidt, and some 150 present and former employees.

    Brian says: "Interesting, but Tedious"
    "Amazing Insight into Changes in Our World"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I understand the World is Flat now, because Friedman told me, but exactly what that means to how my daily life is being increasingly touched by technologies and decisions of people in that industry isn't exactly clear. Googled helps make it more clear by giving me some insight into this company and its "messianic" mission to improve the world. The almost obsessive focus on user value seems to me to be the reason the Amazon.com website has also soared in popularity. Like REI, these companies seem to be most interested in how to bring to the consumer what they want. While this may or may not be true for Amazon, it is certainly true that REI and Google began with consumer-oriented focus and not with monetary focus and it seems both remain so today.
    This books gives me a detailed look into some of the personalities and personality struggles, in the objectives and conflicts of purpose the founders and members of Google have gone through as they vie for optimization or humanization of technology and information.
    Anyone doing e-commerce today, should study this book and with the understanding that providing detailed, useful content is the best way to arrive at the top of the search, improve the content of your site so that it is useful to visitors.
    The more useful, the higher you get in the search rankings. This seems like one more example of how technology is flattening our world.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Tactical Transparency: How Leaders Can Leverage Social Media to Maximize Value and Build Their Brand

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By John C. Havens, Shel Holtz
    • Narrated By Victor Bevine
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (9)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Tactical Transparency provides a methodology that will help your organization create its unique plan to bring greater authenticity to your company and your brands. Drawn largely from interviews with leaders in companies that have achieved measurable success in this arena, authors Shel Holtz and John C. Havens provide step-by-step details on how executives and professional communicators can create a transparency strategy that will keep their organization competitive in the 21st century.

    Charlotte A. Hu says: "Much of the same Material from Other Books"
    "Much of the same Material from Other Books"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This text is a bit preachy and I don't care for the style. It retells the Dell Hell story and another about Sony's bad boy attempt to use social media undercover to drive up PSP Christmas sales, but generally doesn't say anything that hasn't already been covered in this genre -- What Would Google Do, Here Comes Everybody, etc. Yes, we know the dialectic Internet is changing business, but there's nothing particularly insightful about this text. Be Honest, it says. So did Beware the Naked Man Who Offers You His Shirt and How to Swim with the Sharks without Being Eaten Alive -- were those two decades ago?

    But this is different -- be honest, or else, it will bite you. The Internet is forever and anything on a website at anytime can be rediscovered via a simple Google search.

    Is there really anyone reading this who doesn't already know this?

    This book is more an issue of wishful thinking. The authors HOPE businesses will be more honest in the future, but ... I found all evidence to the contrary.

    This book is well read, the production is clean and the ideas flowed smoothly into my mind.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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