This was maybe the best audiobook I've ever listened.
I found this book very intense. The author is tireless in his long, metaphoric descriptions, but with an enjoyable, delightful fluidity. I found his style addicting. His depicting of different ages are archetypal, but he expresses them beautifully.
The narrator is great! All the characters' voices are really good. The best ones, in my opinion, are Mr. Dark's subtly sinister voice and Will's Dad's grave voice. They matched perfectly.
Will and his father climbing together the rungs leading to Will's window was really intense. Father and son reconciling and having a deep conversation without saying a single word. Beautiful!
This audiobook stresses the importance of knowing the difference between religion knowledge and endoctrination. Atheists, agnostics, deists and even the less strict theists will find good advices on how to bring up a child without religion prejudices, that is, without seeing anything special about any religion, but at the same time respecting the believers as human beings. But as the author points out, respecting other people doesn't mean inconditional respect for their ideas, because ideas must earn one's respect.
It was a good listen, but I found it confusing sometimes. Since the book has many quotations and comments of other people's thoughts and works, it is difficult to follow who is being cited. The narrator's voice is great, but she might have explored more intonation changes to stress more clearly who is speaking at any given moment.
The real examples of Big Data application are very interesting. More and more data is being collected on all levels of our daily lives, and the computational power to process it increases consistently. The possibilities in the future are beyond our imagination today.
The example of Google managing to foretell epidemics in almost real time based on search terms is awesome!
As computers get more and more powerful, we will be able to use Big Data techniques to do amazing things, even at personal level. Imagine a personal assistant (like a smartphone) that "knows" what you're doing and anticipates your next moves based on data about your life it collects, privately, in real time. For example, you're talking about a possible trip to your wife and it tells you the best dates based on price, possibility of being away from work or school, weather forecast, availability of someone to take care of your dog, estimated availability of money at the time of the trip, etc. All in real time and without explicitly asking. You just need to say "book it!" at the end.
A good thing about the print edition is the pictures and charts. But the audio edition is excellent nonetheless.
Well, there aren't exactly characters in this book. But I think Yahweh (God) with his genocidal spree, and Lancelot with his killing spree, deserve to be mentioned.
His voice is very clear and sober. He sounds like an experienced scholar. It matches the style of the book very well.
I got some: there is no pattern in the temporal distribution of wars; every single form of human killing has systematically decreased (although we can't guarantee that for the future); economic relationships, democracy and information access were fundamental to decrease violence in the past and still are.
This book is really long, but it is worth every minute! Pinker explores many interesting topics to approach violence. As a scientist, he not only provides the evidence but also criticises his own conclusions. And, to top it all off, he provides great references for further reading.
I would have made the explorer's goals more practical, like exploring some miles into the crust. The way the story goes, a "scientist" is convinced that his expedition could descend thousands of miles into the planet and then come back, on foot and carrying only some pounds of dried meat and crackers as provisions. That's better described as fantasy, not science fiction.
No. The performance was OK. I hope to enjoy it more the next time, with a better story.
Maybe, but it should be a fantasy story with kids, because the basis is too silly to involve adults, let alone scientists.
Those who listen to this audiobook expecting a science fiction story will be disappointed. But it is a good fantasy story, specially if you assume that the professor is delusional.
Sure! Besides being a beautiful story, it's lots of fun!
The story is eternal and fun for all ages.
Anne Hathaway's performance was delightful! She can do many different, convincing voices. Her Scarecrow is really funny!
A memorable passage to me involved the philosophical views of the Tin Man. He explained how he tried to be kind to all living ceatures, since he didn't have a heart to judge when not to be kind. Beautiful!
This audiobook makes a great bedtime story. My 5 year old daughter listened to it twice, 10 minutes a night, and simply loved it!
Darwin wins again.
Steven Pinker explains very clearly the theory of human language as a biological adaptation. And he teaches you a lot of related subjects along the way.
The way Pinker conveys knowledge to the layperson and the specialist at the same time reminds me of Carl Sagan. Pinker's book is very well written and makes you want to read more and more about the subjects involving human language. In contrast, I was reading one of Terrence Deacon's books about language and got stuck with his tiresome writing.
About the narrator, this was the second book I listened with Arthur Morey. Like in "The Better Angels of our Nature" his performance was flawless.
Yes, but it's 19 hours of audio!
Excellent book for the lovers of linguistics. And an excellent opportunity for those interested in knowing more about this subject without getting bored.
I would recommend this audiobook to anyone who needs to improve their listening and articulation in American English.
As a foreigner, it was very instructive to know how the function words are almost neglected and have no stress in spoken American English. It gave me a different perspective on the rhythm of the language.
I don't think this question applies here.
This is a book for intermediate to advanced English students or fluent speakers. They don't provide the corresponding textbook, although they refer to it. I didn't need it, but many students probably would.
Yes, because it is always good to read about human nature.
The main character, Gregor Samsa. All the others are more disgusting than the creature he becomes.
This was the second book I heard with this narrator. I didn't like him very much. It's a matter of taste, but I didn't like his voice and his interpretations. He sounded rather monotonous.
Well, I felt a bit disgusted throughout the book, and a bit depressed with the end. All in all it was a very good book. It makes you think about life.
This book is about a human being who lived among verminous creatures. When he becomes a nasty bug like them, they realize they have to start living like human beings.
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