I want to go about finding entertaining, engaging, intelligent things I can read about subjects I know nothing about. Ideally, I want a source of these things which will reliably send me off in directions I'm completely unfamiliar with, rather than just new sources which cover individual specific subjects. But it has to be enjoyable, even somewhat mindless reading – think Cracked or Buzzfeed. Does anything like this exist? Are there good places online for me to stimulate myself when I'm in that mindless time-killing mood?
posted by Rory Marinich
on Jul 9, 2013 -
I'm looking for resources for evidence
-based processes, tips, hacks, improvements, ideas, etc., for learning more effectively. [more inside]
posted by StrawberryPie
on Jun 23, 2013 -
Hi Metafilter. Recommendations, please?
Recently I had ended a cycle of medication that was likely to affect my memory. It has.
I feel as though I've gone from a quick, engaged conversationalist, to a bit of an observant, less inclined platform of speaking. Mostly, it's because I can't seem to recall things as quickly as before. It's so, so uncomfortable.
I've been told my memory will return over time, but in the meantime, I can read and participate in exercises in an attempt to jar it.
Can anyone offer some comprehensive overviews of religion, history, philosophy, or politics?
Really basic stuff would be just find - Any texts going over the religions of the world, introductions to politic, lists of notable philosophers or historic figures..
posted by thewolfandewe
on Jun 16, 2013 -
I'm looking for a particular recording of Alan Ginsberg reading America. It was on a mix tape I lost many years ago, and the particular moment that stands out is when he says "America I am the Scottsboro boys", someone in the (high as a kite and raucous) audience shouts out "you are
the Scottsboro boys!" Any pointers would be helpful, either to purchasable media or to online video.
posted by pmb
on Jun 15, 2013 -
After rereading the Little House on the Prairie series, I want more books of a similar style! Particular specifications and a few more examples within. Note: Anne of Green Gables need not apply. [more inside]
posted by windykites
on Jun 13, 2013 -
I'm looking for examples of analysis of why a particular passage of prose is excellent, or why it fails. [more inside]
posted by tchemgrrl
on Jun 11, 2013 -
I would like to spread the word on a release party of sorts for a small publication that specializes in experimental poetry, literature, and conceptual writing. [more inside]
posted by archivist
on Jun 10, 2013 -
My math knowledge ends just past Newton. What books provide a good, relatively general-audience introduction to the past 150-250 years of problems and developments in mathematics? [more inside]
posted by gallusgallus
on Jun 10, 2013 -
I like reading pen-and-paper RPG rulebooks. Can you recommend some of your favorites? Extra points for: non-Tolkein universes, a cool new spin on classes or magic, and anything that has interesting non-combat systems. [more inside]
posted by subject_verb_remainder
on Jun 8, 2013 -
My wife and I are starting a "book club" for the two of us. The plan is to read an award winning book each month. The first month we'll read a book that won an award in 2012, the second month an award-winner from 2011 and so on.
There are many, many book awards to pick from so here's the question: What book awards do we use to determine the "nominees" for each month? [more inside]
posted by John Frum
on Jun 4, 2013 -
What are the best transit accesible public spaces for sitting and reading in Queens? Even after the renovation of the Queens Central Library, it's still hard on the eyes. Are there attractive libraries? Privately owned public spaces, like the Olympic Tower Atrium
in Manhattan? Hotel lobbies? [more inside]
posted by Jahaza
on May 30, 2013 -
I adore to read.
And I adore puns. Help me choose an amazing pun-based name for my book group! All suggestions considered. Googling "book puns" and "reading puns" was surprisingly unhelpful.
posted by drunkonthemoon
on May 19, 2013 -
I'm finding as I age, I use Readability on a lot of pages. Can I make a local style sheet that overrides the native one upon first load of a page that does what Readability does?
posted by usermac
on May 14, 2013 -
As a Progressive, aside from some stuff I hate read, the only conservative periodicals i read on any regular basis are First Things and the Economist (which, you know Cliche). Part of the problem is homophobia, but that's not enough of an excuse. So which blogs, websites, pod-casts, magazines, journals, tv shows, subreddits, zines, or mailers about neocons, fiscal cons, paelocons, libertarians, paleo-libertarians, social conservatives, or anything I have missed. I have read a lot of books, and I am more interested in a set of ongoing discussions, rather than something as solid as a monograph.
posted by PinkMoose
on May 7, 2013 -
I'm looking for recommendations for contemporary(ish) literary fiction written by folks who are not white men. [more inside]
posted by shakespeherian
on May 7, 2013 -
I'm seeing a trend emerge, but I can't quite put my finger on how to identify it. Does it already have a name? If not, help me come up with one (for an article I'm writing). The article's jumping off point is RapGenius's foray into annotating everything
not just lyrics, the NYTimes' Quips
tool, Medium.com's paragraph-level commenting/annotation system
, and Findings.com. [more inside]
posted by AceRock
on May 6, 2013 -
I commute to and from work, which involves busses and trains transfers and other general distractions, and while I really enjoy reading on this commute, I can't sink my teeth into heavier books that require a ton of concentration to comprehend and follow (I save those for the weekends). I have found that lighter books with shorter chapters and engaging storylines are easiest to read in this atmosphere. What are your recommendations? [more inside]
posted by wordsmith
on May 3, 2013 -
I've recently discovered that I love reading non-fiction about the Great Outdoors and the things that happen there. I'm talking about books like 'Touching the Void' by Joe Simpson, and Jon Krakauer's books 'Into Thin Air' and 'Into the Wild'. It doesn't necessarily have to be about disasters and tragedies: I really loved this recent FPP about the Alaskan Iditarod
. I want to read (but haven't yet) 'Into the Silence: the Great War, Mallory and the Conquest of Everest'. Please recommend me other books in this vein?
posted by meronym
on May 2, 2013 -
I am leaving for Africa in less than 12 hours. I will be spending the next three months doing fieldwork. I am bringing a Kindle. What reading material should I bring for entertainment? What's gotten you through some long spells away from civilization? Looking for recommendations for books that really make you think. [more inside]
posted by Scientist
on May 1, 2013 -
My grandmother is in her 80s, but loves romance books, especially Danielle Steel. She's gotten several of the Harlequin Intrigue, etc series, but says that there's too much sex in them. She prefers the Danielle Steel books because of the plot (I think?). Can you suggest any other authors/books? [more inside]
posted by needlegrrl
on Apr 25, 2013 -
If I were to choose 10 fiction and 10 non-fiction books to read within the next year to make me a better, more well-rounded conversationalist (for argument's sake, let's say within a college-educated professional audience), what books would give me the most bang for my buck? [more inside]
posted by dynamiiiite
on Apr 23, 2013 -
It's when "words fall away to pictures" occasionally , perhapps particularly when reading the text of physical books, usually novels, of a large size. It doesn't happen with reading online or e-book readers or textbooks. It's as if the visual imagination (without deliberate activation
) overrides what's actually been seen by the eyes, so that the story unfolding is actually being "watched" in the mind's eye in an immersive, vivid way where one becomes virtually unaware of the actual text print and the outside world (so it's not even like watching a movie in a cinema, where there is more consciousness of the real surroundings). This is not
just getting immersed in reading - the strong, and not deliberately activated, visualization is crucial. Based on anecdotal evidence, what I'm describing (not from my personal experience) appears to be a rarer rather than a common experience. Anyone have ideas what this neurological (?) trait might be?
posted by zresearch
on Apr 20, 2013 -
Reading is important, and I want my team to do it as part of training. And then I want to know what they understand, how much they assimilate, what conclusions they reach from the articles and documents I am sending them. What are some good ways for me to accomplish that? [more inside]
posted by anonymous
on Apr 17, 2013 -
Searching for [reading glasses .50] gets me 2.50, etc., on both Google and Amazon. ReadingGlasses.com has expensive ones, but I'm hoping to find good, low-strength reading glasses for the same price one would pay in a drug store. Strength .5 and/or .25. Any specific recommendations or search tips? (and what is the unit of measurement, anyway?)
posted by amtho
on Apr 16, 2013 -
Years ago (years!) I recall a TV show with Carl Sagan wherein he was standing in a library and made the point that if he read x
books per week for x
number of years then he would have read a small fraction of the books that have ever been written. His point was that even a well-read person can only ingest a fraction of what is out there.
I've always like that quote and would like to find this scene on YouTube or another site...
posted by gilast
on Apr 7, 2013 -
My kids (a boy and a girl) are now five years old, and my wife or I read to them every night before bed. I'd like to start reading larger books to them which we can stretch out throughout a week or more, by reading them a chapter a night. Please help me put together a great reading list of age-appropriate books that will capture their imaginations and inspire happy dreams. [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Apr 2, 2013 -
I am turning 27 in two days. Inspired by this
, I want to ask for your help in compiling a list of poems that celebrate turning older each year. [more inside]
posted by pleasebekind
on Mar 13, 2013 -
I run a once-a-week book club for 8 grade 7 girls. We likely have funding and time to read one more book and I'd really like to make it something special. [more inside]
posted by iftheaccidentwill
on Feb 26, 2013 -
I am a white gay dude. My goal is to bring myself up to speed on feminism (and important streams in gender and whatnot).
What books should I read?
What blogs should I be reading?
I want to be able to speak more coherently to these issues with an understanding of the history, and of the current theory.
posted by wooh
on Feb 24, 2013 -
While reading Infinite Jest, I looked up a word in the dictionary only to discover that the example sentence in the definition on my Kindle was exactly the same sentence I had just read in the book. [more inside]
posted by :-)
on Feb 20, 2013 -
Last week I read David Foster Wallace's "A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again" (thanks to this
FPP), while in the middle of reading Moby Dick. I found them resonating together so well: the high tragedy mixed with low comedy, the elaborate descriptive asides, the playing with formatting, the casual authorial self-hatred, the obsession with morality, to say nothing of the mechanics of the ship and the sea. All this without a single over reference back to Melville.
What are some other great co-reads (or movies/TV/opera/album/etc.) to get that enriching resonance? Subtle is good: think tone, theme, shape more than plot or character. If you've caught Laurence Weschler's McSweeney's series of Convergences (published in book form here
), that's more what I mean. The reader/viewer makes the connections without being led by the author (So, for instance, King Lear & Jane Smiley's A Thousand Acres are too overtly linked).
Bonus points for something that goes well with Cloud Atlas (the book, not the movie).
posted by rikschell
on Feb 18, 2013 -
What publications give solid advantages in which lines of work when read regularly? A few examples might be McKinsey
when read by HR managers, A List Apart
when read by designers, Hacker News
when read by programmers, and Poynter
when read by journalists. What else is there in these fields and in others that puts a person ahead?
posted by michaelh
on Feb 17, 2013 -
Just too late for Valentine's Day, recommend me some awesome fantasy novels with satisfying romances. [more inside]
posted by WidgetAlley
on Feb 15, 2013 -
Name that young adult fantasy novel: Two boys who are enemies at school are transported to some magical scenario where they have to work together. [more inside]
posted by latkes
on Feb 13, 2013 -
Week-long cottage holiday with friends coming up. We're planning a table reading. Last year's "Macbeth and margaritas" night was a roaring success, but we want to branch out. Recommend us some great plays! [more inside]
posted by stuck on an island
on Feb 13, 2013 -
An adult friend needs help becoming a faster reader. She's not interested in speed-reading classes because she doesn't want to learn how to skim: she wants to learn how to read more fluently. How does she learn to do that? [more inside]
posted by colfax
on Feb 12, 2013 -
Seeking recommendations for fiction that features matriarchy / female led societies.
posted by travelwithcats
on Feb 4, 2013 -
My favorite kinds of biographies have political/military figures from classical antiquity or America, with a focus on their intellectual development. I really enjoyed Dreams from My Father and Plutarch's Lives because they really delve into the intellectual development of their subjects. Biographies that span someone's entire lifespan are fine, as long as early life is well covered. Any recommendations?
posted by tomtheblackbear
on Jan 31, 2013 -
Can you recommend short, easy-to-understand math writing I can read before bed? [more inside]
posted by kristi
on Jan 29, 2013 -