It is the time for end-of-year lists. Just like last year, I'm going with five Product-related books I've read in 2016.
No obvious, SV group-think choices - I promise!
If there was even a shadow of a doubt that tech industry is not just deeply political, but rife with regressive politics, the events of 2016 removed it out completely.
Precisely why we desperately need to start unpacking technology more critically.
It is not so much that David Golumbia picked on Bitcoin. It is more that it should a great way of how to analyze technologies.
"... where and how it happened that a technology developed specifically to magnify the powers favored by the political right has mutated so as not to serve those powers but the forces they oppose a...".
O'Neil book is not just a fairly rare example of progressive take on technology. Far more importantly it is an excellent guide of how to design algorithms better.
"Mathematical models should be our tools, not our masters".
I've picked only the last book in a loose trilogy - including The Red Men and If Then .
It is not that de Abaitua in particular, has some deep recipe for the future. He merely observes the present very well. Of course, the AI angle is increasingly relevant. It is also hella fun.
Read the trilogy in any order you like - but don't skip The Destructives.
If this sounds interesting but too long, just read Warren Ellis' Normal. A "provocative techno-thriller" set in an asylum for broken futurologists. Can't go wrong...
One of my insights for 2016 is that Designers are new Product Managers. I'll expand on that some other time.
In the meantime, this brief outline of how to structure a Design team from the Adaptive Path heavyweights Kristin Skinner and Peter Merholz will help out.
After all, all those design disciplines are getting confusing.
I thought a lot what to put on the last slot. In a conventional way, Sprint book would be a great choice. Or Patton's User Story Mapping - it needs to be a standard reading for any PM.
Looking more Heffernan's Magic and Loss gave a very interesting perspective on the Internet. Equally Anand's The Content Trap is a great read on business strategy for the content-driven industries.
Yet, I'll go with a slightly older, but increasingly relevant read - Dan Hill's Dark Matter and Trojan Horses.
" So we have new kinds of problems, but potentially new kinds of design to address them."
You won't get all the answers here, but there are plenty of directions to explore and useful tools to practice.
As sure as hell we'll need it in 2017 and beyond. Here we go!