Books That Changed You

Ego

The Only Thing Bigger Than My Head
Feb 15, 2005
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#1
Ever read something so profound that it made you think/feel differently about a subject, or the world in general?
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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Mar 22, 2006
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#2
Ever read something so profound that it made you think/feel differently about a subject, or the world in general?
I'm not sure but if an author helped shape me into the monster I am today then they owe me money or at least an apology.
 
May 30, 2013
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#3
Other than the predictable responses of "Everybody Poops" and "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" the book that changed me was "Constructive Analysis" by Errett Bishop. It fundamentally changed the way I approach mathematical proofs by introducing me to constructive analysis. It also helped me come to the realization of how closely algorithm design and mathematical proofs are related.

Basically-

[assumption, proof, conclusion]

Can be understood in terms of

[ input data, algorithm, output data]
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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#4
Other than the predictable responses of "Everybody Poops" and "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" the book that changed me was "Constructive Analysis" by Errett Bishop. It fundamentally changed the way I approach mathematical proofs by introducing me to constructive analysis. It also helped me come to the realization of how closely algorithm design and mathematical proofs are related.

Basically-

[assumption, proof, conclusion]

Can be understood in terms of

[ input data, algorithm, output data]
Wait, you read a textbook? Huh, I had no idea that ever happened.
 

Ego

The Only Thing Bigger Than My Head
Feb 15, 2005
4,339
700
628
Elkton, MD
#5
The 48 Laws of Power did it for me. I don't ever plan on ruling the world, but I became more involved in picking my spot in situations.
 

Atomic Fireball

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Jul 26, 2005
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#6
1984
Atlas Shrugged
The Singularity is Near - nonfiction - Ray Kurzweil makes a very compelling case that something extraordinary is going to happen in 40 -50 years
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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Mar 22, 2006
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#8
The Singularity is Near - nonfiction - Ray Kurzweil makes a very compelling case that something extraordinary is going to happen in 40 -50 years
I hope Ray was off by 50 years and it happens tomorrow because I'm bored as shit with the current circumstances.
 

LiddyRules

I'm Gonna Be The Bestest Pilot In The Whole Galaxy
Jun 1, 2005
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#9

LiddyRules

I'm Gonna Be The Bestest Pilot In The Whole Galaxy
Jun 1, 2005
141,458
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644
#11
The Lion, the Witch, and The Wardrobe because it really made me question the tastes of people who liked it. (This was late elementary/early middle school age.)

I'm sure there were others before this, but I think The Trial (Kafka) was one of the first that really fucked with my thought process. Not that it "permanently" changes the world view, but where when you put it down you almost feel drugged because your brain is operating in a different way.

I'm blanking on others now.
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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Mar 22, 2006
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#12
To be serious for a minute, there was a poem that FUCKED me up big time. I still remember it to this day...

You see it all around you
good loving gone bad
And usually it's too late when you realize what you had
And my mind goes back to a girl I left some years ago who told me
Just hold on loosely but don't let her go if you cling too tightly you're gonna lose control
 
May 30, 2013
46,127
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#13
1984
Atlas Shrugged
The Singularity is Near - nonfiction - Ray Kurzweil makes a very compelling case that something extraordinary is going to happen in 40 -50 years
No "Animal Farm" or "Brave New World"?
 
May 30, 2013
46,127
41,879
293
#14
To be serious for a minute, there was a poem that FUCKED me up big time. I still remember it to this day...

You see it all around you
good loving gone bad
And usually it's too late when you realize what you had
And my mind goes back to a girl I left some years ago who told me
Just hold on loosely but don't let her go if you cling too tightly you're gonna lose control
Poetry? Faggit...
 
May 30, 2013
46,127
41,879
293
#15
I only like poetry when it's read aloud...

 

Voodoo Ben

You gotta wash your ass
Dec 5, 2010
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#18
The Maxx by Sam Keith.

changed the way i looked at superheroes and comics.
 

whiskeyguy

PR representative for Drunk Whiskeyguy.
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Jan 12, 2010
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#20

Both these really changed the way I viewed the world.

When I first read Catcher in the Rye it kind of put my more cynical side in perspective.

Fight Club & American Psycho (read around the same time) - introduced me to what is now my favorite genre of novels, sometimes referred to as transgressive fiction. Total new way of viewing society and the world in general.
 

Psychopath

Plata O Plomo
Dec 28, 2008
17,707
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#21
God No, by Penn Jillette. Made me change my views on being an agnostic, and why he considers agnosticism should just be called atheist. The First Family by Mike Dash destroyed my misconceptions on the American Mafia.
 

Mags

LDAR king
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Oct 22, 2004
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#23
Green Eggs and Ham.

I do not like them
in a house.
I do not like them
with a mouse.
I do not like them
here or there.
I do not like them
anywhere.

I haven't been the same since. That was over a month ago.
 

Tetro

Registered User
Feb 1, 2010
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#24
Ham on Rye - Charles Bukowski
Meditations - Marcus Aurelius
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
Apr 22, 2002
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Seattle
#25
Stay with me here.

I was in second grade. Some of you might have noticed that I read pretty well. I had exhausted the library of "age appropriate" books through sixth grade level and would walk around libraries with a dumb look on my face, completely bored with my options. I had started to show an interest in the D&D game my friend had and, for my birthday, he gave me the Dragonlance Chronicles.

It was the first "real" books I had ever read. I fell in love. With fantasy, with novels, with reading in general. I already enjoyed reading, but these made me see the possibilities of books. Epic storytelling, vast environments, large character casts...and the first time dealing with one die. It was the first time I'd read about youth and adult love and the difference between the two and what it really means to take responsibility, not just have it forced on you. It taught me the concepts of good and evil and how the line between is often blurry.

After this I tore into novels, starting with my dad's Heinleins and Executioners. The Time Machine and War of the Worlds. I ripped through my mom's Louis L'amours. Then I picked through the shelves looking for anything I might have missed. I wore holes in my library cards.

Since that time fiction novels have been my constant companion and, for good or ill, have shaped my views of the world and given me an education far beyond what my teachers, or even parents, could hope to.

Of course, my parents are the reason I was a fluent reader from well before Kindergarten, so I guess it all stems from them.

I still have those books. They are a little worse for wear and I bought a new set that I can actually read. Those are starting to get a little worn as well.