How do we decide how long a person stays in jail? Which teachers get fired and which get to keep their job? How is our credit rating linked to the ads we see online and the amount of money we pay for car insurance? There’s one answer for all these questions: Algorithms. There are thousands of mathematical models built that track each and every one of us, putting us in neat little boxes for purposes of safety, advertising, and a dozen other broad causes. But are those algorithms always fair, or even coherent? Cathy O’Neil is here to argue that many of the algorithms running invisibly in the background of our day-to-day lives are ‘weapons of math destruction’, vicious computer codes that can destroy lives as a byproduct of completely failing to measure the thing they were created to measure.
Reviewed by Rebecca Donatelli
It’s Complicated is one of those eye-opening books that leaves you asking yourself question after question, wanting and needing to find the answers. For parents struggling to teach their children about Internet safety, or for those wondering how social media can have such an influence on the lives of everyday teens, this book would be an excellent way to begin your research.
Boyd interviews and observes teenagers as they live their lives through social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. She is an advocate for teenage Internet usage and wants the world to know that utilizing the web does not always lead to negative consequences for teens. Most of us age forty or over hung out at football games (opening scene) to socialize with our friends for four hours on a Friday evening, not worrying necessarily about capturing
Why I read this book:
I chose to read Ultimate Guide to Pinterest for Business because I’m a multimedia-based marketing professional. It’s important for me to stay up-to-date on the latest social media trends so that I can place my clients at the forefront of their industry. I also love Pinterest for myself as well! When this book claims to be the Ultimate Guide, it’s not lying! Karen Leland covers everything starting from the basics of how to set up an account and how things work. Once readers get the hang of it, she moves on to strategy, user guidelines (like copyrights, ethics, etc.), and bonus features. Then, she explains how Pinterest can be used for business or career professionals, and even shares some helpful ideas for specific industries.
If you haven’t yet jumped on the Pinterest bandwagon, I highly
Christopher Johnson’s knowledge as a linguist and expert verbal branding consultant is put to use in Microstyle: The Art of Writing Little. The guide sets out to help ordinary people understand how to write effectively in a world of Facebook status updates, Twitter feeds, and blogs.
Microstyle is organized into four main categories of language convention: Meaning, Sound, Structure, and Social Context. Each section contains a brief introduction into the category to familiarize the reader and then breaks into smaller chapters that describe finer details within the category like “Tap into Metaphor” and “Use Grammar Expressively.” Johnson’s writing style throughout these sections and chapters is conversational, well supported, and realistic. These characteristics help make this guide transcend the inherent problem with most style guides—they are boring and hard to follow.
With most style guides I’ve used as an
The Internet is a vast, unknown, and often unfriendly place. There is, however, a place where women can get together and share things. They can share recipes and projects and news stories that caught their eye. They can share photos of their families or of the communities that they call home. They can even share their secret thoughts and dreams and all of the ideas they dare to let others see. This is Kirtsy.
Kirtsy.com is the brainchild of Laurie, Laura, and Gabby, three women who had met over the Internet and formed a friendship as strong as those they had in their “real” lives. They wanted to create a place for women to meet online that could serve as a magnet for all of the lovely things that were coming up on people’s