The 22 Books I Read in 2020

In the year of Corona, I read a lot. I did not read as many non-fiction books as usually, but escaped into some great novels, alone and with my family/kid.

5 Stars

  • Der Fisch in uns: Eine Reise durch die 3,5 Milliarden Jahre alte Geschichte unseres Körpers – awesome and entertaining book about evolution, from the point of view of an archeologist.
  • The Lean Startup – totally overdue for me to read this great classic on starting a business,

4 Stars

  • Solaris – reading this was triggered by the release of the movie. The book is awesome, the movie is horrible.
  • Children of Time – hard science fiction, the way I like it!
  • Todesengel – a great and depressing story on populism and hate.
  • Im Krieg – another great science fiction on weaponized animals. He was a good dog!

3 Stars

  • Traction: How Any Startup Can Achieve Explosive Customer Growth – this is a wonderful book, as it makes sure that you are not blind to promising sales channels.
  • The Technology Fallacy: How People Are the Real Key to Digital Transformation –bringing the buzz-word topic of digital transformation and people together.
  • Productized Services – a useful book for freelancers who want to productize their services without employing people.
  • Children of Ruin – not as good as “Children of Time”, but still a fascinating read.

2 Stars

  • Project to Product – I have a hard time buying into the framework that is supposed to solve the problem of the digital disruption.
  • Das Jesus-Video – interesting idea, but compared to other Eschbach books it is just “okay”.
  • Die lymphatersche Formel – short story by Lem, I came across it when looking for Solaris.
  • Awaken the Giant Within – I like to check out books like this once in a while that provide guidance in your life, but it was too much anecdotes and feel-good stuff, without much substance.

1 Star

  • Im nächsten Leben wird alles besser – too much lecturing, twice as long as it needs to be and an end that was totally predictable. Not sure why this book got such good reviews.

Children Books

  • Blackthorn Book 3 and 4 – Book 2 is still my absolute favorite. Book 3 was decent, book 4 a little disappointing.
  • Der Ratz-Fatz-x-weg 23 – Fast and fun story, perfect to read with the family.
  • Die Nachtflüsterer 1-3 – I got the audio book because it was read by Oliver Rohrbeck. But the story itself was so-so.
  • Das schwarze Mal – pretty good fantasy, set 500 years in the future. However, the end is rushed and a little anticlimactic.

Pocophone F1 Fixed – So Much Software in Smartphones!

I had really bad touch screen glitches in my phone, and I was convinced it was a hardware issue. Well, turns out that in addition to the ROM (I run LineageOS), there is also a separate Kernel. Updating to FrancoKernel seemed to have fixed it!

This is not the first time I had a problem with software that I wasn’t even aware of: In the past, I had a phone where I had to update the radio firmware, as the new SIM card I got was constantly crashing…

 

Firstest with the mostest – What the world has learned about facing covid-19 | Briefing | The Economist

Some [cases of covid-19], such as that of a New York lawyer and his family, have no obvious connection to any of the four high-incidence countries, strongly suggesting that there are what epidemiologists call silent chains of transmission in the country. In a population without measures in place to control such chains, a single undiagnosed case can, in principle, give rise to more than 3,000 cases six weeks later.