What I Read in February 2023

Posted on 6th of March 2023 | 605 words
Note: My current reading list is available here.

Purely Functional Data Structures by Okasaki, Chris (reread)

I read this book when I was in my deep-deep functional programming phase couple of years back. Coming from imperative and OOP world, I already had a pretty good understanding of algorithms and data structures, but that knowledge was very much grounded in the imperative world. This book got recommended to me on how similarly useful data structures can be implemented in a purely functional way. I wanted to reread due to having some discussions with friends of mine about this same topic, so I wanted to refresh some memory about it.

Overall, I feel that it’s a very fun book to read and, compared to many other data structure books, it’s also quite fun to work with. It’s definitely niche on not so widely usable book compared to many other algorithm and data structure book, but definitely something that can give you a new view on certain problems.

The Buddha’s Teachings and Refuge by Thanissaro Bhikkhu

I have had long fascination towards Thai Forest Buddhism for many years now. Work of Thanissaro Bhikkhu was familiar to me in the form of his translations of numerous suttas. Quite recently I found out that he has also written many books on Buddha’s teaching, varying from fundamentals to interpreting Pali canon. So I wanted to wrap my head around those. Definitely recommend for anyone that cares about either Buddhist practice or just mindfulness in general.

All of his writing and talks are available at https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html .

Insomniac City by Hayes, Bill

Every once in a while, I have some irregularities in my sleeping schedule. I got recommend this book due to its running theme of insomnia in it, so I during one of many of my sleepless nights, I decided to pick this up and start reading it. Book is about the authors, insomniacs himself, own life in New York and also the event what led to him moving there. Book covers many sleepless nights in New York City and how the author wanders around it finding stories. One of the main focal points in the book is also the author’s relation ship with the late Oliver Sacks . Very heartwarming story, definitely recommended.

Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now by Lanier, Jaron and Digital Minimalism by Newport, Cal (both reread)

I decided to bundle both of these books here since they’re mainly about the same topic. Main reason on why I wanted to reread these was the recent events happening on Twitter. Despite I’m not part of any social medias (outside LinkedIn and that is also mainly due to requirements), I’m always quite interested on what’s happening around it. I thinks it’s mainly just hate towards those platforms so I just want to see them burn. Another big reason why I wanted to reread these was the fact that the popularity of Mastodon really started to get some traction. But I think this requires it’s own long form blog post about. So stay tuned on it.

No Longer Human by Dazai, Ozamu

For some reason, I’ve always had a weird fascination towards tragic human lives. Ozamu Dazai’s semi-autobiographical novel No Longer Human definitely tells the story of one. Very dark, grim and heavy book about mental illness and its effects on human nature. Don’t know if I can recommend this book for too many people. While it was very well written, the topics that it explores can be definitely be too much for many. But if you’re up to it, I think it’s worth a read