Book review: 100 Essential Things You Didn’t Know You Didn’t Know

by Administrator 9. august 2011 21:17

Hi all

I have previously written part 1 of a book review at http://blogs.eliasen.dk/Personal/post/2011/07/10/100-Essential-things-you-didn’t-know-you-didn’t-know-part-I.aspx.

I have now finished the book and thought I’d write my thoughts about the book here.

First of all, I am not sure the 100 things are actually essential… some of them are more “Nice to know” than “Need to know”, but hey, that’s subjective, right?

Anyway, some of the things I didn’t know I didn’t know require some more-than-basic math skills to understand, which at times was rather hard to follow; I mean… for a book that is supposed to be bedtime reading, I think it requires too much. Had it been a book where you are supposed to sit and use time to study calculations, that would have been fine.

Out of the 100 things, I found these to be the most interesting;

  • Why pylons consists of triangles
  • Why it is easier to walk on a tightrope using a long pole with heavy buckets at the ends
  • Why Barbados had to score an own goal against Grenada to move on in a tournament
  • Some strategies for dividing something equally
  • Why no one has ever travelled in time
  • A new proof of Pythagoras’s theorem
  • How Calculus once saved the life of a mathematician
  • A lot of information about how to cut a diamond
  • There are no uninteresting numbers
  • Some different ways to score sports events that are more or less silly
  • Why A4/A3/A2 and so on paper formats are SO much cleverer than the US letter format and so on

It’s been a good read, but without some interest in mathematics and physics, you won’t like it.

--
eliasen

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About the author

Jan Eliasen is 37 years old, divorced and has 2 sons, Andreas (July 2004) and Emil (July 2006).

Jan has a masters degree in computer science and is currently employed at CGI Denmark as an IT architect.

Jan is a 6 times Microsoft MVP in BizTalk Server, although not currently and MVP.

Jan is proud to be one of the authors of the BizTalk Server 2010 Unleashed book.

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6 times: July 2004, July 2008, July 2009, July 2010, July 2011, and July 2012. Not currently an MVP.

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