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August 11, 2010

Lee Slade, P.E. is Senior Principal with national consulting engineering firm Walter P Moore. He leads the firm’s national structural engineering practice.
Title Author Purchase
The World is Flat Thomas L. Friedman Buy

In this remarkably engaging and well-researched book, Friedman paints a picture of the future that we as leaders must understand and respond to. He supports his basic thesis – that technology and other factors are leveling the global competitive playing field in ways that are fundamentally transforming commerce – with a series of practical and surprising examples. I’ve recommended this book to all my partners. I suspect that its clarion call will help us change and evolve our fundamental core strategic positioning.
The Short Game Bible Dave Pelz Buy
Amidst the plethora of golf instruction, this book stands out because it works. Though few will take the time to learn and groove a fundamentally sound golf swing, merely understanding and applying Pelz’ principles will shave strokes off anyone’s game. Pelz’ rational approach – derived from his days as a NASA research scientist – is appealing to the engineer in me. A few years ago I committed to enjoy every round and not let it get me frustrated; playing better is a good way to make good on that promise. This classic book is the definitive guide to really getting better at the game of golf. I go back to it time and again for pointers and new insights.
The Tipping Point and Blink Malcolm Gladwell Buy
In Blink, as well as his earlier best seller The Tipping Point, Gladwell makes numerous societal observations that are both entertaining and useful in understanding how people process data and make decisions, especially subliminally. In Tipping Point, he dealt with macro-issues. Blink explores micro-issues, and is told in the same way with one interesting story after another. I’ve found that Gladwell’s insights make me think and generally be more observant about how and why things happen. His concept of ‘thin-slicing’ – what I think of as “cutting to the chase at warp-speed” – is a useful concept for understanding and dealing with my info-overloaded life.
Membrane Structures Klaus-Michael Koch Buy
In this well-illustrated book, Koch provides an overview of the use of fabrics and cables in structures worldwide. Though membrane structures have been a bit slow to catch on in the U.S., they are used widely in Europe and elsewhere. As a structural engineer with interest in developing more attractive and economical structures for our sports, convention, and other specialized buildings, this book is ‘required reading’.
         
 

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