The Tempo Reading List: Timing and Decision-Making

A Listmania! list by Venkatesh Rao (Arlington, VA)
(REAL NAME)   
The list author says: "A big list of excellent books that cover every aspect of decision-making. Plus a few not-so-great ones that nevertheless offer some unique value. The focus is on practical, non-technical (both not necessarily "popular science") books that talk about real-world human decision-making and timing in both right-brained and left-brained ways. This list will evolve and grow quite a bit in the next few months, so check back frequently."
A Geography Of Time: The Temporal Misadventures of a Social Psychologist
1.  A Geography Of Time: The Temporal Misadventures of a Social Psychologist by Robert Levine
The list author says:
  "Rifkin's book is one of the most interesting looks at the diversity of time perceptions across different cultures. His survey is at once prosaic and empirical on the one hand, and qualitative and literary on the other. He intersperses his statistics-based analysis with lyrical interludes, meditating on things such as the relation between waiting and status relationships."
$16.60   Used & New from: $0.11
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

Time Wars: The Primary Conflict in Human History (A Touchstone book)
2.  Time Wars: The Primary Conflict in Human History (A Touchstone book) by Jeremy Rifkin
The list author says:
  "Rifkin's book is a very politicized take on time, positing "time wars" between the ever-accelerating culture of time in the age of computers and the Web, on the one hand, and slower models of time. Curiously, unlike other leftist writers, he actually defends traditional 'clock' time, which others see as being equally unnatural, compared to natural rhythms and social, event time."
Used & New from: $0.01
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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A Sideways Look at Time
3.  A Sideways Look at Time by Jay Griffiths
The list author says:
  "Griffiths book is frankly, not very good. In fact it is quite terrible for the most part, written with a certain amount of shrill feminism. Still, it is a study in how political time can get, and provides some insight into how time can be viewed by those who've been marginalized by the march to dominance of clock time and its descendants"
$12.15   Used & New from: $0.01
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition (2nd Edition)
4.  The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering, Anniversary Edition (2nd Edition) by Frederick P. Brooks Jr.
The list author says:
  "The classic that first pointed out the problems of waterfall engineering."
$29.04   Used & New from: $9.86
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (243 customer reviews)

Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us)
5.  Traffic: Why We Drive the Way We Do (and What It Says About Us) by Tom Vanderbilt
The list author says:
  "Traffic is a great example domain for decision-making, and a running example through Tempo. Vanderbilt's book is a great in-depth look."
Used & New from: $0.01
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (199 customer reviews)

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The Society of Mind
6.  The Society of Mind by Marvin Minsky
The list author says:
  "A foundational exploration of how the mind works."
$16.64   Used & New from: $1.25
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)

Click: What Millions of People Are Doing Online and Why it Matters
7.  Click: What Millions of People Are Doing Online and Why it Matters by Bill Tancer
The list author says:
  "Excellent exploration of online decision-making."
$19.08   Used & New from: $0.01
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (80 customer reviews) | 1 customer discussion

On War, Indexed Edition
8.  On War, Indexed Edition by Carl von Clausewitz
The list author says:
  "The source of the coup d'oeil concept used in Tempo, and a general classic in narrative-driven decision-making."
$25.38   Used & New from: $13.43
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)

The Influence of Sea Power Upon History, 1660-1783 (Volume 27)
9.  The Influence of Sea Power Upon History, 1660-1783 (Volume 27) by A. T. Mahan
The list author says:
  "The classic on naval history and strategy"
$12.99   Used & New from: $6.01
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)

Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War
10.  Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War by Robert Coram
The list author says:
  "An excellent biography of John Boyd, a pivotal figure in the modern study of decision-making."
$12.14   Used & New from: $5.52
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (272 customer reviews) | 1 customer discussion

On The Experience Of Time
11.  On The Experience Of Time by Robert E. Ornstein
The list author says:
  "An early classic on how time is experienced, from the 1930s"
Used & New from: $6.58
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life
12.  The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life by Philip G. Zimbardo
The list author says:
  "A somewhat flawed but insightful book on subjective time perception and attitudes. The book is based on a survey called the Zimbardo Time Perspective Inventory which you can take online. It assumes a rather naive framing of time, however."
$13.09   Used & New from: $2.35
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)

Designing for Situation Awareness: An Approach to User-Centered Design
13.  Designing for Situation Awareness: An Approach to User-Centered Design by Betty Bolté
The list author says:
  "Endsley is credited with the modern definition of situation awareness. Technical volume, not meant for random lay reading."
Used & New from: $25.10
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Free Agent Nation: The Future of Working for Yourself
14.  Free Agent Nation: The Future of Working for Yourself by Daniel H. Pink
The list author says:
  "An excellent way to set the context and right mental models for modern career decision-making."
Used & New from: $1.52
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (70 customer reviews)

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Rubbish!: The Archaeology of Garbage
15.  Rubbish!: The Archaeology of Garbage by William Rathje
The list author says:
  "You can get surprising insights about how people make life decisions by digging into what they throw away. Garbology has insights about things like the impact of our cooking decisions."
$14.71   Used & New from: $0.01
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)

Clockspeed : Winning Industry Control in the Age of Temporary Advantage
16.  Clockspeed : Winning Industry Control in the Age of Temporary Advantage by Charles H. Fine
The list author says:
  "The classic on the tempo of economic life in industry."
$14.50   Used & New from: $0.01
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)

Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre
17.  Impro: Improvisation and the Theatre by Keith Johnstone
The list author says:
  "A major reference for Tempo, an excellent source (almost the only good source) for really understanding the psychology of creative improvisation in real-time decision-making."
$30.79   Used & New from: $8.93
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (62 customer reviews)

Intention, Plans, and Practical Reason (David Hume Series)
18.  Intention, Plans, and Practical Reason (David Hume Series) by Michael Bratman
The list author says:
  "An excellent scholarly treatment of the fundamentals of decision-making from a Stanford philosopher. The source of the BDI (belief-desire-intention) model cited in Tempo."
$22.50   Used & New from: $12.95

The Hedgehog and the Fox: An Essay on Tolstoy's View of History
19.  The Hedgehog and the Fox: An Essay on Tolstoy's View of History by Isaiah Berlin
The list author says:
  "A classic on archetype-thinking."
Used & New from: $9.50
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

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Venkatesh Rao (Arlington, VA)
(REAL NAME)   
Qualifications: PhD (control theory), decision-science professional, writer
Last updated: 6/7/11
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