- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 5 hours and 10 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Abridged
- Publisher: Random House Audio
- Audible.com Release Date: February 1, 2011
- Language: English
- ASIN: B004LUAXCK
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank:
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Faster: The Acceleration of Just About Everything Audible – Abridged
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Top Customer Reviews
Why are we in such a rush?? Are we really saving time? And just what do we DO with those few seconds we seem to save by multitasking even the smallest of our daily activities?
"Faster" answers many of those questions and it also looks into other scientific aspects of time and how we perceive it. I highly recommend this book for those who feel rushed in their lives but don't know why. I also recommend it for anyone interested in the science of time and time travel. James Gleick is a genius. He has an incredible way of provoking the reader to look closer into something and see what is really happening there.
Hurry up and read this book, you'll be amazed at what you'll learn.
'Why, we remember the days when you had to actually go into a bank and see a teller to get cash, when nobody had a fax machine, when we had to keep from playing our favorite tunes too often because, as every audiophile knew, the grooves on the LP needed time to rest; and, dammit, we liked it that way!'
Employing a knowing, tongue-in-cheek style and, yes, a suitably fast pace, Gleick examines every time-related dimension of life in what he calls this "epoch of the nanosecond." He observes that "a compression of time characterizes the life of the century now closing," and he proceeds to peg our obsession with correct time, our frustration with things that go too fast or too slow, the evolution of the concept of speed, the pervasive influence of the computer and the effect of the culture of acceleration on the arts.
His most resonant chapter heading is "The Paradox of Efficiency." Gleick uses the phrase to describe the complicated systems that businesses use in order to become vastly more efficient (and less likely to bend to your whim). Missed your connecting flight? Thanks to modern flight planning programs that keep far fewer "extra" planes on hand, you stand a good chance of waiting longer than ever for another one.
But the paradox of efficiency doesn't apply to customer service alone.Read more ›
Although I enjoyed "Faster" and appreciated Gleick's prompting to consider the proper speed at which life should be lived, I could not help but also be critical of it. The average chapter-length in "Faster" is somewhere around five pages. Not surprisingly, one is escorted through the book at a spritely clip, due mostly to Gleick's zeal and his technicque to state and re-state his same harrangue in every (and, sometimes, even in the same) chapter. Wording his argument differently by only substituting one or two words.
While managing to comment on how just about every element of Western society during the later-20th century has 'sped-up' without ever reflecting on the evolution of our increasingly-technological culture, Gleick short-shrifts his readers -- making them believe that a pause and a deep breath once or twice in the day (which was allotted to your ancestors in their idyllic worlds, don't you know) is better than the alternative in which you live, where you rush through your life at break-neck speed where you accomplish nothing. Of course, Gleick fails to mention the unbearable, sixteen-hour work-days that persons living in this country endured prior to modern labor laws and, accordingly, their certain lack of 'free time.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Believe it or not, this book came to my house faster than any other one. I live in Chile and it took just five days to arrive: normally it takes more.
I'm not kidding. Read more
One of the most pointless books ever written, moving from common place to common place without any real substance. Read morePublished 13 months ago by G100
Interesting collection of short essays on the subject of time. Some that intersect, some that do not , but all excellently written.Published 16 months ago by Garth Molyneux
Interestingly, this is also a fairly fast read. I enjoyed the amount of information, but put in a concise way, with an interesting voice.Published 22 months ago by Melissa M.
The world, James Gleick breathlessly tells us, is getting faster. Faster communications, faster computing, faster transportation, shorter attention spans- everything is speeding... Read morePublished 23 months ago by Michael J. Edelman
Then you can behave exactly as the book is describing and listen to the book while working, driving, talking, drinking, thinking, daydreaming, and tapping your fingers. Read morePublished on January 8, 2014 by Sam Mercer
hated this book.... only reason i got it was for a class which i ended up dropping..... now i see why!Published on October 12, 2013 by Hilary Hatch
Loved this book, it deals great with the theme of acceleration in different areas, highly recommended for any one interested in the subject.Published on July 29, 2013 by Ileke
Some neat facts throughout, but I kept finding myself thinking so what? The author certainly did a lot of research, but it didn't amount to anything beyond sort of stating the... Read morePublished on June 29, 2013 by river view