20 Nov

Book Review: Brain Rules

This is not your usual book review that you would expect on a site like this.  First off, the book does not talk about code, software, or software developers even once.   But, almost everything in this book is applicable to what we do as software developers, managers, project managers, and leads.

The book, Brain Rules by John Medina, is about the brain and what is actually know about.  I like the author’s criteria for what went in the book.  He called it the “Cranky Scientist Rule.”  Nothing is in the book that hasn’t been published in a scientific journal, peer reviewed, and duplicated by someone else.  I liked that as well.

Each chapter, and there are 12 of them, are about what the brain needs, and how best to give the brain what it needs.  There are chapters specific to Sleep, Stress, Short term memory, long term memory, and gender.  There are few absolutes in the book (except multitasking, he says you can’t do it and wants to ban texting in cars – I’ll grant him that one), but LOTS of pointers.  Also, there are plenty of asides where he talks about actual people with interesting conditions you should really hope you don’t get (but probably wouldn’t notice if you did).

And for a book on the brain, it is not dry at all.  The Author is a VERY effective writer, and judging from his credentials, probably an excellent teacher as well.  If you have a few minutes, I highly recommend checking out his web site: BrainRules.com and watch some of his videos.

Check out the book as well at amazon.

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