Saturday, December 10, 2005

Full House: Who let the dogs out?

Posted Dec 8th:

Reading another book now called 'Full House' by Stephen J Gould. Its got a good premise about it, and the reviews are good mostly...

But one thing about some authors really pisses me off... they write like they have a thesaurus by their side, looking up the unused words so people will think they are smart. I'm not dumb, and I get bored reading this book because his writing is so complex that I have to spend my time trying to grasp what he's even saying in each sentence... much less grasp the whole picture he's trying to paint. Its quite tiring and it comes off to me as snobbish. I think people don't complain about this, because they seek some validity in their intelligence: "Oh I can understand this book, really I can; because I'm smart!"

An example:
"Take the standard illustration of coin flipping: we compute the probability of sequences by multiplying the chances of individual events."
He seriously could have just saved his breath and said:
"Take the standard idea of coin-flipping: we can find the probability of getting 'heads' 5 times in a row; by multiplying the chances of getting 'heads' by the amount of coin-flips."

But instead he rambles off, thinking is SO intelligent because he has a thesaurus beside him to help make his book sound more 'educated'.

I'm going to continue to read it, but if it starts tiring me out and I stop getting motivation to read, I'm going to begin reading a different book between pauses so I don't fall asleep.

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