Sleeping with Your Smartphone: how To Break the 24/7 Habit and Change The Way You Work Leslie A. Perlow

(Harvard Business Review, Rs. 995)

Can you think of life without your smartphone or mobile? Most of us cannot. The mobile phone has become an extension of our personality. But do you realise how dependent we have become on this device?

In this book, Perlow, a Harvard Business School professor, talks about how you can disconnect and become more productive in the process. In fact, you can devote more time to your personal life and accomplish more at work, says Perlow. What this requires is a little bit of re-organising your life… a collaboration between you and your team, with small, doable changes.

What started as an experiment with a six-person team at The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), triggered a global initiative that eventually spanned more than 900 BCG teams in 30 countries. These teams confronted their non-stop workweeks and changed the way they worked, becoming more efficient and effective.

In this book, Perlow takes you inside BCG to witness the challenges and benefits of disconnecting. She provides a step-by-step guide to introducing change on a team and then spreading change to the rest of the firm.

Velocity: The Seven New Laws for a World Gone Digital

Ajaz Ahmed & Stefan Olander

(Random house, Rs. 599)

This book is highly accessible, lively and inspiring; it draws upon the authors’ unique perspectives and experiences to present seven timeless new laws for businesses and individuals in a world dominated by digital technology.

Written as a fascinating conversation between Olander (vice-president of Digital Sport from Nike) and Ajaz Ahmed (founder and chairman AKQA), the book has plenty of examples to illustrate the key lessons it propounds, along with interesting ideas and insights.

The untold back stories talk of influential and iconic innovation. Fast paced, useful, provocative and motivating, Velocity, which has been in the making for over a decade, helps businesses identify the pain points, see patterns emerge and evolve.

One of the seven laws, ‘the most powerful force is not technology but imagination’, says it all.

Number Freak: A Mathematical Compendium from 1 to 100

Derrick Niederman

(Duckworth Overlook, Rs. 450)

What do Fight Club, wallpaper patterns, George Balanchine’s Serenade, and Italian superstitions have in common? They’re all included in the entry for the number 17 in this engaging book about numbers — detailing their unique properties, patterns, appeal, history, and lore.

In an interview, Niederman says, “…I would be especially pleased if parents bought Number Freak to introduce their kids to the world of numbers in a way that is, maybe, friendlier than what those kids were getting elsewhere….” Anyways, that’s precisely what this delightful book does… bring numbers to life, complete with illustrations, amusing facts, stories and brainteasers.

Niederman takes readers on a guided tour of the numbers 1 to 200 — covering everything from basic mathematical principles to ancient unsolved theorems, from sublime theory to delightfully arcane trivia. This book will fascinate and engage readers of all levels of mathematical skill and knowledge.

Sample these…

* There are 42 eyes in a deck of cards, and 42 dots on a pair of dice.

* In order to fill in a map so that neighbouring regions never get the same colour, one never needs more than four colours.

* Hells Angels use the number 81 in their insignia because the initials “H” and “A” are the eighth and first numbers in the alphabet, respectively.

* The concept of a dozen was alive and well even in Greek mythology; 12 is a favourite in many religions.


Keywords: Smartphones

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