Reading Recommendations From People You Trust
By mbriggs on Dec 29, 2009
Voracious readers, don't you love seeing a list of Must Reads from someone you trust, who has interests similar to yours? Whenever I see such a list I get all excited, login to half.com and buy most of them. I'm a big amazon fan and find the ratings and reviews very useful, but there is no substitute for that recommendation from someone you admire.
Note that people you respect and admire is not necessarily the same as the list of your friends, or is even a logical community or group on facebook or linkedin. It often isn't someone you know personally.
Recommendations often come from blog posts, but they are scatter-shot. One of my favorite bloggers is Brad Feld a VC at the Foundry Group. He posted a list of his favorite books about a month ago, and I gobbled them up. He (fortunately) has a Books link on his website.
So this is the OneStop Secret Sauce blog, mostly about Building Web Community (@Sun). How do reading recommendations fit in?
Isn't this a natural for some sort of community? It's not a community as per facebook or linkedin, but there should be some way to consolidate reading recommendations. Therefore, we've established a community on SunSpace called "READ", and we've seeded it with the reading lists from a bunch of notables.
For this community we hope to leverage the organization, in particular roles and job titles. The assumption is that many people will care about the books a Principal Engineer is reading, at least the technical ones. I'm interested in the business books that the execs are reading. To take this a step farther, I also care about the news sources (blogs, etc.) that the people I respect consume.
It's important to include meta information about the books, particularly date and a short description. Categorization (and soon tags) will help a lot.
The tables below are on the Mike Briggs page of the READ community, categorized into Daily News, Business Related, and Fiction or Just Good Reads, Sorry, the community is only available on the Sun internal network. Maybe Brad will do one for his large external audience.