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Showing posts from December, 2014

Why I Read

Earlier this month, Paul Graham published an essay regarding his real reasons for reading. To summarize, he concludes that reading is not about remembering details and facts, but rather about building mental paths that you aren't even consciously aware are there. You remember structures and processes that get embedded in your mind, despite the exact details not being there. He goes on to also note that reading books again is valuable, not so much for picking up on more details, but because we notice different things and take different viewpoints based on our current life situation.

While I completely agree with everything Mr. Graham mentioned, there was a key element - at least for me - that I feel was not in the essay. That is, I read to be convinced. I too can read a whole book, then fill a mere page with what I remember about it. Sometimes even summarize the book in a paragraph, just a few sentences. So why even bother to read hundreds of pages? Again, it is the convincing. If …