Capture Book Club: What We’re Reading, Vol. 1

Learning something new is a three-step process that usually operates on its own timetable — meaning you can learn practically anything within a relatively short period of time if you simply choose to. The steps go like this: immerse > reflect > grow (then repeat).

With this in mind, Capture is offering a reading list that focuses on books about inquiry, curiosity, data and anything connecting different aspects of life that would otherwise not be obvious. The following are the first five books in what we’re calling “Capture Book Club,” with comments from the “Captors” who recommended them.

 The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns by Sasha Issenberg (2012)

(From the dust jacket flap) The book Politico calls “Moneyball for politics” shows how cutting-edge social science and analytics are reshaping the modern political campaign.

(From Capture) “This is the book if you want to understand modern admissions and the transition Capture is introducing. In Victory Lab, Issenberg outlines modern political use of data to completely overhaul election campaigning, moving from canvassing neighborhoods to micro-targeting individuals. Since current admissions techniques stem from the political field, it is very telling on what will happen in admissions over the next five years.”

The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Tim Ferriss (2007)

(From the dust jacket flap) Forget the old concept of retirement and the rest of the deferred-life plan — there is no need to wait and every reason not to, especially in unpredictable economic times. Whether your dream is escaping the rat race, experiencing high-end world travel, or earning a monthly five-figure income with zero management, The 4-Hour Workweek is the blueprint.

(From Capture) “Literally changed my life. This has less to do with data than it does with training your brain to think differently.”

The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less by Barry Schwartz (2004)

(From the dust jacket flap) As Americans, we assume that more choice means better options and greater satisfaction. But beware of excessive choice: choice overload can make you question the decisions you make before you even make them, it can set you up for unrealistically high expectations, and it can make you blame yourself for any and all failures. In the long run, this can lead to decision-making paralysis, anxiety, and perpetual stress. And, in a culture that tells us that there is no excuse for falling short of perfection when your options are limitless, too much choice can lead to clinical depression.

(From Capture) “Another book that will change the way you think about so many things.”

 NutureShock: New Thinking About Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman (2009)

(From the dust jacket) In a world of modern, involved, caring parents, why are so many kids aggressive and cruel? Where is intelligence hidden in the brain, and why does that matter? Why do cross-racial friendships decrease in schools that are more integrated? If 98 percent of kids think lying is morally wrong, then why do 98 percent of kids lie? What’s the single most important thing that helps infants learn language?

(From Capture) “Top recommendation for anyone with young children. This one takes the latest in psychological research and quite simply blows away long-standing parenting myths.”

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell (2008)

(From the dust jacket flap) There is a story that is usually told about extremely successful people, a story that focuses on intelligence and ambition. Gladwell argues that the true story of success is very different, and that if we want to understand how some people thrive, we should spend more time looking around them-at such things as their family, their birthplace, or even their birth date. And in revealing that hidden logic, Gladwell presents a fascinating and provocative blueprint for making the most of human potential.

(From Capture) “A classic, simply put.”