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review 2017-11-28 13:09
Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly
Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race - Margot Lee Shetterly

Alright, you guys know that I'm basically down for anything aerospace, so it was inevitable that I was going to read this part historical, part biographical overview of coloured women who worked at NACA and later NASA at Langley. And I have to say that it was interesting because I knew next to nothing about the role of the early computers (human computers) that did all the number crunching before electronic computers were used and while a lot of the bugs were being ironed out when they finally were rolling out.

 

I did go into information overload a few times because I just didn't know that many details about the history of segregation in Virginia and the American South (broad strokes, yes, but a lot of the specific people were unfamiliar, and it seems crazy to literally close all the schools instead of integrating them...sigh). It does help explain some of the things I'd observed in American TV shows over the years without really understanding why things were like that. I also found that the last few chapters seemed less focused and could have been much stronger. It was a case of trying to include too many people, I think.

 

Oh well. It was still an interesting read and I recommend it. You know, compared to some of the books marketed as "science" that I've read recently, there were far fewer physical descriptions and digressions, and the ones that were there were generally appropriate since this book is part biography.

 

Related post:

Musings on 16 Festive Tasks Squares

(first part of the book focuses on WWII)

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-10-26 08:16
6 Quotes from Hidden Figures that Show How Gender & Racial Discrimination Are Connected
Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race - Margot Lee Shetterly

 

 

 

 

Originally published at midureads.wordpress.com on October 26, 2017.

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review 2017-10-25 00:00
52 Mondays: The One Year Path To Outrageous Success & Lifelong Happiness
52 Mondays: The One Year Path To Outrageous Success & Lifelong Happiness - Vic Johnson,Derek Shetterly Some of the suggestions in this book is are useful and can be applied by anybody. Actually some of the suggestions from one week or other are integrated parts of most people's life . Then are those suggestion that sound logical but are either use less or impractical, especially outside the united states or cannot be implemented by people from all walks of life.
Some readers might find the way these suggestions are presented not helpful. The author suggests some actions for each week in a specific order that might not suiteverybody's goal.
I found out that the audio version doesn't work for me. It is hard to go back to the useful points if you don't know the track number. I guess that I would have found a printed or electronic copy more beneficial.
All in all it isn't a great book but it is worth reading once. I would suggest borrowing it from a library and writing the points of interest down.
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review 2017-08-10 12:56
Hidden Figures - Margot Shetterly Hidden Figures - Margot Shetterly

The film felt a lot more cohesive, this was interesting but quite bitty, one minute I was following one life and the next another and it just didn't flow for me.  It was enjoyable but somehow unsatisfying, the lives were fascinating, what they had to endure and go through to get where they were was amazing.  The book could also have done with some illustrations, I do better with factual books where I can visualise the people involved.  Still it was interesting and kept me reading well past my bedtime.

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review 2017-05-05 11:51
Hidden Figures ★★★☆☆
Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race - Margot Lee Shetterly,Robin Miles

I should have loved this book. I wanted to love this book. It tells us of extraordinary women breaking boundaries of math, science, race, sexism, and culture through their brains and grit and determination and the brilliance to recognize an opportunity and drive the wedge of themselves into it and make a place for themselves and their children to follow. Unfortunately, the storytelling is so dry and the narrative so disconnected that I really struggled with it. Perhaps this would have been better in a bound version than audio, I don’t know. Nevertheless, I recommend making the effort. I’d never heard of Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, or Christine Darden before, and that’s a damn shame. I’m glad I know their stories now.

 

Audiobook, borrowed from my public library. Robin Miles provides an excellent performance.

 

Previous Updates:

4/26/17 – 2% http://sheric.booklikes.com/post/1557885/hidden-figures-progress-2

4/28/17 –  37.0% Dull stuff. It's a struggle to listen to. My mind is continuously wandering as the author describes the personal and career paths of several people. At 37% we still haven't gotten to the beginnings of the space program. Yawn.

5/1/17 – 41.0% The beginnings of the Cold War and the mechanism of emerging McCarthyism is pretty interesting stuff, and form a pattern that seems all too relevant to current events.

5/1/17 – 41% http://sheric.booklikes.com/post/1559221/hidden-figures-progress-41

 

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