About Tom Killalea

Wondering how we can improve the experience of reading.

Public Notes

Recent Activity

  • Tom shared from The House of Rumour: A Novel by Jake Arnott
    people who had worked on the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s early rocket tests had also lost jobs in the McCarthy clampdown, while captured Nazi scientists had had their war records laundered and were now in charge of research in the field. “You know, when I was a kid I thought that science was going to save the world, that it would give us a universal language, progress, peace,” he lamented. “The military men took it over. Science means one word now: security.”
    Note: @ayjay Jake Arnott talks about this post-WWII transformation and militarization
  • Tom shared from Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
    In The Black Swan, Taleb introduced the notion of a narrative fallacy to describe how flawed stories of the past shape our views of the world and our expectations for the future. Narrative fallacies arise inevitably from our continuous attempt to make sense of the world. The explanatory stories that people find compelling are simple; are concrete rather than abstract; assign a larger role to talent, stupidity, and intentions than to luck; and focus on a few striking events that happened rather than on the countless events that failed to happen.
    Note: @vgill That and narrative fallacy
  • Tom shared from The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
    You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world, old man, but you do have some say in who hurts you. I like my choices. I hope she likes hers.
    Note: Our choices, more than our circumstances, define us @RealJohnGreen @KateRudd #TFiOS
  • Tom shared from Moby Dick: or, the White Whale by Herman Melville
    He saw God's foot upon the treadle of the loom, and spoke it; and therefore his shipmates called him mad. So man's insanity is heaven's sense; and wandering from all mortal reason, man comes at last to that celestial thought, which, to reason, is absurd and frantic; and weal or woe, feels then uncompromised, indifferent as his God.
    Note: Man's insanity is heaven's sense
  • Tom shared from Use of Weapons (A Culture Novel Book 3) by Iain M. Banks
    “If we kill him, and he turns out to have been important, then we might start a war, and too early.” “Perhaps, but I feel we must do what is not expected. To prove our humanity, to exploit our intrinsic advantage over the machines, if for no other reason.”
    Note: Game theory in Use of Weapons -- what defines humanity?
  • Tom shared from The Blind Assassin: A Novel by Margaret Atwood
    Should is a futile word. It’s about what didn’t happen. It belongs in a parallel universe. It belongs in another dimension of space.
    Note: @margaretatwood on the futility of "should".
  • Tom shared from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
    He smiled understandingly—much more than understandingly. It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life. It faced—or seemed to face—the whole external world for an instant, and then concentrated on you with an irresistible prejudice in your favor. It understood you just as far as you wanted to be understood, believed in you as you would like to believe in yourself, and assured you that it had precisely the impression of you that, at your best, you hoped to convey.
    Note: The most understanding smile in literature?
  • Tom shared from House of Mirth by Edith Wharton
    Under the glitter of their opportunities she saw the poverty of their achievement.
    Note: Edith Wharton on society
  • Tom shared from Digital Disruption: Unleashing the Next Wave of Innovation by James McQuivey
    When people adopt technology, they do old things in new ways. When people internalize technology, they find new things to do.
    Note: @JMcQuivey is on to something
  • Tom shared from Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg
    One of my favorite quotes comes from author Alice Walker, who observed, “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.”
    Note: Lean In. A very relevant quote from Alice Walker.