What is futurist Vernor Vinge reading? His coffee table—a metal bookcase topped with a piece of plywood—is “covered by a deep layer of books,” Vinge says, as are most other surfaces in his San Diego, California, home. His current pile includes:
- Books by Charles Stross and Karl Schroeder. “If I can’t find my science fiction to read at night before I go to bed, I begin to get stressed out.”
- Matter by Iain M. Banks, set in a fantastically advanced civilization known simply as the Culture.
- The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable, a nonfiction best-seller on randomness by Nassim Taleb: “It’s a rare thing that something liked is also really important.”