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Book Reviews

User experience knowledge

User experience knowledge

Get up close with UX techniques and definitions

We've recently come across the wide variety of user experience books offered by Rosenfeld Media. Ranging from research to strategy to content and much more, these are extremely valuable resources for the creative who wants to start on the path of UX learning. If you're an agency leader or marketer, I'd go for the entire 20-book package for 299USD.

Book Review: Running Lean

Book Review: Running Lean

From Lean theory to Lean practice

There's a wide gap between theory and practice, particularly in the innovation arena. After the wide success of Steve Blank's "The Startup Owner's Manual: The Step-by-Step Guide for Building a Great Company" and Eric Ries' "The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses", the market was now armed with a new innovation theory, but lacked the in-depth knowledge to avoid pitfalls in practice. Ash Maurya's "Running Lean: Iterate from Plan A to a Plan that Works" aims to fill that gap.

Covering all steps of the Lean strategy, Ash goes into each part in detail, arming current and wannabe entrepreneurs with tools, processes and vocabulary to tackle each phase.

Running Lean works for us as a weekly consultation guide. That works for us much better than a long continuous read. We recommend it for intra and entrepreneurs in any industry that are already familiarized with the Lean Startup philosophy, as well as developers who would like to get rid of their waterfall processes.

Book Review: Remote: Office Not Required

Book Review: Remote: Office Not Required

By Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson

Remote workers unite

I've recently finished reading 37signals' latest book, Remote: Office Not Required. It's a 256-page ode to a new world where remote collaboration is touted as the norm and not the exception. The book also presses a lot on the messaging of long-term happiness and independence in the workplace. Treating people as adults is one of their first premises, although one that is much easier to implement in a medium sized business with great hiring strategies.

Unexpectedly I have benefited most from their chapter on security, where they share their best practices related to cloud services, mobile devices and more.

Even though it's another book that I would definitely recommend – especially if you are serious about implementing or being a part in a remote work structure implementation – I can't help but wonder if I wouldn't be better off if they had decided to use their time to update Highrise, their cloud CRM tool and our relationship software of choice here at Mecenato. It's seriously outdated by now.

 

Book Review: Cloud Surfing

Book Review: Cloud Surfing

The solution is in the cloud

Sometimes we come across readings that are worth mentioning, for one reason or another. Our topics are usually around the intersection of technology, human behavior and business. In our first post of this sort, we will mention Thomas Koulopoulos' Cloud Surfing. Thomas has been involved in the tech world for a while, and his take on the benefits of the cloud are numerous.

While we at Mecenato are obvious pushers of the concept of decentralization, organized remote work and the usage of collaboration tools in the cloud, we have been slightly more aware recently of the far-reaching consequences of a life of data in the cloud. For those, Thomas ever optimistic and solutionist tone might be much.

Even so, this book is a good read for those in business, especially IT managers and C-level marketers with an intent of better understanding this deluge of information regarding "the cloud". The definition of private and public clouds is also helpful for the fearful among us.

For counter balancing purposes, we recommend everyone Evgeny Mozorov's "To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism" as your follow-up read.