Bill Gates' summer reading list

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Isn’t it “Gates’s?” </ pedantry> (also kind of not sure)

Some interesting choices, but it sucks that he included no literary/serious/adult fiction.

Related (and weird/cute):

Bill Gates is now a composite cybernetic life-form, thus the plural possessive.


It depends on who you ask (and what style guide you choose to follow). Two of the most commonly followed style guides, Associated Press (AP) and Chicago, disagree. The following webpage has a discussion of this issue:

AP vs. Chicago


I’ve always gone with *s’ – I didn’t realize that even those who support it have all those rules around it. But I prefer to write it the way I say it, which, apparently is also controversial.

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I would have done it that way, but back in the day we made all our s’s to look like f’s too, so what do I know.


How to Lie With Statistics is fantastic, however, incredibly disillusioning if you don’t want to realize how much you believe lies and, in turn, tell them. It clearly explains that our favorite representation of the facts was originally intended as being a salient point in a broader discussion and that, outside of that discussion, it is just a misinformation. You will duly question every statistical “fact” you ever see or hear in the news again and/or be duly frustrated when you want to make a statistical point.

The other great book by Huff is How to Take a Chance.

Notably absent is Piketty’s Capital.

Kill him.

I’m with the Chicago guide on this one:
Chicago: Add apostrophe-s if singular, and add an apostrophe if plural.
Socrates’s tea
the Obamas’ garden
Les’s moor

I would pronounce “Socrates’s tea” as Socrateses tea.

Also, I just finished reading How to Lie With Statistics, by Darrell Huff, like, just last week.

Really? That sucks.

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You mean that fucks.


Let’s invite Bill to join!


Do you ever talk about “literary/serious/adult” fiction or do you just tut tut people who talk about stuff besides “literary/serious/adult fiction”?

That was on a list of his last year:


Yes it does. But it’s in line with most men: most men don’t read fiction. I find that a bit sad. I think (publishing trade paper article some years ago) that the fiction rate declines as men get older also.

Do you ever talk about “literary/serious/adult” fiction or do you just tut tut people who talk about stuff besides “literary/serious/adult fiction”?

Yes, I do, and no, I’m not tut tuttng, just mourning something missing. At least one token woman author would have been nice too. But that’s all mostly just like, my opinion, man.

huh? two of the authors are women.

Right, thanks, my bad, typing from memory, should’ve checked his list again.