Bookworm Friday: Five Books Recommendations from Adam Dziendziel


On a daily basis, Adam is an Interim Head of Engineering in UNITY, developing our platform for international markets. He says: After work, I enjoy spending time with my family, playing with my 2- and 4-years-old daughters. You may also find me cooking, exercising, or dancing.

Check out his 5 book recommendations!

1. John Yates, The Mind Illuminated

When I progressed to the management career path, I found it stressful and challenging with my personality type. Meditation is a helpful method for staying centered, or realizing and overcoming limitations and reflexes imposed by our reptilian brain or monkey mind. I am still at the beginning of this journey, but can honestly recommend this book as a good meditation manual for technical people. It breaks down the learning process into 10 clearly defined stages, explains what challenges you will face at each, and how to deal with them. Having these milestones and techniques makes learning the skill a lot easier and rewarding.

2. Joel Fuhrman, Eat to Live

Fuhrman popularized the notion of nutrient density in what he calls the Health Equation: Health = Nutrients/Calories. This is one of his books which are describing the foundations of a Nutritarian Diet, based on micronutrient-rich plant foods and limiting high-calorie and harmful foods, as a way to stay healthy and prevent chronic diseases. Includes references to scientific evidence and medical cases, which may be eye-opening. I feel a correlation between my well-being and adherence to the advice from the book and recommend everyone to give it a try.

3. Marcin Iwuć, Finansowa Forteca (available only in Polish)

We live in times when interest rates for bank deposits are almost equal to zero and inflation is high. At the same time, stock markets and cryptocurrencies are charting historical records. If you are saving money for your retirement, children's future, or another long-term goal, and see your savings melting in a bank, you may be tempted to go all in. I was, but luckily found "Financial fortress" - an easy to read the book that explains all asset classes and financial products available to an average Polish investor or family. It describes how they relate and behave during different stages of an economic cycle. It is also proposing an all-weather portfolio with a simple investing strategy that anyone can implement with minimal time. An excellent starting point.

4. Martin Kleppmann, Designing Data-Intensive Applications

If I could select only one book that every aspiring software architect should read, that would probably be this one. If you are designing systems expected to scale horizontally, and at the same time meet desired reliability and consistency requirements, or if you are simply working with technologies that are distributed by nature, like Kafka or Cassandra, this book is going to give you a good overview of inherent challenges and trade-offs you may need to make, and outline applicable patterns.

5. Eben Hewitt, Technology Strategy Patterns

This book is listing and briefly describing analysis and communication patterns that chief architects, strategists, or senior engineering leaders can use. These include the kind of tools like SWOT, RACI, Business Value vs Application Cost matrix etc. If you work in technology and want a great bridge into strategic analysis and planning, this might be a book for you (although it is a bit dry and left me wanting more).