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The Age of the Infovore: Succeeding in the Information Economy

3.36  ·  Rating Details ·  88 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
"Will change the way you think about thinking." -Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind

Renowned behavioral economist and commentator Tyler Cowen shows that our supernetworked world is changing the way we think-and empowering us to thrive in any economic climate. Whether it is micro-blogging on Twitter or buying single songs at iTunes, we can now customize our lives
Paperback, 272 pages
Published June 29th 2010 by Plume (first published May 26th 2010)
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Jessie Young
Mar 08, 2011 Jessie Young rated it really liked it
This wasn't any easy read for me, but I know it was a good read because I thought a lot about it while I wasn't reading. It also made me think that I and everyone around me was autistic, so I know the content sunk it.

I'll let my highlights speak for themselves (ps - first book I read on my Kindle! Awesome!)

A recent study showed that parents of autistic children were less likely to socialize and that those same parents were also less likely to make eye contact and more likely to read other people
Sean Goh
Sep 11, 2016 Sean Goh rated it liked it
Liked the first half, wasn't expecting the strong focus on autism and autistics and how everyone could learn from them (especially how they process information). The later chapters on politics and beauty were quite meh though.


Recognising the power of autistic learning overturns a lot of stereotypes. Its not recovery from disability, more accurate it is development as the autistic learns to overcome their cognitive disadvantages.

When access is easy, we tend to favour the short, th
I really enjoy Cowen's blog, Marginal Revolution, but I found this book to be a hand-waving, unsystematic mishmash of ideas that were sometimes properly baked and sometimes not. It's a book about autistics and an "autistic" way of thinking that Cowen argues is very useful to have in modern society, where the ability to process large amounts of data is at a premium. The book cover tells me that it "[w]ill change the way [I] think about thinking" but this was not the case for me. There were no "oh ...more
Joanna Cabot
Jul 20, 2012 Joanna Cabot rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012, non-fiction
This was a really interesting book! I think the title and blurb were misleading; only two chapters were about the internet per se. But the book's theme, that autism is not a disability but rather a form of 'neurodiversity' that has its strengths as well, was intriguing. I liked Cowen's theory that the information overload of the internet age is giving a glimpse of how the autistic brain works. The self-filtering we apply to deal with the mass of information (RSS feeds instead of newspapers, for ...more
Aug 15, 2010 Vladimir rated it really liked it
Appropriately enough, this was my first purchase for my Kindle.

Neurodiversity is a concept I hadn't thought about before, but in retrospect it is obvious and useful. The general welfare would be improved if people studied and tried to make use of our different ways of thinking instead of categorizing differences as deficiencies.

"we have become more adept at menipulating small bits of information and weaving those small bits into an emotionally satisfying narrative, even if the suspense and bea
Nov 09, 2013 Joseph rated it it was amazing
this book conveys more message than the title of the book.

it starts off discussing autism and how it relates to the new world order, a topic i dont think i could appreciate much previously.

each chapter deals with a subtopic that will make you think hard, and re-think - a blend of philosophy and economics. e.g. cost of access, small cultural bits, peak vs steady daily experiences,framing effect, economics of story, beauty, politics and the universe.

the discussion is original and persuasive.
Aug 04, 2010 Max rated it liked it
This was good, but not great. The concept is that autism isn't necessarily the affliction that we mostly believe it to be. There are plenty of high-functioning autistics out there and, what is more, the autistic brain is particularly well-equipped to handle many of the challenges of modern life. I thought this was an interesting concept. All in all, I enjoyed several of the sections drawing out this idea, but I found several other sections less appealing and I ended up skimming a lot of the ...more
May 16, 2011 Eliza rated it it was ok
Didn't actually finish this but I wanted to take it off my shelf.

I kinda want to call Tyler Cowen's writing dense...but fascinating. I think he and I would get along. I also enjoyed "Discover Your Inner Economist."

Just found another reader's review of this: "Superficial blog-post of a book about how information overload is no big deal because all you need to do is to be like Sherlock Holmes, except more Buddhist, or something."
Jun 22, 2012 Jeff rated it it was ok
This book was interesting, but not as amazing or as insightful as others seem to feel. So I probably docked it a star just because so many people love this book, and I wasn't in awe of it. Tim Harford is more fun to read and more interesting, in my opinion. I guess it's greatest value would be in understanding autism
Jun 30, 2011 Eric rated it really liked it
I liked Cowen's Hayekian approach to the socioeconomic relationship between people and the cognitive spectrum/abilities. The writing is balanced in such a way that the ideas are clear and seem intuitive without compromising the intellectual integrity of the underlying ideas.
Jun 30, 2010 Peter rated it it was ok
Superficial blog-post of a book about how information overload is no big deal because all you need to do is to be like Sherlock Holmes, except more Buddhist, or something.
Mar 10, 2013 Rick rated it it was ok
Seems ill-conceived to me, although maybe I'm just at the stage of my life where I'm more concerned with deeper understanding rather than consuming as much information as possible.
Andrew Webber
Oct 20, 2010 Andrew Webber rated it liked it
I'm not sure how I feel about this! It was pretty interesting I guess, but also pretty weird? Definitely not what I expected to be reading.
Neil Rempel
Jan 18, 2016 Neil Rempel rated it really liked it
Having read two previous book by Tyler and a consumer of his blog "marginal revolution" this was like a visit with an old friend.
Jeremy Franz
Dec 04, 2010 Jeremy Franz rated it really liked it
A really interesting commentary on society relating our use of technology and information to people on the autism spectrum. I still reference it when writing about consumer behavior on the net.
Dino Ruffino
Dino Ruffino rated it it was amazing
Jun 23, 2012
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Apr 18, 2014
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Christoph Hellmuth
Christoph Hellmuth rated it it was ok
Oct 13, 2012
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Jul 20, 2015
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Mar 06, 2016
Munir Squires
Munir Squires rated it it was ok
Sep 30, 2013
Josh Gunter
Josh Gunter rated it it was amazing
Mar 06, 2015
Vova rated it it was ok
Jun 17, 2012
Nick Stibbs
Nick Stibbs rated it it was amazing
Apr 30, 2013
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Apr 03, 2011
Yogesh rated it really liked it
Aug 18, 2011
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Tyler Cowen (born January 21, 1962) occupies the Holbert C. Harris Chair of economics as a professor at George Mason University and is co-author, with Alex Tabarrok, of the popular economics blog Marginal Revolution. He currently writes the "Economic Scene" column for the New York Times and writes for such magazines as The New Republic and The Wilson Quarterly.

Cowen's primary research interest is
More about Tyler Cowen...

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“Let’s say that you could carry around a perfect copy of a three-dimensional realization of a Caravaggio painting (or if your tastes are more modern make it a Picasso). You would carry a small box in your pocket, and whenever you wanted, you could press a button and the box would open up into life-sized glory and show you the picture. You would bring it to all the parties you attended. The peak of the culture of the seventeenth century (or say the 1920s if you prefer Picasso) would be at your disposal. Alternatively, let’s say you could carry around in your pocket an iPhone. That gives you thousands of songs, a cell phone, access to personal photographs, YouTube, email, and web access, among many other services, not to mention all the applications that have not yet been written. You will have a strong connection to the contemporary culture of small bits.” 1 likes
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