I love to read Niall Ferguson. I don’t read every book he writes. I don’t agree with everything he says. But if he writes a book about a topic I’m interested in, I read it. The Square and The Tower is a book like that.
The Square and The Tower: Networks and Power from The Freemasons to Facebook is about networks and hierarchies and how they have acted and interacted through history. I’m sure there will be great history lessons in the book. I’m sure I will be surprised how Ferguson connects certain dots. I’m also sure that his historical view of hierarchies and networks will be a fine counterpoint to the current thinking.
What do I worry about? Obviously, I worry that the book won’t be up to my very high expectations. I also worry that it will be purely historical with little reference to what we know about network theory and analysis. That’s the reason I’m reading another, very different book about the same phenomena. That book is From Gutenberg To Google by Tom Wheeler.
Have you read The Square and The Tower? What did you think of it? What should I watch for? What else is good on the topic?