Top critical review
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Very limited coverage of smart drugs, limited coverage of ethics, and generally tries to cover too much in too little space
on 30 June 2014
The problem that I've got with this book is really that it's too short to cover the range of subjects it aims to cover. It discusses bad decision-making in moderate detail, including looking at a number of studies on where this goes wrong and its impact, but my impression is that 'Thinking Fast and Slow' covered this side better. The comprises the bulk of the book.
After this, there is a minimal amount of discussion about smart drugs, basically covering Ritalin and Modafinil, but basically ignoring the range of other smart drugs on the market, and mainly focuses on Modafinils potential to reduce levels of tiredness. It spends more time discussing the ethics of smart drug use in an otherwise healthy population, and tries to cover both sides of the argument, but not, to my mind, particularly convincingly - it would have been better to include not just a dispassionate outline of both sides of the argument with short arguments from proponents and opponents of using these drugs in a healthy population.
In all, the book is too short, and cannot cover the subject in sufficient detail, and focuses as a result mainly on ethics and theory and little on practical implications or how else someone could improve their decision-making.