The best 24 Big Data books



Laurent Richard and Sandrine Rigaud
How a Spy in Our Pocket Threatens the End of Privacy, Dignity, and Democracy
4.3 (273 ratings)

What's Pegasus about?

Pegasus (2023) follows the thrilling, worldwide investigation into one of the most powerful and insidious pieces of cyber surveillance software known to date. Beginning with a massive data leak to a small, independent news outlet, it tells the story of how Pegasus came to be, the hundreds of innocent individuals who have had their privacy taken away by it, and the global team of reporters and editors who risked everything to bring the story to light.

Who should read Pegasus?

  • Followers of the Pegasus Project and other cyber security international bombshells like the Panama Papers, or Wikileaks.
  • Fans of investigative journalism who want to know the stories behind the reports that shake the world.
  • Anyone who owns a phone and wants to know just how fragile their privacy really is.

AI Superpowers

AI Superpowers

Kai-Fu Lee
China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order
4.4 (256 ratings)

What's AI Superpowers about?

AI Superpowers (2018) takes a revealing look at the US and China as the world stands at the precipice of the AI economy, a multi-trillion dollar industry of algorithms and automation. As a tech expert and venture capitalist with experience in both China and the US, author Kai-Fu Lee guides us through the past to discover how we got to where we are and what to expect in the future.

Who should read AI Superpowers?

  • Anyone curious about artificial intelligence
  • Executives interested in emerging markets
  • Futurists and technocrats

The Data Detective

The Data Detective

Tim Harford
Ten Easy Rules to Make Sense of Statistics
4.5 (212 ratings)

What's The Data Detective about?

The Data Detective (2021) is a smart, practical guide to understanding the ways in which statistics –⁠ and our reactions to them –⁠ distort and obscure reality. Using psychological research and illuminating examples, it reveals some of the ways our brains influence how we see data and statistics and how we draw incorrect conclusions as a result. By picking apart our cognitive biases and misconceptions, we gain the ability to see data, and in turn, the world, for what it really is.

Who should read The Data Detective?

  • News and social media addicts
  • Avid consumers of scientific articles and research
  • Anyone who regularly comes into contact with data or statistics



Brett Scott
Cash, Cards, Crypto, and the War for Our Wallets
4.2 (512 ratings)

What's Cloudmoney about?

Cloudmoney (2022) provides an overview of our present payment landscape. As it turns out, the age-old question of “cash or card” is not as simple as it seems. Underneath the push toward cashless is a murky world of powerful interests trying to extract profit and data from people’s purchases. And the disappearance of cash has more disadvantages than you might think. 

Who should read Cloudmoney?

  • Literally everyone – we all use money
  • Anyone considering getting rid of cash altogether
  • Students of finance, economics, or politics

The Master Algorithm

The Master Algorithm

Pedro Domingos
How The Quest For The Ultimate Learning Machine Will Remake Our World
4.3 (96 ratings)

What's The Master Algorithm about?

Though you might not be aware of it, machine learning algorithms are already seeping into every aspect of human life, becoming more and more powerful as they continue to learn from an ever-increasing amount of data. The Master Algorithm (2016) provides a broad overview of what kind of algorithms are already out there, the problems they face, the solutions they can provide and how they’re going to revolutionize the future.

Who should read The Master Algorithm?

  • Entrepreneurs who want to connect producers and customers
  • Tech junkies interested in the next big technological evolution
  • Anyone concerned about how their personal data is being used

The Industries of the Future

The Industries of the Future

Alec Ross
The next wave of innovation and globalization
3.7 (85 ratings)

What's The Industries of the Future about?

The Industries of the Future (2016) gives a sneak peak at the effects information technology and the next wave of innovation will have on globalization. These blinks explain how people, governments and companies will need to adapt to a changing world driven by big data.

Who should read The Industries of the Future?

  • Any business owner or entrepreneur who accepts payments by credit card
  • Those aspiring to own a business
  • Parents who want to prepare their child for a successful future

Weapons of Math Destruction

Weapons of Math Destruction

Cathy O’Neil
How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy
4.1 (135 ratings)

What's Weapons of Math Destruction about?

Weapons of Math Destruction (2016) offers a critical look at the growing number of algorithms that could be impacting your day-to-day life in ways you’re not even aware of. As more businesses and services, including schools and police, use algorithms to automate jobs, an increasing number of people are suffering the adverse effects. So don’t leave yourself at the mercy of automation – find out what you can do to protect yourself and your data.

Who should read Weapons of Math Destruction?

  • Students and enthusiasts of computer science and statistics
  • Internet activists
  • Readers worried about their privacy rights

The Four

The Four

Scott Galloway
The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google
4.0 (126 ratings)

What's The Four about?

The Four (2017) examines the great superpowers of our digital age – Apple, Amazon, Facebook and Google – and attempts to answer a few tough questions: How have these companies changed the world we live in and what is their formula for success? How can other companies rise to similar echelons of power? And what does it take to thrive in a world shaped by the Four?

Who should read The Four?

  • Facebook and iPhone users
  • Anyone who regularly performs searches on Google, shops on Amazon, uses an Apple device or spends time on Facebook
  • Business enthusiasts and business analysts

Everybody Lies

Everybody Lies

Seth Stephens-Davidowitz
Big Data, New Data and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are
4.1 (107 ratings)

What's Everybody Lies about?

Everybody Lies (2017) is about the data collected in vast quantities by computers and over the internet. This data can help reveal fascinating information about the human psyche, behavior and quirks, because, as it turns out, people aren’t always so willing to communicate their true hopes and desires to others.

Who should read Everybody Lies?

  • Anyone interested in the complex nature of human behavior
  • Media studies experts and social scientists
  • Anyone concerned about the power of the internet and online privacy

Big Data

Big Data

Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Kenneth Cukier
A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work and Think
4.4 (98 ratings)

What's Big Data about?

Big Data provides an insightful look at why a change to “big data” is a major shift in how we collect, use and think about the data around us. It provides great explanations and examples of how individuals and companies already ahead of the curve are using the tools of big data to create value and profit. Casting an eye forward, the book also outlines the future implications for a big-data society in terms of the risks, opportunities and legal implications.

Who should read Big Data?

  • Anyone who is interested in learning more about what “big data” is and what it means for society
  • Anyone who is looking to make a career using big data
  • Anyone from a company who is looking for opportunities to use the data the company collects

New Dark Age

New Dark Age

James Bridle
Technology and the End of the Future
4.1 (79 ratings)

What's New Dark Age about?

New Dark Age (2018) investigates the fundamental paradox of our digital age: as new technologies allow us to gather more and more data on our world, we understand less and less of it. Examining the history, politics and geography of the complex digital network we are enmeshed in, James Bridle sheds new light on the central issues of our time, from climate change to wealth inequality to post-factual politics, and explains how we can live with purpose in an era of uncertainty.

Who should read New Dark Age?

  • Tech skeptics and tech enthusiasts
  • Critical thinkers fascinated by the geopolitics of our networked world
  • Anyone interested in the silly and profound ways technology shapes our lives

Privacy Is Power

Privacy Is Power

Carissa Véliz
Why and How You Should Take Back Control of Your Data
4.6 (194 ratings)

What's Privacy Is Power about?

Privacy is Power (2020) is a shocking exposé of the inner workings of surveillance capitalism. It reveals how, every day, hundreds of interested parties are violating your privacy and capitalizing on your personal data. Corporations, governments, and criminals alike are all busy collecting and exploiting your data in an effort to influence the way you think and behave. In these blinks, you’ll learn why your privacy is so important and what you can do to protect it.

Who should read Privacy Is Power?

  • Those perturbed by governments and corporations snooping on our private lives
  • People untroubled by digital surveillance because they believe they have nothing to hide
  • Anyone looking for actionable ways to protect their privacy now



Christopher Wylie
Cambridge Analytica and the Plot to Break America
4.5 (116 ratings)

What's Mindf*ck about?

Mindf*ck (2019), written by a whistleblower, tells the story of the largest data crime in history to date. On the eve of the 2016 United States presidential election, consulting firm Cambridge Analytica harvested the Facebook data from 87 million people and used it to conduct a mass disinformation campaign. Now, the full story has finally come to light.

Who should read Mindf*ck?

  • Americans who want to understand Cambridge Analytica’s role in the Trump election
  • Left- and right-wingers feeling increasingly resentful of the other side
  • Brits interested in why the Brexit referendum turned out the way it did

Super Crunchers

Super Crunchers

Ian Ayres
Why Thinking-by-Numbers Is the New Way to be Smart
3.6 (21 ratings)

What's Super Crunchers about?

From building a wine cellar to finding your happily ever after, modern life is increasingly ruled by number crunching and algorithms. Super Crunchers (2007) is about the sheer power of the large data sets that are fed into algorithms and the way they’re revolutionizing our businesses, medical treatment and even our governments.

Who should read Super Crunchers?

  • Anyone interested in the power of statistics
  • Computer and math nerds
  • Business owners, politicians and baseball coaches

Small Data

Small Data

Martin Lindstrom
The Tiny Clues That Uncover Huge Trends
4.0 (48 ratings)

What's Small Data about?

Small Data (2016) is a guide to utilizing minor details about people’s lives to connect with them and sell them on your brand image. These blinks incorporate observations of cultures all over the world to point to the emotions and desires that help brands become household names.

Who should read Small Data?

  • Marketing professionals and students of human behavior.
  • Anyone working to establish a brand.

Streaming, Sharing, Stealing

Streaming, Sharing, Stealing

Michael D. Smith and Rahul Telang
Big Data and the Future of Entertainment
3.6 (28 ratings)

What's Streaming, Sharing, Stealing about?

Streaming, Sharing, Stealing (2016) is about the ever-changing entertainment industry. Recent years have seen the emergence of new players who continue to utilize technology to transform the landscape. This book assesses how companies like Apple, Netflix and Amazon use data to understand their consumers’ needs.

Who should read Streaming, Sharing, Stealing?

  • Publishers and policy makers
  • Technology enthusiasts interested in big data and analytics
  • Media, film and music students

Calling Bullshit

Calling Bullshit

Carl T. Bergstrom
The Art of Skepticism in a Data-Driven World
4.3 (109 ratings)

What's Calling Bullshit about?

Calling Bullshit (2020) is a guide to navigating the huge amounts of bullshit that surround us. By being alert to the ways in which data and scientific processes get manipulated, we can learn to call out bullshit when we see it.

Who should read Calling Bullshit?

  • Popular science fans who want to see behind the curtain
  • Data nerds who want to learn more
  • Concerned citizens eager to fight misinformation

The People Vs Tech

The People Vs Tech

Jamie Bartlett
How the Internet is Killing Democracy (And How We Save It)
4.6 (47 ratings)

What's The People Vs Tech about?

The People Vs Tech (2018) examines the rise of digital technology. It argues this process is undermining six of the key pillars of democracy: active citizenship, a shared democratic culture, free elections, free association, equality, and governmental authority. Looking to the future and observing how it is already unfolding in the present, it paints a chilling picture of the possible dystopian world to come. However, it also shows the paths that are leading us to that world and suggests that these paths can be redirected, pointing the way to a better future.

Who should read The People Vs Tech?

  • Citizens concerned about how the internet is impacting society 
  • Workers who fear their jobs may be replaced by AI
  • Fans of dystopian science fiction literature, movies, and television series

It’s Not the Size of the Data

It’s Not the Size of the Data

Koen Pauwels
It’s How You Use It
3.7 (12 ratings)

What's It’s Not the Size of the Data about?

It’s Not the Size of the Data (2014) is a beginner's guide to designing, creating and adopting your own marketing dashboard, helping you uncover the links between campaigns and performance, and monitor progress with long-term goals in mind.

Who should read It’s Not the Size of the Data?

  • People who believe in the power of numbers and how they can inform logical decision making
  • Marketing innovators confident that they can benefit from data-driven marketing



Christian Madsbjerg
What Makes Human Intelligence Essential in the Age of the Algorithm
4.1 (22 ratings)

What's Sensemaking about?

In a world where data, numbers and statistics are treated like holy relics, Sensemaking (2017) powerfully advocates a return to humanities-based thinking. These blinks explain the process and principles of sensemaking, a way to make sense of the world through the interpretation of human culture. Being able to look beyond the immediate focus and understand the context surrounding the issues at hand is a critical tool for anyone looking to develop great, one-of-a-kind ideas.

Who should read Sensemaking?

  • Devotees of the human sciences, philosophers, linguists and historians
  • Students of STEM looking to expand their potential
  • Business leaders and entrepreneurs



Christian Rudder
Who We Are When We Think No One’s Looking
3.5 (22 ratings)

What's Dataclysm about?

Dataclysm shows what data collected on the internet can tell us about the people who use it, opposed to information gathered from the sterile environment of a scientific laboratory. What you’ll learn is not all good news: when we think no one is watching, we often behave in nasty, brutish ways.

Who should read Dataclysm?

  • Anyone interested in human behavior “in the wild”
  • Anyone who gets mired in pointless arguments on websites’ comments sections
  • Anyone looking for love through online dating websites

Too Big to Ignore

Too Big to Ignore

Phil Simon
The Business Case for Big Data
4.3 (11 ratings)

What's Too Big to Ignore about?

Too Big to Ignore explains why Big Data is tremendously important for your business. It illustrates the ways that Big Data analysis can revolutionize your company, and takes you step by step through the tools you need to harness it. It also looks ahead to our Big Data future.

Who should read Too Big to Ignore?

  • Anyone interested in entrepreneurship or business
  • Anyone interested in technology
  • Anyone looking to use Big Data in their company



Ken Auletta
The Epic Disruption of the Advertising Industry (and Everything Else)
4.2 (23 ratings)

What's Frenemies about?

Frenemies (2018) explores the forces that are currently disrupting the traditional advertising and marketing industries. It looks at how the internet age has forced the advertising industry to change and adapt, specifically how technology, science and customization have revolutionized the role of the traditional advertising agency.

Who should read Frenemies?

  • Advertising and marketing professionals seeking outside perspective on their industry
  • Corporate marketing executives trying to connect with their audience
  • Curious readers interested in the disruptive effect of technology on traditional industries

Dragnet Nation

Dragnet Nation

Julia Angwin
A Quest for Privacy, Security and Freedom in a World of Relentless Surveillance
4.4 (22 ratings)

What's Dragnet Nation about?

Dragnet Nation details the ways in which governments and corporations can gather vast amounts of your personal data and how this affects you. The book explains how easily such sensitive data can be abused, and that ultimately, such practices lead to a loss of freedom for all of us.

Who should read Dragnet Nation?

  • Anyone who wants to protect their privacy online
  • Anyone who does not think that data mining and privacy are a big deal
  • Anyone interested in how personal data is collected by governments and corporations

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