Based on the podcast 99% Invisible, which takes a close look at planning and design decisions that do or don’t work, that control the world around us, that are intentional or unintentional, and the various motivations that go into them. The podcast is really successful because each episode is relatively short (10 min or so on average) and they hyper focus on the specific element. An episode might look at bench design in cities, a specific building in a city, a bridge, etc. Sometimes they are morely widely broadcast, and sometimes they are hyper-focused. The show is also well-produced with sound design, interviews, and clips as part of the package.
I mention all this because this book is ALMOST the same as the podcast, and is packaged in a very cool logical way (and I listened to the audiobook, so Roman Mars, the podcast host and book author is a familiar voice). It almost acts as a guide through a city, grouping things together in categories that work together and make sense. The book’s information is great (though it’s often a retread of the podcast). The only issue really is that it’s so close to the podcast, that I can FEEL how much it’s NOT the podcast. It’s a narcissism of minor differences kind of thing, where what’s slightly off about it makes it feel way different. Mostly, it’s an audiobook and not a podcast, and you can feel that difference if you’re used to the first. It’s great regardless.