I’m still waiting for my chair to get back to me, but in the meantime I’ve started thinking about what I want to read once I finish.  I’ve let a lot of my tech skills slide while I’ve been writing, but here are the top skills I want to refresh once I have the time…My nook is feeling empty.

R in a Nutshell –  More and more statisticians are moving to R, but it is primarily a command line system.  I constantly hear about how powerful it is, though, so it is the number one technical item I want to get up to speed on.

R Cookbook – Ditto – Specific solutions for over 200 specific problems.

Data Mashups with R – This book falls into the category of inspiration.  It is a case study of some very interesting online data work that could inspire new research ideas!

Beautiful Visualizations and Beautiful Data – After going to an Edward Tufte seminar, I’ve become convinced that the best way to communicate is through well-designed visualizations of complex data.  Anything to help me do this better is on my list.

Information Dashboard Design – Relevant to my day job, but also as a way to think about how to present data. Stephen Few is one of the best in this area, so anything by him works.

slide:ology – Tufte hates powerpoint, but it is a fact of life in american business.  Anything that can help me come up with better visualizations and make better use of those presentations is a good thing.

Statistics Hacks – I teach statistics, and I am constantly on the lookout for better ways to teach or more examples.  This one sounds like it contains some great stuff!

Head First Physics – OK, this is just one of those topics I wish I knew more about.  The Head First books are good for helping you learn and pedagogically sound, so what the heck; I’ll give it a try….

Cooking for Geeks – I love to cook.  I’ve spent most of the last 3 weekends cooking things because I finally had the time.  Heck, even when I don’t have the time I make my own bagels.  So learning more of the science just fascinates me.

Of course, this adds up to over $350 for the ebook formats, more on paper, and would keep me reading for weeks.  But who knows – those are at least the topics I want to start looking into….