Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things
by William McDonough & Michael Braungart
The book looks at how to "do more with less in order to minimize damage," and examines manufacturing techiniques and environmentalism. I'm currently reading this book and it is fascinating.
An amazing book but impossible to find. The book provides informative inspiration for design as well as an introduction to the properties of various materials such as wood, metal, glass, ceramics and plastic.
Making It: Manufacturing Techniques for Product Designby Chris Lefteri
Yet another beautiful, informative and inspirational book that is difficult to find. "It''s the only designer''s guide to a broad range of production methods: from liquid, plastic and solid-state forming to different methods of cutting, moulding and machining, from rapid prototyping to finishing."
The Graphic Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines
The book goes in depth about copyright issues and contains contract and model release templates. It provides key knowledge for graphic designers and illustrators who are new to the industry. While I'm more involved in the product and UX design industry, I belive this would still be valuable knowledge to have. "As the graphic art marketplace continues to evolve to meet the needs of both digital and print media and as clients struggle with shrinking budgets in the current economy, the need for up-to-date information on business, ethical, and legal issues is greater than ever."
(And all the textbooks and articles I'm currently reading at school!)