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technical books

What technical book(s) are you reading now?

Thursday, September 4, 2003

1. Object Design: Roles, Responsibilities, and Collaborations
2. Naked Objects

As an aside, this is possibly the most underrated interview question ever. It is applicable in *both* directions: when interviewing with an actual manager, ask her/him what books she is reading now and what her favourite management and technical books are.

Reginald Braithwaite-Lee
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Agile Software Development - Principles, Patterns, and Practices by Robert C. Martin

Excellent book that seems to pull all of the things that I'm currently interested in together in one place. Agile processes, test first development, refactoring and a sprinkling of patterns.

Len Holgate (
Thursday, September 4, 2003

The Practice of Programming

Thursday, September 4, 2003

Mike Gunderloy's books on VB.NET

Prakash S
Thursday, September 4, 2003

* WROX's Professional Commerce Server 2000--bleh!
* WROX's Professional PHP Programming--bleh!
* More webpages than you can shake a google at.

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, September 4, 2003

* MS Press's Programming Microsoft Visual Basic .NET, but then this is not a book, it's an abridged encyclopedia. *faint*
* I am envious of (or feel sorry?) the shop with the dead-tree edition of the complete documentation on dotnet. But that's a USD$2000+ investment. Damn, how much can you learn about blocking I/O? Apparantly a lot.

Li-fan Chen
Thursday, September 4, 2003

I wish I was reading Programming Language Pragmatics by Michael L. Scott, but I've exceeded my book allowance for the month.

Joe Cheng
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Code Generation in Action -
A colleague at work is creating miracles using code generation with Java, so I decided to find out more.  Book has also opened my eyes to Ruby, which really is a nice language.

Eclipse In Action -
I've played with Eclipse, and really want to find out how to use it.  Covers the whole development process centred around eclipse rather than just IDE itself.

The Third Manifesto -
A proposal for an Object/Relational model.

This is rather deep.  I think I'm in over my head, but I'm learning so much in the struggle.

Ged Byrne
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Pragmatic Programmer
ANSI Common Lisp

Car Cdr
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Effective Perl Programming

(Just Finished) Learning Perl Objects, References, and Modules. (Yes, the PORM)

Matt H.
Thursday, September 4, 2003

A random sampling of my favourites.

Jon Bentley's "Programming Pearls" series [ ]. Although it does tend to talk about unpopular subjects such as "program correctness" and such. Highly recommended.

The Dragon Book [ ]. Even if you have nothing to do with compilers, there's a lot of generally useful material in this book, and it is very well presented, in the practical setting of building compilers / translators / whatever.

Numerical Recipes [ ] - for the math inclined (or, at the very least, for the math non disinclined). Even though most of you probably never need the algorithms described, reading this book as a textbook, rather than a reference book, may change your perspective about abstraction - everything in that book is down-to-the-metal, with little to no abstraction (and that doesn't make it less readable / usable / maintainable).

Ori Berger
Thursday, September 4, 2003

(forgot to add: Even though I read them cover to cover several times in the past, I keep opening them at random places, and read a bit from time to time, to refresh)

Ori Berger
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Inside SQL Server 2000 is a good book so far.

Also finished The Unix Philosophy.

Thursday, September 4, 2003

Reading through "Rapid Development" by Steve McConnell again. Always a fun thing to do when a "classic mistake" comes up...

Better Than Being Unemployed...
Thursday, September 4, 2003

.NET Framework Security
By Brian A. LaMacchia, Sebastian Lange, Matthew Lyons, Rudi Martin, Kevin T. Price

Essential .NET, Volume 1: The Common Language Runtime
By Don Box, Chris Sells

Essential ASP.NET with Examples in C#
By Fritz Onion

Professional Software Development: Shorter Schedules, Higher Quality Products, More Successful Projects, Enhanced Careers
By Steve McConnell

Secure XML: The New Syntax for Signatures and Encryption
By Donald E. Eastlake III, Kitty Niles

Just me (Sir to you)
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Just ordered this one:

"Special Edition Using Visual C++.NET"

Thursday, September 4, 2003

Are some Amazon reviews plants by the Author or publisher? Okay - that was a rhetorical question.

I have been offered books by publishes to review on Amazon - the unspoken code is that if the review is positive - more free books.

Some publishing agents are more forthright about the above rule on getting a positive review.

So why did I bring this up? And on this thread?

I recently bought a book on Java and XP programming - "Java Tools for Extreme Programming: Mastering Open Source Tools Including Ant, JUnit, and Cactus"

The reviews were glowing in praises - but the book had nothing to do about XP. It was just a summary, and cursory at best, of some open source tools used in Java.

I think the authors swung the XP into the title to garner more sales.

And about a third of the book were API documentation. Which can be found else where word for word on the web.

Ram Dass
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Programming Language Pragmatics - Michael L. Scott

Thursday, September 4, 2003

Lisp in Small Pieces - seems to be a very well written post-SICP book
The Art of Computer Programming - not the bible, but also very well written

I like both these books because they try hard to not leave people hanging with partially-understood ideas.  L.i.S.P. is probably the most charismatic tech book I've read, admittedly I've only had it a couple days.

Tayssir John Gabbour
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Beginning ASP 2.0 !
Ok, just kidding. I'm reading Java Enterprise Design patterns, which really doesn't have anythihg to do with java, other then a few examples.  Its pretty good and informative.

Thursday, September 4, 2003

C++ Network Programming Vol 1 and 2.

christopher baus
Thursday, September 4, 2003

Technical books are, in the most part, a waste of money.

Yes, I realise with this answer I probably wouldn't get the job, but it's true. ;)

Sum Dum Gai
Friday, September 5, 2003

Ummm the kind of technical books I read are for reference so the idea of there being a current list (and me being able to remember the titles rather than thinking of it as the flourescent pink one, or the one with the scary photograph on the front), is risible.

I made it a rule a long time ago not to read management or self help type books. 

Simon Lucy
Friday, September 5, 2003

"The Science of Debugging" by Matt Telles and Yuan Hsieh. I'm about half way through it, and so far it is really good. This book doesn't seem to be very well known, which is a pity. It has a lot of good material on debugging, and since I do a fair bit of debugging it is quite helpful.

I also just ordered "Programming Ruby" by the pragmatic programmers. I like to have an actual book when learning a new language, even though this one is freely available on-line.

Regarding reviews on amazon: I always check out books I'm interested on Amazon, and I like reading the reviews.

Of course they have to be taken with a grain of salt. You'll always have someone saying "This is a great book!!" and giving it five stars.

I'm looking for reviews that are specific in why they liked or disliked the book. If someone is positive about a book, I usually look at other reviews they've written. If they've reviewed other books that I also have read, I get a better feeling for if I can trust their judgement.

The vast majority of reviews on amazon are quite positive. I think partly that's because it's more fun to write about a book you liked than writing about one you didn't like (even though negative reviews can be really helpful). I also think that we tend to read books we like (if you don't like it, maybe you'll stop reading it), so this will also mean more positive than negative reviews.

This of course doesn't mean there aren't undeserving books getting rave reviews - there certainly are.

The last book on SW engineering I read was "Facts and Fallacies of Software Engineering" by Robert Glass. I think it's really good, and I actually posted a review of it on amazon (trying to follow my own advice about giving specific details on why something is good or bad).

I does take a bit of an effort to write a review, and I haven't been able to review as many books as I'd like to. But when I'm done with the debugging book I think it's time to make an effort again...

Henrik Warne
Friday, September 5, 2003

"SQL Performance Tuning", by Gulutzan and Pelzer

Grumpy Old-Timer
Friday, September 5, 2003

I'm thinking of picking up "Pokeman Ruby and Sapphire". It's been listed in Amazon's Top 5 bestselling computer books all year. So, if that many people are buying it, it must be good! :-p

Friday, September 5, 2003

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