Jon Aquino's Mental Garden

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Books on my radar screen

  • Algorithms, by Sedgewick. Actually I'd rather read Knuth, but Sedgewick is available on Safari Online. Plus Knuth is expensive and I hear bad things about the fictional MIX language he invented for this book.
  • Why Programs Fail. On debugging.
  • Beautiful Code. Great sample essay by Tim Bray.
  • Code Craft
  • Debugging by Thinking. Maybe. Not sure from the reviews whether this one is for novices or whether pros can benefit as well.
  • Debugging: The Nine Indispensable Rules. Great war stories.
  • Microserfs. From Joel Spolsky's reading list.
  • PPK on JavaScript. May not be useful to an experienced JavaScript developer, but hey it's on Safari Online.
  • Programming Pearls. C-based but evidently has some gems.
  • The Elegant Universe. Seems to be a "Short History of Nearly Everything" for string theory.
  • The No Asshole Rule

Books I should finish:
  • Rapid Development. Good catalogue of software project management techniques.
  • Mastering Regular Expressions
  • CSS Mastery
  • The Principles of Beautiful Web Design. Alas, this full-color book is a bit boring.
  • Agile Software Development (Robert Martin)
  • Refactoring to Patterns
  • Streamlined Object Modeling. Doesn't seem useful to me though. Wonder if Domain-Driven Design would be better - I hear that one's a bit verbose unfortunately.
  • Facts and Fallacies of Software Engineering (Safari Online). Occasional intriguing observations about the software development process, but I'm not sure how useful they are.
  • ActionScript The Definitive Guide. Depends how much Flash work I will be doing.


  • Ha ha - me too! I still haven't finished Rapid Development, either. Not a patch on Code Complete. Mastering Regular Expressions was great for the first 3 or 4 chapters but I skipped a lot of the language-specific stuff.

    I really liked Facts and Fallacies of Software Engineering, though. I must admit that I can't think of anything from it now a couple of years later, though.

    Microserfs is quite fun. Very much a book of it's time but still a good read for someone in our profession. And of course plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.

    By Blogger Thomas David Baker, at 7/11/2007 4:16 p.m.  

  • Tom - très bien! Alas, we need to get off our duffs and finish these titles!

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 7/11/2007 7:37 p.m.  

  • Sutton (No Asshole) was on KGO last week. A caller supplied a sorta corollary rule: If you encounter more than two assholes in any given day, maybe it's you. Sutton liked that.

    By Blogger scruzia, at 7/11/2007 10:12 p.m.  

  • scruzia - nice.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 7/11/2007 10:59 p.m.  

  • can one ever finish Mastering Regular Expressions?? I don't use regex nearly enough to remember most of the syntax... so I revisit this book regularly.

    By Blogger Michael, at 7/17/2007 5:41 p.m.  

  • MRE - the book that cannot be finished.

    By Blogger Jonathan, at 7/17/2007 9:07 p.m.  

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