Category Archives: Books

O’Reilly Offers 50% Off On Git Ebook And Videos Through Feb 8th

Being a huge fan of the git version control system, I was pleased to see that O’Reilly is offering 50% off on their git-related videos and ebook. I haven’t seen the videos, but the “Version Control with Git” book is quite good. More info on O’Reilly’s site:

Oreilly git offer

P.S. I have no financial motivation to post this info, i.e. I am not being compensated through any kind of referral links or anything else. I just think this is an interesting offer to folks interested in learning more about git.

R.I.P. Dennis Ritchie, half of the K&R Bible for C Programming

KandR CProgrammingLang

For those of us of a certain age, “The C Programming Language“, written by Brian W. Kernighan and Dennis M. Ritchie, was our “bible” as we learned to program in those very early days. Our copies of “K&R“, as many of us referred to it, got quite dog-eared and marked up as we used it to figure out this whole new world of “C”. It was an exciting time and a critical book to have.

Many of us, in fact, probably still have that book… the image accompanying this post is my copy that I pulled off of a bookshelf a few moments ago.

Today many of us learned that Dennis M. Ritchie, the co-author of that book and indeed the inventor of the C Language, passed away recently after a long illness.

While many of us stopped programming in C years ago (although many still do), it was the language that got many of us started in “serious” work… and also that formed the background of UNIX as well.

On that note, I had quite honestly forgotten over the years Dennis Ritchie’s role in the creation of UNIX, but as has been noted in many articles today it was he and Ken Thompson that started it all. Here’s a great video from the Bell Labs days showing both Thompson and Ritchie:

R.I.P. dmr!


UPDATE: A couple of other nice tributes:


Online Preview Available of O’Reilly’s Upcoming “Up and Running with Node.js”

Tom Hughes-Croucher is writing a book for O’Reilly & Associates about Node.js called “Up and Running with Node.js” and he tweeted out today that a preview of the book is now available online at:

http://ofps.oreilly.com/titles/9781449398583/index.html

As he says in the author intro:

When Simon, my editor, and I were initially discussing this project it was obvious how vibrant the Node.js community is. We felt that it was important that we engaged with the community as we worked on this manuscript. In order to do that we decided to release the book in parts as I wrote it. What you are reading now is one of those partial releases.

It’s very cool that he’s made the text available and will be continuing to update it as the book evolves. Apparently he has to do something to enable commenting, but shortly you should be able to comment on his text.

Nice to see authors doing this to solicit input from the larger community before a book is actually printed. Very cool.

Upandrunningwithnodejs

Free eBook: Mastering Node.js (still a work-in-progress – and NEEDS YOUR HELP)

MasteringnodejsAs I continue my own exploration of Node.js, I was pleased to see that a free eBook, Mastering Node.js, was available about Node.js from none other than TJ Holowaychuk, a big contributor to the Node.js community. You can get the current version of the book at:

http://visionmedia.github.com/masteringnode/

However, there is the one little detail… it’s still very much a work-in-progress. As TJ Holowaychuk says on the Github page for the project:

Mastering node is an open source eBook by node hackers for node hackers. I started this as a side project and realized that I don’t have time 🙂 so go nuts, download it, build it, fork it, extend it and share it. If you come up with something you wish to contribute back, send me a pull request.

It is a good start on a book… and if anyone out there wants to add to it and help fill out the contents, he’s obviously open to that assistance.

Video Book Review: Pragmatic Guide to Git

pragmaticguidetogit.jpeg

Last night I recorded a new episode of my Emerging Tech Talk video podcast (as part of my One Day of Content Creation) where I reviewed the Pragmatic Guide to Git written by Travis Swicegood and published by Pragmatic Programmers in November 2010.

As I note in the video embedded below, I found the book quite useful as a reference and a solid intro to git for people who may have experience with other version control systems and want to come up to speed with git. It is not a tutorial on version control systems, so if you have no experience with VCS’s, you’ll need to read some other book first. (Or watch my earlier ETT episode where I explain version control systems.)

Enjoy the review…


In full disclosure:

  1. O’Reilly sent me a copy of this book to review, but I would have purchased it anyway since I have a passionate interest in git.
  2. The links to Amazon.com above use my affiliate code and so if you actually buy the book I will receive a tiny amount of money.

Python heading up O’Reilly’s recent book promotion?

oreillybooks.jpgTwo days ago, Tim O’Reilly published an interesting post around the books people chose as part of O’Reilly’s Cyber-Monday deal. What I found interesting was the number of books all about…

python!

Given that I’ve been programming now and then in python for over 10+ years, I just found it both interesting and pleasing to see that python is still growing in interest. Google has certainly driven much of that interest in recent years with AppEngine, but Tim O’Reilly points to “data science” as a new driver:

… while Python has a large following in data science. It’s particularly interesting, and important, that using Python to collect data from sensors (“Real World Instrumentation with Python”) made it onto the list.

Very cool to see!

P.S. I agree with Tim that the list is a very interesting view into what programmers (who buy from O’Reilly) are interested in…