Monthly Archives: December 2010

Learning Node.js – a video from Ryan Dahl

I have admittedly become a bit fascinated with Node.js lately. In part because it uses that most mundane of web programming languages, JavaScript… the language looked down upon by so many, but actually quite powerful with the right tools. In part because I’m intrigued by a event-driven I/O. And in part because it’s so trivial to get web services up and running (and yes, that is true of other frameworks as well).

If you’ve been interested in learning more about Node.js, this video may help you as it helped me:

One note: It’s from November 2009, which in web language terms that is quite old… and Node.js has evolved a bit from where it was in this video. For instance, the “tcp” module mentioned in an early demo is now the “net” module. (I found some good examples of current usage.)

Ultimately my goal is to experiment with the Tropo WebAPI library for Node.js to build voice, SMS and Twitter apps using Right now, though… I’m just having fun learning a new way to program!

Video Book Review: Pragmatic Guide to Git


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 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…


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…