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It's strange... but I've been able to finish reading a book cover-to-cover that's not a book for my kids. It's hard for me to get hooked into books and find the time to read them. I think the one I finished before this might have been 10 PRINT, and that was over a year ago. This time, though, I completed the book on the story behind the creation of Windows NT: namely, "Showstopper!" in its short form, written by G. Pascal Zachary. Reading the story of how Windows NT came to be was entertaining, as it is a story of the system itself and the dynamics between Dave Cutler, the original designer and lead for NT, and the other people involved in the project. I was shy of being 10 years old when Windows NT launched and I didn't comprehend what was going on in the operating systems world and why this release was such a big deal. Reading the book made me learn various new things about the development process, the role of Microsoft in that era, and allowed me to settle some questions I've had over the years. This article is a mixture of a book review and a collection of thoughts and reflections that the book evoked. Let's begin because we have a lot of ground to cover.
After about two months, I finally finished reading Twitterville by Shel Israel (@shelisrael). One of my followers (@drio) asked for a review of the book, so here is my attempt to do so. But first, a quick summary: Twitterville is a book that focuses on the dynamics of Twitter. It starts by explaining how Twitter works, but that is only a tiny introductory part of the book. The majority of the contents explain how people and business interact with each other by means of Twitter, and it does so by providing lots of real-life stories.
I just finished reading the third book in a row from Joel Spolsky, titled Joel on Software. Before this one, I read More Joel on Software and The Best Software Writing 1, all in a bit over a month. Note: I hadn't read any book cover-to-cover for a loooong while. Very interesting and entertaining books; highly recommended. Oh, and his writing style is really enjoyable. We, crappy blog writers, can learn a lot from him!
This year, Google sent all the Summer of Code students the Producing Open Source Software: How to run a successful free software project book by Karl Fogel (ISBN 0-596-00759-0) as a welcome present. I've just finished reading it and I can say that it was a very nice read. The book is very easy to follow and is very complete: it covers areas such as the project's start-up, how to set things up for promoting it, how to behave in mailing lists, how to prepare releases, how to deal with volunteers or with paid developers, etc.