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Just like last year, it might be interesting to ask what who is planning to read on this year, maybe even recommend a book/document or two.


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    Technical (mostly old for future debugging reviews):

    • Computer Architecture, 5th Ed. (Hennessy and Patterson, 2012)
    • Computer Systems: A Programmer’s Perspective (Bryant and O’Hallaron, 2003)
    • How Debuggers Work (Rosenberg, 1996)
    • COBOL II (Bookman, 1990)
    • Debugging C (Ward, 1986)
    • Invitation to MVS (Katzan Jr. and Tharayil, 1984)
    • System 370 Job Control Language (Brown, 1977)
    • Programs for an Electronic Digital Computer (Wilkes, Wheeler and Gill, 1957)


    • The Tyranny of Experts (Easterly, 2013)
    • 23 Things They Don’t Tell You About Captialism (Chang, 2010)


    • The Once and Future King
    • Some of the Harry Potter series, I guess
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      System 370 Job Control Language (Brown, 1977)

      Why do you hate yourself so so so much?

      I have a nice hammer which you can hit yourself with…. I’m sure it will hurt less.

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        Computer Systems: A Programmer’s Perspective is a great book. The 3rd edition covers x86_64. I’m surprised I don’t see it popping up more in lists like these.

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          I read that JCL book in 1989 starting my IT career. Programmed COBOL for a few years and at some point converted a bunch of JCL to shell script at EDS.

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          My 2019 resolution is to reduce for-learning books and increase for-fun books. Here are some of the for-fun books on my list.

          • Mistborn, Brandon Sanderson
            • The Final Empire
            • The Well of Ascension
            • The Hero of Ages
          • Wheel of Time, Robert Jordan
            • The Eye of the World
          • The Axe, Donald Westlake
          • Le Comte de Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas
          • Discworld, Terry Pratchet
            • The Colour of Magic
          • Pillards of the Earth, Ken Follet
          • Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
          • The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien
            • The Hobbit
            • The Fellowship of the Ring
            • The Two Towers
            • The Return of the King
          • The Hand Maid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood
          • Malazan, Steven Erickson

          In my for-learning list, I have a couple of history books and I’ll probably want to add a couple of books on satisfiability (probably Knuth’s) and database implementation.

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            Nice list. If you haven’t already read it I’d also like to suggest the Stormlight Archives by Brandon Sanderson. I wasn’t a huge fan of the Mistborn series but the Stormlight Archives is one of my favorite series.

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              I was coming to say the same thing; the Stormlight Archives are so good! I found them prior to any other Sanderson books, so I’ll be going through Mistborn next, but I feel like these have set the bar really, really high.

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              Looks like you want to try Terry Pratchett? I would not start with the first one. It is not as good as his later books.

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                Since you seem to like a certain type of fantasy, may I suggest The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie? I’ve read most of the books on your list, and I thought Abercrombie’s First Law series was up there with the best of them. The audiobook was particularly well done.

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                  Mistborn is great, it was my introduction to Sanderson as well (and after reading them I binge-read the rest of his books). If you want to keep going with him after the original Mistborn trilogy, I’d recommend reading Warbreaker and then diving into the Stormlight Archives. As @qznc stated, I’d recommend starting with a different Pratchett book. What a friend got me to start with was Thud, which I absolutely loved. That being said, it looks like you’ve picked a great list! (Also, just in case you aren’t aware, Hitchhiker’s Guide is a series, as is Malazan)

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                    As @qznc stated, I’d recommend starting with a different Pratchett book. What a friend got me to start with was Thud, which I absolutely loved.

                    There is also Good Omens. Which is what you would get if you were to cross a Terry Pratchett book & a Neil Gaiman book… probably because it is a Terry Pratchett & Gaiman book.

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                      I heard of Sanderson because of his videos on writing on Youtube and I figured I’d read what he wrote. Really enjoying Mistborn: The Final Empire at the moment. For Discworld, it came recommended by a colleague at work; is it okay if I don’t read them in order? For HHGG, it’s a re-read and Malazan is going to be an attempt at the series, we’ll see if I stick with it

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                    I’m trying to read the four classic Chinese novels - last year I read Water Margin so this year I’m hoping to read Journey to the West (and watch Dragon Ball in conjunction), although it will probably take a long time.

                    I want to work through my purchased-but-unread books that are sitting on my shelf: The Tale of Genji, Hypnerotomachia Poliphili, The Design of Everyday Things.

                    Books about New Zealand history, and particularly Māori: currently reading He Reo Wahine: Maori Women’s Voices from the Nineteenth Century and will hopefully read Tears of Rangi: Experiments Across Worlds or Ka Whawhai Tonu Matou: Struggle Without End.

                    Still on a Greek bent, I loved Mary Renault’s Theseus books so might read her Alexander trilogy. Madeline Miller’s The Song of Achilles was a really different take so I hope to read Circe. I also saw The Silence of the Girls in a book shop recently, which sounded good.

                    … and trying to read more by or about people who occupy different quadrants to myself, such as something like Things Fall Apart, We Need New Names, Americanah, Homegoing, or Kintu (picked these up from a list).

                    In the background I’m working my way through Robin Hobb’s Realm of the Elderlings books but trying not to consume them too quickly because I don’t want to run out! I’m partway through the Sherlock Holmeses so I need to finish them too…

                    I also need a new South-American author to get obsessed with. I finally finished Borges Selected Non-Fictions and I read a lot of Bolaño last year, but I’m going to run out of his books soon (although I’m saving The Savage Detectives).

                    … and I want a new sci-fi series to get into. Something like Ann Leckie’s Ancillary series or Yoon Ha Lee’s Machineries of Empire, which absolutely blew my mind. Also, Brandon Sanderson is always fun.

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                      I don’t have a giant reading list at the moment, but I’m currently working through two books of note:

                      Development and Demployment of Multiplayer Online Games Volume 1. This is the physical printing of the MMO material at ithare.com. It’s been a good read so far, it aims to be a distillation of industry wisdom on building multiplayer games at scale. I plan on picking up the rest of the series as it comes out over the coming years.

                      The Craft of Research, by Booth, Columb and Williams. I’ve never gotten the place where I’ve felt comfortable writing a research paper on a topic that I’m not intimately familiar with. I’d like to work on that this year. Of course, writing always gets uncomfortable, but I want to have a better sense of the process, winding as it can be.

                      I’m also going to be working through the Discwold novels throughout the year. So far I’ve read Thud! and most of Guards, Guards!. Thud!, in particular, seems like it’d make a really good movie, in the hands of the right editor, and was a powerful story in general.

                      As far as recommendations go, I highly recommend finding a copy of Life in Code: A personal History of Technology, by Ellen Ullman. I haven’t finished it yet, but the opening third is quite an interesting reflection on the culture of software development. For me, it goes up there with Soul of a New Machine, and Coders at Work as a

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                        Wrt Discworld, I find the Moist von Lipwig books the best. Going Postal has already been made into a movie.

                        I don’t find the Discworld movies very good. Maybe an animated movie would work better for me.

                        A close second character is Tiffany Aching and the witches. The first book was hard to get into but it then she is awesome.

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                        So far, “The Master Switch”.

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                          I’ve just bought those books:

                          I hope I will manage to actually read them all this year.

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                            My goal this year is to double the number of books that I read last year.

                            I know that, at least, these are books I plan to read in the future:

                            • Mistborn, Brandon Sanderson
                            • Wheel of Time, Robert Jordan
                            • The Expanse, James S. A. Corey
                            • Programming Pearls, Jon Bentley
                            • Manager’s Path by Camille Fournier
                            • The writings of George F. Kennan

                            And various other technical books.

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                              How tedious it would be to talk about books I haven’t read; I must imagine it’s like like dancing about architecture or singing about microeconomics. I could only lament that I wish I were already done reading them and not really offer much else.

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                                The following books are piled up on my bedside table (in queue so to speak):

                                • Faith - Jimmy Carter (currently reading)
                                • Leonardo da Vinci - Walter Isaacson
                                • Where Wizards Stay up Late - Hafner & Lyon
                                • Joy Division and the Making of Unknown Pleasures - Jake Kennedy
                                • Everything is Illuminated - Jonathan Safran Foer
                                • The Sun also Rises - Hemingway
                                • Morrissey - David Brett
                                • Hackers and Painters - Paul Graham

                                Want to buy/read, because people keep recommending them:

                                • How the Internet Happened - Brian McCullough
                                • Bad Blood - John Carreyrou
                                • American Kingpin - Nick Bilton
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                                  Funny, I wrote about how I crafted one for this year in my blog (which is not common, I don’t usually plan it). tl;dr:

                                  • The Pragmatic Programmer.
                                  • Clean Code.
                                  • Domain-Driven Design.
                                  • Growing Object-Oriented Software, Guided by Tests.
                                  • Functional Programming: Practice and Theory.
                                  • Continuous Delivery.
                                  • An Introduction to Statistical Learning.
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                                    I never managed to make much of a dent in Evans’s DDD book. I don’t remember why exactly. I later ran across Patterns, Principles, and Practices of Domain-Driven Design which managed to keep my attention a little longer.

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                                      I would recommend: https://pragprog.com/book/swdddf/domain-modeling-made-functional

                                      It made the whole DDD concept click for me, especially the implementation details.

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                                    Full disclosure that I’m planning on waiting a little bit and coming back to scour though this thread and steal books that look interesting.


                                    • Capital In the 21st Century - Thomas Piketty
                                    • A People’s History Of The United States - Howard Zinn
                                    • Sapiens A Brief History of Humankind - Yuval Noah Harari
                                    • Cod - Mark Kurlansky


                                    • Blood Meridian - Cormac McCarthy
                                    • Revelation Space [Series] - Alastair Reynolds
                                    • The Three-Body Problem - Cixin Liu
                                    • The Pillars Of The Earth - Ken Follett

                                    Honestly I’m not sure how many of these I’ll get through. Some of these are a bit rough.

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                                      Like @vfoley, I’m trying to read more for enjoyment than for profession.

                                      For enjoyment:

                                      • Remembrance of Earth’s Past trilogy by Cixin Liu – currently reading
                                      • Circe by Madeline Miller
                                      • Permutation City by Greg Egan
                                      • The Inheritance Trilogy by N.K. Jemisin
                                      • Fifth Risk by Michael Lewis
                                      • Percy Jackson books 2-5 by Rick Riordan and Harry Potter books 6-7 by J.K. Rowling, to keep up with my kids

                                      I plan to read one or two professional books this year. Current leads in my professional queue:

                                      • Rust Book
                                      • Python for Finance 2e by Yves Hilpisch
                                      • Debugging Teams by Brian Fitzpatrick and Ben Collins
                                      • Manager’s Path by Camille Fournier
                                      • Managing Humans by Michael Lopp
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                                        Working on a habit to read at least one hour of books before going to bed.

                                        As for books, I am going to be working through this list.

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                                          Currently, Old Man’s War by John Scalzi and I should probably finish up the Rust book.

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                                            Refactoring 2nd Edition Martin Fowler.

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                                              I’ve shifted my focus on reading about design this year, and it may take me through the year into 2020 before I actually complete a lot of the material I’m planning to read.

                                              I think it’s important to understand the designer’s perspective on problems they face. How they think, work, and produce output is important because they’re the ones who are leading the change in this world. Right now, I think technology is an implementation detail of the designer’s vision. By the end of the year, I’ll know if that theory still stands.

                                              There are three broad categories for the books I’m planning to read: thinking, process, and design skills. They’re all found, along with a description for each, on this page.

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                                                I mostly just jump from book to book based on my current interests.

                                                But I’m currently reading “How to Think About Analysis” and “Advanced Global Illumination”, so hopefully I’ll at least read those.

                                                I also just picked up “The Archaeology of Colorado”, and have a big backlog of local (Colorado) history books I’d like to make progress on.

                                                I wish I could read books as quickly as I can find ones that interest me :-/