Friday, December 2, 2011

Books I've Read This Week

Programming HTML5 Applications by Zachary Kessin is a good overview of a number of new HTML5 JavaScript API's that are becoming available in your browser. Wherever possible these are the specs we try to follow when implementing the PhoneGap API. It is a relatively short book at 130 pages so you should really look for it on the O'Reilly's Deal of the Day feed.

Snuff by Terry Prachett is another home run by a master storyteller. I wasn't a fan of Sir Prachett when I read his first book The Color of Magic but he really didn't hit his stride as an author until his third or fourth book. Since I didn't like the first book I kinda ignored Discworld for a long time much to my detriment.

Snuff is the 39th novel set in Discworld and it features my favourite character in the series, Commander Sam Vimes of the City Watch. This is a novel about the slavery and racism that Sam Vimes runs into while on vacation. No other author that I know of can tackle such a serious issue with as much humour as Terry Prachett can while at the same time making the reader really think.

Can't recommend Snuff and Prachett's earlier works highly enough.

Rule 34 by Charles Stross is sort of a sequel to his earlier Halting State but luckily you don't need to read the previous book to enjoy this one. This book is more of a police procedural set in a near future where the internet permeates our lives completely. You follow a number of main characters as the detectives try and track down who is killing spammers.

The real joy of this book is Charlie's extrapolation on how the internet will affect our near future society and policing in general. It was a pretty fun and interesting book to read.

See you next Friday.