This page contains a list of the books that I've read, who has written the book, when I finished reading it, the language the book was written in, the number of pages, in some cases the original title and my comments. Of the older books I read before I started to keep this list I only mentioned the most important books I can remember. I will mention the titles in the language I read the book but my comments will be in English (or something that looks like it ;-) )
The Black Swan - Nassim Nicholas Taleb - 2 January 2013 - 444 pages - (Original version)
This book holds some interesting ideas, though the text is filled with backreferences and name dropping which adds a lot to the volume but unfortunately not as much to the core ideas.
Digital Video Processing for Engineers: A Foundation for Embedded Systems Design - Suhel Dhanani, Michael Parker - 28 December 2012 - English - 232 pages - (Original version)
The book promises to be an introduction, and this is what you get, but even though many subjects are touched the number of pages is still rather low, this can only mean that it's a bad introduction to several subjects. Personally I would appreciated it to be a bit more in depth and more focsing on the embedded systems design.
Safer C - Les Hatton - 19 December 2012 - English - 228 pages - (Original version)
Needless to say that this book is a classic, and it's one of those rare tech books which have really stood time for a very lang period, the book dates from '95, and that is often clear, C++ wasn't standardized at that point, I didn't find any traces of MISRA probably because of the same reason. But apart from that the book raises a conscience in people which has gone missing lately by a lot of programmers. (I agree, there's a large amount of C++ bashing in the text, but you could consider that as a plus as well). There are some parts of the book which are less readable (e.g. the legal chapter).
xkcd, volume 0 - Randall Munroe - December 2012 - English - 11101 pages - (Original version)
I've been willing to read this book for quite some time now, but in the past shipping it from the US used to be more expensive than the price of the book, but I recently found out I could just get it through e-bay, and the book is extremely awesome, even that awesoms that my wife didn't allow me to read it in bed since I was laughing that much that she couldn't sleep. Personally I hope that volume 0 implies that there are more volumes under way.
Patterns for Parallel Programming - Timothy G. Mattson - November 2012 - English - 384 pages - (Original version)
A book introducing parallal programming concepts from a software architecture viewpoint, also focuses a bit on applying there with MPI and openmp. Like many patterns you have the feeling they're often kicking in an open door.
Network Processors: Architecture, Programming, and Implementation (Systems on Silicon) - Ran Giladi - August 2012 - English - 736 pages - (Original version)
Very nice book, really appreciated the beginning of the book where telco networks were explained.
Erfenis - Christopher Paolini - 19 July 2012 - Dutch - (Inheritance)
Finished the inheritance cycle (started with Eragon) with this book. Great book and it's nice to see things come to an end.
The Time Machine - H.G. Wells - December 2011 - English - (Original version)
Millennium Trilogy - Stieg Larsson - September-October 2011 - Dutch
The three books of the the Millennium trilogy. Really enjoyed reading these books.
DOS Handboek voor programmeurs - Terry Dettmann and Marcu Johnson - August 2011 - Dutch - 599 pages - (DOS Programmer's Referende 3rd Edition)
I bought this book (virtually for free) at a library sell-out, it was written in 1992 and I really think people should spend more time with these 'old' books. These books show a vision on the world (computer science specific that is) which does not exist anymore nowadays. But I must say much of this DOS low level stuff is actually helping to understand the functioning of modern day operating systems. (And it actually helps me to understand some things I did in the 90s, but failed to understand then, nevertheless this book also emphasized the feeling that I've always had, namely that I've been born 5 to 10 years to late ...
Het Wiskunde Boek - Clifford A. Pickover - 17 July 2011 - Dutch - 528 pages - (The Math book)
This book is a listing of important (for mathematics) events/persons/facts on a timeline, both combining a description of the fact with a full color picture, this makes it a very nice book go to through. It contains several interesting facts, but sometimes it feels like reading an encyclopedia ...
Necronomicon The Best Weird Tales of - H.P. Lovecraft - July 2011 - English - 878 pages - (Original version)
This is a great work, and it has learned me one very important lesson: my knowledge of English is much worse than I sometimes believe it is. This book is extremely difficult to read (due to Lovecraft's very descriptive way of writing) if you do not fully master the language. Reading this book has cost me probably 3-4 years (it's a collection of short stories and I usually read a couple between other books) and this would be an ideal book to read on a Kindle (due to the integrated oxford's dictionary).
Gulliver's Travels - Jonathan Swift - June 2011 - English (13th book read on Kindle, 345 pages) - (Original version)
Ever since I found myself cursing on little and big endian platforms I wanted to go back to the roots and read Gulliver's Travels, I knew part of the story from when I was younger but I did not know that there were multiple stories attached. The book is written in a timeless fashion,which is also why it is still readable today, and the footnotes explaining some older words and putting certain metaphors in their (political) context are really offering some added value here.
The Architecture of Open Source Applications - Amy Brown and Greg Wilson (eds.) - June 5, 2011 - English (12th book read on Kindle, 633 pages) - (Original version)
A free (as in beer) www.aosbook.org∞
book on the architecture of many open source applications (25 use cases are in the current version, but new chapters are being added). This was a really nice book there are some really good chapters in there (nosql, hadoop, audacity, wesnoth, llvm, asterisk, ... and others come to mind) and there are some chapters of lesser quality. But the main differentiater between a good and a bad chapter there is how many they talk in code instead of about code. Some people (mainly java projects ...) have the tendency to just flood-fill a chapter with code snippets making the entire thing unpleasant to read. While others do a very great job in describing choice made, problems met and problems solved and this just what you need. What is striking to me is that very often people say the opposite, some say 'OSGi is the holy grail', others say 'fuck OSGi', some say 'interfaces are holy and should never change' while others plea for flexibility in interfaces. Nevertheless, great book and reading my first tech book (converted from EPUB) was a great success.
Pyramids - Terry Pratchett - June 2, 2011 - English - (11th book read on Kindle, 286 pages) - (Original version)
7th Discworld novel, I promise I won't underestimate camels anymore.
Het korte tweede leven van Bree Tanner - Stephenie Meyer - May 2011 - Dutch - 192 pages - (The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner)
And this is where the Twilight-box ends. A nice book albeit a bit short (when compared with the others).
Morgenrood - Stephenie Meyer - May 19, 2011 - Dutch - 603 pages - (Breaking Dawn)
At this point I have only The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner remaining of the Twilight-box I once found in a store, but so far I found the Twilight sage a nice collection of books, I could appreciate them although they were not (strictly speaking) 'for my age'. A side-effect of this last comment is that the books are rather simple to read (if you're coming from epics like Raymond E. Feist) and I must say I regret that I haven't read them in English ...
Eclips - Stephenie Meyer - April, 2011 - Dutch - 480 pages - (Eclipse)
See Breaking Dawn.
Wyrd Sisters - Terry Pratchett - April 16, 2011 - English - (10th book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
Sixth discworld novel, good book, but worst in the series till now.
Sourcery - Terry Pratchett - April 2, 2011 - English - (9th book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
Fifth discworld novel.
Superfreakonomics - Steven D. Levitt; Stephen J. Dubner - English - (8th book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
The successor to Freakonomics, an extension of the same theme. I enjoyed reading this one as well but I must say that at this point I'm saturated in terms of Freakonomics. Opposite of what the authors are saying there is an implicit unifying theme which makes the entire book consistent, but on the other hand there are that many facts that are brought up during this book that it's impossible to remember a lot for a larger period of time (but that can also be myself who is broken).
Freakonomics - Steven D. Levitt; Stephen J. Dubner - English - (7th book read on Kindle) - (Original but extended edition)
This was the revised edition with several extra's inlcuding several columns and extracts from their blog. I ready everything except the blog extract. The book itself is a fascinating read, however if you already heard some spoilers (such as the impact of abortion on crime) then you already miss some fun on the book. Apparently there's also a follow up book (Superfreakonomics) wich is next on my list.
Mort - Terry Pratchett - March 11, 2011 - English - (6th book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
4th discworld novel.
Equal Rites - Terry Pratchett - March 3, 2011 - English (5th book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
3rd discworld novel, a bit less funny than The Light Fantastic but still fun to read.
The Light Fantastic - Terry Pratchett - February 26, 2011 - English - (4th book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
2nd discworld novel and sequel to The Colour of Magic and it's been since reading Douglas Adams that I caught myself laughing this often during reading a book.
Flatland - Edwin A. Abbott - February 20, 2011 - English - (3rd book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
Okay, this book was awesome, although it was written in 1884 it is extremely timeless and truely fascination (it also proves that a great work does not need to consists out of hundreds of pages.
The Colour of Magic - Terry Pratchett - February 12, 2011 - English - (2nd book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
First book in the discworld series, I really wanted to read Discworld for a long time but because it was difficult to find these (they're not in the local library) I actually had to postpone it a bit in time. And although people say that this is only that start of it all, I really enjoyed reading this book.
Neuromancer - William Gibson - February 4 2011 - English - (1st book read on Kindle) - (Original version)
This was the first book I read on my Kindle, this is a classic I wanted to read for a long time. But I must admit the book was very confusing, I don't know whether this was because a) I read it on my Kindle, b) because it's been a while since I read some fiction in English c) because of the book. At this point I guess it's a combination of b and c. I must say that if you take into account that it was written in 1984 then it's a decent book, but if you forget that fact then I'd call it a cheap version of the Matrix (while the opposite statement is probably more accurate).
Nieuwe Maan - Stephenie Meyer - January 2011 - Dutch - 427 pages - (New Moon)
Twilight - Stephenie Meyer - January 2011 - Dutch - 383 pages - (Twilight)
I know, out of my age range, but I don't care, really enjoyed reading the book, althought the story started a bit slow.
Equinox - Michael White - January 2011 - Dutch - 311 pages - (Equinox)
Average book, not much more to say about it.
De Houtjongen - Raymond E. Feist - December 2010 - 61 pages - (The wood boy)
A standalone book, I read this while waiting for the other books of the Conclave of Shaodws to become available.
Klauw Van De Zilverhavik - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - December 2010 - 320 pages - (Talon Of The Silver Hawk)
First book of the conclave of shadows series. Very nice.
The Shining - Stephen King - Dutch - November 2010 - 381 pages - (The Shining)
Another awesome book by Stephen King
De Spelbreker - Stephen King - Dutch - 11 November 2010 - 314 pages - (Gerald's Game)
This is a really superb book, it's been quite a while since I had this real page-turning experience, which is really extraordinary because the plot on its own is extremely simple.
Traan der Goden - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - November 2010 - 383 pages - (Tear of the Gods)
Last book of the Krondor series, I really liked this trilogy, especially this last book. I can't put my finger on it but it's somehow a bit different than the Serpent war ...
De Moordenaars - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - October 2010 - 350 pages - (The Assassins)
Het Verraad - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - October 2010 - 416 pages - (The Betrayal)
De scherven van een verbrijzelde kroon - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - September 2010 - 480 pages - (Shards of a broken crown)
Carrie - Stephen King - Dutch - 3 September 2010 - 205 pages - (Carrie)
First book by Stephen King, awesome.
De razernij van een demonenkoning - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - 1 September 2010 - 576 pages - (Rage of a demon king)
Next to last book of the serpent war ...
De macht van een koopmansprins - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - 14 August 2010 - 415 pages - (Rise of a merchant prince)
De schaduw van een duistere koningin - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - 2 August 2010 - 480 pages - (Shadow of a dark queen)
Robbie de Hand - Raymond E. Feist and and S.M. Stirling - Dutch - July 2010 - 319 pages - (Jimmy the Hand)
De drie huurlingen - Raymond E. Feist and Loel Rosenberg - Dutch - July 2010 - 288 pages - (Murder in Lamut)
Introduction to High-Performance Scientific Computing - Victor Eijkhout - 16 July 2010 - 263 pages - (Original version)
This is a draft version of a book, I found it extremely interesting mainly because it covers a large set of topics, not all were that easy to read for me (my linear algebra is gathering some dust, and my molecular dynamics has never been anything else but dust) but some were extremely interesting (such as dealing with performance of regular applications and the impact of caches etc). I encountered many interesting things while reading this work. The book can be found at http://tacc-web.austin.utexas.edu/staff/home/veijkhout/public_html/Articles/EijkhoutIntroToHPC.pdf∞
De eervolle vijand - Raymond E. Feist and William R. Forstchen - Dutch - July 2010 - 320 pages - (Honoured enemy)
Boekanier des konings - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - July 2010 - 543 pages - (The king's buccanneer)
Prins van den bloede - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - June 2010 - 325 pages - (Prince of the blood)
Duitsernis over Sethanon - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - June 2010 - 448 pages - (A Darkness at Sethanon)
Zilverdoorn - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - June 2010 - 416 pages - (Silverthorn)
Since there's no more Goodkind left to read, since Paolini hasn't finished Eragon consider Feist my new hobby ;).I already read the first book earlier and I'm continuing where that one stoppe.d
De wet van Negen - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 25 May 2010 - 462 pages - (The law of nines)
After reading the sword of truth series one would have thought that a certain writer would no be able to surprise anybody, but this book is really awesome, I find it much better than the books in the sword of truth series (although I already liked those a lot). But at this point ... there's no more Goodkind to read ... what shall I read now ? I'm actually quite proud I finished these books, in total nearly 8500 pages in about 8 months.
De ongeschreven wet - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - May 2010 - 671 pages - (Confessor)
Final book in the sword of truth series. Great book, great ending, only the report of the Ja'la games are too lengthy for me.
Fantoom: De tiende wet van de magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - April 2010 - 655 pages - (Phantom)
Nearly finished, call this a spoiler.
Ketenvuur: de negende wet van de magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 17 April 2010 - 749 pages - (Chainfire)
The backcover states that this book can be read by people who haven't read the previous books in the series. From a marketing viewpoint I completely understand this viewpoint, but this doesn't change that this statement represent a worthless idea .... First people who read a book an see that it is part of a series will (logically) start reading the first book (or in this case even the epilogue book). The side effect is that the entire books starts being filled by dead obvious statements of the past which offer the readers who've read the previous books zero information (and will even bore/scare them) and which offer people who haven't read a preious book too little information to fully understand everything. Can't we just agree that people who are that ignorant to start reading a book in the middle of a series are intelligent enough to google things they don't understand ? Hence making it their problem and not mine ? Other than this the story is fully in line with the previous books and the twist in the plot is completely unexpected.
Het weerloze rijk, De achtste wet van de magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 3 April 2010 - 703 pages - (Naked Empire)
Another one in the sword of truth series.
Magier - Raymond E. Feist - Dutch - 20 March 2010 - 736 pages - (Magician)
A spoiler of the series I plan to start reading when The Sword of Truth is finished, but at this point the 8th book of the sword of truth was not available in the library, and the first book by Feist was so I thought I'd give it a try. It was a pleasant to read book, in many way different from Goodkind's way of writing (non-equal-paced time, more 'politics', much more flows/characters (at least that's my impression ) ). The only comment I have on this book is that next to two maps they should also print some family tree or character summary list, since the amount of characters Feist is playing with (and then change names several times within the book) is of a too large number for me to be stored inside my head.
Zuilen der Schepping, De Zevende Wet van de magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 21 February 2010 - 655 pages - (The pillars of creation)
Still no repetition, even a complete switch of main characters, .... fascinating book, eagerly waiting for the next one.
Zuster van de duisternis, De Zes Wet van de Magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 7 February 2010 - 753 pages - (Faith of the Fallen)
Sixth book in the sword o truth series, great book, better than the fifth (the level of repeating has decreased), only one comment is that the cover of the book contains such a massive spoiler .... bad move there. The only problem is that I won't be able to go fetch the next book in the series within 6 days ... :(
Het verloren symbool - Dan Brown - Dutch - 24 January 2010 - 510 pages - (The Lost Symbol)
Dan Brown his latest work, it has been waiting for me for quite some time, but once I started I finished it in no time. My feelings were a bit mixed, my expectations were extremely high (which has never been a good thing). In the end I enjoyed reading the book and the book is written at a page which makes me eager to continue and to finish it. However there were a bit less plot twists than in his previous books and this books seems to be exploiting the success of the Da Vinci code by adding a bit more puzzles. Also when people start adding technical details such as the notions of hops and traceroutes to a book ... Anyhow, it was a very good book. It deserves a place next to the other books by Dan Brown, but not a place in front of the others. And now back to the sword of truth.
Ziel van het vuur, De Vijfde Wet van de Magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 21 January 2010 - 688 pages - (Soul of the Fire)
Fifth book in the sword of truth series (starting to make progress), a bit the same story as usual I think, great book, pleasant to read, enormous speed up of events near the end combined with a slow start/slow middle. The only annoying thing the author (I guess commercial reasons) started doing in this book (he didn't do it, or I didn't notice it, or it didn't annoy me in the previous books) is repeating himself, putting pointers to events in the previous books ... this is like an anti-spoiler.
UML Distilled 3rd Edition - Martin Fowler - English - 9 January 2010 - 175 pages - (Original version)
After being severely disappoined by Refactoring by Martin Fowler, I hesitated a bit to start reading this book, but my hesitation has seemed to be completely innecessary, I really adored this book for its brevity, its to the pointness and its no-nonsense approach.
Logicomix - Doxiadis, Papadimitriou, Papadatos and Di Donna - Dutch - 28 December 2009 - 346 pages - (Logicomix)
A graphical novel on the search of truth and logic within mathematics. Really a one of a kind (if there are more, i'd really like to now) work which sketches Bertrand Russell's quest for truth within mathematics.
How to win friends and influence people - Dale Carnegie - Dutch - 27 December 2009 - 303 pages - (How to win friends and influence people)
I read this book after I heard in a documentary that Warrent Buffette called this course/book one of the most influential books on his life. I do agree with certain points of the book, all of them are common sense but it's difficult to adhere to all suggestions, mainly because you're not really used to acting this way.
Mindmappen - Tony and Barry Buzan - Dutch - 21 December 2009 - 276 pages - (The Mind Map Book)
After seeing a documentary on Warren Buffett I wanted to read two books, one of these books (by Dale Carnegie, to be added to this list soon) brought me to the wrong section (read psychology-stuff) of the library where I found this book. Well the ideas in this book are rather simple and make sense so I started applying mindmapping to some books I'm reading and if that goes well I'll try to adapt it more widely too. It's an interesting book, a little bit too thick and sometimes things are repeat too often but perhaps there's a reason for that.
Tempel der Winden: De vierde wet van de magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 19 December 2009 - 735 pages - (Temple of the winds)
Well, obviously the fourth book in the Sword of Truth seies. Firth book is next to my bed but I might read some other things in between, personally this is a good book, the technical storylines are a bit in line with the previous work, so it takes a lot of time to mess things up (main thing is that things now get really really messed up, and then corrected in a short amount of time. Almost as if people would as a refund for a non-happy-ending. But I enjoyed this book too.
De Derde Wet van de Magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 6 December 2009 - 636 pages - (Blood of the Fold)
The third book in the Sword of Truth series. Already starting in the next book ;). One remarkable thing in this book is that within a book it takes a very long time to 'mess things up', but it only takes a short amount of time to 'fix' things.
Agile project management with Scrum - Ken Schwaber - English - 20 November 2009 - 163 pages - (Original version)
Okay, this book is almost 'as good' as the previous book, which basicly means this person should be forbidden to author books. AGAIN he keeps repeating the same things over and over again, without giving a consistent feeling. The only difference is that this time the images haven't been drawn in paint.
Agile Software Development with Scrum - Ken Schwaber and Mike Breedle - Dutch - 19 November 2009 - 158 pages - (Original version)
An introduction to using scrum. The ideas of scrum are in itself a collection of common sense. The book however isn't a terribly good introduction to it. While the principles are simple the book keeps on repeating the same things which can be annoying. The images used in the book often look as if they were drawn in ms paint and don't have any added value most of the time. Also the book isn't a 100% objective, but books on a certain subject rarely are.
Kaloemmerkes in de zep - Herman Brusselmans - Dutch - 16 November 2009 - 178 pages - (Original version)
The most recent book by Herman Brusselmans, and I really keep questioning why I still keep reading them. I really favored his work which he wrote in the end of the 90s, but this work is nothing like that anymore. But I just can't walk past these books in the library when I see them ... perhaps I should in the future.
Refactoring, improving the design of existing code - Martin Fowler - English - 15 November 2009 - 431 pages - (Original version)
Some people like this book a lot and practically use this book as their credo. However after I read this, the only persistent feeling is disappointment. The biggest part of the book are refactoring recipes which treat the reader as if the reader has never seen a piece of code in his life. The subject of the recipes itself is nothing more but a collection of common sense. Only the first 100 pages (the part before the recipes) are actually needed to grasp the meaning and then one should still keep in mind to be very pragmatic about refactoring. Sometimes style and readability is all that matters but sometimes readability comes at a (very high) cost too ... when it comes to refactoring the world is not black and white.
De tweede wet van de Magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 14 November 2009 - 876 pages - (Stone of tears)
The second book in the Sword of Truth serie. Next book in hot standby ... Nice book, only a bit predictable in the end.
De eerste wet van de Magie - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 20 October 2009 - 784 pages - (Wizard's first rule)
Well, reading this series will keep me busy for quite some time, but after reading the first book of the series I'm hooked, it's easy to find your way in the universe, the book is written in a very fluent style and I'm about to leave for the library to go fetch the next book in the series.
De Nachtploeg - Natsuo Kirino - Dutch - 4 October 2009 - 479 pages - (Out)
This was the only book of Natsuo Kirino which was translated in Dutch which I hadn't read, but this is also the book which made the author famous, and I must admit this is a really great book, the story line has a real page-turning effect. The story in this book is much better than the story in Grotesque or Real World, but the author's style (where the perspectives/time are changed quite often) is only used once (in the ending, true Jackie Brown style) which I like so much in the other works is a bit less here. But I still think this is the best out of three books I read.
The Mythical Man-Month - Frederick P. Brooks, Jr. - English - 2 October 2009 - 322 pages - (Original version/anniversary edition)
This is a classic I've already wanted to read for a long time, and I'm really glad I read it, the book is a great book and many times I couldn't stop myself from laughing aloud (probably out of misery and self-recognition). But I must admit this is the oldest book (dating from '75) in computer science I've read, and this is probably one of the most up-to-date works I've read. So all I can conclude is that mankind hasn't learned from its mistakes in the past 34 years. Well does that surprise you ?
Femtocells - Saunders, Carlwa, Giustine, etc all - English - 26 September 2009 - 211 pages - (Original version)
This book was lying around at work so I decided to read it. This is another book on which I have mixed feelings, first the technology it describes is really fascinating, it describes the subject from multiple dimensions (from business/market to technical protocol/implementation). So that was very interesting to read about this subject. But then again, each chapter has a different author, as a result the book is not very 'fluent' to read, some chapters only toch a small part of the subject and it seems not all autors knew well enough what the prerequisites of the story were. So some chapters don't go deep enough, while others start either too deep or with too much repitition. So I enjoyed learning some things on the subject, but I would never have bought this book myself.
Interconnecting Cisco Network Devices, Part 2 (ICND 2) - Steve McQuerry - English - September 2009 -384 pages - (Original version)
The second ICND book, actually finished it some time ago, meaning that I read the book, but I still need to do some practical playing around. This is also my most important comment, okay you can read this book, and some theoretical aspects/facts will keep sticking into your head, but without some actual playing around you will not gain that much. Personally I find that there's still much namedropping happening in this book, and rather a lot of repetition. If you repeat things enough they will eventually become truth, if you repeat thing enough they will eventually become truth. Other than that it was a rather interesting book to read. My short-to-read-queue is rather filled now but I do plan to dive a bit deeper in the CCNP'ish books too.
De avonturen van Alice in Wonderland ; Achter de Spiegel en wat Alice daar aantrof - Lewis Carroll - Dutch - September 2009 - 247 pages - (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland)
I heard this story before (I had it on audio tape when I was young), I had forgotten most of it and somehow mixed this with parts of the wizard of oz, but I must say that while reading this book most of it (the first book mainly) came back as some strange deja vu. You can clearly see that the author has a background in mathematics and not in languages. If he would have been a professional writer, he probably would have truned this book in a seven-book counting epic fantasy series, now the book feel really dense, almost as in reading a summary. But I enjoyed reading it.
Echte Wereld - Natsuo Kirino - Dutch - 8 September 2009 - 254 pages - (Real world)
Second book (out of three currently translated works), and I must say I really like the authors style. In this case it books has a linear story line, but each successive chapter is given from the perspective of a different character, so it's almost like the story is brought by several people at once which is really refreshing actually. The last remaining book is lying around here waiting for me and both other works I ready reference Natsuo Kirino as author of Out (in dutch nachtploeg) so my expectations are rather high.
Grotesk - Natsuo Kirino - Dutch - 3 September 2009 - 509 pages - (Grotesque)
This book is by who is supposed to be the best Japanse crime-writer, and I must say I really enjoyed to book, I actually enjoyed it that much that I decided to read more books by the same author. At this point I'm busy reading real world by the same author. The interesting thing in this book is that the story is brought through the eyes of different characters at once without turning into something chaotic.
Het Proces - Clod & Ceka - Dutch - 27 August 2009 - 48 pages - (Le Proces)
This book is a comic which tells the story of 'The Process', the well-known work by Franz Kafka. As soon as I saw this book in the bookstore I knew I wanted this book. And given its limited amount of pages I finished it really fast too. But I do have some comments, in a review I read that the graphical style was not matching the atmosphere Kafka was creating. Personally I strongly disagree with this, I think the graphical illustrations are well-adapted to Kafka his message. But other than this I would not recommend anybody reading this story without having read the original work up front, I think it would be impossible to reconstruct the entire story based on the graphical version alone. While reading this book it felt like reading a summary. And as we all know, summaries are rather useless if you never touched the course up front ... but other than this I really appreciated this work.
Interconnecting Cisco Network Devices, Part 1 (ICND 1) - Steve McQuerry - English - 23 August 2009 - 491 pages - (Original version)
I decided to do some brushing up of my networking theory and to gain some pratical feeling with more Cisco devices. So I started to follow the Cisco learning curriculum and this is the prologue (you see, fantasy aren't the only series I enjoy reading :-)). This first book covers some fundamentels, what is networking ?, what are lans ?, what are wlans ? , what are wans ?, how can you help to make Cisco shareholders happy ? But I must say I found it an interesting read, although from a theoretical viewpoint and except for some proprietary protocols, there hasn't been much new in this book. However I did started to play a bit around with dynamips and I should do some more serious digging there. The only piece of comment I have is that they shielded some technical things behind the Cisco SDM, something of which I cannot imagine that people are actually using it, but on the other hand, introducing manual DHCP configuration or NAT might scare some people off ...
De Aflossing - Terry Goodkind - Dutch - 22 August 2009 - 127 pages - (Debt of bones )
This book is in Belgium shown as a prologue to 'The Sword of Truth' (in Belgium this is called 'Wetten van de Magic' (='Laws of Magic'), and I'm reading this book as part of my quest to find some new fantasy series to start following. In this quest I already gave up Robert Jordans Wheel of Time after not liking the prologue there, but at this point it sounds promosing, the prologue I read wasn't a very thick book, but it was written very smoothly and it progressed rather smooth. So I think this is a good reason to continue reading this series (and hope for the best). As I already said, the book is only 100 something pages, the story is thus not very complex but it does contain some interesting twists.
Het wapen van Newton - Greg Keyes - Dutch - 17 August 2009 - 448 pages - (Newton's Cannon)
First book of the age of unreason cycle, it's a nice book but actually rather confusing at first. In the beginning of the book one start wondering where the border with reality lies, and only beyond the point where this gets annoying (when I got on the edge to start wikipedia-ing some facts), things start becoming more clear (as in wikipedia won't be a big help). So personally I think I would've found it less confusing if non-existing characters were but than again it would make orientation in time more difficult ... guess I'm never happy with something.
Mijn haar is lang - Herman Brusselmans - Dutch - 9 August 2009 - 181 pages - (Original version)
Well, when looking at the library catalogue I noticed that I had missed a book while catching up my unread works by Brusselmans. On the back cover of the book is a quote by a journalist saying that Brusselmans is the best when it comes to writing about nothing and I must admit, it's true. The only drawback of this reading one of these books is that once you finished reading it, you feel satisfied because you finished reading the book but you feel less satisfied at the same time because during those pages you spend reading nothing really happend ...
Cryptonomicon - Neal Stephenson - Dutch - 8 August 2009 - 1085 pages - (Cryptonomicon)
Without a need to look back in what I read the past year I can say that this is the best book I read this year. First I had my doubts about reading this book since I feared it was going to be a bit too much history, but in the ends the book is simply a fantastic pageturner. I do have one small remark about this book and that is dutch translation I read is really terrible, whoever translated this should either be shot or educated. Several unix commands (think whois, think date were translated into dutch), heck he even tried to translated output-feedback mode stream cipher, luckily he also mentioned the original English term or otherwise I would never have known what the hell he was talking about (for the dutch speaking who enjoy a laugh, it was translated to 'teruggekoppeld sleutelrijsysteem'. And then there were some other numerous spelling errors as well.
Alleen jij kunt ons redden - Terry Pratchet - Dutch - 25 July 2009 - 166 pages - (Only You Can Save Mankind)
Comments see below.
De donkere kant van de zon - Terry Pratchett - Dutch - 23 July 2009 - 150 pages - (The Dark Side of the Sun)
I'm back in library mode, I originally wanted to read some books of the discworld series by the same author but I found that the library didn't have any book of that series available :(. So I ended at home with the other available books by Terry Pratchett to get a bit familiar with his wriiting style. Both books I've read contain a twist to science/computer thingies which I can always appreciate. The two book are of a genre for men who are actually boys refusing to grow up. Now I can't do anything but wonder whether the books in the discworld series are completely in line with this or not. My favorite of the two was Only You Can Save Mankind, simply because I'm still in an old-school mood after recently finishing the best of 2600.
Een dag in Gent - Herman Brusselmans - Dutch - 21 July 2009 - 191 pages - (Original version)
Book 3/3, same comments as below apply but I'm through my stack of books now ...
De perfecte Koppijn - Herman Brusselmans - Dutch - 19 July 2009 - 272 pages - (Original version)
Book 2/3, the same comments as below apply.
Kwantum - Herman Brusselmans - Dutch - 18 July 2009 - 110 pages - (Original version)
Well passed by the library, and I got back with three books of Herman Brusselmans, it's been a while since my last book by him, this is simply because I like his older work much more than his recent work so I stopped purchasing his newest books and switched to library mode. This book is the smallest of the three. And it what you would expect from Herman Brusselmans, not much more, not much less.
The best of 2600 - Emmanuel Goldstein - English - 17 July 2009 - 871 pages - (Original version)
This book consists out of the best selected articles of the famous 2600 magazine series. I enjoyed reading the book, but certain things got me a bit disappointed, first a lot of attention is given to certain lawsuits/legal aspects/... while I understand this is important (as in a driving force to get the world to understand what the hacker-spirit is all about) somebody (read: I ;-) ) who is interested in technical aspect actually doesn't really care that much about this. Also the proportions are not correct, I really liked reading the articles covering the phreaking technology of the old days, but there was very little material on more recent pc/internet/... material (e.g. the index lacks the words Linux, exploit, overflow, ...). And I must while in the 80's there were only little sources available and you had to base upon what you could figure out yourself, many recent articles follow the same methodology. As in the author placing some faulty guesses, or not bothering to read some freely accessible standards. This costs these articles (and the magazine in general) in my eyes a lot of credibility ... (at a certain point some dude changed his snmp port number to an insanely large value, while everybody knows portnumbers are 16 bitters ... *sigh*).
Brisingr - Christopher Paolini - Dutch - 2 July 2009 - 576 pages - (Brisingr)
Thrid book in the Inheritence cycle, now eagerly waiting for the author to finish the fourth and last book of this cycle .... come on HURRY UP !
Oudste - Christopher Paolini - Dutch - June 2009 - 576 pages - (Eldest)
Sequal to Eragon and second book in the cycle.
Eragon - Christopher Paolini - Dutch - 17 May 2009 - 448 pages - (Eragon)
The first book of the Inheritence cycle (books two and three lying ready to be read), actually my interest in the book got triggered after seeing the movie, but I must say I like the book better than the movie. I really enjoyed reading the book (and actually finished it in a rather short amount of time too).
Watchmen - Alan Moore - English - 6 March 2009 - x pages - (Original Version)
This is the omnibus version of DC Comics series Watchmen, it is written by Alan Moore, the same author as V for Vendetta, so again, my expectations where rather high. I enjoyed reading the books but, and it's probably me, the ending was rather disappointing, I don't really feel as if it has ended. But I did enjoy everything before the end.
The Long Road Home - Stephen King, Peter David, Robin Furth, Jae Lee, Richard Isanove - English - 1 March 2009 - x pages - (Original Version)
This is the second season of The Dark Tower graphic novels published by Marvel comics. About a year ago I read <i>The Gunslinger Born</i>, and this is the second hardback omnibus of this series I'm buying. But where The Gunslinger Born is a graphical version of Stephen Kings <i>Wizard and Glass</i>, this book contains some entirely new story, it starts after the death of Susan Delgado and tells the story of the katet going back to Gilead. I really enojoyed reading it, but it was a bit shorter than last year (now 5 comics instead of 7). But the artwork is still impressive. I wonder what the future will bring for this series. But story-wise I think there is still a <b>HUGE</b> gap between Roland his early years, and the old man in the desert where The Gunslinger starts.
Operating Systems, Design and Implementation 2nd Edition - Andrew S. Tanenbaum and Albert S. Woodhull - 28 February 2009 - 937 pages - (Original version)
I have always liked Tanenbaums work, and this book, the Minix-book can be seen as the root of Linux. Nevertheless I can't really say this was a great book. First it's a 1000 pages, of which half is source code. So this leaves us with 50% text, of this 50% text, half is about the source code (and is really boring to read). So you end up with 25% or some 250 pages of useful (and interesting text), but in 250 pages of text it's difficult to cover a complex subject as operating systems properly. But it's typical for me to have high expectations towards a certain book and end up being disappointed. An I remember when I bought this book it was a rather expensive one as well, if I only had to pay 25% of it would be a more correct price.
Leonardo Da Vinci Notities - Anna Suh - Dutch - 25 January 2009 - 333 pages - (Leonardo's Notebooks)
This is the kind of book my almost 2 year old son would like as well because it has much more images than text in it. This book is a compilation of Leonardo da Vinci's sketches and notes and is enriched by the translations of the text on the images. But I must say that throughout the book I was constantly amazed by Leonardo's genious, we all learned about the Renaissance and the 'uomo universalis' in history, but only when watching his work one can truly grasp the meaning of it, the sketches cover that many areas (biology, painting, physics, geography, mechanics, architecture, astronomy, ...) that one can only gaze at his work and be amazed. The only bad thing about the book is that I was hoping for a more explaining text. Once I saw documentaries and works where some of da Vinci's inventions were dissected and/or constructed for real. I was hoping for a little bit more than just a translation of the texts da Vinci has written on his sketches, simply for my humble mind to comprehend better what his work is all about.
The Pythons, Autobiography by the Pythons - The Pythons - English - 17 January 2009 - 359 pages - (Original version)
The book looked nice, the illustrations looked nice, gonig through the book gives a comfortable feeling unfortunately actually reading the book is a rather painful activity, so I quit doing it. The text is a bit an anticlimax and totally not what I expected (although I don't really know what it expected, but all I can tell is that it wasn't that).
Sophie's World - Jostein Gaarder - English - 10 January 2008 - 10 January 2009 - 436 pages - (Sofies verden)
This book, which was rather popular when it came out, but seems to have died a silent death afterwards offers a story-like introduction to the world of philosophy. In the past I tried to read several philosophical works (mostly Nietzsche since the author has always fascinated me) and I always lost my focus after a couple of pages, it was like I was unable to sync to the text. And (apart from Dawkins if that counts) this is the first philosophical work which I really enjoyed reading. The most smashing thing to me was that most of the subjects touched in the book I had already encountered in some form in my life. For example philosophical ideas already popped up in history courses in college, most scientific ideas popped up in some form of sciences class (think Darwin and Biology) and most of the ancient Greeks already popped up in mathematics courses. This simply to illustrate that philosophy is basicly present everywhere in some form. This just to say that I really enjoyed reading this book.
The Little Book of Semaphores - Allen B. Downey - English - 27 December 2008 - 279 pages - (Original version)
This is a freely available book (see The Little Book of Semaphores∞
) which covers several mutithreading patterns, it covers concurrency in detail and illustrates this with all sorts of commonly (and also less commonly known) problems (think Dining Philosophers, think reader-writer, think producer-consumer) and the nice thing is that the book presents them in a puzzle-alike form, really forcing the reading to think about it. Very often people will simply skip certain parts without delving deeper, they will read some text but not grasp the full importance of the text and typically with these kinds of problems a small nuance makes the difference between a smooth running programming and a very rarely occuring deadlock. Two thumbs up for this work.
De Donkere Toren - Stephen King - Dutch - 27 December 2008 - 800 pages - (The Dark Tower)
Well I started reading the first book (The Gunslinger) in february, I know it would take me a while to finish the whole series, but I even managed to finish it this year ! This last book was probably the best book in the series, a lot of things happen which I would never imagined possible a couple of books ago. I wonder what I'll do next now this part of my life has disappeared ...
Effective C++ - Scott Meyers - English - 28 November 2008 - 297 pages - (Original version)
This book has been on my to read list for a while, so my expectations on this work were rather high, but I must honestly admit the book didn't live up to them all. It still is a very good book and contains a lot of nice ideas, but personally I find it a bit too chaotic in nature due to the strict separation between items.
Professional C++ - Solter and Kleper - English - 2 November 2008 - 828 pages - (Original version)
Okay, I bought this book as a bargain and my expectations about this book where rather low, but after reading a couple of pages I was prooved wrong. This book turned out to be one of the best C++ related books I've read so far, and while thinking about it even <i>the</i> best, it's far more complete than Oualline for example, has a broader scope and is more pleasant to read than Shtern and off course it will be rather difficult to write something less like a dictionary than Stroustrup. But it contains lots of different subjects, such as how to use C++, best practices, using the STL, extending the STL, but also software engineering practices like design patterns, frameworks, unit testing and distributed computing. Although lots of subject are touched none go in to a too deep level where it can get boring (okay, one STL chapter perhaps) but all go deep enough in order to be useful. There are some points which were not perfect, but if all books would reach this level I would be a very happy man.
Network Algorithmics - George Varghese - English - 12 October 2008 - 465 pages - (Original version)
It's probably me, but I usually judge books on 'how easy reading' they are especially combined with 'bedtime reading'. So and just like Understanding Linux Network Internals this book fails this test. It's a good book, contains some interesting points, but very often the text is drowning in references to other works, which I simply hate. Some parts of the book are written extremely fluent and extremely interesting but other parts are really not 'fun' to read, some complex subjects are touched and only referenced to in other text which basicly forces you to go look these up elsewhere (e.g. the Boyer-Moore algorithm is touched, used, implemented and explained in less that a page and a half, which was for me not sufficient although I studied the algorithm in a previous life). The general feeling I have after this book is a bit a contradiction, I spend my life trying to come up with a aesthetically pleasing software solutions are possible while this text could be summarized as the little black book of network hacking ;). But given the problem domain I can't blame the author for that, it's just some feeling which popped up while reading.
The Practice of Programming - Brian W. Kernighan Rob Pike - English - 4 October 2008 - 267 pages - (Original version)
I guess I'm on a software engineering killing spree, but you can call this the UNIX version of The Pragmatic Programmer, a whole series of best practices, do's and don'ts. I enjoyed reading this, while it was a problem to stop knodding while reading. But I found in this book not such a big aha-erlebnis as in for example the pragmatic programmer or code craft. But I would again recommend this book to everybody interested in reading some common sense.
The Pragmatic Programmer - Andrew Hunt and David Thomas - 28 August 2008 - 321 pages - (Original version)
Halleluja, in my eyes this book is a perfect summary of all important things within the programmers craft. I summarizes most things I've picked up myself during the past years but it's really nice that a well known work as this books confirms you're on the right track. In the opinion section of the book one quote is "This is the sort of book I will buy a dozen copies of when it comes out so I can give it to my clients" and personally I couldn't agree more.
Understanding Linux Network Internals - Christian Benvenuti - English - 23 August 2008 - 1035 pages - (Original version)
When I first got this book in my hands my expectations were high, it was published by O'Reilly, it has lots of drawings in it ( :-) ) and it has a volume in which one could explain some things. The table of contents and the general structure of the book seemd very logical to, first some big parts on general things, and then a part on the lower OSI layers. Device interaction, layer 2, neighboring, layer 3, routing and each part was divided in a general concepts, an 'how is it implemented' part and a how does userspace interact with this/how can you tune it so it all looked promising, at the end however I'm very disappointed. First, every couple of pages the author mentions 'outside the scope of this book' or 'see linux device drivers for details' or 'see understanding the linux kernel for details'. The book skips a lot of 'the good stuff', like IPv6
and iptables. I feel like I've read a mix of Linux Device Drivers, Computer Networks (by Tanenbaum) and the Linux Network administrators guide, and the parts detailing the implementation in the kernel read like a telephone dictionary (and must admit, because of this I skipped some of these pages). When I'm thinking about Robert Love's book, I know that I isn't difficult to write 'about' code or 'about' and implementation in a way which still is interesting to read. I must admit there are some genuine good parts, the discussion of STP and multipath routing concepts were very interesting to me. A last thing I have to say about this book is that it contains a massive amount of spelling errors, it was so bad that even a non native English speaker like me began to bother, it is even that bad that the table of contents isn't generated properly ...
Software Configuration Management Patterns - Stephen P. Berczuk - 10 August 2008 - 218 pages - (Original version)
This book is an enumeration of common sense, it explains some patters in the use of configuration management (aka a version system like SVN, CVS, ...) and even now it's simple to realize this book will be a timeless work. The book explains 16 patterns in how to deal with a configuration management system, where it explains what the best common practices are, how branching should be use when dealing with releases, with main development line, for tasks, for 3rd party source code. It explains that unit tests should occur, that a developer should create his/her own private workspace similar to the integration build, ... nothing more than common sense really, were it not that the book is also filled with examples where people try to use their common sense, and fail ... an important lesson to keep in mind.
Advanced Linux Programming - CodeSourcery - English - 5 August 2008 - 368 pages - (Original version)
This book is a masterpiece, it's one of the best books targeting Linux development I've read so far. The main advantage is that it is very practical in nature and stays fun to read, while many other books turn out to be an exhaustive listing of options and possibilities. The book touches a lot of andvanced subjects which are faced when dealing with user space development. With this I think about inline assembly, processess and threading but it also has an introduction to security. And the biggest advantage about this book is, its completely free, you can get your digital copy at http://www.advancedlinuxprogramming.com∞
Een Lied van Susannah - Stephen King - Dutch - 24 July 2008 - 461 pages - (Song of Susannah)
Getting there, the sixth book of The Dark Tower series is also finished ... can't wait for the last book.
Wolven Van De Calla - Stephen King - Dutch - 18 July 2008 - 686 pages - (Wolves of the Calla)
The fifth book of The Dark Tower series by Stephen King, and only two to go. Personally I found this the best book of the series which I read so far. The main reason is because it is linked with so many other books and facts in the Stephen King universe (the link with Hearts In Atlantis and Salems Lot being the most obvious one). It really spices up your paranoia and you start seeing 19 everywhere. Can't wait for the remaining two.
Over de Oorlog - Carl von Clausewitz - Dutch - 12 July 2008 - 277 pages - (Vom Kriege)
This book is one of the standard works concerning military theory, call it the 18th century version of Sun Tzu's The art of war. Due to it's highly philosophical nature I must admit that it isn't easy reading however Clausewitz makes a lot of (obvious but nevertheless) valid points. One of them being that the goal of war is peace, that war is highly political in nature and that the majority not always needs to win (although this do is a strong factor). On certain points I disagree, one of them being that the higher than of a person is the higher that person's intelligence should be. One of the most shocking conclusions I made is that if you'd replace some words like army and employees, and enemy and competitor you actually end up with a lot of rules which also apply on business as well.
Code Reading: The Open Source Perspective - Diomidis Spinellis - English - 21 June 2008 - 495 pages - (Original version)
This books covers code in many aspects, it contains an introduction to advanced data structures, applied architecture, the principle of documentation and testing. Nevertheless the title suggests it covers reading code, in my opinion it really isn't. My first expectations were that it would cover how to handle lots of code, how to dive into a large project but it really isn't (in such a strict way). It brings in fact much more knowledge of applied open source development to the reader (on top of handling large projects) which makes it a really priceless work. The only negative point is that about 20% of the book are appendices (which nobody really reads, and it would've been better to simply put them on the cd-rom instead).
Tovernaarsglas - Stephen King - Dutch - 31 May 2008 - 735 pages - (Wizard And Glass)
We're getting there, I finished the fourth book of Stephen Kings The Dark Tower series. Which means only three books to go (and I've started the fifth one already). Unfortunately I read The Gunslinger Born the graphic novel published by Marvel before I read this book. Why unfortunately ? Well the graphic novel covers about 80% of the story told in this work. So while reading the book I actually knew what was going to happen. The other way around would be less painful I think because if you already knew the story you simply focus a bit more on the images. It isn't a bad book, only the order in which I read it was wrong (but how should I've known at the time ?
Digital Systems Design with VHDL and Synthesis: An Integrated Approach - K.C. Chang - English - May 2008 - 499 pages - (Original version)
Basicly the same comments apply on this work as on the previous work, it's a bit outdated. Neither have I been able to finish the entire book (library issues). Nevertheless I feel that I need other alternatives (besides books) for learning some basic FPGA skills.
Digital Design and Modeling with VHDL an Synthesis - K.C. Chang - English - 17 March 2008 - 345 pages - (Original version)
The plan is to gain some basic skills with VHDL and FPGA usage in the course of the next year and a half, and this book is the first step. It's a book I found in the library of my old school, and is it is expected with libraries, it's rather outdated. It focuses on VHDL '87 (and a bit on VHDL '93) and you can clearly see it predates IDE's. Nevertheless the main reason why I read this was to get used to the look of VHDL and to get used to some basic principles, for which it suited fine. The books contains the design of an ALU and a simplified PCI core. But I must say in the beginning of the book my attention was stronger than in the end, the first timing diagram I saw I really tried to understand all the signals, and near the end I simply turned the page. Anyhow, the book itself isn't that bad, only due to time it is made bad.
Hannibal Rising - Thomas Harris - English - 28 February 2008 - 319 pages - (Original version)
After seeing Red Dragon, Silence of the Lambs and Hannibal (and also reading the last one) I decided to read the most recent book by Thomas Harris, and I must say I'm a bit disappointed, I expected an thorough answer on the how and the why, but all I got was a very bad version of Kill Bill
The Gunslinger Born - Stephen King, Peter David, Robin Furth, Jae Lee, Richard Isanove - Dutch - 22 February 2008 - x pages - (Original Version)
Like V for Vendatta, this is a graphic novel published in a nice hardback edition (of in total 7 comics with some extra artwork) which are sort of a prequel to the dark tower series. I must admit in the beginning I was really touched because this story really connected itself to things I've read in the gunslinger and other works. The story begins with the boys test for example where Roland challenges his teacher, but unfortunately after that the story diminishes. The artwork is superb and it really has the dark tower atmosphere all over it, but the story is rather weak. But the artwork can be really impressive at sometimes (certainly the extra artwork). Nevertheless if a second series would be started I wouldn't feel compelled to purchase or read it. While I am motivated to purchase/read the four unread works in the dark tower series. (Hurry up publisher !)
Het Verloren Rijk - Stephen King - Dutch - 18 February 2008 - 493 pages - (The Waste Lands)
The third part out of the Dark Tower series, and the last one for the coming month since the next part of this books will only be published in march (the 5th in may, and the other in the summer). A dutch publishing combination is creating the entire series in a nice looking hardback edition. Anyhow this was part three, the plot thickens and the journey continues. The work is completely in line with the previous two works I recently read.
Self-Service Linux, Mastering the Art of Problem Determination - Mark Wilding and Dan Behman - English - 15 February 2008 - 431 pages - (Original Version)
Self-Service Linux is a freely available book which covers low level debugging and system inspection on Linux systems. The book can be downloaded here∞
and it basicly explains how programs work, how to use gdb/kgdb, how the ELF format works, some background on compiling, background on the stack how to find information in the proc filesystem. The most interesting part of the book is where is explained how strace works. The worst section is the section covering the /proc filesystem, that section doesn't go deep enough (unfortunately I even wish to add because all other parts of the book go really in depth, the ELF part even a bit too deep). Anyhow, everybody using C/C++ on Linux should (have) read this book.
Het Teken van Drie - Stephen King - 9 February 2008 - Dutch - 389 pages - (The Drawing of the Three)
Part II of the Dark Tower series, after reading two books I must says that although you read everywhere that the dark tower is described as a fantasy epos I still think that it isn't a 100% fantasy, there are many elements that remind me of regular novels. But due to the heavy link with the real world during the first two books, my vision can be a little clouded, to be continued...
De Scherpschutter - Stephen King - 1 February 2008 - Dutch - 311 pages - (The Gunslinger)
As I mentioned last week I was planning to start reading The Dark Tower series by Stephen King, meanwhile I've finished the first part (The Gunslinger) and the 2nd and 3rd part are already waiting. The editor however mailed me their planning for the following 4 titles will be available in march, may and in the summer. But first it's time to finish parts 2 and 3. But it was a great title to read, I hope the next parts of this series will turn out to be as great as this one.
Cell - Stephen King - 27 January 2008 - English - 399 pages - (Original version)
Since I started logging which books I finished this is the eight work already by the hand of Stephen King. Judging by numbers only this must make Stephen King my 2nd favorite author (although it could be third, I read a lot of books by Herman Brusselmans and when I was even younger I ready everything the local library could give me by the hand of Anthony Horowitz). Anyhow at the moment of writing Cell is Stephen Kings second most recent novel. And it was a great book, some comments are that once the story is started it follows a natural flow so you could almost guess what the next steps are. The only missing part in the story is the reason behind everything (and a and they lived happily every after ending. And the last page of the book is superb it reads alone on a page Stephen King lives in Main with his wife, the novelist Tabitha King. He does not own a cell phone. A sneak preview, I plan to start reading the Dark Tower series, I recently found that a Dutch publishing company is republishing them in a decent hardcover edition.
The Great Dune Trilogy - Frank Herbert - 5 January 2008 - English - 910 pages - (Original version, omnibus containing Dune, Dune Messiah and Children of Dune)
This book combines the first three books of the Dune series (Dune, Dune Messiah and Children of Dune), all three written by Frank Herbert. I really enjoyed reading these books, but I must say that I feel no urge to read the books that follow in the series because halfway through the end of the third book it felt like it was evolving into some kind of soap-opera plot, at the moment I have really good feelings towards these three books, but by continuing the rest of the series I fear that I'll start to dislike them. Anyhow this was another one that has been standing on the to read list for a very long time.
Hacker's Challenge - Mike Schiffman - 9 December 2007 - English - 355 pages - (Original version)
Okay, this book hosts 20 cases in a 'question' vs 'response' method (which is annoying since you're constantly jumping back and forth in the book). Next in the 20 cases, there are only like 4 or 5 unique cases, the other were duplicates. And looking at some nmap/netstat/tcpdump output can be quite exciting for certain readers, for me however it is not. For me this book didn't have much added value.
Game Physics Engine Development - Ian Millington - 6 December 2007 - English - 456 pages - (Original version)
By the same author as the previous book I read (Artificial Intelligcne for Games), but completely different in nature. This book is less thick, covers less references to real games (which isn't a bad thing per se) but the big advantage is that the entire story is coherent, it guides you through the development of an entire physics system. And the biggest advantage to me is that this book uses examples in C++ instead of a Python alike pseudo language. Anyhow boot books by Ian Millington where great works.
Artificial Intelligence for Games - Ian Millington - 21 September 2007 - English - 856 pages - (Original version)
This books offers a no-nonsense introduction to how aritificial intelligence is typically used in modern games. It touches a real variety of different subjects. The only drawback is that the pseudo-code listings in the book are in a form of pseudo-python. But other than that I found it an extremely interestng book to read.
Van Hoog en Laag - Cyriel Buysse - 24 July 2007 - Dutch - 166 pages - (Original version)
I (proof)read this work in it's original old-dutch spelling (anno 1913) for http://www.pgdp.net∞
(Project Gutenberg Distributed Proofreaders) which scans and OCR's original manuscripts and transforms them into texts available under project gutenberg. It's quite fun to read something in an older spelling where some dialect words are present (in their original form).
The Black Art of Video Game Console Design - Andre LaMothe - 24 June 2007 - English - 955 pages - (Original version)
Well, this book covers 'The Black Art of Video Game Console Design', it starts with some basic circuit analysis and the basics of analog and digital design (probably to difficult for people that know nothing about it, but too easy for people that already now something about it) but the main and interesting part is on the 'putting it all together part, which I find extremely interesting. How do you build a console, how do you generate NTSC and/or PAL signals, how does the audio hardware work ? Anyhow it has for sure given me a lot of new ideas, and this is a great book, nevertheless the list of errate I constructed was rather large.
The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams - 27 May 2007 - English - 149 pages - (Original version)
Well I strongly believe that this book is one of my most favorite books ever. I think it's about the third time I've read it (I'm only referencing the first part out of the five that make up the trilogy ;-) ) and I still find myself laughing out loud while reading it. The only negative point in the book is that it starts extremely funny in the beginning the this magic touch is lost in the second book The Restaurant at the end of the Universe. The rather ironic fact is that I bought the omnibus (and read it) the period where I met my wife, which was in the end of 2000, beginning of 2001 and read it briefly before our son was born in 2007. Another ironic part is that I finished this book immediately after I finished The God Delusion which references Douglas Adams often (the God Delusion is even dedicated in the memory of Douglas Adams).
God als misvatting - Richard Dawkins - 14 May 2007 - 448 pages - (The God Delusion)
Well Richard Dawkins is on a mission, he wants everybody to know his vision on religion and I must say I agree on many (all ?) points he makes. Mainly because he is able to write a mainly philosophical work in an extremely humerous way. If you'd read books like Nietzsche you'd get bored after two pages wondering what his point is. But Richard Dawkins is capable of defending his point in a very convincing AND amusing way.
The Code Book - Simon Singh - 1 May 2007 - English - 411 pages - (Original version)
is also author of two other books I read before, Fermats Last Theorem
and Big Bang: On the history of the universe
. But this book is the one I've wanted to read for the longest time (but the most difficult one to obtain). But this books tells the history of keeping secrets it was written in '99, if it were written in 2007 it would probably be a little bit thicker. But Simon Singh isn't a computer scientist and I found that he already did a great job explaining Diffie-Hellman, RSA and DES (from a distance). If the book were written nowadays I think it would have been rather difficult with all sorts of emerging technologies, like AES, Blowfish, SSL, ... at the time the book was written the internet was still being born, now it has exploded and it is much more difficult to keep track of things than in '99. But nevertheless it's not a computer science book per se, it's a book on cryptography. Only the last two chapters apply to the current evolutions of public key cryptography/exchange, asymmetric ciphers and quantum cryptography. The first chapters touch history, deciphering hieroglyphs, caesar cipher, vigenere cipher
, the enigma combined with Bletchley Park∞
and Alan Turing∞
. Anyhow this book is superb ! A next book on a similar subject still on my to read list (for quite a while to be honest) is The Codebreakers∞
by David Kahn
Het Proces - Franz Kafka - 15 April 2007 - Dutch - 293 pages - (Der Prozess)
This is the first book in this list which is a book I've read for the second time. The frist time was in 1999 when I read the collected work of Franz Kafka. However Der Prozess and Das Schloss always left the deepest impression on me. So I was wandering in the library last week and I decided to reread this work and I'm glad that I did. This is really a superb 'one of a kind book' and I would personally force everybody to read this work.
Muggepuut - Herman Brusselmans - 1 April 2007 - Dutch - 256 pages - (Original version)
Okay, it's (yet another) book written by Brusselmans, I just realised that I've been reading his books for over 10 years now and although this isn't a bad book, it's still way above average, the fun I'm having while reading his books diminishes ... I'm actually thinking about re-reading some of his old work like 'Vrouwen met een IQ', 'Het oude nieuws van deze tijden', the 'Guggenheimer' trilogy. But on the other hand, my list of other books to read is also quite long.
Advanced UNIX Programming (2nd ed) - Marc J. Rochkind - 23 March 2007 - English - 719 pages - (Original version)
This book is a classic, almost such a classic as those written by Stevens. It covers all aspects from UNIX programming, the system interface that is, combined with some best practices and so on. Simply superb. See also AdvancedUnixProgramming
Designing Embedded Hardware (2nd ed) - John Catsoulis - 9 March 2007 - English - 377 pages - (Original version)
This work gives an introduction to the electronics level behind embedded hardware. It is truly focusing on the hardware, sometimes even a bit too much. It touches various microprocessor / microcontroller architectures but it only touches them, it doesn't go very deep in them. By going deep I mean the software level behind them, the book mainly shows the hardware level of how these components should be used.
Realtime And Embedded Howto - Herman Bruyninckx - 4 March 2007 - English - 176 pages - (Original version)
Freely available on the internet: http://people.mech.kuleuven.be/~bruyninc/rthowto/∞
although not updated for quite some time and unfinished in some parts this is a great work, it is written in timeless way so that it can talk about software and certain interfaces (which are bound to time) but also talks about many general aspects which add the timeless dimension to the work. I hope it will ever reach a finished state, it would be certainly worth it.
Code Craft, the practice of writing excellent code - Pete Goodlife - 7 February 2007 - English - 580 pages - (Original version)
This books gives an overview of the software development process for programmers. When you read the book you immediately feel the book has been written by a developer with tons of experience but you also notice the book has been written for developers. The book suggests how the programming process should be from a bottom up persepective. The first parts of the book handle the code, how should it look like, what are good practices and especially what aren't ?. After this the book moves up talks about architecture, version control and also goes into more social aspects. What types of developers are there, how is a team structured, what can be issues with teams ? And finally at the top what are requirements, how should they be formed and what is the link with the programmer ? Anyhow, this book gives an overview of the software development process by someone who knows what he's talking about and is able to present this in a way which is acutally fun to read too. Superb book.
Introduction to Computer Graphics - N. Krishnamurthy - 21 January 2007 - English - 343 Pages - (Original version)
Okay, this was a waste of paper. I just can't believe somebody wanted to publish this book. It's completely awful. The book was written in 2004 but it feels like 1994 would be more accurate. 'Basic' is still the top of the bill programming language and C/C++ is still some height. The high end graphics subsystem on Windows is called paint
. C is said to contain graphics primitives (I think Kernighan and Ritchie weren't even aware of this). There's an entire chapter on CRT screens and it stops right after VGA, like 'some screens can go higher than 1024x768 resolution .... I've only seen one screen (the one with my first pc, in '94 that was) that couldn't go higher than this resolution. It doesn't even mention graphics API's like DirectX
. Hell it even shows how to make graphs in 'text' mode. I mainly read this book for refreshing some things before starting Computer Graphics by Hill (it's odd, the 2nd edition by Hill is 4 years older but completely aware of decent graphics API's, OpenGL
namely) while this book has a timing advantage of 4 years and fails to make use of it. Did I mention the Windows 3.11 screenshots already ?
Physical Computing, Sensing and controlling the Physical World with Computers - Dan O' Sullivan and Tom Igoe - 20 January 2007 - English - 464 pages - (Original version)
This book offers a general introduction on how it is possible to interface microcontrollers (both Basic Micro and Microchip based microcontrollers) with computers on the one end and with the real world using sensors and actors. I read this book as an introduction to this matter and didn't do any practical experiments mainly because everything is in basic and if there's one thing I don't like to program in it is basic and because I also lack the hardware. But nevertheless I found it extremely interesting to read this book.
Big Bang, the origin of the Universe - Simon Singh - 2 January 2007 - English - 532 pages - (Original version)
Simon Singh is an author I'm not unfamiliar with, previously (I didn't even know he was the author until I visited his website while reading the book, and previously means 'some five years ago') I also read his book on the search for the solution of Fermat his last theorem (you know, the one with the trivial proof). Well this book tells the story about the search which resulted in the Big Bang theory. Everything starts in Greece with the search the Greeks searching for a methode to measure earth, how they reached the point the earth wasn't flat so it evolves towards the helioscentrism. Next it goes to an atomical level, what does our universe exist of (I just saw all names I ever encountered in physics labs occur). Next the book also says hi to uncle Albert and results with a discussion of the Big Bang theory (and it's opponent the Steady State Model). The book comes whit lots of illustrations and is written in an extremely narrative way which makes it extremely fun to read. I also added wrote The Code Book which tells the history of cryptography (the book was written in 1999 so it'll be missing the most recent thingies but these kind of books are not meant as a reference) to my long list.
Jeff Duntemann's Wi-Fi Guide 2nd Edition - Jeff Duntemann - 22 December 2006 - English - 498 pages - (Original version)
Some time ago I was playing with my WiFi
card, accessing the wireless API the Linux kernel offered, but I found that certain parameters I simply couldn't place. So I encountered this book someplace and I thought I wanted to give it a go. Well, the book didn't answer my (too technical) questions. I enjoyed the book but I found the technical level too low. When you read the book you instantly feel that the author is really capable in this subject, but you also feel that he refuses to go deep. This is probably not to scare the (large) public of people new to wireless networking. But I'm afraid that those will get scared off anyhow. I found it an interesting book to read, but the technical level was (as mentioned previously) too low. The book is also written in a way that it gets attached to time. The current version is copyrighted 2004 and makes a lot of estimates of the short future (2005,2006, ...), and already many of these estimates aren't true (yet). So this book is on the edge of being outdated. Also the author know about Linux, he simply refuses to tell the real things. It would be much more interesting to write these things on Linux than to describe the web interface of certain routers. Also the 802.11b vs 802.11g talk is repeated multiple times and can be annoying.
Thus Spake Zarathustra - Friedrich Nietzsche - 22 December 2006 - English - 318 pages - (Also Sprach Zarathustra )
When I was 18 I was fascinated by Nietzsche, but when I attempted to read one of his books I quickly gave up. Now I tried to read another of his works, but unfortunately I still wasn't able to bear his work. Although his ideas are strong he just doesn't seem capable to write them in a comfortable (for readers at least) way.
From a Buick 8 - Stephen King - 7 December 2006 - English - 356 pages (Original version)
A novel by Stephen King (yet another frequently occuring name). The book tells the story of (you won't believe this) a buick 8 with some 'special' abilities. It's an interesting book but it's not the best book by Stephen King.
The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich - William L. Shirer - 30 November 2006 - English - 1249 pages (Original version)
This, a bit to thick to comfortably read, book tells the story (here comes a surprise) of the factors that caused Hitler and his Third Reich to exist and to gain popularity. Personally I found this book extremely interesting since less than half of the book discusses the war. Which is an added value to me, I especially appreciated the description of the years 1930-1940 where Germany started to form a very efficient war economy. And it's kinda shocking to notice how that economy could flourish. The war is treated in the book but the book is not focused on the war which is in my opinion positive, since the war is a result of a chain of events. And these events matter in order to understand everything, not the war itself. Altough I'm glad I've read the book I'm also happy that the book is finished, because of the size of this book spend a lot of time with the book. This book is like a fat process holding the queue.
Stealing The Network: How to Own a Continent - Too many people - 30 October 2006 - English - 402 pages - (Original version)
Initially I was thinking, yet another 'how to hack' books, but when I looked at the cover I saw the Kevin 'Free Kevin' Mitnick was the technical reviewer, which got my attention, then I saw 'Fyodor' between the list of authors, you know 'nmap Fyodor' so I ended up with this book at home and to be honest I really enjoyed reading it. It's kinda high tech novel. It's like hackers, or operation swordfish, or the net but then written by people that have actually seen a computer in their lives.
Debugging by Thinking, a multidisciplinary Approach - Robert chalres Metzger - 8 October 2006 - English - 567 pages - (Original version)
This books tries to explain the process of debugging by looking at other domains. Altough the title is extremely impressive, it is very badly written. The book is an enumeration of enumations which is very difficult to follow and to read at a decent speed. Also the three cases are way too large and impossible for a human mind to comprehend from paper. Altough the title is impressive the books contents is not.
Games, Diversions and Perl Culture - Various Authors - 27 August 2006 - English - 569 pages - (Original version)
Okay, this books sucks :p I read about 70% of it and than gave it up. I really don't want to waste much words on it (except that natural language processing sucks and that reading quizzes even sucks more). But there were three or four interesting chapters on game theory ... but for the rest it was a waste of paper. Time to get this book in a place where it can gather a lot of dust, next to some visual basic book.
Embedded Software The Works - Colin Walls - 15 August 2006 - English - 390 pages - (Original version)
This book is a collection of several articles covering a wide range of subjects related to embedded software and systems. The fun part is that it covers a lot of topics, the negative part is that due to this is misses sometimes some depth.
How Not To Program in C++ - Steve Oualline - 6 August 2006 - English - 265 pages - (Original version)
This book contains 111 broken programs and 3 working ones. Using a 'hint' and 'answer' system it tries to learn the reader something about programming. And actually it is great fun to do so ;-). It's one of those books that works for users which have a certain programming skill already. Altough there are easier and more difficult problems.
V For Vendetta - Alan Moore and David Lloyd - 30 July 2006 - English - 290 Pages - (Original version)
This is the hardback omnibus of the comic series that was the basis for the 2006 movie 'V for Vendetta' if you liked the movie as much as I did you just know you have to read the original works. And it's quite nice to see how some events are changed to make the movie more sensible. Anyhow after not reading comics for years I really enjoyed this one. (Especially the speed boost).
Salem's Lot (Illustrated edition)- Stephen King - 22 July 2006 - English - 594 pages - (Original version)
The second book by Stephen King tells the story of a local town Jerusalem's Lot which is haunted by vampires. It has a strong relation to Bram Stoker's Dracula (which I've added on my longlist). The illustrated edition adds some short stories, pictures and deleted scences to the original '75 edition. Altought reading the deleted scenes chapter is very annoying the rest of the book isn't.
De Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien - 6 July 2006 - Dutch - 253 Pages - (The Hobbit)
Now the LOTR hype has finished it's save to read Tolkien in public again. I read the LOTR trilogy years before the movie became available, and this isn't the first time I change the order of prequel and sequel ;-). But I enjoyed reading it, I think this book more 'narrative' than the LOTR trilogy and it is kinde more to the point. The annoying thing about the LOTR trilogy is that the last couple of hundred pages are simply an enumeration of predictable events (which is annoying :p) this book also goes the same way but because it's more limited in size it isn't that annoying.
Boeddhistisch tempelleven in Laos, Wat Sok Pa Luang - Ilse and Birgit Schrama - 25 June 2006 - Dutch - 128 pages - (Original version)
This book which contains more pictures than text (which is in this case a good thing) tells the life (both through images and stories) of Buddhist monks living in the Wat Sok Pa Luang monastery in Laos near the Mekong river. Since it consists of a lot of images it reads prety fast but it really shows the life of the novices, monks and nuns in a fascinating way. (I have no responsibility for owing this book, I borrowed it from my girlfriend, but nevertheless I'm happy I read it).
The Picture of Dorian Gray - Oscar Wilde - 25 June 2006 - English - 194 pages - (Original version)
I guess everying who has had english (up to a certain level) has read some parts of this book, I for sure have. And at that time the book fascinated me, so when I came across this book I had that chance to buy it for a couple of euro (dollar) so I did. En after reading it I found that the image I had about the book was completely different than the image created by the English course (but wasn't school invented to created distorted images of reality ? :p). But I'm glad I read it.
De Meester en Margarita - M.A. Boelgakov - 16 June 2006 - Dutch - (My russian isn't good enough to write the original version)
The first book that originates from Russia (as far as i know) that i've read and I must say i really enjoyed reading it. One of the biggest strenghts of the book is that it's not entirely "finished" so there's a large (but still controlable) amount of storylines) convolving around one theme which give it a chaotic impression at first. But make it superb in the end.
The Scientist and Engineer's Guide to Digital Signal Processing, 2nd edition - Steven W. Smith - 8 June 2006 - English - 640 pages - (Original version)
Yet another hole in my eduction that got filled a bit. This excellent work is available online DSPGUIDE∞
and this book gives an introduction to the field op DSP. But this book focuses on humans, not on mathematicians, which makes it extremely interesting. A lot of attention goes to (what acutally is interesting) the applications in the field of DSP. Things like audio and video processing, medical imaging, dsp processors, compression, neural networks etc etc. There is a part which defines some filters, that part wasn't that pleasent but knowing that some good
stuff is on it's way surely keeps one motivated.
De Dollartekens in de Ogen van Moeder Theresa - Herman Brusselmans - 5 June 2006 - Dutch - 133 Pages - (Original version)
After reading 'Het spook van toetegaai' I feared Herman Brusselmans had last his touch, but this book proves that he didn't ;-). This book, a novelle, is a bit shorter than the works he usually produces but still it's soaked with his typical style of humor.
Linux Kernel Development - Robert Love - 3 June 2006 - English - 332 Pages - (Original version)
Ok, I it's very difficult for me to define a technical book as excellent but this book truly is, it offers an introduction to the Linux kernel. Normally people would tell to you simply dive into to code, but some people like to have their hands held, well this is the book to hold your hand. It's a bit a complement to Linux Device Drivers, this boek doesn't cover the device drivers but everything else boing more core, things like: interrupt handling, scheduling, vfs, block I/O, concurrency, portability. The book is written in an awesome style, note that this book is still the first edition while the second edition is already available.
Pragmatisch modelleren met UML 2.0 - Sander Hoogendoorn - 20 May 2006 - Dutch - 392 pages - (Original version)
These are the notes (published as a book, du'h) from a course I had to follow. Due to a certain course I've never liked modelling and after this course it hasn't really changed, why do people always start to think 'web applications' '.net' 'j2ee' when they talk about modelling ? It's a nice book to read when you're obligated to do so ;-)
De Mooiste Griekse Mythen en Sagen - None - 6 May 2006 - Dutch - 275 pages - (Original version)
This book contains 35 Greek myths. I've always been fond of myths even when I was like 12 or so I read some books by Anothony Horowitz which also contained myths and legends, when I got a bit older I read some other works by Homeros (Oddysee, Aeneas and things like that), my old nickname was even based on helios the Greek sun god. So I like the content of this book but unfortunately the stories have been transformed into executive summaries. So the story of Hercules is only told in like 10 pages which is a shame.
Creativiteit Hoe? Zo ! - Igor Byttebier - 30 April 2006 - Dutch - 282 pages - (Original version)
I got this book with a course about creativity and entrepreneurship I followed. So most subjects touched in the book weren't really new to me. But it's still an interesting book talking about how you take different look at things.
The Story of Mathematics - Richards Mankiewicz - 28 April 2006 - English - 192 pages - (Original version)
This book tells the (hi)story of mathematics in a very illustrated way. It places important inventions in mathematics in an historical perspective. The only negative point is that each period in history is explained with equal bookspace while the amount of inventions is much larger in the later periods than in the original ones.
The way to market leadership - Jan Baan - 19 April 2006 - English - 232 pages - (Original version)
Jan Baan is a self made CEO of a dutch software group that developed an ERP packet and was top of the bill at the end of the last century. This books tells the story about the raise and the fall of the group. It could be an interesting book if it weren't filled with religious nonsense. You don't let Jesus run you company.
Bedwelmd - Lulu Wang - 15 April 2006 - Dutch - 425 pages - (Original version)
After being impressed by the Liliy Theater by the same author it was very difficult not to read another book by Lulu Wang unfortunately it's always difficult when expectations are high. This book tells the story where two people, each with a different cultural background, find eachother and how that cultural difference makes it almost unpossible to succeed.
The Golden Ratio - Mario Livio - 14 March 2006 - English - 294 pages - (Original version)
This fascinating book tells the story about the number phi. It tracks the number through history and through many different areas of interest. It's a really fascinating number which gets only more fascinating after reading the book. The only drawback is that this book contains waaaaaaaaay too many references which is most of the time annoying when you're simply interested in the story behind phi.
De Delta Deceptie - Dan Brown - 7 March 2006 - Dutch - 414 pages - (Deception Point)
This was the only work by Dan Brown that I hadn't read yet. But I have to say this was the less best book of the four works that I read, this doesn't mean I didn't like the book, or that it wasn't good on the contrary, it's still way above average, but one has got to be the worst. This was the only book of the four by which the pageturning urge was missing.
LPI Linux Certification In a Nutshell - 30 January 2006 - English - 551 pages - (Original version)
This book has been printed in June 2001 and is therefore rather outdated (e.g. no mention of grub) and isn't therefore in my eyes the most perfect book to read. It is surprising that no second edition of this book is announced (yet).
Silence on the wire - Michal Zalewski - 15 January 2006 - English - 280 pages - (Original version)
An excellent book on passive computer security. It explains many interesting aspects of computer security by only doing some passive observation of a computer system or a network (connection). It is the most interesting book on this topic I have every read and I strongly advice this book to everybody interested in this topic who has gotten a bit of a hacker mentality.
The Making of Doom III - Steven L. Kent - 24 December 2005 - English - 192 pages - (Original version)
This book tells the story behind on of the best computer games in the past two years... DOOM III by Id Software. It tells the story of the people behind the game, the artwork, the sound, the level design, the story and last but not least the engine design. Unfortunately the book goes into too much detail about the story and too few detail about the engine. But since I don't define myself as an average reader I can imagine that from a marketing perspective this has been a good decision. A must read for all fans.
Baudolino - Umberto Eco - 17 December 2005 - Dutch - 473 pages - (Baudolino)
Once upon a time in the past I read In the Name of the Rose and really got addicted to this book. So a time after that I encountered Foucault's Pendulum in a bookstore. So I just had to buy it. But it turned out to be a disappointment. Anyhow some time ago I encountered Baudolino at a book fair, so I decided to give Umberto Eco another chance. The book started really good but once after some 200 pages it tends to loose its grip. Too bad, but I'm still in love with In the Name of the Rose.
Het sixtijnse geheim - Philipp Vandenbeg - 27 November 2005 - Dutch - 288 pages - (Die Sixtinische Verschworung)
While writing this I just looked up the original title and found out this book was actually written in 1988. Only now somebody decided to translate it. This it wat we call in dutch: platcommercieel. They only translated this book because the title sounded like The Da Vinci Code and the content is (a bit) related. But because I hate the way this book was brought onto the market doesn't mean I can't like the contents. The book starts a bit slow, but after hundred pages it really starts to speed up. Also the 2 climaxes at the end are very nice.
Decamerone - Giovanni Boccaccio - 20 November 2005 - Dutch - 829 pages - (Decameron)
, a collection of hundred short stories. Very interesting in the beginning (these stories are more than 600 years old), but after 80 of them you really want the book to end mainly because I'm used to reading books (not stories) containing longer plots. But interesting to have read (once).
Dagboek van een hacker - Dan Verton - 23 october 2005 - Dutch - 348 pages - (The hacker diaries)
I found this book at a book fair for a couple of euros. It scetches the lives of some teenagers who spent their youth behind a computer screen. Unlike the real (old) hackers, it scetches the lives of people of my generation. I was also 15 when winnuke, netbus an back orrifica arrived. The only annoying this is that the minority of people in this book manifested their begin a hacker by doing illegal things. This book almost says: you can't be a hacker without breaking into computer systems that belon to others. There is only one story which says the opposite but I can live with that. Some things I can't live with is that this book was translated by somebody who knows close to nothing about hackers, *nix, programming or computer history. Every then pages some explanation/translation is fscked entirely by the translator, if the publisher simply pushed this book into the hands of somebody who knows something about computer this person could easily read it and point out all annoyances...but this isn't a perfect world.
De Trein der Traagheid - Johan Daisne - 8 october 2005 - Dutch - 117 pages - (Original version)
It's a very small book (in fact a very small story) by a Belgian other who lived in the previous century (1917-1978) but this is one of those books you pick up and just want to read until it's finished. Luckily is not a very big book and you'll be probably able to do so. But it's fascinating and (except some minor details) timeless. If you have an hour of free time you should read this.
Het Spook van Toetegaai - Herman Brusselmans - 8 october 2005 - Dutch - 336 pages - (Original version)
This is the most recent book by Herman Brusselmans and one of so many in this list. However in my opinion this book is a bit weak most books by Herman Brusselmans are soaked with cynism while this book start extremely slow and keeps being slow the entire book. I hope this is a temporary tryout and not a definitive change in his work.
Het lelietheater - Lulu Wang - 20 september 2005 - Dutch - 495 pages - (Original version)
I guess this is one of the few books which was originally Dutch but translated into English (Title: The Lily Theater). This is the debut of Lulu Wang (who live in the Netherlands) and I was very surprised when reading her book. I liked the book very much. It's almost incredible that somebody that wasn't born in a dutch speaking country could write a work like this book (and that for a debute). Two thumbs up both for the use of language and for the story.
Een Venetiaans Geheim - Ian Caldwell & Dustin Thomason -9 september 2005 - Dutch - 390 pages - (The Rule of Four)
Ever since Dan Brown's The Da Vinci Code became a popular book (and after more than a year still is the most popular book according to belgian rankings there are many authors/publishers releasing books which contain a mix between science (all kinds of sciences going from physics and maths to literature) and an exciting story. At first I was bit sceptical about this boom but after reading The Einstein Code and this book I'm getting rather fond of this genre (it is really becoming one). The story is related to a book: Hypnerotomachia Poliphili∞
which I certainly would start reading now if the book did not contain the tone that it is a very chaotic book. But since I'm rather fascinated by it now it might end up in this list one day. Anyhow I very much enjoyed this book.
Het Barre Land - Scott Phillips - 5 september 2005 - Dutch - 318 pages - (Cottonwood)
This book tells a story situated in the states around 1900. It's no special book, it is just a book. I can't tell very much about it actually. It's not a bad book it's just average. It reminds me a bit of a mix between a soap and bonanza.
Jo Lernout, mijn verhaal - Frieda Joris - 15 august 2005 - Dutch - 335 pages - (Original version)
This book tells the story of a founder of a company L&H, a Belgian company that was once world leader in computer speech products. Ever since L&H went out of business it seems the consumer market for speech products has slowed down. This book tells the raise and fall of L&H (and a third part, the views of Jo Lernout about the future of technology, a part that, in my opinion, contributes nothing to the book). It's an interesting book, since it gives a (tainted) summary of the entire L&H adventure. I just wonder now how the computer world would have looked now (especially the belgian r&d market) if the L&H schandal would not have occured.
Sterrenkunde voor Dummies - Stephen P. Maran - 31 july 2005 - Dutch - 323 pages - (Astronomy for Dummies)
This book is (as the title suggests) an introduction to astronomy. I've found astronomy always interesting so I decided to read this book when I saw it at the library. And it turned out to be a very interesting book. The advantage on this book is that is can be usefull to people that plan to get started using their own telescope but also for people (like me) who don't but just want to find out more about astronomy in general.
Zo bouw je een tijdmachine - Paul Davies - 16 july 2005 - Dutch - 159 pages - (How to Build a Time Machine)
This book touches timetravel in a fun way. It explains how timetravel might be possible (using Einsteins relativity theory). I had especially the amount of fun the author brought in this book (something that is not very easy considering the subject (physics)).
Utopia - Thomas More - June 2005 - Dutch - 164 pages - (Translation from Latin)
This philosophical work defines a perfect community, a community without money, where everybody is happy, everybody has enough food etc, etc. It is remarkable that, you should consider this book was written in the 16th century, More already defines things like euthanasia. In my opinion there are two things More gets wrong. The first one is the place of the woman. In a family point of view, females are still inferior. The man should control his wife. The second one is there is still way too much room for religion, although religion is very open in Mores society. This is a book everybody should have read or at least know its content.
De Kinderen van Chronos - Pieter Aspe - June 2005 - Dutch - 290 pages - (Original version)
It is said that Pieter Aspe is one of the best crime authors in Belgium. Personally, I'd hate to see/read any other crime authors. I found this book rather predictable and it reads like it's nothing more than applying a recipe. For books by authors like Brusselmans I can live with it, because I rather like Brusselmans' recipe, but I just can't live with one crim recipe (who could ?). Anyhow, I expected a lot more from this book
The Art of UNIX Programming - Eric S. Raymond - June 2005 - English - 525 pages - (Original version)
The Art of UNIX Programming (taoup) tells you everything you should know about UNIX programming from a psychological point of view. It tells you how the UNIX community works, which conventions are used, which pracitces are good, which language should be used when. This is the stuff you need to know but no course will ever teach you. I think nobody can call him a UNIX programmer unless he knows the contents of taoup. A must read !
The Art of War - Sun Tzu - June 2005 - English - 95 pages - (Lionel Giles translation)
The Art of War is a chinese work about warfare. It tells rules that should be obeyed in order to achieve victory. It explains good tactics and the consequences of the deeds of a general. When reading the book, some thing might look like kicking in an open door, but when you keep in mind that this book was writting in 500 B.C. your eyes should really open up. Some people say that even Napoleon used this book but many generals of our modern world don't use the book while they better should. In the foreword the author makes the suggestion each general should be forced by law toch pass on an annual exam covering only this book.
Visual C++.NET, The Complete Reference - C.H. Pappas and W.H. Murray - 16 june 2005 - English - 1073 pages - (Original version)
At a point I decided that I really should look into C++ programming under Windows (I know, I've tried it now and I won't ever do it again), so I bought this book. This book has been one of the biggest mistakes I have ever made. Somehow when the titles says C++.NET it also means C#.NET ? When you think window programming, you think GUI programming only 40% of the covers *bad* GUI programming, some type this code examples are giving which basicly don't teach you anything. After reading about 900 pages I just gave it up. I'll just stick to Linux/Unix and never touch this book ever again.
Ik ben Rijk en Beroemd en ik heb Nekpijn - Herman Brusselmans - 4 may 2005 - Dutch - 423 pages - (Original version)
Some people say all books written by Brusselmans are alike. So ? What if I happen to like the one book he's writing ? Anyhow I enjoyed this book as much as all other books I've read (and I've already read some books by his hand by now). As far as I'm concerned I hope many of the same books wil follow.
Chatter - Patrick Radden Keefe - 29 may 2005 - Dutch - 320 pages - (Chatter)
When I read a preprint of this book a belgian magazine (HUMO), this book fascinated me at once. I've always been fascinated by the secret organisations like the NSA and those big brother conspiracies. This book offers a good introduction to worldwide signal intelligence networks. It covers all aspects going from background information to european reports, everything is combined with a lot of research and references which makes this book a rahter solid source (in my eyes) and not only an enumeration of possibilities. If Echelon interests you, you will already have read this book. Which reminds me, the Codebreakers by David Kahn is now added on my to read list.
Godel, Escher, Back: een Eeuwig Gouden Band - Douglas R. Hofstadter - 19 may 2005 - Dutch - 900 pages - (Godel, Escher, Bach: an Eternal Golden Braid)
This book covers: music, art, mathematics, computer science, artificial intelligence, biology, ... so why shouldn't you read this book ? It's a very interesting book but it takes (too) much time to read and some chapters are less interesting than other chapters. The best thing about this book is that it brought the works of the Dutch artist M.C. Escher to my attention. Since I started reading this book I grew really fond of his works.
Belgie voor beginnelingen - Bert Kruismans and Peter Perceval - 18 may 2005 - Dutch - 246 pages - (Original version)
This books gives a satirical view on Belgium (the country I live in). So many things described in the books are things I encounter every day which makes it an extemely funny book. If you are from belgium you should really read this book !
Seizoen van de machetes - Jean Hatzfeld - 21 april 2005 - Dutch - 302 pages - (Une saison des machettes)
This book tells the story of the 1994 genocide that happened in Rwanda. This book isn't an enumeration of facts, it tells the story from the ordinary people who took the machete (a long knife which was the most commonly used weapon during the genocide) and killed their enemies. In a normal situation one will feel some compassion for the victims and one won't even bother to understand the bad ones. But this book offers an interesting perspective on the genocide.
De Einstein Code - Adam Fawer - 11 april 2005 - Dutch - 367 pages - (Improbable)
There one thing I truly hate about this book and that's it's title. Ever since Dan Browns The Da Vinci Code, a lot of books have been translated and have gotten a new title which contains the name of a scientist/famous person. Even Dan Brown his own books. The same has happened here, the oringal title 'Improbable' has been translated to have some of Dan Browns success. It's a dirty marketing trick AND the book has (forgetting 5 lines) nothing to do with Einstein. If the title contained Laplace or Heisenberg I could live with it, those individuals are closely related to the story, but Einstein ? Anyhow, it was an interesting book, containing a lot of action and an improbable plot. I didn't get the pageturning feeling while reading (I rarely do) but I enjoyed reading it.
De Kunst van het Misleiden - Kevin D. Mitnick - 21 march 2005 - Dutch - 302 pages - (The Art of Deception)
This is the dutch translation of Mitnicks wellknown book 'The Art of Deception', in this book all aspects of social engineering are explained, some with shocking results. But most shocking is that all situations are possible in real life and no technology is able to prevent this from happening. If you're into security you should already have read this book.
Alles is Eventueel - Stephen King - 13 march 2005 - Dutch - 462 pages - (Everything is eventual)
This is a bundle of a number of shorter stories. Unlike Hearts in Atlantis there is no connection between the stories. My favoriete story is the first one (Sectiekamer 4, (Section chamber 4)) where a person who has been bitten by a snake and became paralyzed by the poison. You look thru the eyes of that person and at a moment you realise you are surrounded by a couple of pathologist who are convinced that you are dead and you can almost feel the fear of the person. The book contains 14 stories and only one story was not very good. This book show that Stephen King is a writer with many talents.
He Nostradamus - Douglas Coupland - 6 march 2005 - Dutch - 258 pages
This book tells 4 stories, all stories are related to a high school drama. A good book except the first story which is filled with prayers. (The head person in the first story is part of a Youth Alive organisation, I agree on the fact that it emphasizes on her view on the facts but still I find it more a waste of paper). An interesting book.
Memmen - Pierre Merot - 2 march 2005 - Dutch - 190 pages
It was a book with a very promising cover∞
, it's a satire, sometimes funny, sometimes not funny. It isn't a bad book, but it isn't a ver good book, it's just a book. It tells the exagerated story of life but it lacks some structure and it's written (translated since it was originally written in French) in an odd writing style, like they are trying to project the satire on the reader. If you need to pass some spare time you could read this book but there are much other books you could also read.
Het Raadsel van de Filosoof - Jose Carlos Somoza - 24 february 2005 - Dutch - 317 pages
A translation of an Greek text written by Filotextos of Chersonesos. The translator creates his own story using footnotes in the translation giving an extra dimension to the text, sometimes even more exciting that the original text. On the cover it says the book has won the Gold Dagger Award in 2002 and as far is I can tell the book really deserved that award. It has a high In the Name of the Rose factor which I especially enjoyed.
Enterprise Java Servlets - Jeff M. Genender - 2 february 2005 - English - 444 pages
A book covering J2EE and servlets and such. I enjoyed reading this book, it has some good ideas in it. But there's not much more to say about it.
Hearts in Atlantis - Stephen King - 11 january 2005 - English - 523 pages
Hearts in Atlantis consists of 5 interconnected stories. The only negative at this is that I really wanted to know how the first stoy ended, who were the little men ? What happened to Ted ? After each story has ended a lot of questions remain, it feels the story ended before the climax was reached. So saying that I preferred Dreamcatcher over Hearts in Atlantis won't be a big shock. And now my eternal search for a hardback English version of 'It' continues ..., I hope that the next Stephen King book in this list will be 'It'. (Anybody reading this ? My birthday is coming up :-) )
Dreamcatcher - Stephen King - 6 janury 2005 - English - 620 pages
Same shit different day ? I really enjoyed reading this book, it contains many unexpected changes in the plot. It gets sometimes really complicated but not toocomplicated. If you like the 'it looks like an ordinary book but in the end aliens are taking over the world' kind of book you should really read this one.
De Geheimen van de Da Vinci Code - Simon Cox - 29 december 2004 - Dutch - 175 pages
When you've read Dan Browns 'The Da Vinci Code' you are thrown in a world of mistery, for example when you look at Leonardo Da Vinci's Last Supper fresco, why does the person on the left (from the viewers perspective) look female ? Could it be that that person is Mary Magdalene ? This idea has caused many die hard believers to write books about this subject, letters to Dan Brown etc etc, this book is a little guide that gives just the facts about events, places, persons in the Da Vinci Code. It gives a little bit of background information. If you've read the Da Vinci Code and you still have some unanswered questions, this book might help. Or if you really liked the book like me, you just can't afford not to read this book.
Missie Irak - Hans Blix - 27 december 2004 - Dutch - 295 pages
This book tells the story of the period before the United States invaded Irak, as it was experienced by the head weapons inspector Hans Blix. There are two big ideas in this book, the first one is that when searching for weapson of mass destruction (another google hit on this keyword) it isn't sufficient to find nothing, you have to prove there is nothing to find which is more difficult than finding nothing. The second idea is that it's difficult to stay neutral when everybody tries to push you in a different direction and everybody is watching you very closely to spot a mistake you make or could make or to twist your words into something they like more.
De Zwarte Wieg - Jef Lambrecht - 20 december 2004 - Dutch - 415 pages
I attended a lecture by Jef Lambrecht and I was fascinated by this person who is a Belgian radio journalist, so I went to the library to search his last book. It tells the history of the topics that cover the main media topics today, Israel conflict, WWII, Iraq conflict and how these events are linked together. There is only one disadvantage with this book and that it consists of a lot of names (which is typical for history books) which makes it sometimes difficult to get the actual story from all the names.
Moordenaars en hun Motieven - Jef Vermassen - 13 december 2004 - Dutch - 620 pages
A book by a famous belgian Judge who has spent year defending criminals in court and doing research for this book. And this is a good book, it consists of three big parts (actually four parts but the first two are about the same): introduction to human beings, language, communication, facts committed by individuals (the most interesting part an the main subject of this book), facts committed by multiple people with as main topic the holocaust. The book is in my opinion complete and covers everything one wants/needs to know about this subject.
Het Juvenalis Dilemma - Dan Brown - 12 november 2004 - Dutch - 365 pages
When I tell you that this book was released 12 november 2004 it won't be no surprise that Dan Brown is becoming my favourite international author (Herman Brusselmans is my favourite national author). I know I've been reading his books in reverse order but that's also the fault of the publishing company. They translated this book (Dan Browns second book) after The Da Vinci Code and Angels and Demons. And his first novel Deception Point hasn't been translated yet. But I don't think I can wait that long I'll see if I can order an English version of Deception Point somewhere. If you shouldn't have known already the English title of this book is "Digital Fortress". After reading this book I can only say one thing: "wauw". This is a really good book (except some minor details showing that Dan Brown isn't a computer scientist) but this book just kept me reading from page 1 till the end. I wish Dan Brown could write novels at the speed I could read them. Expect more books from this author.
Java Examples in a Nutshell - David Flanagan - 12 november 2004 - English - 382 pages
This is a book that has been lying around here for some years now and it's getting a little bit dated. Covering the 1.2.x SDK, nothing about swing etc so I tought it was about time I read it. And it contains some really interesting pieces. Especially an example about printing in Java (which isn't the easiest thing to do in Java) is interesting. If you want to read this, get a more recent version ;-).
Medische Blunders - Denise Van Den Broeck - 10 november 2004 - Dutch - 240 pages
This book tells the story of medical errors made in Belgium and how people have always failed to prove an error has been made. I know everybody makes professional mistakes (just image a programmer that can code without writing a single bug), but when a medical doctor makes an error the consequences are bigger, and I don't think you should sue your doctor (wasn't he trying to save you life ?) but I do think the doctor should say that he has made a mistake. But this is most probably due pressure coming from insurance companies. Anyhow if you've read this book you'll think twice before having an operation of some kind.
Verziekt - Julie Gregory - 7 november 2004 - Dutch - 256 pages
This book tells the story of a woman who has been the victim of a mother suffering from Munchausen by proxy. This book was recommended by my girlfriend (and this was the last time I followed one of her recommendations). I just don't like this kind of books. When I read a book I want to have fun reading it or I want to learn anything but this books just shocks me and makes my wonder how stupid people can be not noticing the things happening to this girl.
De eerste keer - Various - 3 november 2004 - Dutch - 158 pages
A book containing 12 short stories. Ten of these were the winners of a competition for beginning writers. The best is in my opinion the story by Kobe Van Steenberghe.
Vergeef mij de Liefde - Herman Brusselmans - 30 october 2004 - Dutch - 954 pages
The book isn't really 954 pages, in between sections are skipped by the author, in reality it will be somewhere between 200 and 400 pages (like almost all books by Herman Brusselmans except "Kus in de Nacht", Anyhow there isn't much to say about it, some people say that if you've read one book, you're read them all but when you realy like the style of Herman Brusselmans every book is different. What I'm trying to say here is that I liked the book ;-).
Takkenbos elektronica - Willem H. M. van Dreumel - 30 october 2004 - Dutch - 85 pages
This book gives a short practical introduction to electronics. It gives a great introduction to electronics keeping everything as cheap as possible (no prints are used for example, all the components are interconnected directly. This book is completely unlike everything I've learned in school about elektronics (which was only a theoretical approach). Subjects covered are 555 timers, basic opamps, basic logic,... but it's an introduction, what did you expect ?
Cosa Nostra, De Geschiedenis van de Siciliaanse maffia - John Dickie - 20 october 2004 - Dutch - 421 pages
This book covers the origin and evolution of the mafia in Siciliy. If you like the Godfather and/or other works by Mario Puzo and you'd like to read something non fictional about the mafia (and not only covering mafia in the US) I can really suggest you this book. The book tells the story of the mafia, it does much more than simply enumerating facts, figures and names which makes the book very readable.
Computernetwerken - Andrew S. Tanenbaum - 6 october 2004 - Dutch - 847 pages
When I tell you the book I read was the 2nd edition and the current edition is the 4th you can suspect that this book has been lying here for a while. The book has evolved and has really gone thru some changes when taking a look at the table of contents of the current edtion. And about any comments I have on why this book reads slow and is sometimes boring seems to have been solved. Everything related to ATM (you can't believe how boring that was) seems to have been dropped. Interesting things like VoIP
, wireless lan have been added and the last chapter in my edition application layer has been expanded and split into application layer and encryption. Which are in my opinion the most interesting parts of this book. If you need a book covering computer networks in general without going to platform specific implementations but with an overview of all levels in the OSI stack, this is the one you need.
Het verbrande Meisje - Mark Billingham - 4 october 2004 - Dutch - 320 pages
A detective, interesting story, nice plot however the one who did it came falling out of the sky. But I think this could be a nice story for a movie or a series.
De Kus in de Nacht - Herman Brusselmans - 1 october 2004 - Dutch - 614 pages
Again a book by Herman Brusselmans, altough I must say that this one is not as good as his other books I've recently read. It's still above average but I don't know, normally Herman Brusselmans is really good in writing about nothing but in this book his skill has had a little dip in this book apperently.
Het Bernini Mysterie - Dan Brown - 23 september 2004 - Dutch - 461 pages
After reading "De Da Vinci Code", I knew I just had to read this book and all I can say is that I enjoyed this book. It doesn't happen much that I have had a pageturning feeling over a book, but both books written by Dan Brown gave me such a pageturning feeling. So this guy really deserves this link. The English title of this book is "Angels and Demons".
Corba Security, An Introduction To Safe Computing With Objects - Bob Blakley - 14 september 2004 - English - 135 pages
This books gives an introduction to the principles of Corba Security, it doesn't go into detail on implementation it just provides and overview of the theory and principals behind it. It's intended for people who want to have and idea of what it is and how it works but don't care about the implementation. I got this book for free at a big book sale so I could as well read it.
Justine, of de tegenspoed der deugdzaamheid - D.A.F. De Sade - 14 september 2004 - Nederlands - 270 pages
An old book, but nevertheless a good book. In our modern society this book can be considered a little bit shocking but in the original time of writing this book could have been hell on earth. For a short overview of the life of the Marquis De Sade click here. Basicly the story is told of a woman believing in everything that's good and hopes/depends on the good will of other gets disappointed everytime she does so. She gets raped and sexually abused time after time but still she keeps believing in the good of mankind. Altough sometimes quite funny. Anyhow if you can enjoy this book then I enjoyed it, but I don't think enjoying is the correct term for this.
Java Security 2nd edition - Scott Oaks - 13 september 2004 - English - 600 pages
YAO (Yet Another O'Reilly). To summarise this book in a sentence: "it's a great book but it sucks". Why does everybody who writes a book on Java has to fill half the book with a copy of the function prototypes ? Every Java programmer knows java.sun.com exists, every single java programmer knows what API documentation is and how to use it. Not a single Java programmer is waiting for a book containing exact the same information as the API. The book counts 600 pages, of these 600 pages 220 pages are appendices. Of the 380 pages I assume half are tables filled with the function prototypes and a word of explanation. Meaning only 30% of the book is usefull in my eyes. Why did I pay a whole book if only a third contains usefull information ? I fear that no writer of Java books will ever learn (and of all the books covering programming languages Java books are the worst, I can't remember any other book with such annoying enumerations). On the other hand I find the 30% that were no copy of the API interesting, Maybe the author should consider cutting all the copy-pasting and replacing it by an intro to cryptography. Nevertheless there aren't much other books out there covering this subject...
Mank - Herman Brusselmans - 6 september 2004 - Dutch - 184 pages
Again a book of my favorite Belgian author, and again a book in his typical style. If you like his style you will like this book, if you don't then you will hate this book. I enjoyed it ;-).
Er was eens een Getal - John Allen Paulos - 3 september 2004 - Dutch - 208 pages
In this book the author tries to link mathematics (statistics) the regular life. Once you know the basics about statistics then this book can learn you some interesting facts.
Sterker dan de Dood - Manda Scott - 30 august 2004 - Dutch - 251 pages
This book is a great detective a little complicated a the beginning, some names are rather odd (it took me a hundred pages to find out Kellen is actually female *shame*) but a great story with an unexpected plot.
Turings Tijger - Ian Stewart & Martin Golubitsky - 20 august 2004 - Dutch - 330 pages
A book covering symmetry occuring in nature and how that symmetry in nature is/ can be broken. Some parts of the book are rahter interesting but other parts can be boring
Het Stalker Syndroom - William Gibson - 13 august 2004 - Dutch - 288 pages
Idoru by the same author was very disappointing but this book is a bit better. The story is a bit better (but still nothing compare to Insomnia for example). Again the book contains with n different story's which grow to each other and meet near the end of the book. Completly the same as in Idoru. Normally I wanted to get Neuromancer by the same author, but that wasn't available in the library to I borrowed this book and Idoru but after reading these two I doubt I'll even bother altough another biography on the internet also said the books I read weren't his best.
Insomnia - Stephen King - 6 august 2004 - Dutch - 640 pages
Unlike the last book I read, this is a book I would definitely recommend anyone to read. Insomnia gives you insomia, most of the reading happened at a time where I am supposed to be asleep but wasn't (I was too busy reading du'h).
Idoru - William Gibson - 25 july 2004 - Dutch - 256 pages
Altough I heard many good things about William Gibson I didn't like this book. It was a weak story, nothing really exciting happened. This is not a book I'd recommend anyone to read.
De Val van het Kaartenhuis - Ben Mezrich - 18 july 2004 - Dutch - 267 pages
For the first time in four years I renewed my membership at the library in Wetteren (mainly because of school and other books to read), but this book was one of the reasons, I just took a look in the library and spotted this book, it's a true story about some MIT students that set up a team to play professional blackjack. It's a really amazing story about a couple of students beating the system.
Matlab Programming Tips - Mathworks inc. - 13 july 2004 - English - 66 pages
Same comments as the book below.
Creating Graphical User Interfaces - Mathworks inc. - 12 july 2004 - English - 184 pages
A Matlab user guide covering the Graphical User interfaces in Matlab, it starts from scratch and builds up to a certain level. If you need to build user interfaces in Matlab you must read this, also because it's free and available online as pdf.
Amerikanen - Greet De Keyser & Miel Dekeyser - 11 july 2004 - Dutch - 333 pages
A book by two Belgian reporters in which they try to explain the 'American'. When an American looks at a European (Belgian) (and vice versa) they think the other one behaves odd. In this book they try to explain why an American looks odd on a political point of view (related to the recent Iraq issues). The book contains some nice to know facts but a certain political/historical background is requiered.
Java 2 - Aron Walsh, Justing Couch & Daniel H. Steinberg - 2 july 2004 - Dutch - 786 pages
A dutch translation of the Java 2 Bible (www.javabible.com). A book I've bought a while ago and I've spend some time reading it (at a low priority). It's a nice help for people learning Java2
. Altough it's now a bit outdated (jdk 1.3.x) it still covers a wide introduction. Two positive points are that it covers the JDBC API and it cover writing Guis, not only applets but real applications. Many Java books (in the time I bought this book), covered only awt and applets, but didn't mention swing or real applications. A negative point is that it contains too many prototype dumps.
De Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown - 30 june 2004 - Dutch - 431 pages
When I saw this book at the bookstore and looked at it I just know it had to be good. I bought it at 11.00 AM and finished it at 00.11 AM. It was simply impossible to stop reading. On the cover is quote from a reviewer who calls this book "the definition of a pageturner" which is in my opinion the best description possible for this book. But since it's based on existing facts it's sometimes difficult to draw the line between fact and fiction. E.g. on Leanardo Da Vinci's Last Supper fresco looks the person left of Jesus female. Now why's this ? Perhaps it's not John but Mary Magdalene ... Definitely a recommended book.
XML in a Nutshell 2nd edition - Elliotte Rusty Harold & W. Scott Means - 9 june 2004 - English - 614 pages
Yet another O'Reilly, again from the library and agan too little time to finish it properly damn you exams ! Altough it says 614 pages don't expect 614 pages you can read, about 330 pages can be read and the second part (half a book) is filled with references. So if you need a reference get this if you don't try to get 50% reduction (it might work). It's a good book reads easily but near the ends you've read so much new terms (xml, xslt, xpath, xpointer, dom, sax, xsl-fo, rddl, dtd, ...) that the odds that you'll begin confusing some terms gets rahter big.
Het Verdriet van Belgie - Hugo Claus - 21 may 2004 - Dutch - 775 pages
Hugo Claus is said to be one of the best belgian authors and because it was recently his 75th birthday (and there was a promotion on most of his books ;-)) I decided to buy (and read) one I've always wanted to read. So my expectations were rather high, but high expectations are doomed to fall apart and so did these. It is my opinion that this book is rather chaotic and full of jumps. It's not a boring book (else I would have stopped reading it after hundred pages) but it's also nothing I wanted it to be. To summarize: not my style of book.
Managing Projects with Make - Andrew Oram & Steve Talbott - 20 may 2004 - English - 150 pages
This is YAOR (Yet Another O'Reilly), covering the make utility. Although make isn't a very difficult utility (once you know the syntax) it has some features that can make it really powerful. The only problem is there are a lot of make versions out there and each adds its own touch to it, so this book covers the most common features. A good book altough it contains some outdated parts.
Practical C Programming (3rd edition) - Steve Oualline - 8 may 2004 - English - 428 pages
Again an O'Reilly by the same other who wrote Practical C++ Programming (see below). As you might guess, this book is the C flavor of the Practical C++ Programming book. But it's a pity that a big part is copied between the two books with only the adaption to the programming language. If you've read one of these books, don't read the second because the biggest part is the same. Replace printf by cout, new by malloc en delete by free and you'll have to other book. (Except the object oriented part). Nevertheless if I've read this book without reading Practical C++ Programming I would find this book much better. It is a good book only the copy paste trick isn't very appreciated.
Masters of Doom - David Kushner - 7 may 2004 - English - 335 pages
I first read about this book on a weblog of a friend of mine. And when I read the book was about how John Carmack and John Romero (the Keen, Wolfensteind 3D, Doom, Quake, .. guys who founded ID software) their lives, I knew I just had to read this book. Everyone who has ever played one of their games should be obligated to read this book. These guys just started with nothing more than a passion and made themselves big.I especially liked this.
De wraak van het Lam Gods - Rudy Pieters - 18 april 2004 - Dutch - 368 pages
A book covering the mystery after the theft of the Just Judges∞
part of an altarpiece that currently stands in St Bavon in Ghent (Belgium) (without the Just Judges, which is still missing after the theft). Since the person that could be the thief (Arsene Goedertier) lived in the town where I was born (Wetteren) I've always been fascinated by this mystery and I've seen some documentary's about it but this is the first book/documentary that uses facts (from newspaper archives and police interviews) to build its story unlike the documentary's I've seen where a conspiracy theory is used to build the story.
Chaos, Fractals & Dynamica - Robert L. Devaney - 18 april 2004 - Dutch - 180 pages
An easy to understand/follow intruduction to the world of fractals. The only negative point is that it borrowed this book from the school library and you can't borrow this books for an infinite amount of time so I had to hurry reading the last chapters. Good book, altough a bit outdated, covers computer experiments in (*yuck*) BASIC, but I had enough selfrespect to do these experiments in Matlab ;-)
Hoe Schrijf ik een Scriptie - Umberto Eco - 30 march 2004 - Dutch - 275 pages
This is a book telling you how to write a thesis. But it is my opinion that this book rather sucks, it is way outdated (written in the seventies but got updated) so computer or the Internet isn't mentioned in it. It was an Italian book, the Dutch translater adapted it to the Dutch situation but I'm Belgian... . So this was a bit a waste of time altough I found a small amount of good tips.
Programming with GNU Software - Mike Loukides & Andy Oram - 22 march 2004 - English - 245 pages
An O'Reilly covering C/C++ development under Linux/Unix using GNU tools like Emacs, the GNU compiler collection, gdb, make,... a real suggestion to anyone who knows C/C++ and would like to get an overview of the help that is offered by some GNU applications. Personnally I found the gdb chapter the most interesting.
De Leeuw van Vlaanderen of de slag der gulden sporen - Hendrik Conscience - 20 march 2004 - Dutch - 368 pages
This book is a piece of Belgian history, it is written in 1838 and it tells about the 'Slag der gulden sporen' (in Dutch) or the liberation of Flanders from France (the battle was fought in 1302). It is a combination between a good story and a piece of history (of history that is relevant to me) which made it a good mix.
De Rozenmoorden - Anna Kalman - 28 february 2004 - Dutch - 221 pages
I needed something to read on the train and my girlfriend (Els) finished this book yesterday so it was my turn to read it today and I really enjoyed it. The book is a so called psychological thriller which looks and reads like a detective. No need to say that the butler did it.
Getting Started with MATLAB Version 6 - Mathworks inc. - 26 february 2004 - English - 138 pages
Since I will be needing Matlab to do my final year these I think it doesn't do any harm preparing a bit for this and this is the first Matlab 'book' I read, in fact this is an online available PDF which can be downloaded from the Mathworks site. Printed versions are also available but these are cheaper. It's an interesting book, it gives a short introduction to all matlab aspect likes Matrix operation, plotting, gui development and function. It doesn't go in detail about it (it is an introduction, what did you expect ?), it just mentions what it is, how you use it and illustrates this with an example (which makes it a book you should read with matlab next to you so you can play with the things you just read). Really a good introduction to Matlab.
Schaum's outlines: Essential Computer Mathematics - Seymour Lipschutz - 18 february 2004 - English
A Schaum's outlines which has been lying here for some time now, I always started reading it but always stopped after some time but I finally finished it today. Last year I started created a 'Solutions guide' for this book but the .tex source got lost along with a root partition. Anyhow the book is finished now, most of the subjects that were covered were things I already learned in school but reading things you already now can be quite relaxing.
Jongens en wetenschap 2 - Sven Speybrouck & Koen Fillet - 6 february 2004 - Dutch
The second book (see Jongens en wetenschap more below). Personally I think this book is a bit better than the first one because the second book contains more (scientific) jokes than the first one. A fun read, really learned some interesting stuff. I hope there will be a third part next year (I got this as a gift from Els).
Gestructureerde Computerarchitectuur - Andrew Tanenbaum - 28 january 2004 - Dutch
Another book on computers but this one I had to read for school. I had a class called 'System Archtitecture' which used this book as a coursebook. And having to read something makes it always less appealing. The book is a little bit out of date (covers Pentium II and such) but who can stay up to date with the current rate of hardware development ?
Genes, the fight for life - Brian J. Ford - 2 january 2004 - English
One of the first non fictional books which has nothing to see with computers. It's a nice book and it really opens your eyes to microscopic world. The best part is one of the last chapters in the book where the author makes a connection between microbiological behaviour and the behaviour of people. Nice book, also for people whose field is something else than biology or genetics.
Learning the BASH Shell 2nd edition- Cameron Newham & Bill Rosenblatt - 1 january 2004 - English
Yet another O'Reilly, this one covers the Bash shell and Bash shell programming, which is interesting since Bash is $HOME since a long time and I have an upcoming test on Bash programming and a bit of background knowledge is always welcome. It's a nice book but there are already a lot of online (free as in free speech and as in free beer) references out there, but if you like dead trees (or see it in a library like I did) why not ?
The Girl who loved Tom Gordon - Stephen King - 20 December 2003 - English
This was a nice book (not a big book, about 200 pages which I finished in a day and a half). It was easy reading but a bit predictable. After reading the short content you already knew how it was going to end.
Het Parfum, de geschiedenis van een moordernaar - Patrick Suskind - 2 November 2003 - Dutch
Reading this book was quite an experience I found myself attached to this book, once I started it I wanted to spend as much as time possible reading the book. It was a fantastic book. The only problem is that is a reprint, printed in 2003, but that it still is written in the old spelling so it contains some spelling errors which are really annoying. A Dutch quote from the book is : " Maar zo'n mensenlijf is taai en laat zich niet zo makkelijk stuktrekken, zelfs paarden hebben daar nog de grootste moeite mee". Anyhow, I really enjoyed reading this book and if you want a book suggestion from me, read this.
Linux Assembly - H.P. Berends - 12 October 2003 - Dutch
This is a free book which can be found here. It is written in dutch but this book is fantastic. I really enjoyed learning/reading my way thru this book. It really gives you a good introduction and some knowledge of what can be found "under the hood". It contains a wide variety of examples, the author did a hell of a job on this book.
De Droogte - Herman Brusselmans - 29 September 2003 - Dutch
A book from my favorite belgian author Herman Brusselmans, I really like this author his style, in the past i have read about 80 percent of the books he has already written. In my opinion this book is another masterpiece, too bad not everyone is so fond of his style.
SQL Unleashed 2nd ed - Sakhr Youness - 18 September 2003 - English
This is a good book if you are using micro$oft sql server (hello ms-sql worm) or Oracle but I am not running those, I am still happy with mysql database so somehwere at page 250 I got tired of having to skip m$/oracle specific sections. The mysql manual is a better reference for me than this book. (Update 21th December 2003) But now I need to work with Oracle for school and this book turns out to be a great reference now.
Didactiels OpenGL - Xavier Michelon - 10 August 2003 - French
Online tutorials about OpenGL
available from the LinuxGraphic
website, only available in French. These tutorials are a nice introduction to OpenGL
Core C++ - Victor Shtern - July 2003 - English
Excellent book covering the object oriented aspects of the C++ programming language, I really enjoyed reading this book.
Red Hat Linux Sys Admin Handbook - Kominski & Collett - July 2003 - English
This book I goot for free at a large book event in Ghent in december, it did not contain much things I did not already know but it was for free and it made time pass while I was on the train travelling to my summer job.
Jongens en wetenschap - Sven Speybrouck & Koen Fillet - March 2003 - Dutch
The book after the belgian radio programma on radio 1. A fun read, it is nice to read about some basic events explained in a scientific way. Questions like, do you own the air above and the ground beneath a piece of land that you have bought. And what is the best way to defrost something ? I really had some fun reading and learning my way thru this book.
Geheime Dagboeken - Kurt Cobain - March 2003 - Dutch
You are a Nirvana fan or you aren't.
Linux Device Drivers 2nd edition - O'Reilly - February 2003 - English
This book was a little bit to theoretical so I only made it halfway thru this book.
Java 2 - Brit Schroker - January 2003 - English
I got this book for 1 EUR on a book event so one can not complain about the price but the book is published by easy computing which about says enough.
De Slinger Van Foucault - Umberto Eco - 20 october 2002 - Dutch
I really like " In the name of the rose " by Umberto Eco so my hopes were a little bit too high when I started reading this book.
Practical C++ Programming - Steve Oualline - 5 August 2002 - English
A very good book covering the basics about C++ and the basic utilities like make, it doesn't cover OOP in a way I would want it to be, the book is currently at its 2nd edition. My copy is never far from my desk.
Gewoon voor de fun - Linus Torvalds - 31 July 2002 - Dutch
This was a nice read, getting to know the big brain after my favorite operating system a little better. But for the record I still like Tux more than the pink triangle Linus suggested at first.
Deus Ex Machina - Pierre Ouellette - 24 May 2002 - Dutch
Nice techie book.
Omerta - Mario Puzo - 17 April 2002 - Dutch
I am really fond of the Godfather series and this book by the same author (wo already passed away) covers the same subject.
Other books that I've read (some long long time ago) and that deserve my respect:
- Books by Franz Kafka
- The Universe by Stephen Hawking
- Userfriendly∞ comics
- The linux network administration guide
- Hannibal by Thomas Harris
- American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
- 1984 by George Orwell
- Brave new World by Aldous Huxley
- The Hitchhikers guide to the galaxy by Douglas Adams
- The Godfather by Mario Puzo
- Books by Herman Brusselmans