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Hackers & Painters: Big Ideas from the Computer Age
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I'm surprised no one in this thread has mentioned Hacker & Painters: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1449389554
This is the book that really got me into programing. I'd tried programming before, and had even studied a C++ textbook and written some simple programs. But it really hadn't clicked. Graham's points about the fundamental expressiveness of different programming languages really blew my mind. This started a chain of "learn language X and try to build Y" for different values of X and Y.
Part of what I realized is how much I had been hampered by how difficult C++ is to pick up (especially with the IDEs of the early 2000s, which would give you an "empty" project with a couple hundred lines of code in it). When I realized that to write a Perl script, all I needed to do was open Notepad and start from an empty file, it was just so unbelievably liberating. That and also, obviously, just how much easier dynamic languages are to work with in general. Of course I eventually came back to C++, but that was the spark which kicked off a journey that lead to me flying through CS in college and eventually ending up in a PhD program.
Edit: Fixed link. Note also that the essays are available online for free, though you have to reverse engineer the reading order from the table of contents.
Paul Graham's essays aren't just "kind of" a book, they are a book. (A very good one BTW)
Of course, the original comparison between coders and artists was made by Paul Graham in Hackers and Painters:
Pretty surprised to not see Hackers and Painters: https://www.amazon.com/Hackers-Painters-Big-Ideas-Computer/d...
Sorry if I'm going too far on a tangent here, but has anyone bought his book Hackers & Painters: Big Ideas from the Computer Age ?
It has been on my wishlist for quite a while now. The reviews are quite positive.
⬐ justinzollarsLoved this book.
She might find inspiration in Paul Graham's "Hackers and Painters"
"The computer world is like an intellectual Wild West, in which you can shoot anyone you wish with your ideas, if you're willing to risk the consequences."
I'm not much of a butt-licker, but Hackers and Painters: Big Ideas from the Computer Age from PG is a classic. http://www.amazon.com/Hackers-Painters-Big-Ideas-Computer/dp...
Links to buy/sample the book:
⬐ yuvipandaAnd for those who want to buy it in India:
+1 for Cryptonomicon. It isn't the easiest book to get through, but it's very worthwhile.
Another couple of possibilities might be:
The Soul of a New Machine - Tracy Kidder
The Cuckoo's Egg: Tracking a Spy Through the Maze of Computer Espionage - Clifford Stoll
Hackers & Painters - Paul Graham (yes, that Paul Graham)
That's for the kindle version, but the paperback edition is $11 .
⬐ defroostSo you save a whole dollar and 51 cents. Big deal. I'd just as soon order it from Amazon, who in general has much better prices than direct from O'Reilly.⬐ araneaeI would rather order it from anyone but Amazon, who has been started removing "offensive" books from the Kindle store left and right.⬐ grinichCitation?⬐ araneaeTwo blog posts from affected authors:
This first one was on HN: http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2007395⬐ puredemoInteresting links, thanks.
It's only $12.23 on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Hackers-Painters-Big-Ideas-Computer/dp...
for the dead tree version.
Direct link to the book, skipping the tweet http://oreilly.com/catalog/9781449389550/
Or at Amazon.com for $12.23 http://www.amazon.com/Hackers-Painters-Big-Ideas-Computer/dp...