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05 February 2008

The sorry state of computing literature

While I was browsing a Borders yesterday evening, a revelation came upon me as to an analogy for the computer book situation:

Imagine in a bookshop that there is a "Food" section where there are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of books, all quite clearly divided into sections:
  • How to eat Pizza
  • How to eat quiche
  • How to eat soup
  • Serving food
  • Table settings
  • The Art of Plating
  • Slicing Turkey
  • Serving Pie
  • Reheating Dinners

Dozens of sections about food... yet none of them actually tell you how to make anything. No ingredients. No recipes.

That is the state of the majority of computer books and computing magazines today.


Eric Herman said...

At least Knuth is still in print.

Giuseppe Maxia said...

that was a brilliant comparison!