...my rule is: you don't throw away good computer books, period.

Most folks at my palace de ork are...odd, to put it nicely: today I strolled over to the "Dispose Me!" desk in the hallway which is often stacked with orphaned books (today: loads of Flash, Dreamweaver and other less interesting stuff) and there I picked up this Absolute Gem: the 1977 hardcover edition of Donald Alcock's Illustrating Basic. (I very much recommend checking out the PDF excerpt. 134 pages of hand-lettered and -drawn illustrated goodness.)

Picture this: the person who dumped it, has had it since 1978 and nevertheless decided to toss out this classic.

These are people who'd throw out a full Knuth to make space for "Vista for Dummies"!

On similar occasions in the past I did inherit/adopt/reverently provide a new home to: Tanenbaum's Structured Computer Organization, Sterling+Shapiro's The Art of Prolog, one of the compiler bibles, The TCL/TK book and sundry Lesser Goodies. But enough of that; their (unfelt?) pain, my gain.

One of the cool things about the Basic book is that it's well written, and actually had enough appeal for Conny to spontaneously start learning how to program today. She did her first few experimental programs (with bwbasic and emacs on my/her Debian laptop) just this evening and so far is pretty much thrilled by what one can do. Pretty cool, and I hope she gets something of lasting value out of it.

Go Conny! :-)

[ published on Tue 13.05.2008 23:21 | filed in interests/au | ]
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