best books...ever

This is a discussion on best books...ever within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; Hmm... If you want philosophy, I'd say Plato's Republic, though good and a classic, is a bit difficult. Not in ...

  1. #46
    Toaster Zach L.'s Avatar
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    Hmm... If you want philosophy, I'd say Plato's Republic, though good and a classic, is a bit difficult. Not in the message or the style, but some of Socrates's generalizations make me think he had a bit too much wine at that party.

    If you don't mind Wittgenstein's terse format, or you are a math person, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus is an excellent book.

    Ayn Rand is very good as well. The Virtue of Selfishness is probably one of the more accessible books/collections of essays. Very interesting, especially if you are interested in the objectivist viewpoint.
    The word rap as it applies to music is the result of a peculiar phonological rule which has stripped the word of its initial voiceless velar stop.

  2. #47
    Pursuing knowledge confuted's Avatar
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    Originally posted by kermit
    So if I did not get mad, but have not participated in any formal cross-x debates, am I allowed to comment? And how would it make a difference if one had participated in a cross-x debate? Just curious.
    If you'd done cross-x debating, you'd understand that you say what you need to say to win (providing you can back it up with facts, even if it contradicts standard opinions). It doesn't mean that you actually believe that - it just means you can make the argument and make it logical and based on facts. Seperate yourself from ethical concerns when necessary in debate. I can, and have, defended genocide in debate. That was pushing it a bit, but you just have to understand that the person reflected in a debate is not (necessarily) the real person.
    Away.

  3. #48
    Registered User axon's Avatar
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    Originally posted by confuted
    If you'd done cross-x debating, you'd understand that you say what you need to say to win (providing you can back it up with facts, even if it contradicts standard opinions). It doesn't mean that you actually believe that - it just means you can make the argument and make it logical and based on facts. Seperate yourself from ethical concerns when necessary in debate. I can, and have, defended genocide in debate. That was pushing it a bit, but you just have to understand that the person reflected in a debate is not (necessarily) the real person.
    Hey, lawyers do it all the time....

    some entropy with that sink? entropysink.com

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  4. #49
    ... kermit's Avatar
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    Originally posted by confuted
    If you'd done cross-x debating, you'd understand that you say what you need to say to win (providing you can back it up with facts, even if it contradicts standard opinions). It doesn't mean that you actually believe that - it just means you can make the argument and make it logical and based on facts. Seperate yourself from ethical concerns when necessary in debate. I can, and have, defended genocide in debate. That was pushing it a bit, but you just have to understand that the person reflected in a debate is not (necessarily) the real person.
    I suppose that is a sufficient answer. Never could see why anybody would want to do a debate of such kind where they might have to defend the side that they don't even agree with. I am not a huge formal debate fan, but when i do listen to the odd one, I like the kind where the opponents are thoroughly versed in their own particular specialty and are passionate about what they are talking about.

  5. #50
    the hat of redundancy hat nvoigt's Avatar
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    Never could see why anybody would want to do a debate of such kind where they might have to defend the side that they don't even agree with.
    Well, you will never be particularly good at getting a point across if you only see your own side of the argument. Looking at the other side of the fence might give you an advantage in your own argumentation.
    hth
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  6. #51
    H&R
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    In line with the original thread title and given where this forum lives, nobody has felt inspired enough to put forward "The C programming language" by Kernaghan and Ritchie, Is this not considered a great book pretending to look shocked or are we sticking to fiction
    YNWA

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  7. #52
    Registered User axon's Avatar
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    Originally posted by H&R
    In line with the original thread title and given where this forum lives, nobody has felt inspired enough to put forward "The C programming language" by Kernaghan and Ritchie, Is this not considered a great book pretending to look shocked or are we sticking to fiction
    I believe that the subject of good programming books have been covered many, many times on these boards!

    some entropy with that sink? entropysink.com

    there are two cardinal sins from which all others spring: Impatience and Laziness. - franz kafka

  8. #53
    Mayor of Awesometown Govtcheez's Avatar
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    Originally posted by axon
    I believe that the subject of good programming books have been covered many, many times on these boards!
    For serious. If we want to do it again, I'll throw in Petzold and Jean Labrosse's book on RTOS's.

  9. #54
    H&R
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    Originally posted by axon
    I believe that the subject of good programming books have been covered many, many times on these boards!
    Of course, but does that stop it being a great book?

    As a side question, which I don't think needs a seperate thread, and given that Barnes & Noble have recently given up on the ebooks market. Do many of you actuall read ebooks or is it mostly paper? Given that I imagine most people here sit in front of a screen all day I wouldn't expect many use ebooks.
    YNWA

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  10. #55
    Registered User axon's Avatar
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    Originally posted by H&R
    Do many of you actuall read ebooks or is it mostly paper? Given that I imagine most people here sit in front of a screen all day I wouldn't expect many use ebooks.
    I personally prefer the trditional book, but yes at times I have read an ebook or two...it is well worth it when you need a certain shortstory that can't be found by itself only in an anthology. So istead of going to the library or buying a big anthology an ebook is all you need,

    axon

    some entropy with that sink? entropysink.com

    there are two cardinal sins from which all others spring: Impatience and Laziness. - franz kafka

  11. #56
    Mayor of Awesometown Govtcheez's Avatar
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    I occasionally read ebooks, but much prefer the real thing.

  12. #57
    & the hat of GPL slaying Thantos's Avatar
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    Of course, but does that stop it being a great book?
    IMO, yes. To me a great book is a piece of litature that I truely enjoy, love, connect with, whatever. I have read a fair share of programming books (and other technical books) and I do no consider them to be along the same lines as the rest of the books listed.

    I see programming books and the like as fat instruction manuals. You can skip around chapters and it can still make sense. Read the last few pages of a progamming book and nothing is lost. Read the last few pages of a great book and you'll lose something.

    Programming books: Good? yes. Great? nope

  13. #58
    Registered User axon's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Thantos

    I see programming books and the like as fat instruction manuals. You can skip around chapters and it can still make sense. Read the last few pages of a progamming book and nothing is lost. Read the last few pages of a great book and you'll lose something.

    Programming books: Good? yes. Great? nope
    I think this goes without saying Thantos, ie shouldn't have been said...oyyy

    some entropy with that sink? entropysink.com

    there are two cardinal sins from which all others spring: Impatience and Laziness. - franz kafka

  14. #59
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    I haven't really had a chance to read many books higher than the level of elementary, save LOTR, Hound of Baskervilles, and Great Expectations, but I'd really love to read the book that the movie K-PAX was based off of. I'd LOVE to find some books on philosophy and physics. Does anybody have any suggestions of good reads on books that basically are a compilation of philosophies and thoughts by a particular person?

  15. #60
    Registered User axon's Avatar
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    Originally posted by frenchfry164
    Does anybody have any suggestions of good reads on books that basically are a compilation of philosophies and thoughts by a particular person?
    for physics try Stephen Hawkins' "Brief history of time" and "a Universe in a Nutshell"...you could buy these as a set which costs like $55 at Borders...but if you ghet lucky Barnes&Noble are discontinuing it and I bought mine for $20! two of them actually, will make for a pretty nice gift someday, hehe. Anyways the books are good as they explain almost everything in very simple language, ie you don't need college math to understand it. Other than the content they are really beautifull books.

    Another very good physics book is Jao Maguejo (sp?) "Variable Speed of Light Theory" (VSL) book. the book ventures into very risky ground. It is the story, or speculation about what if Einstein was wrong, and the spped of light is actually not constant! This theory, if proven will explain a whole bunch of problems in the universe, for example bigbang! The theory itself is getting a lot of attention from the scientific community. This one is really worth reading...but it is costly, about $30 so rent it.

    Philosophy: if you're new to it, buy an anthology of short writtings, essays by various philosophers, starting with classical to contemporary. See what you like and go from there. If you've already been there, then try Kierkegard's "Fear and Trembling" and "the Sickness unto Death". Nietzches' "Beyon Good and Evil" or anything by Spinoza or Sartre...some really good stuff there.


    enjoy, axon

    some entropy with that sink? entropysink.com

    there are two cardinal sins from which all others spring: Impatience and Laziness. - franz kafka

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