I thought I’d jot down my current technical reading list. I tend not to read technical books straight through, but instead I pick up a few at a time and refresh myself on whatever I’m interested in at the time. (Full disclosure: these links include my Amazon affiliate code).
- Learning Mysql
Back in 2002 I got my exposure to SQL while doing elemntary PHP programming. I read a little about MySQL back then, but never really went deep into things such as indexes and optimizations. Rails obscures a lot of that stuff, but I wanted to be able to optimize efficiently and learn more about the underlying technology. So far this book has been really good at diving down underneath your SELECT, UPDATE, CREATE, and DROP actions.
- Metaprogramming Ruby
This is bar none my favorite Ruby book, and in my opinion is far better than the Pickaxe book for those who are coming to Ruby from another language/ecosystem. The fellas at Bendyworks have been doing a bi-weekly book club on this book and I’ve happily attended as many as I could to talk about it. This book goes into incredible, understandable detail about the object model and dynamic nature of programming in Ruby. It gets my highest recommendation.
- C Programming: A Modern Approach
My college computer science curriculum was in C++ and Java. My job at Intuit involves C/C++/C# development, but it tends to fall heavily into the C++/C# side of things. I respect the hell out of Zed Shaw’s outlook on programming, and truly believe that a working knowledge of C development will take you far. To that end, I’ve been working through Learn C the Hard Way online while reading this superb book. I also purchased the original The C Programming Language book, but A Modern Approach is, in my opinion, superior as a reference and primer.
My technical reading list changes often; I’ll usually read through three books over the course of several weeks and then pull more off my shelf and refresh myself on a different topic. It’s why I also buy books on the periphery of my interests just to have them on my shelf. I enjoy having the references available, even if I don’t read them as soon as they arrive.