Larry Hosken: New: Tag: unfinished

Book Report: Don't Get Too Comfortable

It's essays by David Rakoff. The first few in the collection were so unenthusiastic about everything that I wondered how did this end up on my to-read list? Then I was reminded: this collection includes J.D.V. M.I.A., his report on playing in New York City's Midnight Madness game. He didn't like it. On the one hand, as you read over the report, you can see some things about the hunt that perhaps made it not-so-fun: lots of emphasis on "aha," not much "grind" for each puzzle; so if a team didn't spot the "aha", there probably wasn't much for them to do except sit and stew and feel frustrated. On the other hand, there also seems to be some sour grapes; he turns up his nose at folks who enjoy such activities. Since I enjoy such activities, I just thought "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man" and was glad to have an excuse to stop reading the collection.

Permalink
& Comments

Book Report: Java Concurrency in Practice I work with the Scala programming language but Scala runs on the JVM, the Java Virtual Machine. This is pretty important. Java turned out to be an icky programming language, but some smart folks have...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Tubes It's a book about the physical structure of the internet. So you'd expect that I couldn't put it down. But oh man. Early on in the book, there's a sentence I share all these quotidian details of tr...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Professor Moriarty: the Hound of the D'Urbervilles What if there were sequels to a bunch of pulp books I never read in which their protagonists confronted Professor Moriarty (of the Sherlock Holmes stories)? Those Sherlock Holmes stories that I thoug...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Corner It's a year in the life of an open-air drug market in Baltimore. Most of the folks in the neighborhood are addicts and/or dealers, and thus most of the folks in this book are, too. I didn't finish re...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Boswell's Life of Johnson Oh man I only made it like halfway through part 1. People keep recommending this to me. Samuel Johnson was some writer. As such, he produced some interesting work. But at least as near as I coul...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Four Steps to the Epiphany You're trying to put together a new product. Steven Gary Blank, author of The Four Steps to the Epiphany, doesn't want you to give the early version away. His test for a viable product isn't "Will pe...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Crossworld You'd think that I'd like to read a book about competitive crossword-puzzle solving featuring a first-hand report on playing in the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. Crossworld is such a book, fr...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Information Yay, no mouse sounds latetly; I guess the mouse didn't stick around. Kinda like me when I tried to read the book The Information. DNF. This book is about information theory. It talks about symbols, l...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Tactile Morse Code Sometimes, you can judge a book by its cover. I don't feel that I need to read the book Tactile Morse Code because its cover explains its system pretty well. Bonus irony points for being a book about...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Bird Cloud It's by Annie Proulx, so the writing's pretty good. It's about how she had a house build out in some windswept spot in Wyoming. Or at least, that's what it was about when I stopped reading it. The wr...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The 48 Laws of Power This book tries to tell you how to get ahead by lying to people. It keeps telling you how powerful you'll be if only you follow its advice; it tells you that people who try to be "nice" are doomed to...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Silicon Eye You think that you understand something, but then you figure out that you don't understand it after all. You've built up this model in your head, then you see something that doesn't fit the model. To...

Permalink & Comments

For old time's sake, looked at the Rapture Index. It's showing Google Ads now. If he figures he'll be around long enough to spend the money, that's a good sign, right? ...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Tilings and Patterns I know what you're thinking: Oh no, Larry tried to read another math book. No doubt this means the blog's"unfinished" tag will soon be attached to another book report. But I made it to the end of t...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Nmap Network Scanning I just got back from a 9-day tour of various western USA places as the Grand Tetons, Yellowstone, Kodachrome, and Zion National Park. Along the way, I busted my travel laptop, so I haven't been upda...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Finite Fields for Computer Scientists and Engineers I'm not at Blackhat, nor will I be any time soon. Crypto is hard. I didn't finish this math book, Finite Fields for Computer Scientists and Engineers. My math is pretty shaky. Usually, when I'm t...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Two Bits Two Bits is a book about the free software movement, explained in terms that an academic can understand. The author tries to steer around debates about what exactly constitutes an example of Haberma...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Internet in China (Zixue Tai) It's going to sound like I'm slamming this book, like it's bad. It's not bad. I just chose the wrong book, is all. The thing is: this is an academic work. [It might also sound like I'm obscurely refe...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Remix It's a book by Lawrence Lessig from 2008, and therefore it's about copyright law. (Nowadays he does election finance reform. Back then he was all about the copyrights.) It's about mashups. It's ai...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Stiff (The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers) There's some interesting stuff in this book about scientific, medical, and engineering-testing uses of human cadavers. There's some interesting stuff, but there's some "humorous" reportage to slog t...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Super Spy It is a comic book, a collection of little spy stories. I bought it because it was an Amazon recommendation (albeit a tepid Amazon recommendation) and it had Morse Code on the cover. I didn't like ...

Permalink & Comments

Zine Report: Wired 17.05 (May 2009) I picked up the latest issue of Wired. A bunch of famous puzzlers made puzzles for it. There's, like, hidden puzzles inside. I didn't make it very far. There's a lot of stuff in Wired magazine. ...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Code I picked up this book because I'd heard it talked about codes and also about digital circuit design, two topics dear to my heart. I started on it and it seemed pretty readable. But it stayed with p...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Best American Essays 2006 It's a collection of essays, not in any particular field. Apparently essayists, when they aren't writing about something in particular--uhm, apparently, they tend to write about themselves. Or else ...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire I guess I made through ~100 pages of palace intrigue before I realized I don't especially want to read through that much palace intrigue. Yeah, that's right, I'm yet another person who made it partw...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Engineering the City This book, Engineering the City showed up as an Amazon.com-recommended book, probably because I liked Brian Hayes' book Infrastructure so much. I kinda wish I'd paid more attention to the details of...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Googleを支える技術 I'm a technical writer. Technical writers write tersely. This promotes quick comprehension. If your writing is translated, there is another benefit. The translator does not need to work so hard. ...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Craftsman In a passing reference to this book, The Craftsman, I got the impression that it was a book that studied how people think when they're working. But it isn't that at all. I wish instead people had p...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Competing on Internet Time, Breaking Windows Competing on Internet Time This book is about the rise of Netscape including competing with Microsoft, contrasting Netscape's nimble pace to Microsoft's slow release cycles. I didn't finish the book...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: TCP/IP Illustrated Network programming today... gee, I just call into some standard library, say, "I want the webpage at http://slashdot.org/" and it's there. It's almost that easy. You kids today, you don't know how...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Principles of Instructional Design This is the third book on instructional design I tackled reading. It's also the wordiest. "When one begins to think about the application of learning principles to instruction, there is no better g...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Keeping Found Things Found This book's title is misleading: it make sense. This book's preface is misleading: it makes sense, too. It took a while before I realized that the book was noodling all over the place but not actual...

Permalink & Comments

Unread Books "Meme" via Journeywoman, a "meme" that's almost on topic with my recent whining about Russian novels: What we have here is the top 106 books most often marked as "unread" by LibraryThing’s users. As in,...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: War and Peace Russian novels are long. Back in high school, my English class was supposed to read Crime and Punishment. Our teacher asked for a show of hands: how many of us had finished reading the book. Mine ...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: On Food and Cooking Here is the recipe I follow for tamales: 1. remove two tamales from package. 2. place in pot with steamer rack 3. place on high heat 4. get distracted by computer stuff, lose track of time 4. when ap...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Inmates are Running the Asylum I didn't finish reading this book. It's about software usability. Well, the first few dozen pages were about the importance of software usability, with precious little advice on how to achieve same...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Devices and Desires Monday did not go as I hoped. Monday, I thought I was going in for HEAD & NECK SURGERY. Instead, I was going in to the Head and Neck Surgery department so they could look at my lip, diagnose tha...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Universal Selection Theory and the Second Darwinian Revolution Ron and Sua are moving soon; last night I helped Ron to pack up the library. "You should read this," he said, showing me a book. Its title was Skepticism and ... uhm, Skepticism and .... Uhm. I f...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: A Tree Grows in Brooklyn I started reading this book because it was highly recommended by Wikilens. I stopped reading it because I didn't want to read more about day-to-day life in Brooklyn. The first hundred pages were fa...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Leave me Alone, I'm Reading Today at lunch, the conversation was all about web application security. No, wait, it wasn't even about web application security. It was about what sort of effort it would take to educate computer ...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Happiness (Lessons from a New Science) Yesterday, I was walking in the Mission district and ran into Janak R. Janak just finished up an internship at my place of employment; soon he will go back to UCB. He asked, "Do you live around here...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Lunch Lessons Those Debian install CDs showed up. Fortunately, I have two computers. So here I sit, typing on the laptop-- uhm, excuse me. OK, I'm back. Here I sit on the laptop, occasionally pausing to swap C...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Assassination Vacation Pre-book-report non sequiturs can be fun: Darcy Krasne. We now return you to today's Book Report, already in progress. ...ever get published? Though this book is by Sarah Vowell, I blame its widesp...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Undercover Economist It's another book explaining economics to the masses. Why did I start reading this? I should have known better. I've read too many popular-economics books lately. I stopped reading this one part...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: the Birth of Plenty Most books are boring. Most books about economics are boring. But a few stand out, are interesting. Some reviewers fooled me into thinking The Birth of Plenty would be interesting. Those reviewer...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Out of Control Interesting reporting and interviews about bottom-up organization, order from chaos, and emergent behavior. Plus some talk about What It All Means. Unfortunately, it doesn't take much talk about Wh...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: The Battle Over Hetch Hetchy I finished playing the excellent game Psychonauts! It was totally worth buying an XBox just to play this game. Actually, I didn't make it to the end of the game. I made it to the start of the "mea...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Remaking the World This is a collection of essays by Henry Petrowski about engineering. I suspect that he was paid by the word. The first essay is about the engineer Charles Steinmetz. But Petrowski wants an angle on S...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Last Crossing It's pancake day, and I'm sick with a cold. Normally, I love pancakes, but today my body craves only soup, gruel, and tea. So be it. There will be other opportunities to eat pancakes. Today, I st...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Krakatoa Krakatoa was a volcano that got bigger and bigger until it blew up. Krakatoa was a book that got longer and longer until I just didn't want to hear any more about volcanoes, the Reuters news service...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Portuguese Irregular Verbs I posted a new travelog on this site, but I don't think it turned out very well. So I'm not going to link to it from here. I won't take the time to point out stuff I've done that doesn't read well....

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Old Goriot It's a French slice of life showing how petty greed and ambition amongst the middle classes can lead to zzz.... I only made it a few chapters into this book. Tags: book | once ground-breaking&...

Permalink & Comments

Book Report: Dreadnought My cousin Betsy was in town this last weekend. She was full of energy. My parents and I had to take her in shifts, and we still got worn out keeping up with her. I accompanied her to a couple of m...

Permalink & Comments

Updates:

Tags