Mary Rose Cook's notebook

The public parts of my notebook.

My homepage.

Books I read in 2016

Clean Code, Robert C. Martin

Lots of applicable advice.

The Software Craftsman, Sandro Mancuso

Apprenticeship Patterns, Dave Hoover and Adewale Oshineye

Practical Object Oriented Programming in Ruby, Sandi Metz

Describes a useful toolkit for writing OO programs.

Infinite Loop, Michael Malone

I wanted this to be more about design and less about business.

How Children Fail, John Holt

Lucid accounts of the practicalities of helping children learn. Gold dust.

Make it Stick, Peter C. Brown, Henry L. Roediger and Mark A. McDaniel

Techniques for how to learn topics well enough to apply them.

Going Solo, Roald Dahl

A very interesting account of when Dahl was a fighter pilot in WW2.

Reinventing Organizations, Frederic Laloux

The Design of Everyday Things, Donald Norman

Half of it is about systems for formally analysing designs. Half of it is examples. Pretty good.

Envisioning Information, Edward Tufte

Many examples of visualisations, with analysis and evaluation. I wanted this to include a system to use when designing visualisations.

Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari

Loved the parts about anthropology. Didn’t like the whirlwind tour of societies.

Do No Harm, Henry Marsh

The essay about an operation to repair an aneurysm is very interesting and exciting. Most of the rest of the book is boring reflections on foolish hospital practices.

Dealers of Lightning, Michael A. Hiltzik

A good overview of XEROX PARC. I wanted more about the technology and less about the personalities.

Spelunky, Derek Yu

Eloquent Ruby, Russ Olsen

A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry

Blew my mind. The first novel I’ve enjoyed in many years. So restrained and careful.

The Process of Education, Jerome Bruner

Amazing ideas about intuition, spiraling, and how all learning should be about getting to the structural truth of a topic. I adored his idea that children who are studying a topic should be doing the same activities as an expert researcher. Little physicists in white coats and safety goggles.

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