Illusory Follies Andrew Flanagan's Blog

23Jan/093

O’Reilly Books

home_tarsier (Copyright O'Reilly Media)I love almost all the O'Reilly books that I've read. The content is great. The style is readable. The quality is excellent.

I've heard of Safari Books Online over the last year or two and I've been thinking about it more recently. Safari Books offers unlimited access for $42.99/month to all the O'Reilly books. At first blush, it seems expensive. Yes, it's nice to be able to do a full-text search through a printed book that's sitting in front of you -- those "index" things in the back are so hard to use! 😉 but at the same time, I don't typically enjoy reading things on the computer for extended periods if time.

...But I'm trying it anyway. My thought is that over the last 12 months I think I've spent at least $50/month on technical books. Most of them (all but 3 I think) have been O'Reilly.

oreilly_large (Copyright O'Reilly Media)

Anybody reading this used Safari Books? Any opinions? I'll post my thoughts in the next week when I make the decision whether to keep the subscription or not.

Pictures used in this post are owned by O'Reilly.

2Jan/094

Reading

Having been encouraged by others and having wanted to do so for a while, I'm going to attempt a little more intensive reading list than usual. We'll see how far it gets. I've been getting bogged down in technical books that relate or very tangentially relate to work. It's a lot of fun, but it's been difficult to read much else. I'm going to largely put that on hold (unless of course I can read at work when I'm on the clock) and instead focus on a rather largish stack of books that I have currently here at home. This includes:

The Baptism of Disciples Alone by Fred Malone (obviously a book that advocates the traditional Baptist view. I've read about half of this, loaned it to a friend, and never finished it. I liked the reasoning and Biblical support that I'd read so far).books_in_library

The World is Flat 3.0 by Thomas L. Friedman (just curious...)

The Art of Deception by Kevin D. Mitnick (never finished -- essentially a guide to social engineering. Computer Security is something I deal with in my professional life quite a bit but this book is focused on, as it puts it, "Controlling the human element of security". Should be a neat read)

The Discarded Image: An Introduction to Medieval and Renaissance Literature by C. S. Lewis (had this lying around for a while -- a little off-topic from my normal reading interest so it'll probably be kind of interesting)

Confessions by St. Augustine (have started and read many excerpts -- and listened to most of it on audio-book -- but have never completed it)

The  Revolution: A Manifesto by Ron Paul (never finished it!)

Pierced by the Word by John Piper (received as a gift -- looks like a good devotional read. I don't like everything by Piper but he challenges you and that's always good)

Banvard's Folly: Thirteen Tales of People Who Didn't Change the World by Paul Collins (Received I believe for my birthday last year and never completed -- it's a blast -- history of people who were almost famous)

Precious Remedies Against Satan's Devices by Thomas Brooks (I think I read this in high school but I figured I'd have another go at it)

The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie (never finished)

Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller (recommended by a friend, not recommended by another friend. We'll see on this one...)

The Kingdom of the Cults by Walter Martin (skimmed various sections by I really should just read the whole thing and be done with it)

The Prodigal God by Timothy Keller (Just started on this after stealing--I mean borrowing--from my mother-in-law. I'll return it soon!)

Uncle John's Biggest Ever Bathroom Reader (ok fine -- I probably won't ever finish this book. But depending on the amount of fiber in my diet this year, I may be able to make a dent in this hefty tome)

Update: Added a few new entries -- I'll probably just update this post as I add to my list so this likely will change over time...