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The Virtual Bookcase : Shelf Computer history/fun

Books about the history of computing or about the current state in a serious or humoristic way.

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virtualbookcase.com score: 4.0 ++++-
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There are enough books 'out there' about the history of the Internet, such as 'Casting the Net' or about modern computing. This book is different. In the first part, "Before the computer", it goes back to the original ancestors of the current computers like the ideas of Charles Babbage. In the second part, "Creating the computer", the original designs and the original function of the computer as a big calculator is given room. Projects like the Hollerith machine built for the US Census. The rise and fall of the mainframe computer and the special place of IBM in this part of computer history is described very well. Other books don't give "the computer as business tool" much of a chance, this book does. The third part "Innovation and expansio... Rest of this review on the detail page
(Review by Koos van den Hout)
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Reviews (2) and details of Computer: A history of the information machine
virtualbookcase.com score: 5.0 +++++
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A humourous dictionary of computer terms with comments. A lot of the inside-joke variety so it's only funny to computer buffs
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Reviews (2) and details of The Computer Contradictionairy
virtualbookcase.com score: 4.0 ++++-
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This book describes the phreaking and hacking activities of Kevin Poulsen. His phreaking combined with social engineering and breaking into phone company buildings. For a book written by a journalist based on interviews it is a pretty complete description of the activities of a phreaker. The book seems seriously influenced by 'The Watchman' about Kevin Mitnick (also by Jonathan Littman). This influence is especially noticable in the last part of the book as a decline in quality. The reader of the book may be getting the idea Kevin Poulsen is still in jail after hacking into every Pac Bell system available but in the end the jailtime wasn't that long. Nowadays Kevin Poulsen writes for Wired magazine, including articles about phone security a... Rest of this review on the detail page
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Reviews (2) and details of The Watchman
virtualbookcase.com score: 5.0 +++++
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A book by Clifford Stoll (famous for the Cuckoo's egg) on his thoughts on how everything has to be 'information highway' nowadays, which he sees as a danger to real communities and people cooperating and meeting eachother for real.
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Reviews (1) and details of Silicon Snake Oil
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