Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Books Seeking Readers

Dear Readers,

Every once in a while (actually annually), I like to go through a list of the books that I have bought in the past year and see how much usage the books are getting. It is a fun analytical exercise and helps me choose what to buy in the future. Sometimes I run into unused books and think, "why on earth has no one yet checked out this book?" So I decided to feature a few (in CS this time), and give them a chance to make a pitch for themselves.

Book seeking reader
Reader wanted for book on cryptography and information theory. I am very readable and would probably be most interesting to people without a strong background in either topic. I would especially like to be read by an undergraduate who is interested in seeing connections between computers and everyday life. My name is Decoding the Universe: How the New Science of Information is Explaining Everything in the Cosmos, from our Brains to Black Holes.

Bachelor (or bachelorette) number two is a somewhat drier sounding book named Researching Information Systems and Computing. This book is perfect for a beginning masters or PhD student in CS who would like to get a broad picture of the types of research (methodology not subject) done in CS.

Our third contestant is a very interesting collection of essays which is available either as a printed book or an e-book. The Handbook of Bioinspired Algorithms and Applications is probably most interesting to advanced researchers in neural networks and automata. The book has several articles on what we can learn about processes from bees and ants. This book is thoughtful and insightful, but has no real sense of humor.

I would also like to call your attention to:Guide to RISC Processors: For Programmers and Engineers (readable and educational)

I have no doubt that these books will eventually develop a rich social life, but I thought I would try to help them out a little. All of the books can be found in our Scotty catalog.

As usual, I welcome your comments.