New books on the shelf

February 6 2011

I’m investingating structures and behaviour at system level, trying to improve my knowledge in that area with a pragmatic approach, doing a few exercises like reviewing and documenting past projects, and organizing concepts and buzzwords around a “design/software architecture/system architecture” scale.

then finally, bought these books..

“Release It!”, which I’ve first borrowed from company’s bookshelf and read in a rush (mostly on a train, going back and forth in a two weeks consultancy in Venice). one of the most illuminating technical books I’ve ever read, on the topic of architecture and quality attributes.

“Essential Software Architecture”, which I’ve discovered while surfing the Sydney University’s Enterprise-Scale Software Architecture class lectures. seems like a really compact and valuable reference book, giving insights on topics like enterprise application integration, messaging infrastructure, middleware and application servers.

“Software Architecture, Perspectives on an Emerging Discipline”, a ’96 book aiming to organize knowledge and patterns on software architecture styles, as perceived in the nineties: client-server and distributed computing, pipes and filter, layered systems, and the like.

“Software Architecture in Practice”, a huge book from Carnegie Mellon’s SEI institute. well, don’t think I’m fully reading this, I was mainly interested in quality tactics, a cookbook to chose recipes from while looking for specific topics, such as scalability or capacity.

well, my reading list got bigger!

Read my lehapz

October 26 2010

sure, it’s been a long and tough year so far, but we’re almost done. anyway, trying to spot out the good things… something really surprising to me, which I just realized: I’ve been reading a lot. even more surprising: it’s about one year or more since I don’t read any technical book. gosh! that’s really great news! (you know, when you’re addicted..)

so, here’s an handful of book which have been filling my travelling by public transports, while going back and forth to customer office. sorry, it’s mainly an italian book list.

first, thanks to Matteo for a birthday gift, I discovered Jonathan Coe and then read the complete novel bibliography: “La banda dei brocchi”, “Circolo chiuso”, “La famiglia Winshaw”, “Donna per caso”, “L’amore non guasta”, “Questa notte mi ha aperto gli occhi”, “La casa del sonno”, “La pioggia prima che cada”, and the latest novel “I terribili segreti di Maxwell Sim”. they’re all great, Coe is visionary talented writer. really recommended the “trilogy” about contemporary UK history (70′, 80′, 90′) – the first three cited books.

first prize goes to Luther Blissett “Q”, a 600-pages historical novel about Protestant Reformation in the 16th century. this took me just a few weeks to read, because I could not stop reading! writing is incredible, mixing novel with diary pages, battle histories and quasi-original letters. I was astonished when I first understood everything’s almost really happened.

a few crime novels, for those who love crime movies and fictions like me (Davide, I know you’re out there!). I enjoyed reading Kristina Ohlsson “Indesiderata”, a swedish novel about police department working on missing children cases, set in Stocholm. funny enough, I was just back from Stocholm when I started reading (even if I bought the book before planning any travelling there!), so I felt like I was really investingating, moving across those districts and islands. then, Santo Piazzese “Trilogia di Palermo”, a collection of novels set in Palermo with a continous jazz and blues soundtrack playing: yep, you could hear it. simple and nice was Giorgio Scerbanenco “L’antro dei filosofi”. finally, Patricia Cornwell “At Risk”, the only one in english in this list. well, not really “english”, since it’s full of american slangs and dialect idioms, I could hardly follow the reading!

then, a few introspecting and psychological novels. first, Alona Kimhi “La lettrice di Shelley”, a very very very nice story about a girl with affective diseases, her troubles and her artistic works, set in Israel (on my bag while travelling around Portugal). then, Mishima Yukio “Musica”, a diary written by a japanese psychoanalyst about a girl he was trying to help (“music” – which she could not “hear” no more – is the word she refers to while talking about libido). finally, Erri De Luca “Montedidio”, set in a popular distric in Naples, tells a story about a kid forced to grow up: his hard job as craftman, his falling in love and his hopes.

on my desk right now, Haruki Murakami “Norvegian Wood”: simply sweet. almost finished reading, it has awakened the desire in me to write: something I used to do ages ago.

well, considering this is less than a yearly report, did I say I’ve been reading a lot?! hope you could find any suggestion for your next book.

Something to read

January 5 2009

that’s true: i’m on holiday, for a few days more. gifts, eating, relatives, friends and, furthermore, a lot of spare time.

i’ve put hands on keyboard working on stuff for next presentations and had a few spikes (did you know that jakarta commons collection already has all the predicates-closures-functors-iterators stuff?). i also had time to read articles and blogs, so here i’m going to recap a few, and point them out to friend and colleagues which are interested in.

first, seems like Naresh Jain is spreading out Kanban and Lean, focusing on business value and getting rid of process overheads like iterations, estimations and velocity. some thoughts remind me recent discussions with Gabriele, both online on the italian eXtreme Programming mailing-list and at our local Milano XP-User Gruoup. even if i don’t completely agree and having had succes stories apply agile estimation and planning, Naresh’s posts are really worth reading, so here they are:

on the other side, there’s Mike Cohn post on “clarifying the purpose of iteration planning”, pointing out the value in breaking down stories in technical tasks during an estimation session. a good reading for all the skeptics (as i was).

Uncle Bob is also writing nice posts. i really liked to read “glory and success are not a destination, they are a point of origin”, and discovering that “the big”, those helping me in some way to be a better professional, never end learning and making mistakes. and reinventing the wheel, like in “fudge anyone”.

then, this weekend i worked on some C# code (it’s almost one year since my last .NET project), and it was really clear to me why i liked the language so much. Antonio and a few collegues more with a solid .NET background joined our team, and they often find something missing while working with Java. even if i’m not a programming languages maniac, here a few posts on Java/Ruby/C#/whatever-will-be-next:

last, for all the algoritms-geek out there, like Matteo, here’s a post on “testing graph algorithms with optimal solutions”. (i have to admit, i gave up reading after a few sentences…)

hope this brief essay was interesting!