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Marcia Savage
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The IT Nerd's Summer Reading List

If you're looking for a good book to take on your summer vacation, we've got 12 recommendations, including technical guides to brush up on your skills and just-for-fun reads.
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Ah, summer. Time for BBQs, pool parties, and family vacations. And the perfect time to pick up a good book. Of course, for IT pros, downtime can be a pretty foreign concept. Still, if you've got that long-awaited vacation coming up and need a good book to read by the pool, we've got 12 recommendations for you.  

We polled our team of expert bloggers and editors to find out what's on the top of their reading lists. Naturally, our list is filled with a lot of technical books because what else would an IT nerd take to the beach? We've got recommendations for those inclined to expand their skillsets or brush up on a particular area with books on everything from network architecture to 802.11ac, IPv6, and Python.

But if you want to branch out from the technical stuff, we've also got some lighter fare. Our recommendations include an engaging account of the development of Internet precursor Arpanet, Ray Kurzweil's book on reverse-engineering the human brain, and a post-apocalyptic thriller. So get your beach towel, sunscreen, and grab a book.

 

Marcia Savage is the managing editor for Network Computing, and has been covering technology for 15 years. She has written and edited for CRN and spent several years covering information security for SC Magazine and TechTarget. Marcia began her journalism career in daily ... View Full Bio

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MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
7/7/2014 | 11:21:21 AM
Re: sleeping
Ha, we try to help!
PaulS681
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PaulS681,
User Rank: Strategist
7/5/2014 | 3:52:57 PM
sleeping
These books are on my need to read if having trouble sleeping list.

 
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/4/2014 | 5:21:30 AM
Re: other suggestions?
@Marcia: If it still exists, I'm sure some people somewhere still do.  (Heck, MySpace is still alive and kicking, for goodness sakes.)

I do know that this is a thing, though: a Twitter account for AIM away messages.
Pablo Valerio
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Pablo Valerio,
User Rank: Author
7/3/2014 | 4:46:24 PM
Re: other suggestions?
Thank you JJ, I'll look for it.
jjessup570
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jjessup570,
User Rank: Apprentice
7/3/2014 | 2:23:51 PM
Re: other suggestions?
Hi Pablo, 

If you liked Behind the Times, you might also enjoy 'The Kingdom and the Power', by Gay Talese. It's from the late sixties but is a classic look inside the NYT!

JJ
MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
7/2/2014 | 11:34:08 AM
Re: other suggestions?
I'll have to look for that Joe, thanks for the suggestion! It would be interesting to read the story from an insider's perspective. I wonder if anyone uses AOL Instant Messenger anymore?
MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
7/2/2014 | 11:27:55 AM
Re: other suggestions?
Those sound like great suggestions Pablo, thanks! "Thinking Small" sounds particularly interesting. There were so many Beetles on the road (especially the powder blue kind) when I was a kid.
MarciaNWC
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MarciaNWC,
User Rank: Strategist
7/2/2014 | 11:19:27 AM
Re: picks?
I've read reviews about "The Circle," and it sounds interesting; Dave Eggers is a good writer. The premise might be annoying though! 
Pablo Valerio
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Pablo Valerio,
User Rank: Author
7/2/2014 | 6:08:06 AM
Re: other suggestions?
Marcia, I tend not to read technical books during the summer (too many technical papers for work), but I like interesting books that could inspire me and also learn something.

A few books I really enjoyed:

Thinking Small
The Long, Strange Trip of the Volkswagen Beetle
by Andrea Hiott

Behind the Times
Inside the New New York Times
by Edwin Diamond

The Quants
How a New Breed of Math Whizzes Conquered Wall Street and Nearly Destroyed It
by Scott Patterson

Enjoy your reading!
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
7/2/2014 | 2:08:46 AM
Re: picks?
I've had Dave Eggers's The Circle lent to me, with a strong recommendation to read it.  Apparently it's a tech novel about social media and all the other garbage interesting stuff that I deal with every day.
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