Despite the plethora of blogs, podcasts, and online videos that currently abound, I still prefer to get most of my technical learning via the trusty old dead-tree format.
Here’s a quick round-up of the techie books that I bought during 2008.
One of a series of four books digging deep into SQL Server (see my earlier review of The Storage Engine). A very in-depth book providing a holistic performance troubleshooting methodology for SQL Server.
Essential Windows Communication Foundation (WCF): For .NET Framework 3.5 (Microsoft .Net Development)
Not easy bedtime reading, but rather a truly essential book to have by your side when using WCF out in the field.
A classic treatise from Kent Beck, and a very entertaining read.
A reasonable coffee-table book from the folks at the Computer History Museum, but not entirely relevant to young whipper-snappers such as myself (although it does include a nice photo of a Commodore 64!)
One of the best programming books that I’ve read in a long time. This could have been a dry and dreary affair, but the examples and depth of coverage help to make the subject come alive.
Setting a new world record for longest time from early PDF to dead-tree edition, this still isn’t out in hardcopy yet! But it proved very useful as I had the pleasure of working on my first NHibernate project during 2008, leading to my Damascine conversion to the world of ORM.
Not strictly a computing book, but liable to be of interest to other IT geeks and calendar wonks like myself.
One of the best programming books I’ve ever read, this had a huge impact on my ability to write clean, maintainable, testable code. The title doesn’t do it justice.
A good introduction to SQL 2008, but loses a star for including information about features which were introduced back in SQL 2005. This could have been several hundred pages shorter, IMHO.
Continuous Integration: Improving Software Quality and Reducing Risk (Martin Fowler Signature Books)
Short but enjoyable book explaining reasons, techniques and resources for implementing Continuous Integration across the whole development lifecycle. Another one of those books you wish your boss would read…
Haven’t read it yet :-(
Sent this back when I realised it only covered InfoPath 2003, and I was interested in 2007 – doh!
A great read for anyone who has dabbled with CSS and now wants to learn more about this sometimes opaque subject.
Haven’t read it yet :-(
Another book whose title doesn’t do it justice – this book is full of great advice for structuring HTML, whether on a new or existing site.
Not my cup of tea, a bit dry and theoretical for my liking. More aimed at pointy-haired types than developers.
A good overview of the capabilities of VSTS and how they can be applied to the software development lifecycle.
My favourite book on software development methodologies using VSTS, this should help any team of developers adopt an agile approach.
Finally, a really good TFS book for developers. See my earlier review.
Framework Design Guidelines: Conventions, Idioms, and Patterns for Reuseable .NET Libraries (Microsoft .Net Development)
I adored the first edition of the Framework Design Guidelines, and firmly believe that all .NET developers should read this book.
Microsoft Data Warehouse Toolkit: With SQL Server 2005 and the Microsoft Business Intelligence Toolset
An excellent detailed description of how to apply the Kimball Methodology when creating a Data Warehouse / Business Intelligence platform using Microsoft SQL Server 2005.