Books and Personal Development for 2012

2 minute read

During the last six months of 2011 I began picking up and reading more tech books then I think I had in the previous 3 years.

My interest in Javascript increased as I started playing around with Node.js, creating Google Chrome Extensions and in general trying to (hopefully) make myself a better dev. I then went back-to-basics and began looking at TDD before reading up and playing around with some of the loveliness that is HTML5.

I read through (and highly recommend):
I'm not one for making new years resolutions, but I'd like to keep up my tech reading with at least one book a month (dependant on size of course).  I get at least 1-2 hours of reading time a day commuting to and from work.  I find reading in the morning helps me get my brain up and running, reading on the way home helps me switch off from "work mode".

I'm not looking to pick up any new languages, but anything that demonstrates a new way of thinking, developments in .Net/Javascript/Node/HTML or toolkits which make life easier or more fulfilling for a developer would be of great interest.

I'm not restricting myself completely to physical books.  I do have a Kindle which allows me to make use of the wonderful Send to Kindle extension and Calibres fantastic RSS support to read web content that hasn't been published in either physical or ebook format.

My to-read list currently looks like:
  • Castle/IoC - I still consider myself a newbie with this.  There's plenty I do know, but not concrete enough to start from scratch without a reference at every step.
  • NHibernate/ORMs - I've toyed a little with NHibernate but again would like to get more knowledge in my head.
  • Node.js - I'm really enjoying tinkering with Node, it's time to make something a bit more complete and fully featured!
  • NoSQL - I've done some work with CouchDb but would like to see what other systems are on offer and how they fair.  A better understanding would also be appreciated when it comes to the IndexedDb API in HTML5
  • Android - I have an Android phone (and soon a shiny new tab) plus I am duty bound to deliver something to the inimitable @stringfellow that I have already started.
Finally I have just begun 20 Recipes for Programming MVC3 by Jamie Munro, so I'm sorted for this month.

If you've got a suggestion, I'd love to hear it.

(I've also signed up for the Software Engineering for Software as a Service course by Berkeley University, and by Codecademy both are free and look excellent.)

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