12 November 2005
Somehow, I managed to do most my modern technical reading out of order. I started reading Core J2EE Patterns and other J2EE books, then I dropped I went back to fill in the blanks with GoF Patterns. Stepping back to even simpler concepts, I recently read Fowler's Refactoring, and I've finally discovered and read Bloch's Effective Java. I fortunately got to borrow it from a coworker.
I found reinforcement for many of my current good practices (which is nice when you're in a training/architecture-type position). I also picked up some tips which I knew needed attention, but just never quite found, such as properly dealing with synchronization or serialization.
Concurrently, I had been reading William Gibson's Pattern Recognition. Quite unlike all his previous books, this one has only 1 storyline instead of 3. This made it feel like a much quicker read, and I managed to put it down and pick it up often without confusion. It was one of the more satisfying of his books set in the present or very near future.
To hold my attention for a couple weeks, I just picked up a relatively cheap book about digital photo retouching called 40 Digital Photo Retouching Techniques. It's based on Photoshop Elements, but it seems to have lots of good ideas, and most of it seems to translate to Gimp easily for me.
After that, I'll probably borrow Java Puzzlers from the same guy who lent me Effective Java -- He has quite the library.