HackerNews Readings
40,000 HackerNews book recommendations identified using NLP and deep learning

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Masters of Doom: How Two Guys Created an Empire and Transformed Pop Culture

David Kushner, Wil Wheaton, et al.

4.8 on Amazon

11 HN comments

Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World

Cal Newport

4.6 on Amazon

11 HN comments

The Dark Forest

Cixin Liu, P. J. Ochlan, et al.

4.6 on Amazon

10 HN comments

Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity

David Allen and Simon & Schuster Audio

4.5 on Amazon

10 HN comments

The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress

Robert A. Heinlein, Lloyd James, et al.

4.6 on Amazon

10 HN comments

Carrying the Fire: An Astronaut's Journeys

Michael Collins

4.8 on Amazon

10 HN comments

Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies

Jared Diamond Ph.D.

4.5 on Amazon

10 HN comments

Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media

Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky

4.7 on Amazon

9 HN comments

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power

Shoshana Zuboff

4.5 on Amazon

9 HN comments

Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley

Antonio Garcia Martinez

4.2 on Amazon

9 HN comments

The Hobbit

J. R. R. Tolkien

4.8 on Amazon

9 HN comments

The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

Eric Ries

4.6 on Amazon

9 HN comments

Bullshit Jobs: A Theory

David Graeber

4.4 on Amazon

9 HN comments

The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma

Bessel van der Kolk M.D.

4.8 on Amazon

9 HN comments

High Output Management

Andrew S. Grove

4.6 on Amazon

9 HN comments

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bwh2onApr 16, 2021

Here's a book more people should know about: Masters of Doom.

Awesome read.

systemvoltageonAug 5, 2021

Reminds me of Carmack and Romero doing their thing with shareware games - true hackers, no fucks given, brilliant engineers, screw the corporate bullshit and get on with the business.

Highly recommend - Masters of Doom audiobook: https://www.amazon.com/Masters-of-Doom-David-Kushner-audiobo...

alfiedotwtfonMay 16, 2021

Not sure what's in them because I can't find their Table of Contents, but if you're looking for other great books on specific games:

1. Masters of Doom

2. Michael Abrash's Graphics Programming Black Book

xrefonApr 18, 2021

Everyone is focusing on the bonus part of the story but man, I really enjoyed the computing history about working inside DEC in those days.

Anyone got other good computing history books/stories to recommend? I really enjoyed Masters of Doom and Hard Drive (about old-testament Gates, not new-dove Gates)

b33j0ronJuly 19, 2021

Wil Wheaton reads Masters of Doom, almost worth it for his impressions alone. “Sid Meier’s Memoir” is great along the same genre.

bwh2onApr 21, 2021

Tons! Here are a few casual reads I enjoyed:

* Masters of Doom

* Where Wizards Stay Up Late

* Working in Public

paulz_onApr 11, 2021

In the short term you can get used to it. I used to get vr sickness instantly when moving with a joystick but eventually you get used to it. I now have zero vr sickness even when doing crazy physics defying spinning or something.

As for the long term - my hope is that it gets better as the headsets get better. It seems to so far.

One sort of interesting thing along these lines - I remember in the book "Masters of Doom" they're describing the early days of FPS development and how people would frequently get very nautious and grab the trash can by their desk to vomit.

You never hear about that anymore. What is that? Better screens? Playing games when you're a kid? Whatever is at work there, seems like it might apply to vr too.

playing_coloursonMay 17, 2021

Get an advanced degree only if you want to do it, or it clearly benefits you - say, migration to some country. You are not limited anymore by paper in your carrier progression within IT industry after your first job - your achievements will open the doors.

Let me also address psychological aspects. You are much more than a university certificate, you are not defined by it. You can self-educate yourself on a lot of technical and non-technical topics, you can have interesting hobbies, create, challenge yourself physically. There are potentially so much more to do to help you succeed in relationships.

Do not build barriers that cause anxiety, do not dream how much better your would be if you had a fancy degree - you live once, accept yourself, and invest in yourself in what you really want.

I totally understand you btw, I have a non-CS degree from a no-name university in a small post-Soviet country. You can imagine that I felt a bit insecure about it as well. 5 years on, I stopped worrying about it, when realised that my employers and people around me in general judged me by my current contributions and character.

In IT, we basically only need to dedicate focus and time to improve ourselves. No barriers like expensive equipment or official accreditation. Also, maybe, read Masters of Doom, a book about John Carmack for inspiration.

nameloswonApr 13, 2021

100% Agree. Just add another point:

Rich people with supportive networks of course can pursuit their goals easier.

Occasionally people from not very good families can do this as well because they're so screwed by the environment and tried to get rid of everything in (the book 'Masters of DOOM' is an example assuming it doesn't try to be too dramatic).

It's much harder to do the same as middle classes with a lot of life obligations, distractions, and most importantly they are by default need to follow linear career developments - it's much harder to be adventurous to had drastic improvement compared to previous categories.

reidraconMay 16, 2021

On the spirit of Masters of Doom, I recommend "It's behind you - The making of a computer Game" by Bob Pape.

The author explains how he made the R-Type conversion for the ZX Spectrum 48k and provides an interesting view of the "bedroom coders" and the early video game industry in the UK back in the 80s.

Self-published and downloadable for free here: http://bizzley.com/

bemonApr 28, 2021

Last year I read Masters of Doom by David Kushner after someone mentioned it on Hacker News. It was the best book I had read in a long time. It won't improve your skills, but I think it will motivate and inspire you to immerse yourself (if we're talking programming, doing small projects and getting feedback is a better way to improve your skills anyway).


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