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Old 12-31-2009   #17
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Join Date: May 2009
Location: RC-S, Afghanistan
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Originally Posted by Schmedlap View Post
While we're talking about the wishlist...

I would add, regarding the programming books, that you can skim through the books relatively quickly and then rely on online help sites as you work through problems (meaning you don't need to bring the books with you). Some books are now offered in .pdf or other e-book format at a reduced price if you buy the hard copy book (usually log onto a website and answer some question such as "what is the fifth word on page 255?"). E-books are nice when they're reference books, because you can run a search for key words.
I'm a big fan of the books that come with the reference CDs or links to the full text online. Generally, e-books are harder on my eyes and I like to spread out my workspace a little bit (plus, a lot of books on my bookshelf makes me look smart! or clueless, I'm not sure which...) but the search ability is a huge time and frustration saver.

In the rare cases when I haven't found an answer, I've posted the question at and then gone to bed. By the time I woke up, an answer was usually posted. I've hardly cracked the stack of books that I own in months - I just rely on the help forums.
There is definitely a large and dedicated community of programmers who use and contribute to the forums. For scatter-brained slow types like myself, I need a little more foundation before I can use them without getting more confused.

And, yes, this is on topic for the thread. As I noted several comments earlier, the internet can be a far more powerful tool for learning than a library. My experience certainly confirms this.
I agree. While it's a double-edged sword (your young men could be using their ability to read to contribute to their community or to join a jihadi group online) I think the net effect of Internet access is liberalization rather than radicalization.
"The status quo is not sustainable. All of DoD needs to be placed in a large bag and thoroughly shaken. Bureaucracy and micromanagement kill."
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"With a plan this complex, nothing can go wrong." -- Schmedlap

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