Book Reviews: Dead Sea Scrolls, Google, Freemasonry

I finished reading several potentially interesting books during our recent family vacation trip to Vashon Island, WA:

I really have to recommend the Fields book on the Dead Sea Scrolls.  It is very well documented and historically interesting - plus it has some great pictures.  Part of the Dead Sea Scrolls are on display in San Diego (through December 2007) which is the main reason I picked up the book.

The Google book is also recommended for those interested in technology, Internet history, and business & organizational ideas.  I personally only had a minor understanding of the history, technologies, and personalities related to Google so I found this book very interesting.

The Freemasonry book was entertaining but nothing spectacular.  I enjoyed it because my father and his father were Masons, and I learned a lot about what they probably went through.  The background history was interesting and I enjoyed the humor of the author.


Podcast Recommendation - Interview With New Media Author Philip Meza

Chris Gondek over at the Invisible Hand Podcast had a great interview with Philip Meza the author of the book "Coming Attractions: Hollywood, High Tech, and the Future of Entertainment" that is definitely worth a listen.

The one great thing in the podcast was that Chris let Philip outline some key recommendations that companies and organizations should be doing to excel in this new media world.

Open Source Rapid Prototyping - PDF, Nagios, & VMWARE

The combo of open source and virtual machines is really providing some powerful options for rapid evaluation and prototyping. 

Here is an example ... "Want to do some network management?" ... then download the $10 PDF of "Network Monitoring with Nagios", then get the VMWARE Player, and then check out the Nagios appliance deployment for VMWARE. 

In a couple of clicks, your up and running and ready to do some network management.  If you like what you see, a couple of file transfers, and some more clicks, and you can be in production mode. Nice.

Thanks to a recent podcast for getting my thoughts moving in this direction.

Survived the DC Trip - Theodore Roosevelt Island, Beer Recommendation, & W.E.B. Griffin

I managed to survive and still have a good time on my recent business trip to Washington DC (the way back was DCA to Dallas to SAN). 

One of the main reasons I had a good time, was that I managed to sneak in three great runs in the Rossyln area of Virgina. One of the better ones included an exploration of Theodore Roosevelt Island which is part of the George Washington Memorial Parkway that is operated by the Virgina Turkey Run Park.

I'm also going to have to recommend the following beers:

Lastly, I have to admit I'm becoming a fan of "reading fiction books" while in transit, vice pulling out the work Tablet PC or the personal iBook or a tech journal.  Right now, I am busy quickly turning pages of W.E.B. Griffen's By Order Of The President.  This is my first Griffen book (definitely not my last Griffen book). I had heard his name before, but never got introduced until I listened to his recent podcast at Pritzker Military Library.

Today's Podcast Attention Report

What if there was an easy way to aggregate information like my podcast consumption for today:

Across 1000s of like minded people.  A mixture of private and public data collected and distributed in an open-source fashion. And it also tracked other media: DVD, video, TV, web surfing, books, events, etc.   

If it was honest, trustworthy, & transparent, I am pretty sure the current survey and marketing companies would probably not be happy.

Friday (050605) Linkfest







The Written Word Thread (Kawasaki, Scoble, Windley)

An interesting pattern emerged over the last week relating to books. 

On my trip to DC last week I started to read my complimentary and signed copy of Guy Kawasaki's "The Art of the Start."  I had sent in a couple of ideas to Guy after he posted awhile back on his mailing list looking for thoughts.  I was shocked when he said he wanted to send me a copy of this book as a thank you for what I considered to be very limited input, and then I was really shocked after I started to read the introduction (page vii) and my name was listed in the thank you section.

The book is very good so far (I am on page 66).  I am underlining things to do, and jotting notes into my TabletPC to remember thoughts of interest.  As someone in an established organization trying to "transform" and implement emerging technology, Guy has made sure to cover this area in the book, as well as covering areas for the complete bleeding edge entrepreneur.

Robert Scoble is also reading this book right now, and he is apparently going to be writing a 'blogging for business' book via a blog in the future [Link #1, #2, #3].

And one of my favorite weblogers Phil Windley announced recently that he just finished writing a book on digital identity management, and he is also doing a podcast now.