Thursday, January 12, 2012

Top 10 books on the internet

John Naughton is Vice-President of Wolfson College, Cambridge and Emeritus Professor of the Public Understanding of Technology at the Open University. He is also an Observer columnist and a prominent blogger at His new book is From Gutenberg to Zuckerberg: What You Really Need to Know About the Internet.

One of Naughton's top ten books about the internet, as told to the Guardian:
Reamde by Neal Stephenson

Stephenson is the Thomas Pynchon of the internet, a writer of sprawling, compulsively readable, fiction with plots into which the network is inextricably woven. Reamde (a play on a common filename – Readme – in computer systems) takes in online gaming, cybercrime, MI6 and the Russian mafia, inter alia, in an intriguing blend of thriller and nerdy realism. Unusually for a novelist, Stephenson is also very knowledgeable about computing. His essay about Linux, In the Beginning was the Command Line, for example, is a terrific read.
Read about another book on Naughton's list.

Also see Lev Grossman's list of five books about the World Wide Web.

--Marshal Zeringue