Interesting web sites

The current version of this page has moved to This copy was last updated in February 2012.

Here are some interesting sites that are not directly related to my work or my teaching.

Search engines, directories, reference
Words: dictionaries, thesauri, and more
Current events and politics
The arts and popular culture
Science and research
Mathematics and logic
Engineering and technology
Graphics and information design
Programming and software design
Internet technology and milieu
Security and privacy
Coping with technology
Three great faiths
Geek culture
In a category by themselves

Revised November 2011: John McCarthy (also here and here), Dennis Ritchie. May 2011: Open source design examples. Dec 2010: Google Books Ngrams. October 2010: Paris Review interviews. Cosmic distances. October 2009: Polymath. September 2009: More about Python. July 2009: Rejecta Mathematica. 100 best first and last lines. May 2009: Logicomix. December 2008: Thelonius Monk. March 2008: Joseph Weizenbaum (also here). October 2007: Many new links in software projects. August 2007: More language arcana. The nonist. June - July 2007: Many new links in math. January 2007: Strange maps. Model-based testing. October 2006: Computer science origins and precursors, formerly good ideas. September 2006: Architectures of control. Linux kernel map. July 2006: Newsmap. Codefetch. 100 Theorems. Music Thing. Scientific theories. Disenchantment with blogs and Wikipedia. An amusing analogy applied to physics and programming. May 2001: Begun with the arts.

Recent updates listed here. Use your browser's reload or refresh button to get the latest version. Most sections are longer than a screenful, keep scrolling. Some links appear in more than one section.

Search engines, directories, and reference works

(See also Words, Internet search)

Google search engine, directions and technical information, web service APIs, also cheatsheet.html, help/features.html, apis/index.html

Google history and assessment, excellent review by John Lanchester in LRB

Google (etc.) in the news (recent articles at top) (Google, Facebook and Twitter in Egypt) (Chinese firewall)
(Google, Yahoo etc. in China. NYT Magazine, Apr 23, 2006) (federal subpoena) (privacy, CNET blackball)

Usenet News searchable archive at Google (formerly at, also advanced_search?q=&

Wikipedia, an on-line encyclopedia written and revised by anyone interested, also wiki/wikipedia:Featured_articles, wiki/wikipedia:Welcome_newcomers

Wikipedia history, assessment, appreciation, and disenchantment

WikiHow, how-to manual that you can edit

Ask MetaFilter, questions and answers on all sorts of topics, for example popularfavoriteall, What-single-book-is-the-best-introduction-to-your-field-or-specialization-within-your-field-for-laypeople, What-are-the-most-wellwritten-textbooks, Classical-classics, Contemporary-Art-History-and-Theory, WWI-what-happened, Past-performance-future-results-ampc, Recommendations-for-PC-drawing-tablet, How-can-I-break-into-an-empty-filing-cabinet, Oh-so-youre-a-insert-profession-here-How-insert-whacky-generalization-and-misguided-curiosity-here, What-are-some-good-songs-to-bring-to-my-human-dissection-class, Help-me-unlock-the-power-of-the-four-chords, Help-Really-Cool-Nonprofit-Reptile-Park-Not-Have-Unusably-Sucky-Web-Site, Whats-the-Best-Thing-Youve-Ever-Seen-Here
etc., etc., ... also
founder's comments:

Open Directory Project, a Yahoo-like directory maintained by volunteers (no ads)

WWW Virtual Library, another noncommercial directory

Ibiblio (formerly Sunsite and Metalab), noncommerical directory in magazine format

Invisible Web, resources said to be unreachable by ordinary search engines

Useful sites for reporters, researchers, and other nosy people

Internet FAQ Archives, frequently asked questions, with answers

Words: dictionaries, thesauri, and more

(See also Reference)

For definitions, just (for example) define:induction in Google search box

Google Books Ngram Viewer

OneLook dictionary search with links to many general and specialized dictionaries, wildcards, reverse dictionary, also ?w=induc*, ?c=faq#patterns, reverse-dictionary.shtml dictionary + thesaurus tree browser

MyEtymology, word origins

Double-tounged dictionary, slang and colorful expressions, for example index.php/citations/violin_hickey_1/

Wordie, "like Flickr but without the photos", for example lists/7519?s=a&d=a

Wordnik (formerly Wordie) goes big time

Lexical Freenet

Internet anagram server

How to write a spelling corrector

How Google Translate works

Automatic computer science paper generator, links to other generators

Magnetic poetry

Current events and politics

Now, daily, weekly, topical, historical, organizations and projects


Newsmap (Flash), also apps/newsmap

Google news, also intl/en_us/about_google_news.html


NY Times tag cloud

BBC day in pictures

Boston Globe big picture (new on Mon Wed Fri)

Wikipedia current events

Arts and Letters Daily


n + 1, especially n1br

SciTech Daily

Boing Boing

Slashdot "politics for nerds"


New Yorker, current issue, many but not all articles online

New Yorker archive search, with example,%20score%20desc&queryType=nonparsed

New Yorker, RSS feed of last several (four or five) issues

New Yorker article database, Nov 2003 -- Nov 2005, also Sept 2001

New York Review of Books: many but not all articles online, well-indexed archives back to 1963

The Onion

Ironic Times


About weblogs (defunct, interesting anyway)

Blogs on politics and current events, many examples linked and reviewed (August 2009)

Weblog enthusiasm and disenchantment
also (with comments)

Google history and assessment, excellent review by John Lanchester in LRB

Atlantic Monthly: archives and notable articles

Harper's archive, 1850 -

Phil Agre's newsletters: technology and society, politics, design, philosophy, also urls.html (RRE notes 1996-'02, urls '98-'04) (RRE 2001 -- 2005) (RRE 1994 -- 2004) (RRE 1994 -- 2000), also back.html (TNO 1994 -- 1996) (Phil Agre is missing) (Phil Agre found)

Robot Wisdom: the original link blog, now apparently inactive (archive through September 2006) (through July 2009)

Historical but always relevant

Orwell on political writing, very pertinent to other topics also
Other writings:, for example
essays/joys/english/e_joys (ghastly boarding school, childhood terrors, snobs and hypocrisy, search for contradicted one another, sheer vulgar fatness, lunatic misunderstandings)
essays/lear/english/e_ltf (Tolstoy, religion vs. humanism, search for exuberance, does not know, rob others, humanist assumption, not a saint)
reviews/swift/english/e_swift (Swift, pessimism, envy, and reaction, search for hates the very idea, his horror, totalitarian tendency, Tory anarchist, weak and ridiculous, endless harping, terrible intensity)
reviews/gandhi/english/e_gandhi (Gandhi, saintliness vs. humanism, search for noble one, one must choose)

100 American speeches (text, many with links to MP3 recordings)

Martin Luther King, lesser known speeches, also RFK on MLK (text, with links to MP3 recordings) (April 4, 1967, on Vietnam) (April 3, 1968, in Memphis) (April 4, 1968)

Organizations and projects

Electronic Frontier Foundation

ACM public policy committee: intellectual property, security, privacy, cryptography, Internet governance, also

Hacktivism and human rights: using technology to fight abuses and protect people

Scorecard and Action Network: reporting on pollution, influencing decision makers

Organize to win: a grassroots activist's handbook

WorldChanging, enviro-tech blog

The arts and popular culture

Painting and drawing, music, movies, writing, people

Painting and drawing

Paintings, indexed by artist

Museum of online museums

Comics, samples indexed by artist (dealer's site, but low-key and helpful)

Wally Wood's 22 panels that always work, also archives/2006/08/wally_woods_22.html

Drawn! Illustration and cartooning blog

(More comics in geek culture)

Books on modern art history, criticism, theory


100 most important American musical works of the 20th century, chosen by NPR staff (RealPlayer)

100 essential jazz albums, chosen by David Remick and Richard Brody

20th century classical music, audio clips for works discussed in The Rest Is Noise

Classical music recordings

Classical music performances on YouTube

Chord progressions, music theory, also determine-key-from-chords

Map of musical influences, by Ethan Hein

Thelonius Monk quartet with John Coltrane at Carnegie Hall (Flash)

Thelonius Monk's musical advice (scroll down for easier-to-read transcript)

Grateful Dead: 3000 complete shows at Internet archive, other Dead lore

Blues, gospel, folk recordings and photos from the Library of Congress (MP3, Real Audio, others), also lohtml/lohome.html, hrhtml/hrhome.html

All Music Guide, discography (commercial, but comprehensive and well-organized),   also

Singing Fish audio video search

On-line sheet music, music typesetting (text or GUI), manuscript paper

Music notation, in BibliOdyssey

Music Thing, synthesizers and more


Movie databases, search in many categories, some entries offer preview clips

Many classic movie clips have been posted to YouTube, for example...

Classic movie trailers, clips, and stills (RealPlayer or Windows Media Player)

Movie trailers (many broken links and ads, Quicktime)


(see also Weeklies)

Paris Review, interviews with writers back through the 1950's

Best magazine articles (boldfaced title links directly to article, alternative to Instapaper at "read" links)

Arts and Letters Daily (many book review journals linked at left column, scroll down)


n + 1, especially n1br

McSweeny's, also links/lists/

New York Review of Books: many but not all articles online, well-indexed archives back to 1963

New Yorker, current issue, many but not all articles online

On-line books

Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow synopsis with artwork

100 best first and last lines from novels, also PDF/100_Best_Last_Lines_from_Novels.pdf

Salon Audio: readings from new books and a few classics (RealPlayer or MP3)
(Index links are on left panel, scroll down a bit. Most readings are 5 -- 10 minute excerpts.)


BBC audio interviews: artists, writers, performers (RealPlayer), also books/features/, music/features/

Fresh Air radio interviews: current show, archive, search (RealPlayer, Windows Media)

This American Life radio episodes, recommendations from staff and others, also 90513/Best-episode-to-introduce-someone-to-This-American-Life

Science and research

(See also education)

Breaking news, journalism, careers, DIY, literature, biology, physics, astronomy

Breaking news

Nature, news, current issue contents

Science, news, current issue contents

Wikipedia current science and technology events

Slashdot science

Journalism, popular science writing, teaching, philosophy, history

SciTech Daily

American Scientist (nearest thing to the Scientific American of old)

Elegant experiments

Why teach science at universities?

What is a scientific theory?

What is the purpose of a scientific theory?

Core scientific knowledge in one paragraph (search for Four centuries ago ...)

E. O. Wilson introduces Darwin, comments on religion and behaviorism

Explanation and advocacy for a scientific worldview in an essay by an English Lit prof

Scientific, artistic understanding contrasted (search for science satisfies a very special hunger ...)

Scientific, journalistic reporting contrasted (scroll down to last three paragraphs: I'm reading a book ...) (Eric Pepke)

Journalist's plea for better science reporting

Assessing science stories in the news, for example #1608866, #1608966 #1608968 #1608971 #1609588

Talking to reporters (much good advice in replies despite snarky title)

Dear Science column in The Stranger, Seattle alt-weekly. Also, author's blog

Bad science journalism,3858,5279802-117799,00.html

Bad science textbooks

Bad science (errors in experiment design and interpretation)

Bad medicine (limitations of epidemiology and observational studies, compared to experiments and controlled trials)

Research studies that looked good, but were later shown wrong

Milieu: funding, publication, review, collaboration

Dan Gezelter's syllabus for Science 2.0

Michael Nielsen's blog, bookmarks

Careers and lives

(See also math, programming, and education)

John Sidles: physics career aptitude test (actually a long essay, also pertinent to other fields)
(scroll down about 10% past other stuff, persevere through poor formatting, much nicer original is lost)

Giving an academic job talk

Working in the lab

Richard Hamming: career advice based on experience among the great and the rest. "What is the difference?"

Tone and attitute in scientific debate, and elsewhere

Coping with disappointment, etc.

Geniuses, crackpots, and others (David Ashley) (Dennis Feldman) (john baez) (Nick Halloway, scroll down past included text) (empath) (Daryl McCullough)

DIY science

(See also in engineering and hacks)

Toys from Trash: simple DIY science toys and experiments, for example induction.html, reactance.html, etc.

Science toys you can make, with detailed instructions and photos, for example

A simple spectrometer built from a CD and a cereal box, with experiments

Weigh the earth in your basement: measure the gravitational constant

Keiki gels: electrophoresis with drinking straws and food coloring

Synthetic biology lab in a closet for $470 (scroll down to fig. 5 near end)

Citizen Science Quarterly

Biotech Hobbyist magazine, interview with contributor

Scanning Tunneling Microscopes (STM)

Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM)

Cyclotrons on a shoestring, also cyc2.html


PubMed (including MEDLINE and much more), also gquery/gquery.fcgi

US Patents

Biology and bioinformatics

Entrez, life sciences search engine

Bioinformatics for dummies (scroll down for links to databases and resources),page-1.html

Centre for Computational Drug Discovery: P2P search for anti-cancer drugs

Physics (formerly, also help/, blurb/pg01unesco.html

David Gross: does physics have a future? 25 questions

Gordon Kane: the standard model, the Higgs boson, supersymmetry, and string theory

David Mermin: introduction to quantum mechanics concepts and notation for quantum computing

Gerard 't Hooft: lifetime physics syllabus, with links to online course notes

Standard Model Langrangian, said to describe everything except gravity

Simplification in physics

Reasoning from first principles

Textbook exercises vs. problem solving

Simple experiment + reasoning gets deep result (DIY Cavendish)

Interpretations of quantum mechanics

Quantum mechanics in popular culture, a sighting

also, 2010/03/the-snarxiv/


Astronomy picture of the day archive, with explanations and links

NASA Visible Earth

Cosmic distance ladder, how we figured it out (about...) (slides, 4.3 MB pdf)

Scale of the universe, animation and tool

Logarithmic maps of the universe

Mathematics and logic

Buzz Exposition Provers Foundations Teaching Culture


Mathoverflow, questions and answers. Also, a review., for example questions/4994/fundamental-examples, 8846/proofs-without-words, 23478/examples-of-common-false-beliefs-in-mathematics

Stackoverflow CS Theory B: logic, semantics, automata, theory of programming

Polymath, massively collaborative mathematics: news story, details, background

Tricki, a wiki for mathematical techniques at university level and beyond, for example tricki/map

Terry Tao: blog, for example 2010/10/21/245a-problem-solving-strategies/, 2010/10/18/the-no-self-defeating-object-argument-revisited/, 2009/09/03/the-cosmic-distance-ladder-2/, etc.

Dick Lipton: blog, for example 2010/11/30/notation-and-thinking/

Timothy Gowers: blog, for example 07/25/what-is-deep-mathematics/, 2008/08/16/just-do-it-proofs/, etc.

Scott Aaronson: blog, for example ?p=327, ?p=303, etc.

Notices of the American Mathematical Society, current issue (and all issues) etc.

Rejecta Mathematica: journal of papers rejected by peer-reviewed journals, also frequently-asked-questions

Exposition, essays, and opinions

Math atlas: brief surveys of college and graduate level topics, with links

Timothy Gowers: essays, also mathsindex.html

Edsger W. Dijkstra: essays, many about mathematics, for example EWD538.PDF, EWD1294a.PDF, EWD1300.PDF

Doron Zeilberger: opinions, for example Opinion65.html

David Eppstein: computational geometry, recreational math, art, science, games

Justin Mullins: beautiful equations

Theorem provers

Formal proof: special issue of Notices of the AMS

Freek Wiedijk: formalizing 100 theorems, also 300 theorem provers, also digimath

HOL theorem prover: history, command summaries, also summary.txt

Coq theorem prover applied to programming language theory, for example sf/Basics.html#lab32, also papers/LambdaTA.pdf

Vdash: a formal math wiki, also e-club.pdf, ignite.pdf

Machine obstructed proof: a novice's experiences

FLiP: logical framework in Python


Logicomix, for example ...#twoj_fragment1-4

Lambda calculus, Church encoding, Y combinator explained with Ruby code

Philosophy and theoretical computer science, course at MIT (links to many readings) (instructor's blog and student comments)

Logic, sets, infinity (Zeisel) (torquemada) (Rubin) (bobg0) (Beldin) (Asselin) (klausness) (crocomancer) (Enderton) (Chapman) (Megill) (Seaman) (Tangent60) (Oliver) (Maimon)

Logic and madness

Teaching and learning

What is it like to have an understanding of very advanced mathematics?

Learning math (see also programming and education) , etc. (flabdablet and many contributors), also #1269359, etc. (Class Goat, grouse, and many contributors) (john baez) (Chris Hillman) (Keith Ramsay) (Torkel Franzen) (Randy Poe) (Clive Tooth) (Ron Bloom)

Students' and teachers' difficulties (see also in programming) (Chris Hillman, don't miss note on Tolstoy at the end) (Lee Lady) (Keith Ramsay and David C. Ullrich) (Gary Martin) (goodyear) (Richard Fateman), for example #1165133, #1165335, #1165165, #1165465 (onoclea and many contributors) (Tachoh and many contributors) (Ron Bruck) (labuser)

Math books (Lieven Marchand) (Josh Kortbein) (Lee Rudolph) (Achava Nakhash) (Robert Hill)


History, people, humor (Doxiadis, et al.) (McCaughan) (Taylor) (Chernoff and others, entire thread) (Long and others, entire thread) (Buyske) (Henry Cohn via danah boyd) (Carvin) (Keith, via Stewart) (Winsor and Parry, via Brooke) (Angluin, via Enderton) (Rodgers)

Mathematical tattoos


Engineering and technology

Theory, electronics, signal processing, computers, DIY


Concise review of systems, circuits, basic electronics, also WhaKnowSys.html

Transfer functions, block diagrams, feedback, also node14.html, node19.html

Digital filters

Units and orders of magnitude, for example Order_of_magnitude_(power) etc., also 485, 526

Problem solving (engineering vs. science), for example #1445725, etc.


Electronic circuits cookbook, for example using op amps and flip-flops, for example opampvar.html#c1, and jkflipflop.html#c1

FPGA projects, for example f2008/tor2/main.html

Microcontrollers and platforms, for example #1802889

Signal processing

Audio, music

GNU Radio, for example TutorialsWritePythonApplications

Music Thing

Computer and network hardware

(See also
operating systems and programming)

Supercomputing on a shoestring

Performance, benchmarks (database of detailed results for many many models)

Networks, including wireless


(See also in
science and hacks)

Make, for example archive/hacks

Computers and systems,4/Build-Your-Own,16/, for example review_print.php?p1=1907, for example #1257622 (high end), #1257439 (low end) (build vs. buy, low end, March 2007) (begun 1980's, revised Sept 2007) "The page has not been maintained since the last century", Category:Audio, Category:Video

Circuits, mechanical etc.

Make printed circuit boards at home out of old magazines (buying press-and-peel transfer paper might be easier)


(See also math, programming, and science careeers)

Why learn, college, graduate school, teaching, lifelong, courses and events, serendipity

Why learn

Why learn about science (or math, or literature, or anything beyond your day-to-day needs)? (Steven Pinker) (bobs) (Brian Harvey), for example #900985, #900844, #901150, especially #901438, etc. (SansPoint and others) (troy) (Penny314)


Getting in: confessions of a college counselor (etc.)

Taking standardized tests

How to write, think, and learn (especially slides 108 - 120 on learning strategies and clear understanding, also 65 - 77, etc.)

How to learn in college (see also math and computer science, many comments here about humanities also apply to science, and vice-versa), #1618707, etc., also #1269359, etc., for example #1445725, etc., 380133, 380251, etc., #1262426, etc., etc., for example #1074772, #1074818, #1074928, #1075527, #1281767, for example #900985, #900844, #901150, especially #901438, etc., for example #2259232, also #2482392, etc., etc. (good advice for any kind of criticism), #1613290, etc., also #1529375, #1529392, #1529532

What is it like to have an understanding of very advanced mathematics? (... or many other subjects)

After graduation, also #1665320

Graduate school

(Much advice here applies to every stage of a research career.)

Considering grad school, getting in

Wrong reasons to go to grad school (bulleted list about halfway down)

How to do research in grad school (MIT AI lab, pertinent to other fields, other places, other career stages)

Grad school disillusionment and realism: You need to focus on a concrete goal. ..., also 1807498, also aboutcomics.html

Preparing during grad school for a finding a job after


How to teach in college, for example #1165133, #1165335, #1165165, #1165465, #2544978 etc. etc.

Alternatives to traditional lectures, exercises, also rowid=78, also phys2010/phys2010_sp04/CTindex.html

Handling too much work in a new job

Professional skills for academics, also leader.html, hosting.html


Coping with disappointment, etc.

Confronting and overcoming discouragement

Staying sharp, also #1580062 etc.

University courses and events

(see also
computer science courses)

MIT course web pages, in many subject areas (scroll down a bit to see the list)

MIT open courseware (still more course web pages), also OcwWeb/Global/AboutOCW/technology.htm

"Everything I learned at MIT" (four years of handwritten notes, scanned), for example 12_1.jpg

UC Berkeley courses and events (video, podcasts)

Research Channel, video archive of research talks from all over (Windows Media Player, etc.), also program/displayseries.asp?collid=172, etc.

Open University (UK), an unusually detailed and well-organized on-line catalog

Self-study and serendipity

What's New in the UW Libraries Collections

Graphics and information design

Frequently updated, portfolios, unusual media, information design, history and literature, web page examples, web page design and technology

Frequently updated

Weblogs, also J/

Drawn! Illustration and cartooning blog

Design Observer

Information aesthetics

Rhizome: net art news

Linkdup: frequently updated directory of splashy websites

Kaliber1000: online design magazine

Generator.x: art from code

Metropolis magazine

Design firms, portfolios, galleries

Coudal Partners: design firm with links to many other graphics and design sites (some Flash), also archive.php, moom.php

Entropy8Zuper: web design firm (Flash)

Second Story Interactive Studios: promo for web design firm with links to many of their projects

Design Observer: Culture Is Not Always Popular, an illustrated lecture

Interactive Media Design Review: exhibit of web sites etc., also imdr02/, imdr01/



Unusual media

The Nonist, also archives/, links/

Book design, for example 2007/11/my-favorite-book-covers-of-2007.html

BibliOdyssey, book art, here showing music notation

Typography and fonts, also category-archive/

Strange maps, an unusual view of history and literature

The Stranger, alt weekly cover art (nb archive links back to 1999)

Poster of the Week, rock club posters (mostly) in the Stranger, also 229406, 12744, 12338, many more at,

Patent Pending Industries, posters, T-shirts, links to similar sites, also shirts.php, links.php

Vintage classical music album covers

Soviet posters, with translations and explanations


ThriftDeluxe, inexpensive cool projects



Music Thing

Information design

Information aesthetics

Visual complexity

Dead Reckonings: Lost Art in the Mathematical Sciences

Newsmap, also apps/newsmap

Linux kernel map, also about.php

Map of musical influences

GUI history, gallery, also site/map, screenshots, icons/components

Paper prototyping


History and literature

Essential graphics literature

History of graphic design

Edward Tufte: essays, forum on information design, also bboard/

Brief summary of lessons from Tufte's books

Design advice and links

Web page examples

Current web style (more links at page bottom)

Fresh Styles: book on web design, lot of links to interesting examples

Deep Sites: another book on web design, lots and lots of links to interesting examples

Test Pilot Collective FirstPage Archive: 1800+ graphic web pages (scroll down)

Paper prototyping: initial pencil-and-paper designs for some well-known web sites

Vows: nice page design for a programming tool

Web page design and technology

(See also Internet technologies)

HTML, CSS, and Javascript briefly explained

Chrome browser explained in a comic book by Scott McCloud

Topics and resources for an introductory course on web page design, HTML + CSS etc. (May 2008)

Google: HTML, CSS, and Javascript from the Ground Up

Google Code how-to's and references on web page design

Mozilla developer center: browsers, plugins, related technologies

HTML primer, including a bit about CSS

HTML style advice, especially semantics vs. display

CSS advice for the artistically challenged

Design advice and links

HTML Dog: HTML and CSS quick references, also cssproperties/

HTML canvas element for graphics and animation

HTML color codes matching chart: CMYK, RGB, Hex

XHTML Character Entity Reference

Common Math Symbols in HTML, XML, TeX, and Unicode

Jakob Nielson: AlertBox, usability advice for web page designers

Webless initiative, Any Browser campaign: pleas and recommendations for simpler web pages, also rules-validated.html, antiweb.html, also ablinks.html

The website development process

Programming and software design

Buzz, languages, tools, systems, design, examples, projects, documentation, open source, teaching, courses, talks, careers, literature, history


Slashdot developers development

Left Fold, weekly digest about programming

Lambda the Ultimate programming languages weblog (arcane), also node/view/13 (list of blogs)

Questions and answers for programmers, system administrators, and users, technology, What-are-good-resources-to-learn-about-search-engine-architecture


John McCarthy: essentials of Lisp

Paul Graham's pages: Lisp, also avg.html, lisp.html

Peter Norvig's pages: Lisp, also Python and Java, also Lisp-retro.html, python-lisp.html, python-iaq.html

The LISP Programming System (1960)

Lisp 50th birthday celebration

New Lisps: Arc (2001), PLOT (2006), Clojure (2008), cheatsheet

Type systems (with several interesting links)

Language arcana
C, also hint
Emacs (TECO, Emacs precursor)
Forth, also jonesforth.s.txt, jonesforth.f.txt (.s is x86 assembler, with explanation)
Haskell, etc., for example C.html, Y.html (Gregg Michaelson) (Miranda, a Haskell precursor, vs. Scheme)
HOL, also summary.txt (John Harrison, Carl Witty)
Java (Marty Hall)
Javascript, also survey.html , also mario.js
Lisp (John McCarthy) (Kaz Kylheku) (Paul Tarvydas) (Tim Bradshaw) (InvalidOrTaken, others) (Reinhard Gantar)
Lisp (CL), also lisp/cl-pitfalls (Jeff Dalton) (Edmund Weitz) (Jeremy H. Brown) (Brooks and Gabriel) (Skef Whorley) (Dan Weinreb) (Zach Beane)
Lisp (Clojure)
Lisp (Elisp) (Christopher Browne)
Lisp (Scheme) (Ken Dickey) (Brian Harvey), also 2009/12/29/sicp-distilled/ (jao) (Scheme vs. Miranda, a Haskell precursor) (Patrick D. Logan) (James A. Crippen) (brlewis)
Lisp (CL and Scheme)
PHP, also #1293266 (starter PHP project, simple server-side include), also #rule7, and comments 7, 24, 26 (learning PHP), for example 436930, 437954, 436966, 437261, 437001, 437140, etc.
Python (reference) (awesomely dense), also #QuickRef (other versions), for example reference/, library/, howto/, modindex.html, glossary.html, also NumPy_for_Matlab_Users (SciPy)
Python (brief tutorials), also 101268/hidden-features-of-python, , 231767/the-python-yield-keyword-explained, 739654/understanding-python-decorators, etc. (graphics libraries, video editing) (also decorators) (decorator classes)
Python (books), also (text for Berkeley SICP in Python, linked below)
Python (courses), also (MIT, uses Downey's Think Like a Computer Scientist text) (MIT, CS intro with Python, 24 videos), also index.html#_python_understanding (Google) (Berkeley, SICP in Python, text linked above), also (Bioinformatics) (SciPy/NumPy) (two-day introduction for women) (free class at a hacker space)
Python (examples) (also Perl, Ruby, C, C#) (Python decorators), also (yield, lambda), also Chapter_2
Python (pitfalls and arcana) (Python 3 motivation and features)
Python (assessment), for example 2009/01/pythons-design-philosophy.html (Python vs. Ruby, lots of details about both) (Python 2.6 vs. 3, keeping up with versions in general) (Peter Norvig and John McCarthy)
Python (announcements and discussion) (Seattle)
Ruby (lambda calculus, Church encoding, Y combinator explained)
Regular expressions, also reanimator/ (Flash), archives/2006/02/reanimator
Unix find, grep, xargs
Unix shells
Z, also toolkit.html (download PDF from link on page)

Programming language Rosetta stones, also
syntax-across-languages-per-language/, also p.html, etc., etc. (and links therein) (anagrams in Python, Perl, Ruby, C, C#)

Codefetch, Code Search, search for code examples from programming books and public repositories, also popular.html, examples.html, also stats/, also help/faq_codesearch.htm

Gawkinet, Internet programming language (new wine in old bottles)

Wheat, Internet programming language (interesting ideas, probably not ready for production), also talk/intro.html, talk/talk6.html

Programming language ecology (Pereira) (Jeff Dalton) (Blackwell) (Naggum) (Shebs) (Shebs 2) (Stroustrup) (Stroupstrup 2) (Pitman) (invalidOrTaken) (Griffith), for example 436930, 437954, 436966, 437261, 437001, 437140, etc. (eries and many contributors) (Gantar)

Conferences, also 2003, 2002, also 2004, also 2004, 2003, 2002, also ll2, ll1

Weblogs, formerly at



Java Modeling Language (JML)

NuSMV: a new symbolic model checker, also NuSMV/papers/sttt_j/html/index.html

AskIgor automated debugging server, also dd/?lang=en

Editors (emacs, vi design philosophies) (emacs in 1977)

IDEs and alternatives


Testing tools (mostly Python but with generally useful taxonomy)

Vows, Javascript testing tool (nice page design, too)

Model-based testing, also mbt/, also research/pubs/view.aspx?type=Technical%20Report&id=912

Distributed version control (see also Subversion)
hg (choosing a dvcs for the Python project)
git reference
git explanation
git svn equivalences
git summaries
  (cool! click in page to show commands, hover cursor over any, explanation appears at page bottom)
git in Python

Nostalgia and frustration


Jim Gray's pages: large databases, astronomy

Design principles

(See also documentation, Internet architecture, examples)

"What is your definition of 'Design', Monsieur Eames?" (ca 1955)

Tim Berners-Lee's principles of design (1998--2002)

Butler Lampson's hints for design (1983)

Jon Bentley's collection of proverbs and aphorisms (1985)

David Parnas' classic paper on modular design (1972)

Jerome Saltzer et al's classic paper on the end-to-end principle (1981)

Jon Postel's robustness principle (1979, via Nick Gall)

Fallacies of distributed computing by Peter Deutsch, comment by Tim Bray

Big-O analysis in web applications

Trygve Reenskaug's original notes on Model-View-Controller (MVC) (1979), an early implementation (1987, 1992), a web implementation (2007), criticism (2008), explanation and caveats (2009) (etc.)

Alexis Rosen's post on user interface design details that hugely affect acceptance (1989)

Martin Pilkington's page on database design and normalisation (also with nicer formating, comments, 2006)

Database normalization design tradeoffs (many contributors, 2008), for example #1319152, #1319416, #1319652
etc. ...

SQL design and programming advice

"Tico the fairy teaches the Princess how to simplify her data management..."

Bjarne Stroustrup's paper on object-oriented design and some alternatives (1995)
(Are there any good short introductions or summaries about object-oriented design? ...)

(... Maybe this is it.)

Object-oriented design: enthusiasm and skepticism (the same tension gathers around any method) (Rolf Schumacher) (Elliot), also 0203.html (Nancy Leveson) (Christopher Browne) (mechanical_fish, thomasmallen), 380862 (gruseom, daniel_yokomizo) (Dr. Richard Botting)

Design patterns (I'm underwhelmed but some think they are helpful), 380862, 380766, etc.

Phil Agre's design course, also week5.html, week10.html

Butler Lampson's and Daniel Jackson's systems course at MIT (2004)

Kaashoek's and Zeldovich's systems course at MIT (2012)

Daniel Jackson's pages: software design and analysis, also alloy, womble.pdf, fall00-lectures.pdf

Niklaus Wirth's history of "good ideas that turned out to be less than brilliant" (2006)

Design examples, case studies

(See also principles)

John McCarthy's essentials of Lisp (1980)

John McCarthy's original paper on the LISP Programming System (1960)

Timothy Brownawell's one sentence description of Unix (2006)

Doug McIlroy, Rob Pike, and Ken Thompson on Unix philosophy, summarized by Eric Raymond (1978, 1987, 2003)

Dennis Ritchie's early notes on Unix (1972)

Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thompson's classic paper on Unix internals (1973,78), also cacm.pdf

Simson Garfinkel et al's Unix haters handbook (1994)

Plan 9, post-Unix OS from the same team, especially 9.html, acme.html, for example (Plan 9 Acme intro - video) (Plan 9 programs ported to Linux etc.) (Plan 9 Acme in use, 2011) (wmii, tiling window manager influenced by Plan 9 Acme)

Sergey Brin and Larry Page's original paper on the Google design and prototype (1998)

Subversion (version control system) goals, architecture, design, performance tradeoffs (2000--2007)
(see also
distributed version control), #svn.intro.architecture.dia-1

Wikipedia database: huge LAMP example (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP5, 2007)

The Architecture of Open Source Applications (2011), for example mercurial.html, packaging.html, and selenium.html

Projects: process, management, politics, and business

(see also documentation, open source, Internet projects, Apple, Microsoft)

Proverbs, truisms, rules of thumb (Alan Perlis) (Jon Bentley) (Robert L. Glass) (Susan Cramm)

Fred Brooks' Mythical Man-Month Revisited (summarized by Rene Schaad)

Routine projects vs. novel ones, other experience that confirms Brooks (above) (Mike Williams)

Program-building strategies and heuristics, #1460817 (jenkinsEar, and for no one) (grumblebee) (edw519)

Extreme programming, and some precursors (chromatic) (John Roth) (Ben Kovitz, Biju Thomas) (John Duncan) (Ulf Wiger) (Gary Stoneburner) (Eric Peterson) (Kurt Guntheroth) (spinoza9999) (Dr. Richard Botting)

Proposals, estimates, invoices, taxes, licenses etc.

Developers, users, and customers (Frank A. Adrian) (Robert Munck and Andy Gabb) (Graham Shevlin) (Darren Collins)

Testing (Marshall Woodson) (Boris Beizer, scroll down for "best and worst practices" article) (Ben Kovitz, Biju Thomas) (Martin Fowler) (Vivekanand Sakaram) (boris beizer)

Estimating time and costs (Rommert J. Casimir) (Herman) (Peter Leeson) (John Duncan) (Jon D Hagar) (Ulf Wiger) (Jonathan Allan) (Tom DeMarco)

Large projects vs. small ones, matching staff size to time (see also Fred Brooks, above) (Scott L. McGregor) (Jeffrey C. Dege) (Dick Dunn)

Damage control and prevention (Steve McConnell) (Joel Spolsky) (boris beizer) (ppgooding) (Nicole Bianco) (jasondigitized and many contributors)

Traditional engineering vs. software development (Jeff Offutt) (Paul C. George) (Andy Dent) (Marshall Woodson)

System administration including people, operations, IT (see also in coping) (Terence Parr) (Steve Simmons) (Paul Evans via David Meyer)

The Inmates are Running the Asylum, a book supposedly about design but more about projects (talk years later by same author)

High Stakes, No Prisoners, a book on startups, management, and the computer industry

QA Confidential


(See also projects, design, literature)

What to document, why, and for whom (John Roth), or (David Parnas and Paul Clements in TSE 12(2) Feb 86) (Paul Campbell) (clover kicker)

What to document for web sites (analogous items are needed for any software), also #1600220, #1600595, etc.

Requirements vs. specifications vs. design vs. user manuals
(Remarks here on object-oriented programming and UML apply as well to other styles and notations) (David Alex Lamb) (Robert C. Martin) (Ben Kovitz)

Requirements via use cases, difficulties and recommendations (cdewalt) (Ben Kovitz)

Unreadable requirements (Ben Kovitz)

Specifications (Tim Berners-Lee) (Pete Fenelon) (Eric Rescorla), also 0510.0/0575.html (Linus Torvalds)

Design notations (remarks here on UML apply as well to other notations) (John Burton) (Graham Perkins)

Design examples (how well do these follow other recommendations linked here?)

Code vs. comments, see especially dissenting remarks number 7, 24, 26 further down page

Collaboration, version control, content vs. cosmetics
(some of us today are happily using emacs, LaTeX, and svn) (Thomas N. Mackey) (many contributors)

Literate programming, advocacy and disenchantment

Open source

(See also

Open source development

Free and open source philosophy, advocacy and licensing, also free-sw.html, categories.html, license-list.html

Early history of FSF and GNU recalled by a participant

Open source and peer review
(Search for paragraph with "Linux" in first line, about a third of the way down)

The Architecture of Open Source Applications

Teaching and learning

(See also in math and education)

Teaching yourself (comments on computing and math apply to other subjects also) (Peter Norvig) (ojbyrne) (jrookie and many contributors) (christo, not just about Javascript) (fstutzman, not just about PHP), this: #1333384 (pjern and many contributors) (Zarkonnen and many contributors), also item?id=149597, also item?id=149495 (Internet starter projects) (DIY web server, ambitious project) (web frameworks) (Dave Korn) (Michael Ash) (Eric Raymond and Rick Moen) (Chris Hillman) (Randy Poe) (Drew McDermott) (mechanical_fish) (yacoset) (Ron Bloom)

Teaching novices (Phil Agre) (SuperSquirrel and others, not just about web design) (Jon Jacky 1) (Jon Jacky 2) (Brian Kernighan)$enk$ (Richard O'Keefe 1) (Richard O'Keefe 2, especially after still struggling ...) (Doc Ruby) (Joseph Weizenbaum, especially paragraph beginning It happens ...)

Teaching and careers, #1419105 (Isemel, twiggy) (Netzapper) (Fernando Pereira 1) (Fernando Pereira 2) (Joe Seigh) (Amanda Giarla) (Edward Hartnett) (Jeff Dalton) (Michael Hann) (Kevin Cline) (Jeffrey B. Siegal), for example #1445725, etc. (gzimmer, scruss and many contributors)

Teaching agony and ecstasy (see also in math) (David Ashley) (Robert Strandh) (Randy Poe) (labuser) (Clack and Myers, via Jacky) (Allan Adler 1) (Allan Adler 2) (Dave Rusin) (john baez)

Computer science courses at universities

(see also other
university courses)

SICP, possibly the best computer science textbook ever: full text, video lectures, worked exercises (Peter Norvig review) (Phil Wadler critique, Scheme vs. Miranda)

SICP at universities recently (dropped at MIT)
  links in HN: (partial revival at MIT)
  comments in HN:, also proglang.html (Berkeley)
  comments in HN: (Berkeley, now in Python)
  comments in HN:

Lectures on Scheme and functional programming (videos) (jao)

Computer Science introduction and survey with Python at MIT, 24 videos

Algorithms course at MIT: summary, individual lectures, handwritten notes, for example mit-introduction-to-algorithms-part-eleven/ with mit-algorithms-lecture-16-01.jpg

Math for computer science course at MIT

Computer systems courses at MIT with links to many classic papers (Lampson and Jackson, 2004) (Kaashoek and Zeldovich, 2012)

Introductory CS course emphasizing functional programming at CMU, 2011/03/15/teaching-fp-to-freshmen/

Brian Kernighan's introduction to computing at Princeton with many interesting links, also summary07.html

UW computer science course web pages

Cambridge University computer science course web pages
(pages for years before 2002-2003 have much more material)

Ars Digita University, MIT-like CS curriculum with free tuition, now defunct but course materials still available, also ~tomh/rants/aduni_five_years_later.html

Computer science research talks

UW computer science colloquia (Windows Media Player, a few RealPlayer)

Research Channel, video archive of research talks from all over (Windows Media Player, etc.), also program/displayseries.asp?collid=485, etc.

Careers and lives

(See also learning and coping)

How to be a programmer

Little nybbles of development wisdom

Interviewing, also
what-you-need-to-know, and other pages at blog-rants

Paul Graham's essays: startups, career advice

Close to the Machine, a memoir by a software engineer

Contrasting career paths (gaius) (ch1x0r)

Confronting and overcoming discouragement

Programming ability and experience (ojbyrne) (Ralph Cook) (Amanda Giarla) (Tim McDermott) (biohacker) (David Chase) (Jim Nusbaum) (David Kastrup) (yacoset) (Linus Torvalds) (Joe Seigh) (Jay) (many contributors)


Rent a Coder (I'm not recommending this!)


Literature and writing

(See also
documentation, design)

Origins and precursors, 1936 - 1982: Turing, Von Neumann, Shannon, etc.

Some classic papers, 1968 - 1984: Dijkstra, Codd, Parnas, etc.

Recent papers by Google scientists

CiteSeer, richly annotated index to computer science literature, also citeseer.html. Example: harel87statecharts.html

Citeseer, most cited papers, also most cited in each topic, also directory.html

DBLP, searchable computer science bibliography, 740K+ BibTeX entries (nice GUI to same)

Disappearing computer science literature (Jerry Leichter)

Experiments (or lack thereof) in computer science

Automatic computer science paper generator

Literate programming, documentation, coding standards, metrics (papers and links)

Literate programming disenchantment

Writing about programming: reviews and criticism (RC) (Doc Ruby) (renderhead) (larry bagina)

Writing about programming: advice, how-to's (pertinent to other subjects also)


(See also literature)

Most important software innovations

Significant new inventions in computing since 1980

Lisp history (John McCarthy 1979, early days) (Michael Fogus 2011, other early contributors) (Steele and Gabriel, 1992)

Lisp machines

Lisp 50th birthday celebration

Alan Kay: origins and very early history of object-oriented programming

AI: two critical histories, and some shorter observations (Phil Agre), also .ps.Z (Rodney Brooks) (Jorn Barger) (Bill Park) (Drew McDermott) (John McCarthy (in 2008!) via mgummelt, and many contributors)

Niklaus Wirth: history of "good ideas that turned out to be less than brilliant"

Jaron Lanier: memories of California hackers in the 70's (including Ted Nelson, see below)

Ted Nelson: curmudgeon's history of computing

The end of history?

Dennis Ritchie: Unix and C history and memorabilia, also picture.html, also primevalC.html

Alan Turing: his life, work, death, and biographers

Portraits of programming language designers, others, also ---Part-Deux.aspx

Programming languages birthplaces

Fallen heroes (Dennis Ritchie and John McCarthy, dual obituary, November 2011),0,2083488,print.story (John McCarthy, October 2011) (don't miss comments at the end) (Dennis Ritchie, October 2011) (Daniel D. McCracken, July 2011) (Tom West, May 2011) (Paul Baran, March 2011) (Ken Olsen, February 2011) (Robin Milner, March 2010) (Joseph Weizenbaum, March 2008) (John Backus, March 2007) (Ted Codd, April 2003), also indexBibTeX.html (Edsger Dijkstra, August 2002) (video interview, pointful comment by fuffz) (Kristen Nygard, August 2002) (Bob Floyd, 2001, eulogy by Donald Knuth) (Alonzo Church, August 1995)

Internet technology, history, and milieu

Buzz, architecture, governance, core technologies, newer technologies, search, applications, projects, history, see also security


Weblogs, etc., for example culture/blogs/my-most-linked-posts.html


(See also layering and software design)

Architectural principles of the Internet, and some recent changes, also rfc/rfc3439.txt, rfc/rfc3724.txt

Internet standards: RFCs etc. by number, also by category, also   rfcs/np.html

RFC writing


Who runs the Internet?, also cid=11837336, cid=11838143

Tussle in cyberspace

Core technologies

Layering, from course notes by Phil Agre (in first three paragraphs only)

Stack of specifications (layering again), from a talk by Tim Berners-Lee

IP, from a book by Eric Hall

TCP, in a paper by Jingjing Lu and Yuxiang Zhu

HTTP, from a book by Clinton Wong

Thirty minute web server by Wilhelm Fizpatrick

TCP/IP and HTTP protocol sequence diagrams, etc.

HTTP headers and status codes, a diagram by Alan Dean

HTTPTracer, displays HTTP traffic between your browser and any server

Well-known TCP and UDP ports

Tim Craven's course notes: brief coverage of many topics with lots of links

Newer technologies

(See also web page design and technology)

Very short but enlightening explanation of many web technologies, then a warning and a mea culpa, but also 538263

Another short explanation

Web servers and HTTP, etc.

John Osterhout's course on web applications (Stanford, Fall 2010), also projects.php

Browsers: primer on the internal operations of WebKit and Gecko

Chrome browser explained in a comic book by Scott McCloud, some background

Mozilla developer center: browsers, plugins, related technologies

XHTML, advocacy and caveats



Ajax (aka Remote Scripting)

Web development frameworks (some advice quickly becomes dated) (TurboGears, Python, 2005) (various, Python, 2006) (various, 2006) (various, 2006), also #rule7, and comments 7, 24, 26 (various, 2007) (various, 2008), also 217264, 216879 (various, Rails, PHP, 2008) (various, 2009) (frameworks vs DIY, 2009) (Django, 2009) (DIY 2010) (DIY Python, 2010)

Social bookmarks, tags, folksonomy, also tag/, help/, joshua/

Mashups and web APIs, also howto, apis, reference

Semantic web: XML, RDF, RSS, OWL etc., from course notes by Phil Agre

Semantic web for web developers (clear, short summary with discussion of RDF vs. XML + SOAP)

Simile, semantic web plugins for Firefox (check out projects on right panel), for example solvent/, piggy-bank/, piggy-bank/developers.html, welkin/, etc.

Semantic web: RDF sample data and command line tools, explanations and demos, also 04/transmuting-ntriples.html

Semantic web in haiku, also

Future of Web Apps Summit (notes from the conference, Feb 2006), also notes/2006/summit/schachter.txt, notes/2006/summit/carson.txt


See also using search engines

Web crawlers, search engines, data mining, and more from course notes by Dan Weld

How Google works

Google design and prototype, original paper by Brin and Page at Stanford in 1998

How Google Translate works

Perspectives on the information industry, a talk by Google CEO Eric Schmidt, May 2005 (abstract, video)

Behind the scenes at Google, a talk by Jeff Dean, October 2004 (abstract, video)

The Google Linux Cluster, a talk by Urs Hoelzle, November 2002 (abstract, video)

MapReduce, a Google Labs paper from 2004 (abstract, also PDF)

The Google file system, a paper from 2003 (abstract, also PDF)

... and many other publications by Googlers

Google maps, how it works

Software development at Google


Tiny web servers, discussion on minimal TCP/IP

Traceroute in Python

VisualRoute, a graphical traceroute (commercial promo, interesting anyway)

Projects: technology, process, management, politics, and business

(See also programming projects)

Philip Greenspun's pages: education, designing and running a big web site, databases, e-commerce, startups, bustups, also internet-application-workbook/, panda/, seia/, also ~tomh/rants/aduni_five_years_later.html

Recent experiences: Terence Parr (jGuru), Joshua Schachter (, Ryan Carson (DropSend), Jacob Kaplan-Moss (6News), Matt Haughey (MetaFilter), various

Y Combinator, seed funding for early-stage startups, also faq.html, lib.html

Project proposals, estimates, and invoices for freelancers and small shops

Starter projects, also item?id=149597, also item?id=149495

Launching a website, also #1633136, etc.

Wordie, minimal but addictive social networking site, some reactions at words/mentions

Wordnik (formerly Wordie) goes big time

____ will ____ you, an even more minimal site

History, assessment, prospects

Brief history of the Internet, by its inventors

Tim Berners-Lee: World Wide Web original announcement (1991)

Tim Berners-Lee: World Wide Web history, architecture, prospects

Tim Bray: XML, RDF history, assessment

Pioneers of the net

Usenet timeline

Internet history timeline

Atlas of cyberspaces

Security and privacy

Networks, web, applications, programming, media, milieu


Network security at home, general information about networks, also advisories/CA-2001-20.html

Top Ten Internet security vulnerabilities (lecture notes in PDF, MP3, updated web page), also mp3, top20.htm


Ruby on Rails security guide (2010, web security overview, not just RoR)

John Osterhout's course on web programming and security (Stanford, Winter 2009), also syllabus.html

Chinese firewall (2008)

A tangled world wide web of security issues (March 2002, review article, 100+ references)


Recent evaluation of cookies by one of the inventors (Dec 2006)

How to block web ads (2000, many browsers now do this automatically)

Cross site scripting, SQL injection (2001), also sql-injection.html

Database security, SQL injection etc., examples in MySQL (2009)

State-based attacks on web applications (2006)

Common security problems in web applications (2006, PHP but probably similar elsewhere)

Top 10 web hacks of 2006


Security and privacy problems in Microsoft products, some fixes and suggestions


Secure programming for Linux and Unix (pertinent to Windows etc. also)

The Tao of Windows buffer overflow

"Smashing The Stack For Fun And Profit"


Hacking the Xbox (hardware, crypto, legal issues)

How to decrypt a DVD, in haiku form, also ~dst/DeCSS/


Ross Anderson's pages, economics of information security, etc., also ~rja14/econsec.html

Dave Dittrich's page, forensics and much much more

Conferences (in Defcon, click on author links to see abstracts and bios)

Spammers and frauds vs. Craigslist: security technology arms race (May 2008)

Credit card exposure due to poor programming: legal repercussions, regulations, standards (May 2008)


Attitudes about security

Coping with technology

How to help someone use a computer (Phil Agre)

How to ask questions, and why so many "stupid" questions are asked (Michael Ash) (Eric Raymond and Rick Moen) (dkarl)

Rationalizations for bad design (Phil Agre)

Some causes of bad design and implementation (see also traditional engineering) (Andy Dent)

Architectures of control, also ?page_id=3 (Dan Lockton, contributors)

Is cost-benefit analysis itself "irrational"? (Nancy Leveson)

System administration (see also in projects) (Steve Simmons) (Paul Evans via David Meyer), also #1314354, etc. (Skorgu, dg, LolaGeek, many others) (wabashdw and many contributors), also #1600220, #1600595, etc. (spicynuts and many contributors)

IT costs

Staying current (see also careers and learning) (Joe Seigh) (Amanda Giarla) (pjern and many contributors) (Zarkonnen and many contributors)

Unix-hater's handbook (Garfinkel, Weise, Strassmann, et al.)

Nostalgia and frustration

RISKS: forum on risks to the public in computers and related systems (Peter G. Neumann and contributors)

Three great faiths

Linux, Mac, Windows. See also hardware and programming.

Books on all three, with sample chapters to download, also animals.html

Linux (and other Unix)

(See also
open source, Unix design)

Unix guide for beginners from Matt Might, settling-into-unix, tools, also ssh-hacks

Linux distributions family tree (explanations, comments, corrections in second URL)

Linux kernel map (Cool diagram with concentric circles. Broken link, where did it go?), also about.php

Linux kernel map (interactive, pg dn to zoom, arrow keys or drag to pan, click to view code), also kernel_map_intro

Linux, Red Hat 7.1, April 2001: 30+ million lines of code, $1B, 71% C

Linux kernel 2.6, April 2008: statistics, authors, sponsors

Package management: significance, how to use it, how it works, command summaries, also ps

Building from source on Unix, Linux, and OS X

BSD vs Linux

Look like a Unix guru, shell and command tipsheets

GNU manuals online

Linux how-tos, Ubuntu 2007 (but much applies to any Linux), much more material in Ubuntu:Feisty

Linux HOWTOs (older, mostly before 2005)

Linux (in)compatible systems, components (not necessarily complete)

Dennis Ritchie: Unix history and memorabilia

Humor (see also in geek culture)


Mac OS X for Unix users

Mac OS X development at Apple

Mac through history

Mac performance, many models

Mac dissection: iBook, PowerBook, Mini

Frankenmac, Hackintosh: OS X on commodity PC hardware (I'm not recommending this!)

Mac disenchantment, especially among former PC users


Windows: 50+ million lines of code, 300+ million copies in use

Windows command line

Windows development at Microsoft

Rapid application development for Windows, Microsoft tools vs. alternatives

.NET and C#, also csharpfaq.htm, also cid=15510059 (C# and .NET vs. Java platform, technology and community)

Programming Windows with GNU, other tools, also links.shtml

Windows/Linux applications and utilities, equivalents/replacements/analogs (apparently defunct)

Essentials for Windows (TeX, LaTeX) (Graphviz: dot, etc.) (GhostScript, GhostView, GSView) (GNU tools: tar, gzip, find, etc.) (Emacs) (PuTTY: terminal with ssh, scp etc.) (CVS) (Subversion) (Subversion server on Windows)

Coping with Word

Windows sysadmin chores

PC performance, many models

US vs Microsoft anti-trust settlement

EU vs Microsoft decision

PIFF + Microsoft agreement about Samba, etc., also PFIF_agreement.html

Geek culture

(See also technology, great faiths)

News, rumors, gossip, rants, also item?id=1024399, 1024293
also see search box at bottom of HN page, for example science-nature, computers-internet etc.

Folklore and jargon

Comics (see also in art), for example 2007/01/were-all-going-to-hell/, for example 195, 482, 485, 526, 386
also (topic index), also aboutcomics.html, many other artists via links.html

Laptop art

Screenshots for example index-el.html, index-tex.html, etc.

Fonts and typography, also 000969.html

Keys vs. mice: "using language is more expressive than pointing at things all day"

Food, also 142951, 311740, 311835, for example #1922385

Hack a day

Neat hacks (recent entries at top, see also in science and engineering)
via, explained at
explained at   2007_Nanoletters_Nanotube_radio.pdf
explained at

Humor (see also in Unix)
differently formatted here
the original inspiration

also, 672582

In a category by themselves

Historical anniversaries

Letters of note, an archive of fascinating correspondence

Internet anagram server

Lexical Freenet

Magnetic poetry

"May I take your order?"

International Rollergirls' master roster

Browse Wittgenstein's Tractatus

Dao De Jing, with links on the translation, language and culture

Oracle of Bacon

Typealyzer, Myers-Briggs classification of web pages

Early technical manual

Search for your name or birthday in pi.

The elements, also Posters/

Looplabs (Flash)

Sodaplay (Java, nothing to do with soft drinks)

404 Research Lab

Jon Jacky,