Things have been a bit hectic since term has began in earnest so I my posts will be a bit sporadic but we’ll see how it goes. I’ve got to do quick shout out to my housemate Chris who is running his blog over at ChrisNolan.me.uk he’ll be blogging on various technologies he’s playing with at the moment including his BeagleBoard.
Onto what I really wanted to write about today….The Search by John Battelle. I’ve been wanting to write a review of this book for a while now I finished it the other day. To give it it’s full title “The Search: How Google & its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business & Transformed Our Culture” yeah that’s a bit of a mouthful. This book provides a amazing insight into the early world of search, while it is a couple of years old now so isn’t as up to date on the recent moves of the market as some of the other books that have been written on this topic it provides a really great view of how these companies launched, grew and created the web we use today. For those who don’t recognise John Battelle he was one of the co-founders of Wired Magazine and founded the now defunct The Industry Standard. His view of the technology industry and the Internet in particular is really thought provoking even if you have no interest in search this book is well worth the read just for Battelle’s insights into the direction this market will take. For example discussed at great length in the book is how one day your search results and your television view may be linked to build a profile of a household allowing for targeted advertising and recommendation. It is this kind of integration of data that Battelle raises throughout the later stages of the book, while it is certainly something that many people have raised concerns about Battelle paints a picture of how this technology can be leveraged to improve the experience for the user.
The Search is just one of many technology titles that is available on Audible. For those of you who have not yet come across Audible, they provide a massive range of audiobooks for download to MP3 players or to play from your PC. The Audible service is fantastic if you are travelling, commuting or doing something where you wouldn’t be able to read a book. I have been using Audible since early this year on one of their subscription services and I could not be happier, as I spend a large amount of time travelling to play paintball I can easily work my way though a couple of books a month. One of the nice things about Audible is that they try to get the Author to narrate the book which is the case for The Search, I feel this really adds something to experience. I really recommend that people try Audible they are currently offering a no-risk trial for one book, so go sign-up for Audible get The Search for free gain some insight into the history of the web as we know it and see if audio books are your thing they have certainly increased the amount I’ve read over the last six months.