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Books about Computing

Books for High School students to read (and their teachers)

Blown to Bits - Review by Adam Thierer of a free on-line book
The authors survey a broad swath of tech policy territory — privacy, search, encryption, free speech, copyright, spectrum policy — and provide the reader with a wonderful history and technology primer on each topic. - free download

Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age by Douglas Rushkoff - summary from Amazon
This book helps "... readers come to recognize programming as the new literacy of the digital age––and as a template through which to see beyond social conventions and power structures that have vexed us for centuries. This is a friendly little book with a big and actionable message."

Automate This: How Algorithms Came to Rule Our World - Suggested by Helene M Martin as short and readable - summary from Amazon
In this fascinating, frightening book, Christopher Steiner tells the story of how algorithms took over—and shows why the “bot revolution” is about to spill into every aspect of our lives, often silently, without our knowledge. The interaction of man and machine can make our lives easier. But what will the world look like when algorithms control our hospitals, our roads, our culture, and our national security? What hap­pens to businesses when we automate judgment and eliminate human instinct? And what role will be left for doctors, lawyers, writers, truck drivers, and many others?

Nine Algorithms that Changed the Future - Suggested by Helene M Martin as short and readable - summary from Amazon
John MacCormick explains the fundamental "tricks" behind nine types of computer algorithms, including artificial intelligence (where we learn about the "nearest neighbor trick" and "twenty questions trick"), Google's famous PageRank algorithm (which uses the "random surfer trick"), data compression, error correction, and much more.

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