I was reading this for a review in the FLOSS UK newsletter due out some time in September. The author aims to chart a course somewhere between dry mathematical rigour and tool-centric shallowness of coverage. Something which I think he achieves. In fact the scope of the book is pretty impressive, scratching the surface of just about everything you need to know, and providing excellent pointers to more in depth resources. Worth reading for the great Python primer, albeit that only version 2.7 rather than the more current 3.4 is covered.
I’ve been a fan of Roberts since reading Salt on the recommendation of a colleague at Hotrecruit, back in the day. Roberts is a thoughtful, intellegent, dark and occasionally very funny writer. He has a gift for telling a well-crafted, literary sci-fi yarn that raises disturbing questions. In Bête, the central plot revolves around animals which have had chips inserted into them to enable them to talk. Roberts uses this as a jumping off point to think about animality, artificial intelligence and human rights.
The blurb on the back of this meditation on the connected world asks the question
What is the new information revolution really doing to us. Krotoski presents a balanced and reasonable account of phenomena like social media, online dating, porn and LOLcats. She writes accessibly and avoids the worst impulses towards moral panic and polemical excess that writing about the web seems to bring out in authors.