Hackers and Painters

This book is a collection of essays by Paul Graham (of ‘Y Combinator’ fame) which can also be found on his website.  I always find Paul’s essays to be very interesting and this collection is no different.  It is a very thought provoking book, which makes it unexpectidily hard to pick out favorite essays from it.  It covers a lot of topics software design, creation, running a business, strategy, managing, technology trends and programming languages.

I’d recommend it to anyone working in software development.

The Myths of Innovation

This entertaining book explains where ideas come from, why there is usually resistance to new ideas, dealing with the inventors dilema, how managers can encourage new ideas and problem finding (rather than ignoring problems).  I found this book very refreshing as it helps dispel the myth that innovation is mostly about the idea, where as innovation is mostly about hard work and persistance in the face of resistance.

This book would be useful to anyone who creates new things for a living as it helps to explain why your great new idea is often met with disproportionate resistance from the establishment.