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Portraits in Silicon

Portraits in Silicon

Submitter: I couldn’t weed this book fast enough as soon as I saw it in the 920’s at my library. Some of the profiles of early innovators such as Charles Babbage and Alan Turing still might be relevant. However, a copyright date of 1987 means this title doesn’t include anyone like Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, or Jerry Yang and Dave Filo. It does, however, have a profile of Steve Jobs, featuring a photo of him with a lovely, full head of hair.

Holly: But it’s historical! Nah, just kidding. Submitter is from a public library in Michigan (not Silicon Valley, not a research institution, not an archive…) I think we all know where I’m going with this. Just weed it and move on.

More Bleeding Edge:

Ancient Chinese Science

Computers from Olden Times

Sally Ride

Video Relics

8 Responses to Portraits in Silicon

  • I’m surprized they picked Knuth. He’s notoriously famous within CS circles, but hasn’t done much of anything of general public interest that I know of. I guess they went more than skin-deep in writing this.

  • Dwight Schrute?

  • Some of the details about Alan Turing may be correct but there will be no mention of the Royal Pardon for his conviction for ‘gross indecency’ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-25495315
    I am a school librarian and have been doing an annual project about mathematicians with our maths department for years. It’s interesting that seven years ago students hadn’t heard of Alan Turing but now they are pleased to be allocated him as ‘their’ mathematician as they have seen the film with Benedict Cumberbatch and know just how much he contributed to the war effort and to computing.

  • I know you hate it when people say “But it’s historical”, but do you not get college students in your public libraries? Or people who want to write a non-fiction book about some mildly obscure subject and don’t want their bibliography to consist entirely of websites?

    • Public and school libraries can interlibrary loan materials on mildly obscure subject matter from university libraries. In my school library, I MIGHT hang onto this until I could update it, especially if there were student assignments built around the topic. Our library subscribes to online databases that include digitized reference books and biographies that would have more substantial info than this.

    • Any college student who is using the public library has a college library that is failing to do its job.

  • Sadly, my local library has two copies of this book.

  • That is exactly what I thought! Maybe Schrute Farms has some high-tech beet technology?