20 April 2020

"Bitcoin for the befuddled" by Conrad Barsky and Chris Wilmer

Bitcoin is one of the hottest topics today. It has gone further than a technological oddity to an evolutionary lap for finances and a matter of discussion for politicians. But understanding Bitcoin is hard. Its concepts are new and its foundations are mathematical and technological so average people have an hard time trying to understand what Bitcoin is based on.

The main good point of this book is that it tries to follow the way described by its title. You are not supposed to have any technical background to read this book, as it explain things for average people using usual day concepts and examples. Even using comics and funny drawings author are able to make easy really complex concepts that other books try to explain overwhelming you with math formula.

Sure, your are not going to develop a bitcoin based app or become the next digital billionaire just reading this book, but at least you'll lose your fears and start to understand what all this fuss is about and how it can change your life in the future. It is a light reading that you can end in just a weekend.

So, this book is quite recommended for everybody who wants to learn quickly the very basics of Bitcoin, both just to understand media news about cryptocurrencies and as a first step of further learning about this topic.

15 April 2020

Programming in Python 3 by Mark Summerfield

Python is an extremely powerful but easy to learn programming language. If you have prior knowledge of any programming language you can learn Python in just few hours and you can be a proficient developers in just some days.

However this simplicity can be dangerous too if you stay at the basics and don´t go further into this wonderful language. It's easy to keep using it just as an script language and think that that is all with Python. But actually Python is complete development language that you can use with almost anything you would need with an ease and expressiveness not easy to find in any other language.

This books focus in Python 3, the new generation of this language that now is its standard. Such an an evolution lap was not able to offer full backwards compatibility with former Python 2.7 branch. But actually this books gives a good guidance to promote your Python code to 3 branch. Book's content is extremely complete covering from basics (flow control, strings, files) to advanced topics (decorator, context manager, functors, abstract classes and metaclasses and a huge etc). Those topics will prove to be very useful to help you to translate easily mental concepts to code. All those concepts are explained with clean code, well commented and easy to understand.

As a summary, this is a good book both for newbies who want to start from the begining and for those with good expertise that want to get full advantage from Python. Besides, once finished this book is a good language reference to keep at hand on your bookshelf.