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Gavin Greig [userpic]

No Rest For The Wiki

July 26th, 2004 (08:45 pm)

It has been interesting to see a forthcoming book, "The .NET Developer's Guide to Windows Security" by Keith Brown, not only drafted on the web but transferred in its final copy-edited version back onto the web in the form of a wiki.

The porting from copy-edited version to wiki is being performed by volunteers (I did Item 51). All 75 items have now been assigned to someone and the transfer should be completed very shortly.

Developing books in public, or making their content freely available while they're still being viewed as a viable commercial proposition seems a pretty brave thing to do. However, it's not a surprise to find that Keith's being published by Addison-Wesley.

When I sat down a while ago to identify what I thought were my "best" computing books - in the sense that they teach something distinctive, valuable and lasting - I found that while they were by a variety of authors, they were almost all from one publisher. Addison-Wesley seem to excel in scholarly books which have something fundamental to offer, so perhaps it's not such a big surprise that they will tolerate a rather academic-style approach to the public sharing of information.

I hope Keith Brown's book sells well and justifies their faith - and his. The content is good and useful, and deserves to do well.