The 11 Best Computing Biographies

6 min read

This article presents readers with reviews and recommendations of the best biographies on computing, offering insight into some of the most influential figures in this field. From Steve Jobs’ revolutionary vision to The Creative Gene’s exploration of computer science history, these books provide an intimate look at how technology has shaped our lives over time. Further selections include Once Upon A Time In Carrotland, which follows the development of a unique artificial intelligence system; The Cuckoo’s Egg which details one man’s quest to uncover international espionage; and Sandworm which traces the rise of cyber warfare as we know it today. Whether you’re looking for inspiration or just curious about what goes on behind-the-scenes in tech culture, these are essential reads for any aspiring computer scientist!

  1. Steve Jobs

    Steve Jobs
    Walter Isaacson
    Published in 2011

    Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs is a captivating, comprehensive biography of the late Apple cofounder. Through more than 40 interviews and conversations with over 100 people close to him, as well as extensive research, it examines every aspect of Jobs’ life from his youth to his success in revolutionizing six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing and digital publishing. This thrilling portrait reveals not only Job’s astounding creative genius but also his obsessions for perfectionism and control that shaped the innovative products he created. Critical reviews praise the unvarnished insights into this iconic entrepreneur—a man whose influence will be remembered long after his death—and recommend it to anyone interested in exploring how ambition can merge with talent to change history.

  2. The Creative Gene

    The Creative Gene
    Hideo Kojima, Nathan Collins
    Published in 2021

    The Creative Gene, by Hideo Kojima, is an insightful collection of essays exploring the sources that have shaped one of gaming’s greatest minds. A voracious consumer of movies, music and books since childhood, Kojima has used these influences to create ground-breaking video games such as Metal Gear Solid and Death Stranding. This book offers readers a unique insight into how this titan of the industry views pop culture. Through his blog posts translated into English literature fans can gain access to what captivated him while growing up – from novels to manga and beyond! Those familiar with his work will find it fascinating; anyone looking for reading list suggestions should also pick up The Creative Gene too – sure to be enjoyed by all who venture inside its pages.

  3. Once Upon A Time In Carrotland

    Once Upon A Time In Carrotland
    Josh Carrott
    Published in 2021

    Once Upon A Time In Carrotland is a captivating autobiography of YouTube icon, Josh Carrott. This groundbreaking book provides an unfiltered look into his fascinating life and the epic saga of friendship which has shaped it. It is humorous yet heartfelt; readers will find themselves laughing out loud at Ollie’s quips while also being touched by moments of true love between the friends. All proceeds from this book are dedicated to building a new statue in New Zealand’s Ohakune Carrot Adventure Park. Perfect for all ages, this truly one-of-a-kind read may even become a major motion picture someday!

  4. The Cuckoo’s Egg

    The Cuckoo's Egg
    Cliff Stoll
    Published in 2005

    The Cuckoo’s Egg is an exciting and gripping true story about a determined individual who exposed hidden spies that threatened national security. Cliff Stoll, the protagonist of the book, was working as a systems manager at Lawrence Berkeley Lab when he noticed a 75-cent discrepancy which alerted him to the presence of unauthorized users on his system. He began an ambitious one-man hunt for “Hunter”, a mysterious hacker who had infiltrated U.S. computer networks and stolen sensitive military information with support from KGB agents fueled by cash and cocaine. In this remarkable narrative, readers will be immersed in a thrilling game of deception, codes, satellites and missile bases – all culminating in success against incredible odds! It is highly recommended for anyone seeking suspenseful entertainment or insight into hacking history before PCs were commonplace; it should also be compulsory reading material for cybersecurity students and professionals alike.

  5. Sandworm

    Andy Greenberg
    Published in 2019

    Sandworm by Andy Greenberg is an urgent and comprehensive investigation into the most devastating cyberattack in history, as well as a captivating detective story. Followed from its inception to its aftermath, this book details how Russia’s military intelligence agency was behind it all – unleashing crippling malware known as NotPetya which cost billions of dollars worldwide. With great detail and skillful writing that reads like a thriller novel, this book enlightens readers on the dangers posed by Sandworm; giving insight into global digital conflict and blurring the lines between war-time and peace-time. This sobering account offers much needed context for our ever changing world where national security must be taken seriously, making it essential reading for anyone interested in current affairs or technology.

  6. The Innovators

    The Innovators
    Walter Isaacson
    Published in 2015

    Walter Isaacson’s The Innovators is an expansive and moving account of the people who have shaped our digital revolution. This masterfully written book examines the creative leaps behind these technological advances, exploring the talents that allowed certain inventors to turn their ideas into realities. It delves deep into the mindsets of major players in this epochal transformation such as Ada Lovelace, Vannevar Bush, Alan Turing, John von Neumann and Steve Jobs among many others. An inspiring read for those interested in innovation, The Innovators takes readers on a journey from its inception to present day with vibrant descriptions and thoughtful analysis throughout. A must-have guidebook to understanding how disruption really happens within technology while providing insight into teamwork’s role in creativity; it strikes a perfect balance between technical jargon and graceful prose making it accessible to all types of readers. With moments ranging from awe-inspiring breakthroughs to tenderhearted realizations about joy being at the root of progress – Walter Issacson has created an essential narrative that reminds us what Americans are capable when they work together towards big goals.

  7. Ghost in the Wires

    Ghost in the Wires
    Kevin Mitnick, William L. Simon, Steve Wozniak
    Published in 2012

    In Ghost in the Wires: My Adventures as the World’s Most Wanted Hacker, author Kevin Mitnick recounts his thrilling true story of eluding capture by law enforcement and outsmarting numerous corporations. The narrative is packed with suspenseful anecdotes from Mitnick’s escapades along with insights into how he managed to access computers and networks at some of the world’s biggest companies. Alongside this gripping tale are details on protecting oneself against cybercrime; readers will discover a wealth of knowledge about easy cloaking and counter-measures for citizens and consumers in today’s Big Brother era. Written with wit and humor to make it an entertaining read even for those who don’t know their way around a computer, Ghost in the Wires provides an engrossing glimpse inside one man’s journey of breaking codes while evading justice.

  8. The Making of Prince of Persia: Journals 1985-1993

    The Making of Prince of Persia: Journals 1985-1993
    Jordan Mechner
    Published in 2020

    The Making of Prince of Persia, Journals 1985-1993 by Jordan Mechner is a fascinating insight into the video game industry’s early days. This 300 page collector’s edition contains Mechner’s original journals and his present day margin notations with added explanation, context and cartoons. It also includes archival visuals illustrating stages in the creation process as well as sketches, rotoscoped animation, screen shots and more. The 32 pages of ‘Legacy’ section feature memories from fans around the world regarding their experiences with this timeless classic over its 30 year history. With an indelible look at the creative process that will resonate with writers, artists and creators alike; it serves both as a tribute to a timeless classic and an inspiring record for anyone aspiring to create something new.

  9. The Soul of A New Machine

    The Soul of A New Machine
    Tracy Kidder
    Published in 2000

    Tracy Kidder’s “The Soul of A New Machine” is an award-winning, documentary style account of the development of a mini computer in the 1980s. Set against the backdrop of Data General’s efforts to keep up with their main competitor (DEC), this riveting story follows Tom West and his team as they try to create a ‘backup’ 32-bit system that would be compatible with their old 16-bit model. It examines what it takes to make a computer, how computers are organized and who puts them together; all while exploring the culture of feverish pace within the high tech industry. With its surprising gripping accounts from people at work, this book offers readers insight into not just technological innovation but also human ambition and dedication towards achieving something greater than themselves. From internal rivalries between engineers and management struggles – this essential read provides both entertainment value as well as being educational for those interested in understanding how technology has revolutionized our world today.

  10. The Dream Machine

    The Dream Machine
    M. Mitchell Waldrop
    Published in 2018

    The Dream Machine, by M. Mitchell Waldrop and published in the Stripe Press edition is a captivating book that provides an insight into the history of computing as we know it today. It tells the story of J.C.R Licklider, a relentless visionary who saw potential in how individuals could interact with computers and software at a time when they were still rudimentary machines used primarily for data processing purposes. Through comprehensive historical exposition and personal narrative combined within its pages, this masterpiece chronicles the man responsible for instigating work which led to both our understanding of what computers can do as well as development of the internet itself – quite literally shifting modern civilisation’s outlook on technology forevermore! Furthermore, readers are also treated to three original texts from Licklider himself: “Man-Computer Symbiosis” (1960), “Intergalactic Network” memo (1963) and his coauthored piece with Robert Taylor called “The Computer as a Communication Device”(1968). The Dream Machine deserves widespread recognition; Alan Kay calls it “the top book” about Xerox Park while others praise it for being thorough yet balanced – truly providing readers with an enriching overview on one individual’s influence over technological advancement throughout recent decades .

  11. Sidemen: The Book

    Sidemen: The Book
    The Sidemen
    Published in 2016

    Sidemen: The Book is a must-read for any fan of the YouTube superstars. It gives an insight into their lives and how they became successful, with details of their childhoods, early work experiences, views on each other as well as advice on becoming a YouTuber. Through interviews and photographs it follows them around the world as they take part in some unforgettable trips such as football matches and visits to Vegas. With humour throughout there are also tales from recording some amazing videos plus information about FIFA too! Whether you want to learn more about the Sidemen or just enjoy reading funny stories this book has got it all – making it a captivating read that will keep you entertained for hours.

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