Re: books on programming

From: Brian A. LaMacchia (
Date: Mon Jan 01 2001 - 22:30:40 PST

A couple years ago Mike Eisenberg, a fellow Project MAC (Abelson/Sussman)
alum now a prof. in the CS dept. at CU-Boulder, put together a course &
reading list of the "canon" works in CS. Here's where the list stood as of
7/99, it's worth FoRK-ing for the record (and so I don't have to search
through half my archives again...). Personal bias: I'd add at least one
crypto paper to the list, most likely W. Diffie and M.E. Hellman, "New
Directions in Cryptography," IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, IT-22,
n. 6, Nov 1976, pp. 644-654.



Aiken, Howard
Proposed Automatic Calculating Machine [1937]

Ada Augusta, Countess of Lovelace
Notes on the Analytical Engine [1842]

Babbage, Charles
Of the Analytical Engine [1864]

Backus, J.
Can Programming Be Liberated from the von Neumann Style?
A Functional Style and its Algebra of Programs [1978]

Berkeley, Edmund C.
Giant Brains, or Machines that Think [1949]

Boole, George
An Investigation of the Laws of Thought [1854]

Bush, Vannevar
As We May Think [1945]

Brooks, Frederick
The Mythical Man-Month [1975]

Clarke, Arthur C.
2001: A Space Odyssey [1968]

Dijkstra, E.
Go To Statement Considered Harmful [1968]
Solution of a Problem in Concurrent Programming Control [1965]

Feynman, Richard
Feynman Lectures on Computation [1983-6]

Gardner, Martin
Columns on John Conway's game of Life [~1970]

Gödel, Kurt
On Formally Undecidable Propositions of Principia Mathematica
and Related Systems [1931]

Karp, R.
Reducibility among Combinatorial Problems [1972]

Knuth, D.
The Art of Computer Programming [1968]

Leibniz, G.
On His Calculating Machine [1685]

McCarthy, J. et al.
LISP 1.5 Programmer's Manual [1965]

McCulloch, W.
What is a Number, that a Man May Know It, and a Man, that He
May Know a Number? [1961]

McCulloch, W. and Pitts, W.
A Logical Calculus of the Ideas Immanent in Nervous Activity [1943]

Minsky, M. and Papert, S.
Perceptrons [1969]

Napier, J.
The Napier Rods [1617]

Naur, P. et al.
Revised Report on the Algorithmic Language ALGOL 60 [1963]

Newell, A. and Simon, H.
Computer Science as Empirical Inquiry: Symbols and Search [1976]

Pascal, B.
On His Calculating Machine [c. 1650]

Shannon, Claude
The Mathematical Theory of Communication [1948]
A Chess-Playing Machine [1950]

Sutherland, I.
Sketchpad: A Man-Machine Graphical Communication System [1963]

Tarjan, R.
Depth-First Search and Linear Graph Algorithms [1972]

Turing, Alan
Computing Machinery and Intelligence [1950]
On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem

Von Neumann, J.
First Draft of a Report on the EDVAC [1945]
The General and Logical Theory of Automata [1951]

Wiener, Norbert
Cybernetics [1948/1961]

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