The best beach reads for IT pros in 2016

What book titles should be on your to-read list this summer?
1 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

The Chip : How Two Americans Invented the Microchip and Launched a Revolution

Author: T. R. Reid

We no doubt take for granted the computer systems which now power our world, mobile devices, television sets and even our vehicles -- but how did it all begin? You can find out this summer by reading The Chip, the story of two men who stumbled across a way to create the silicon microchip, which proved to be the turning point in bringing PCs to the mass market and beyond the confines of research facilities.

Price: $15 (approx)

Via: Amazon

2 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Accidental Empires

Author: Robert X. Cringely

Accidental Empire is a readable guide to the history of computer manufacturing which takes care to keep things fun and anything but dry. This particular story looks at everything from the odd, charismatic personalities which push the tech industry forward -- from Steve Jobs to Bill Gates -- as well as how personality traits, neuroses and the mistakes of men have changed the face of the business. It's fun, sometimes shocking, and absolutely worth a read this holiday season.

Price: $2.40 - $16

Via: Amazon

3 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Turing's Cathedral: The Origins of the Digital Universe

Author: George Dyson

Alan Turing, a key figure in the development of the computer, had a fascinating -- although at the end, sad -- existence. If you enjoyed the film based on his life, The Imitation Game, you will enjoy reading Turing's Cathedral, the story of a group of scientists in the 1940's and 1950's who set out to make Turing's dreams of a universal machine a reality.

Price: $11.70 (approx)

Via: Amazon

4 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

The Annihilation Score

Author: Charles Stross

The latest in the popular Laundry Files series is a must-read for tech and IT pros who want an easy but enjoyable story which combines politics, the occult, technology and programming as the UK's hapless civil servants combat demons brought into the world -- and keep them from the public.

Price: $6

Via: Amazon

5 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Dark Beyond the Stars

Author: Blair C. Babylon

An anthology of short stories submitted by female science fiction writers, Dark Beyond The Stars is a great book to take to the beach to enter different worlds based on space travel, space opera and adventure.

Price: $5.69 - $13.88

Via: Amazon

6 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

An Optimist's Tour of the Future

Author: Mark Stevenson

For an entertaining read on holiday, A Short History of Nearly Everything is an irreverent look at what's coming next for humanity. A traveler talks to climate change-fighting farmers, an emotional and grumpy robot and a Spanish entrepreneur in the middle of putting a hotel into space, among others. It would sound like science fiction, but perhaps it won't be long before that becomes our future.

Price: $5.98 - $16

Via: Amazon

7 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

The Dispossessed

Author: Ursula K. Le Guin

For an enjoyable science fiction read, you can transport yourself into a battleground between worlds through The Dispossessed, a story based on the disparity between the rich and poor, technology, utopian anarchists and how one man tries to be the catalyst for change.

Price: $7.35

Via: Amazon

8 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Countdown to Zero Day: Stuxnet and the Launch of the World's First Digital Weapon

Author: Kim Zetter

A staple, fascinating read for anyone in the security realm is Countdown to Zero Day, the story of how the Stuxnet worm -- considered the world's "first digital weapon" -- was unleashed on uranium plants in Iran to cause havoc, while also reminding us of the risk of digital weapons against our core infrastructure.

Price: $10.48

Via: Amazon

9 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

The Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of Mass Unemployment

Author: Martin Ford

Technology isn't all about how things work now -- but how inventions could impact our future. Those interested in reading about how artificial intelligence in particular could have serious societal implications should read Rise of the Robots -- but you'll probably end up wondering how long your job is safe fo

Price: $9.53 - $10.89

Via: Amazon

10 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

The Car Hacker's Handbook: A Guide for the Penetration Tester

Author: Craig Smith

The cybersecurity landscape becomes more complex as each year passes, and now, the introduction of smart cars, infotainment dashboards and in-vehicle connectivity has prompted increased demand for researchers who have skills in new areas.

A very interesting, in-depth look at vehicle safety is The Car Hacker's Handbook, which introduces readers to the computer systems found in new vehicles, vulnerabilities, exploits and how these systems can be protected.

Price: $27.70 - $34

Via: Amazon

11 of 11 Charlie Osborne/ZDNet

Are the Androids Dreaming Yet?

Author: James Tagg

Are the Androids Dreaming Yet?: Amazing Brain. Human Communication, Creativity & Free Will is an exploration of intelligence, free will, and what we consider to be the self -- all by tying in our history to technological principles, Turing's work and philosophical theories.

You may not agree with every point in this book, but it is still a worthwhile read with interesting ideas concerning humans themselves -- and potentially how we will categorize artificial intelligence in the future.

Price: $19.99

Via: Amazon

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