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From experience, opening a new programming book is always exciting. I start reading (even the dedication, acknowledgements etc.), but gradually loose the vibe and get tired. Here are a few concepts that help me carry on: Divide and Conquer - in programming (and GTD), D&C is dividing a complex task into simpler ones that can be more easily tackled. Plan ...


6

Personally, I scan the book to see if there are chapter summaries, and just read those. If something piques my interest, I'll go back for more detail in the chapter text itself. Failing that, reading the first line of each paragraph is another strategy I've used to get through books quickly. If I can't mentally see the link between the two sentences in ...


4

Check to see if the author has done a TED talk. Those usually explain the core concept in 20 minutes or less. Try to find interviews or reviews of the book online. They will often give the core concept in a much more compact format. If you have the book, try reading the first paragraph of each chapter which often gives the premise or theory the author ...


3

Just read. The more you read, the more you'll be fluent and confident, and the more fun you'll have. There's this concept that Josh Kaufman calls the frustration barrier (not sure if he coined the term or not) - a point after which anything you do feels enjoyable. I think it also applies to reading books whose vocabulary is difficult. Take notes of new ...


2

I use Docear to get an overview of the notes taken in my PDFs and Mendeley for citations. In the Docear help they explain, that simply highlighting a section in Adobe Reader will not create a parseable annotation, but Adobe Acrobat will. A workaround for the Reader is to mark the text, copy it and then highlight it. Reader has an option for automatically ...


2

There are a couple of good practices you can use from the speed reading scene without actually speed reading (meaning reading faster then you can comprehend / subvocalize). I would suggest the following practices which have helped me personally the most: Get a feel for the layout of the book: check the back cover and the index to get a sense of what is in ...


2

You can try very speed reading (just scroll with your eyes through the paragraphs vertically), take a pause and let your mind decide which paragraph was relevant on the 2 pages in front of you. Pick authors who write material the way you'd like. Pick "bible" textbooks, they are quite long, informative, and tend to leave out unimportant stuff. Choose books ...


1

Personal Technical Reading If your intention is to learn ceaselessly without direction or goal then I will make the assumption that you are reading for personal interest. With speed-reading you will sacrifice depth of the knowledge in your haste, but maybe this is what you are going for. My personal opinion is to never do this: if it's worth reading about, ...


1

Have a look at spreeder.com . It's a place to learn not to 'read out loud' in your mind by flashing words really quickly instead of letting you read them on your own. I think you can you can apply this concept to numbers as well. Try flashing some numbers (you could do it on paper) and compute some function of them (pick any. Start with something like a ...


1

I'm cool with the idea that only part of the book is useful, and the remainder is just "water". What can I do with that, anyway? If I've learned something from the book - it was useful. I don't think it matters whether I've "finished" it or not. If I feel like I've got what the author had to say and there is no more meaning in the book left - I consider it ...


1

These speed-reading methods all assume that you can increase you reading speed and still understand enough. That last words is essential, and by definition, not accurately measurable. Speed-reading is in conflict with several memory processes, so there will always be a trade off. So what you experience is that enough is not enough for you. Regarding those ...


1

There are only a couple of programming books I've read cover to cover: Code Complete and The Pragmatic Programmer. Any other programming book I've read has been with the purpose to extract enough information to get a job done. It's a question of utility. Reading a short story is usually a different matter. You're drawn into the world the author created. ...


1

I use EndNote, with the marked up PDF saved into the record for citing as well as populating the 'research notes' field with quotes that I would use regularly from that text. (See below image for an example) The later versions of EndNote (I currently use X7) mean that the saved PDF is also searchable and so sometimes I've discovered useful sections by ...


1

I have a habit of taking all the notes, comments and highlights I have made on a book or a long document and reorganize them all in a mind map. The benefit of mind mapping include reorganizing based on visual cues, story line flow, and other hierarchical classifications. This way not only my notes are preserved but also the book or document's knowledge is ...


1

The Kindle software is fairly good for this. This is what I use. Then there's Mendeley http://www.mendeley.com/ Then there's Zotero https://www.zotero.org/ which may not be exactly what you want but may be.



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