Ellen Ullman: Life in Code

As a programmer with an English degree, Ullman makes boring technical writing compelling and easy to understand. Her writing on technology is clear, witting, and thoughtful. On object-oriented programming for example, she explains, “In this model, code is written in very small chunks, each performing the most minimal of tasks. The objects send small ‘messages’ to one another, like ants rubbing antennas to communicate via pheromones.” The first part of the book, in which she provides her personal story with computer programming, is fascinating and engaging. The second half, she addresses woman issue in the tech industry, porn, Twitter, and Trump. She writes, “The Trump presidency has arrived like an underground nuclear test that has somehow broken through the surface of the earth to explode in the sky.” An enlightening and essential read. I enjoyed every word.