The Old New Thing (the book) allegedly now stocked at the Microsoft Company Store (Redmond)


I've been informed that the Redmond branch of the Microsoft Company Store has begun stocking the dead tree edition of my book.

"But wait, your program isn't printed by Microsoft Press; it's published by Addison-Wesley Professional. I thought the company store only stocked Microsoft Press titles."

I'm told that this is a pilot program. (And no, I don't know what the success criteria are.)

When I stopped by the store a few days ago, they were in the process of reorganizing the book section, so not only was my book not up, neither were any others! But it should be there "any day now."

And remember, I'll gladly sign your book but you have to tell me what to write.

Comments (14)
  1. Yeah, whatever says:

    I’m told that this is a pilot program.

    I guess that means you are a high flyer :)

  2. KTamas says:

    Can you e-sign my e-book? ;)

  3. Rich says:

    Raymond, what I’ve seen some other authors do is to briefly chat with the reader and make their inscription based on that.  It’s quite amazing, to me, to come up with something vaguely good in that amount of time.

    If I ever order one, I will have no choice but to request the inscription, "RTFM". (But maybe that’s preprinted on ’em?) ;)

  4. Dataland says:

    Raymond, a well deserved congratulations!!  You definitely have some very interesting knowledge to share with other developers.  Any chance you’ll be tasked with writing more of your commentary in MSDN magazine?

  5. Scott says:

    <i>what I’ve seen some other authors do is to briefly chat with the reader and make their inscription based on that.</i>

    "Good luck on your thing we just talked about!  You’ll do awesome. -Raymond"

  6. Daev says:

    I think you should sign it "I can’t believe I had to write this."

  7. Miral says:

    Or give the autograph a Nitpicker’s Corner ;)

  8. Someone told me that MSFT employees are not allowed to engage in profitable side ventures of any type.  Is that incorrect, or was an exception made for your case?

    [Well, setting aside the fact that writing a book isn’t profitable… You can do it, but there’s a lot of paperwork and rules you have to follow. -Raymond]
  9. Ben Cooke says:

    Since this post is likely to end up being a high-ranking search result for “old new thing book” and other such queries, I’ll take this opportunity to say that I just finished reading the book and, despite the fact that I’d read much of the information on your blog before, I still found it very entertaining and informative.

    My only minor critique is that some bits of it are very code-heavy. Most of it is fine, but there were a few parts where there were just several consecutive pages that were almost entirely program listing, which I found I had to skip over. In my younger years I used to enjoy studying program listings from magazines and books, but it seems that my brain is no longer wired for quickly scanning code in printed form*. I found the text around the code in most cases told me everything I needed to know to understand the point you were making.

    (* I wonder if perhaps this is because books don’t generally have “syntax highlighting” as you’d see in the programming editors of today. I wonder if there are enough possible shades of grey to print legible syntax highlighting in a book.)

    [I too hate long tedious chunks of code. Any large chunks of code you find in the book were entirely reluctant. (I’m thinking specifically of the one in the Taxes chapter.) -Raymond]
  10. GreaseMonkey says:

    I think they’re just trying to share some of your profits.

    But hey, at least it goes to a good cause. Or something like that.

  11. Worf says:

    Now, what would the success criteria be? After all, everyone who reads your blog and enjoys it probably already has a copy of it. Unless, I suppose, those at Microsoft are made blissfully unaware of your insights and thus might actually come around to the store seeking knowledge, but then they wouldn’t know what "The Old New Thing" really is.

    Such is the irony – those who know and wanted a copy probably already got one, and those who don’t, probably won’t. Unless the peer recommendation grapevine is really strong at Microsoft.

  12. Dean Harding says:

    "Someone told me that MSFT employees are not allowed to engage in profitable side ventures of any type."

    Writing a book (especially a technical one) is not exactly a *profitable* side venture.

    Having said that, I do know of Microsoft employees that *do* have a "profitable" side venture (for example, Rick Brewster who makes Paint.NET — the software is free, but apparently he makes a tidy profit from the advertising and donations on the website)

  13. Larry Lard says:

    I think you should sign it "I can’t believe I had to write this."

    Since the idea of Raymond signing copies of his books first came up, I have been wondering what I would ask him to write should the situation ever present itself.

    That quest is now over. Daev, this is utterly superb.

  14. Anon says:

    I heard a joke about an English author in Australia who dedicated a book to Emma Chissit, since that what he thought the woman holding a copy said to him.

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