Most fiction and nonfiction books evoke a feeling of anticipation before they are read, and then afterward (depending on how good the book was) a fond feeling of remembrance.
But computer manuals are different. Fairly new manuals (and I'm mostly talking about language tutorials and technology references) evoke a feeling of excitement which is tied to all the possibilities of what can be done with them. Even after they have been read, just looking at such a manual's cover can sometimes get your brain going. However, once the manual becomes obsolete, looking at the book is almost like looking at a hole where a book used to be. I had a bunch of really old Excel manuals, for example, and I couldn't believe how easy they were to dispose of. I have the same "nothing" feeling when I look at an ancient copy of "Java In A Nutshell" that has long since passed into uselessness.
No other books that I have can go from feeling so valuable to being nonentities so quickly.Posted by James at July 10, 2003 9:57 AM