The Sustainable Network

Sarah Sorensen

Published by

O’Reilly
ISBN

978-0-596-15703-6

RRP

£22.99

Reviewed by

George Williams MBCS CITP

Score

10 out of 10

The Sustainable NetworkSarah Sorenson gives the game away early on: the network is a dynamic entity, as dynamic as the world itself - and so, by the time you get around to buying this book, it will be, by its very nature, outdated!

This simply goes to prove that the sustainable network isn’t just a vision, it’s a reality. But don’t let that stop you from reading one of the most interesting and thought-provoking books of the year.

The network is all around us, we can all relate to it. It is in every political, economic and social scene that is evidenced on the local, regional and international stage. It’s in the way you live your life and do your job - it’s a powerful tool that can be used to sustain change.

The network is not simply the internet, which is by no means indicative of all it entails. It is not simply a network of cables, routers, acronyms and techie things you may never wish to know about - but it is important that you know enough to be able to understand its significance, and then to help shape the role it plays in our lives. It’s in the news every single day and terms like broadband, 3G, tweets and smart grid are part of our everyday vocabulary.

The layout of ‘The Sustainable Network’ makes it an easy book to read. With 40 chapters, spanning some 300 pages, a few chapters can be easily assimilated into your free time during the day. The book is jam-packed full of interesting and quotable statistics, but they do not stand in the way of what is a very enjoyable read.

With a menu containing delicacies such as those below, it’s very tempting to simply cherry pick for a quick information fix:

  • I am a Node
  • The Mobile Me
  • Demateralization
  • Doing Good by Doing Right
  • I am on the Net, therefore I am Vulnerable
  • The Last Best Place to Attack: Your Mobile
  • Not by Accident: Social Networking

And as Leonard Sachs, the compere of ‘The Gold Old Days’ might have said ... A veritable cornucopia of thoughts and ideas about our pulchritudinous network!

Conclusion

The sustainable network connects us all, and this gem of a book provides copious examples of how it's already effecting change. If you have to buy one information technology book this year, then let this be the one. With a wide and versatile appeal, ‘The Sustainable Network’ can be enjoyed by one and all.

Further Information: O'Reilly

June 2010