My Books
My Books
$28.00
Regular Price
$24.00
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My Books

Lean Publishing
The Markua Specification
Programming for Kids
The following 3 books are included in this bundle...

About the Bundle

These are all three of the books that I've written on Leanpub. (No, it doesn't include the translations of them.)

They have very different audiences, but there may be some overlap: if you are interested in the future of publishing and you want to teach your kid programming, then this is the bundle for you!

Note that Lean Publishing and the Markua spec both have free minimum prices, so I've priced this bundle at the minimum price of Programming for Kids. (This bundle is really just a way for me to cross-promote my books, not as a way of offering a group discount...)

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About the Books

Lean Publishing

Lean Publishing

  • 915

    Readers

  • 137

    Pages

  • 24,348

    Words

  • 100%

    Complete

  • PDF

  • EPUB

  • MOBI

  • APP

This book explains the philosophy behind Leanpub.

While Lean Publishing is a relatively short book at just over 100 pages and 20,000 words (about novella length), I put a lot of thought, research and work into it. Had I put less work into it, it would have been 200 pages and less entertaining.

So, what's in the book?

Quite simply, the definitive introduction and guide to Lean Publishing.

Lean Publishing is the act of publishing an in-progress ebook using lightweight tools and many iterations to get reader feedback, pivot until you have the right book and build traction once you do.

This book examines the Lean Publishing idea in depth, considering both the meaning and the origin of the various aspects of Lean Publishing.

The first chapter, Definition, examines the definition of Lean Publishing in length, going deep into each of its components. This chapter is the basis of the Lean Publishing Manifesto at https://leanpub.com/manifesto.

The second chapter, Origins, considers the origins of Lean Publishing. These include everything from Victorian serial fiction, fan fiction, beta books, blogs, and my own experiences.

The third chapter, Practice, is a short discussion of Lean Publishing practice for both authors and publishers. Leanpub is also discussed, as it's our attempt to implement these ideas.

The Markua Specification

The Markua Specification

  • 668

    Readers

  • 113

    Pages

  • 36,076

    Words

  • 95%

    Complete

  • PDF

  • EPUB

  • MOBI

  • APP

Imagine you owned a magical typewriter.

When you used this magical typewriter, you wrote with fewer distractions. You didn't just write faster, you wrote better.

With your magical typewriter, you never worried about layout. The book formatted itself.

You could hit a key on your magical typewriter to create an ebook from your manuscript with one click.

All ebook formats would be created, and they'd all look good. You'd have PDF for computers, MOBI for Kindle, and EPUB for everywhere else. The book would look great on phones.

With your magical typewriter, you could publish your book before it was even done, and get feedback from readers all over the world. You could automatically share book updates with them. You would press one key on your magical typewriter to publish a new version, and all your readers would have it instantly.

With your magical typewriter, you could easily compare your current manuscript to any other version of your manuscript that had ever existed.

When the book was done, if you decided to make a print book, you could press a key on your magical typewriter to generate InDesign with one click. Your designer or publisher could use this as a starting point for producing a great looking print book.

With your magical typewriter, you'd only have to do one thing: Write.

Wouldn't it be great if such a magical typewriter existed?

It does. At Leanpub, we're building it.

But there's one requirement for this magical typewriter to exist: a simple, coherent, open source, free, plain text format for a book manuscript.

This simple format is what authors will write their books in, instead of Word. It will enable an ecosystem of tools to emerge around it.

This simple format will be the basis for the magical typewriter.

This simple format is called Markua.

This is its specification.

Programming for Kids

Programming for Kids

  • 337

    Readers

  • 154

    Pages

  • 19,779

    Words

  • 100%

    Complete

  • PDF

  • EPUB

  • MOBI

  • APP

This is a book to teach kids who are between 9 and 14 years old the basics of programming.  You need a Mac computer to follow along.

This is a book for you to read with your child, or for your child to read by himself or herself.

I wrote it to teach my 9 year old son the basics of programming. He has been playing video games for years, and he wants to learn programming since he wants to make his own video games someday. This book is intended to be the first step. (No, it doesn’t teach you how to create the kinds of video games a 9 year old can dream up; that takes a lot more knowledge!)

The reason this book exists is to be the best book in the world for a kid who is wanting to learn to program computers to read first. Computer programming is a good skill to have, regardless of what occupation your child eventually does as an adult. (I’d argue it’s much more important than lots of the math than you learn in high school, for example.) But more importantly, learning how to program computers teaches a rigor and discipline of thinking which is useful in any field. This book exists to show kids that they can program computers, and to help them get started.

This book is written like a book for kids in elementary school. My goal is that this book should be accessible for kids between ages 9 and 14. In North America, that’s grades 3-8. My son is working through it as I write it. (I don’t think it’s a good book for kids aged 7 and 8: I started writing this book when my son was 7, but he wasn’t ready for it. So, I paused writing it–for 2 years. If your child is 7 or 8, I think that something like Scratch is a better choice for kids of that age.)

No knowledge of programming is assumed. The examples are as short as possible, since I assume the reader can’t type well. (My son can’t touch type, so if I make long examples I’ll hear about it!)

My goal is for this book to be the best programming book for kids to read first. After this book, they can follow what interests them.

This book is written assuming you are using a Mac. I think that a Mac is the best computer for kids to learn to program on. Since this is a beginner book for kids, I can’t write it generically to cover Mac, Windows and Linux. I have to pick one operating system, and have the child follow along verbatim.

Besides teaching programming, the book also teaches basic use of the command line on a Mac. This is accessed via the Terminal program. The reason for this is that I feel that the best way to learn is to follow along, and the simplest way to follow along is to type everything. Real programmers use the command line every day. If you want to learn programming, you should use Terminal and files. Yes, you can play with stuff in a web browser at places like Codecademy, and while this is very friendly and instructive, it is fundamentally a different activity from what real pro- grammers do. And, besides being easier, it’s somehow less rewarding.

If you are letting your child use your Mac computer to follow along, I strongly recommend you sit beside them and follow along! For example, I’m not planning to teach the command to delete files, but it’s fairly short!

The examples are in Ruby. Ruby is a fairly simple programming language. If you’ve ever heard of websites built on "Ruby on Rails", you’ve heard of Ruby: it’s the programming language that Rails is written in. This is not a book about how to learn Ruby, however. The examples could have easily been written in JavaScript, CoffeeScript or Python.

About the Author

Peter Armstrong
Peter Armstrong

I'm the founder of Ruboss, a software consulting company based in Victoria, BC, Canada.  We're the creators of Leanpub, a website that anyone can use to self-publish in-progress ebooks like this one.  I'm also a programmer, an author and a father.  I've written two books for programmers (Flexible Rails and Hello! Flex 4), so I know how to explain things to fellow programmers.  And my son is a very intelligent 9 year old, so I have a lot of experience explaining things to a smart child.  This is probably the most challenging book I will ever write, as I honestly want this to be the best introduction to programming for all kids. 

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Authors and publishers use Leanpub to publish amazing in-progress and completed ebooks, just like this one. You can use Leanpub to write, publish and sell your book as well! Leanpub is a powerful platform for serious authors, combining a simple, elegant writing and publishing workflow with a store focused on selling in-progress ebooks. Leanpub is a magical typewriter for authors: just write in plain text, and to publish your ebook, just click a button. It really is that easy.

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