How to write a computer book

I’ve designed an outline, which can be used as a table of contents, for a computer book about anything. In this case, about foo bar.

Preface
Forward
Introduction
Overview
What is foo bar?
Before you start
A brief history of foo bar
A longer history of foo bar
Why you want to use foo bar
Why you might not want to use foo bar
Alternatives to foo bar
Obtaining foo bar
Installing foo bar
Getting help on foo bar
Getting help on reading this book about foo bar
Alliterative methods of installing foo bar
Installing foo bar from source code
Installing foo bar from alternate binaries
Installing foo bar on dead badger
Why we wrote this book about foo bar
About the authors
About the reviewers
About the publishers
About the concept of “about”
How to download the code for foo bar
Typographical conventions used in this book
How to read this book in black and white
The plan of the book
What each chapter will tell you
How the chapters in this book are organized
A history of prior revisions and printings of this book
A word about this book’s font
foo bar basics
Advanced foo bar
Futher Reading about foo bar
Index

Comments

  1. #1 Pete A
    August 28, 2014

    Indeed, the meat-dross ratio of many publications often approaches zero from a practical point of view. IMHO the ratio often drops far below zero: trying to find the few needles in the huge haystack.

    Very well crafted indexes work, but only when the crafter truly wanted the readers to maximally benefit from the publication. This concept applies especially to the art and craft of database design — Web search engines are not crafted to assist their users; they are crafted to maximally assist the provider of the engine.

  2. #2 Dave X
    August 28, 2014

    But what about the chapter on searching for help on foo bar which points to google or a dead wiki or spam-filled listserve?

  3. #3 Donal
    August 28, 2014

    Foo Bar for Dum Ees?

  4. #4 Greg Laden
    August 28, 2014

    Help chapters added!

  5. #5 Brainstorms
    August 28, 2014

    Forgot the section that details “How many trees were killed to publish this book” and “How many tons of CO2 were added to the atmosphere in the making of this book”.

    (Note that the second one applies even if its an e-book: Consider the coal being burned to run the blades & HVAC in all the datacenters that provide the on-line version…)

  6. #6 Pete A
    August 29, 2014

    I forget to mention that printed versions of the book must include:
    Guidelines on recycling this book.

  7. #7 Brainstorms
    August 29, 2014

    And a chapter on “Alternative uses for this book” — doorstop, booster chair, shelf support, etc.

  8. #8 Tim
    September 4, 2014

    Mrs. Conclusion
    “We’llo, Mrs. Premis”

    Premis
    “Hello, Mrs, Conclusion.”
    .
    .
    Mrs Conclusion
    “we are going to have to have our Foo Bar put down.”
    .
    .
    Premis
    “Tell me? how do you put Foo Bar down?”

    Conclusion “It’s funny you should ask that because I’ve just been reading this great big book How to Put Your Foo Bar down… And, apparently, you can either hit them with the book or you can stick an extra pipe ‘|” character on the Man page…”