clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Coder uses JavaScript console to create interactive book review

New, 8 comments

Programmer Robin Sloan has used a web-based JavaScript console to produce an interactive review of Ellen Ullman's book "Close to the Machine."

JavaScript book review
JavaScript book review

Searching for a fitting way to share his love for Ellen Ullman's 1997 book Close to the Machine, San Francisco-based "media inventor" Robin Sloan created an interactive book review based around a web-based JavaScript console. Readers are encouraged to watch a specially-timed video that provides commands such as "s.theBook.author()" and "s.whyIsItSoGood()," with each function bringing up a new section of text. When the video nears its end, viewers can order the book — a personal account of the life of a software engineer — through local libraries, bookstores, or Amazon before sending a tweet to promote the review, all by typing customized JavaScript. It's unlikely to take off as a review format for ordinary books, but for a title about "what it feels like to program computers," Sloan's interface feels eminently appropriate.