Amazon Experience

See BoycottAmazon (1999.12.16 posted by Anonymous)

earlier discussion follows:

The PortlandPatternRepository is now pointing its visitors to one source for books, While the arrangement (AmazonAssociate) may be good for us, it is certainly good for them. In return we expect Amazon to deliver good prices and excellent service.

Portland, Oregon, is lucky to have one almost legendary bookseller, Powells Books, as well as representation by two admirable chains, Barnes & Noble and Borders. A year ago our neighborhood, the three block long Multnomah Village, supported as many bookstores. Now only Annie Bloom's remains. If your book budget is anything like mine you have considerable influence over the success of such enterprises. My advice: buy books where you browse books and browse where you find the exceptional.

-- WardCunningham

I bought TheReflectivePractitioner?, ISBN 0465068782 , from Amazon. I had been unable to find it for a couple of years after getting a recommendation from BruceAnderson. Several other rare things I have looked for haven't been available through Amazon, however.

My friend (and Ward's) JoelSpiegel?, who took the FirstAdvancedSmalltalkClass, is now VP of engineering at Amazon. He says that some of the book orders are amazing, like the guy who ordered two quantum mechanics texts and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.

-- KentBeck

Good for Joel.... except I can't find anything amazing about that book order. I think serious readers order books in topics all over the map. Physics and fiction and fantasy and comics and classical and jazz and reggae all in the same order seem quite normal to me. I am glad Joel is their VP of engineering. I wonder whether he'll start reading MarkTwain. -- AlistairCockburn

I had to look this one up -- Connecticut Yankee concerns time travel. Hence, funny order.

It's funny you mention that several rare things you looked for were unavailable through Amazon. The editorial in the August 1997 issue of DrDobbsJournal talks about online bookstores and their claim to being "largest". Editor-in-chief, JonathanErickson, looked up some books he's authored, and found:

Since Amazon won't charge you ( ) for "hard to find" or out-of-print books without prior approval, this shouldn't be a deterrent to ordering. I just found it an amusing story.

-- KatyMulvey


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