Oh man, what I have been missing.
I'm a reader. It's a huge part of who and what I am. I read for fun. I read for information. I read when I'm bored. I read when I'm not bored. As you may have guessed, a good portion of my free-time is spent with my nose in the proverbial book (I'm often reading things online so it's proverbial these days).
And since I'm a software engineer, I have programming books, database books, books on architecture, books on CMMI, books on databases - all sorts of books which relate either directly or indirectly to my chosen career field. Reasonable, a lot of IT folks are in the same boat as me.
Of course what is unreasonable is the fact that each of those books set me back at minimum $40 - and some of them (the ones that started their service to me as textbooks) were closer to $200. I understand this, writing technical books is an expensive undertaking - especially since they are huge tomes filled with arcane knowledge which is often out of date after the second publishing run.
Well, O'Reilly came up with a solution to that particular problem. They call it the Safari Books Online.
Basically, they provide online access to a huge library of books for a low monthly fee.
For $50 a month, one can gain unlimited access to the library while for $20 a month, one can gain access to a bookshelf deal - where you can 'check out' 10 books from the library for your use (the only thing is that you must keep those books checked out for a minimum of thirty days).
I think this is a wonderful idea, now I just need to figure out how to squeeze an extra $20 (or $50) a month from my budge to pay for this.