Charles Petzold

The Competition

September 25, 2005
New York City

Does it bother me that Chris Sells and Ian Griffiths have already published a book entitled Programming Windows Presentation Foundation while I've just started my book on the same topic?

You bet!

But I don't envy them at all. I once wrote a "preview" version of a book that was shipped along with a beta SDK, and it was a brutal experience. (Oddly enough, that book also had the word "Presentation" in its title.) It's bad enough working with betas in order to get a book out at the same time a product is released. Targetting a beta release is much, much worse. And it's not just dealing with all the little changes. Sometimes a "little" change has a major impact on the way in which a programming tutorial is structured.

One good thing, however: Now I can be absolutely certain that my book will not be titled Programming [the] Windows Presentation Foundation. That's a title that puts me to sleep somewhere between ation #1 and ation #2, and I could see it coming. (My contract refers to Programming the Windows Client Platform, which was what it was briefly called in the summer of 2003.)

Unfortunately, I can't actually read the Sells/Griffiths book until my book is finished. It's a silly rule I set for myself to avoid subconscious or semi-conscious plagiarism or imitation.