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Thinking in C++
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About the cover

The first edition of this book had my face on the cover, but I originally wanted a cover for the second edition that was more of a work of art like the Thinking in Java cover. For some reason, C++ seems to me to suggest Art Deco with its simple curves and brushed chrome. I had in mind something like those posters of ships and airplanes with the long sweeping bodies.

My friend Daniel Will-Harris, ( whom I first met in junior high school choir class, went on to become a world-class designer and writer. He has done virtually all of my designs, including the cover for the first edition of this book. During the cover design process, Daniel, unsatisfied with the progress we were making, kept asking “How does this relate people to computers?” We were stuck.

On a whim, with no particular outcome in mind, he asked me to put my face on the scanner. Daniel had one of his graphics programs (Corel Xara, his favorite) “autotrace” the scan of my face. As he describes it, “Autotracing is the computer's way to turn a picture into the kinds of lines and curves it really likes.” Then he played with it until he had something that looked like a topographic map of my face, an image that might be the way a computer could see people.

I took this image and photocopied it onto watercolor paper (some color copiers can handle thick stock), and then started creating lots of experiments by adding watercolor to the image. We selected the ones we liked best, then Daniel scanned them back in and arranged them into the cover, adding the text and other design elements. The whole process happened over several months, mostly because of the time it took me to do the watercolors. But I’ve especially enjoyed it because I got to participate in the art on the cover, and because it gave me incentive to do more watercolors (what they say about practice really is true).

Thinking in C++
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   Reproduced courtesy of Bruce Eckel, MindView, Inc. Design by Interspire