The Story About Ping|
by Marjorie Flack, Kurt Wiese (Illustrator)
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Paperback - (August 1977) 36 pages
Reading level: Baby-Preschool
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Avg. Customer Review: ; Number of Reviews: 6
A reader from Upper Volta, Uzbekistan , March 7, 1999
The book describes networking in terms even a child could understand, choosing to anthropomorphize the underlying packet structure. The ping packet is described as a duck, who, with other packets (more ducks), spends a certain period of time on the host machine (the wise-eyed boat). At the same time each day (I suspect this is scheduled under cron), the little packets (ducks) exit the host (boat) by way of a bridge (a bridge). From the bridge, the packets travel onto the internet (here embodied by the Yangtze River).
The title character -- er, packet, is called Ping. Ping meanders around the river before being received by another host (another boat). He spends a brief time on the other boat, but eventually returns to his original host machine (the wise-eyed boat) somewhat the worse for wear.
The book avoids many of the cliches one might expect. For example, with a story set on a river, the authors might have sunk to using that tired old plot device: the flood ping. The authors deftly avoid this.
Who Should Buy This Book
If you need a good, high-level overview of the ping utility, this is the book. I can't recommend it for most managers, as the technical aspects may be too overwhelming and the basic concepts too daunting.
Problems With This Book
As good as it is, The Story About Ping is not without its faults. There is no index, and though the ping(8) man pages cover the command line options well enough, some review of them seems to be in order. Likewise, in a book solely about Ping, I would have expected a more detailed overview of the ICMP packet structure.
But even with these problems, The Story About Ping has earned a place on my bookshelf, right between Stevens' Advanced Programming in the Unix Environment, and my dog-eared copy of Dante's seminal work on MS Windows, Inferno. Who can read that passage on the Windows API ("Obscure, profound it was, and nebulous, So that by fixing on its depths my sight -- Nothing whatever I discerned therein."), without shaking their head with deep understanding. But I digress.
A reader from Houston, TX , November 25, 1998
Ping has his adventure and returns to the boat and his family, wiser yet innocent. Great story to share with your children. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
firstname.lastname@example.org from Grand Rapids, Michigan , March 24, 1998
Ping will capitvate young readers with his dilemma.
Young Ping learns that often it's better to take your punishment than to try to outrun it. His adventures take him through a loney, sometimes frightening day on the Yangze river as he searches for the "wise-eyed" boat where he lives with his family. The beautifullly drawn illustrations, "fun to say" words", and repition will make this book one your kids will want to come back to over and over again. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
email@example.com from Pennsylvania, USA , March 19, 1998
A Story About the Importance of Home
This is a delightful little story of the misadventures of a duckling named Ping. Ping hides in the weeds along the banks of the Yangtze River rather than face the spank the last duck to board his houseboat at dusk receives (I have always wondered _why_ the last duck gets spanked). The story is beautifully illustrated, and the poignant scene of Ping looking after his home as it sales away stands out, as does Ping nestled safely with his family and friends on the very last page.
This tale underscores the importance of home, of family and of belonging. It is a good bed-time book with its happy ending after Ping's narrow escape from becoming a meal. Highly recommended. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
A reader from Detroit, Michigan , December 15, 1997
Recommended reading for everyone.
This is a very warm book which evokes subtle emotions. The art work is rather simple, but is extremely life like in other ways. I read it as a young boy, and remembered it. As an adult the story has new meaning. Though it may have been written for children, I recommend it for every adult. Read the book, and you will know why.
A reader from brunswick, jersey , November 30, 1997
I grew up on Ping and I love it still. I'm 21 now and buying it for every friend with a kid. Its clean, its fun, and its just great. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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