"What is the book that changed your life? (not novels or religious texts)"
I think it's a wonderful way to connect in a less superficial way and learn a little more about each other. It's also a wonderful way to discover new books worth reading.
This is one of them:
As Microsoft's much-touted "Wolfpack" Cluster Server shows, clustering technology has arrived in the marketplace. Clustering is now a strategic direction for Microsoft, Compaq, IBM, Sun, DEC, Novell, and every other large computer company – and their products are rolling out now. This comprehensive, highly-readable guide helps you make sense of clustering in all its forms, not just a single company's offering. Gregory Pfister – one of the world's most respected experts on clustering technology – delivers all the information you need to make critical strategic decisions. He introduces the primary hardware and software technologies involved in clusters, and shows why they have become popular – and will become increasingly important. He presents the background that system planners, purchasers, designers and architects need to make effective use of clustering. He compares different types of clusters and the workloads they are best used for. He presents a detailed comparison of clusters with symmetric multiprocessing -- demonstrating major differences that are often "papered over." The book contains extensive new coverage of availability issues, as well as detailed coverage of Non-Uniform Memory Access (NUMA), the technology at the heart of new offerings from Sequent, HP, Pyramid, NCR and others. "Pfister is a prophet with an attitude..." – Norris Parker Smith, HPCWire.