Kathy Sierra

Kathy Sierra

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Kathy Sierra has been interested in learning theory since her days as a game developer (Virgin, MGM, Amblin'). More recently, she's been a master trainer for Sun Microsystems, teaching Sun's Java instructors how to teach the latest technologies to customers, and a lead developer of several Sun certification exams. Along with her partner Bert Bates, Kathy created the Head First series. She's also the original founder of the Software Development/Jolt Productivity Award-winning javaranch.com, the largest (and friendliest) all-volunteer Java community.

Areas of Expertise:

  • Java
  • Creating Passionate Users
  • speaking
  • training



“Perhaps the biggest marketing takeaway from this book is the difference between how most companies market their product versus how most customers want to use your product. Most marketing is focused on the product, or tool. But most customers are more interested in what the tool allows them to do. ”
— Mark Collier, MarkCollier.com
“Do NOT let the breezy presentation of the ideas here convince you that the ideas themselves are lightweight. They're not. Kathy Sierra has become an expert in where expertise comes from, and with in this book she'll show you how to make your product's users experts. Or, as she puts it, badass, which is the perfect label for Kathy and for this book.”
— Andrew McAfee
“You should want your users to be awesome, because if they are, they’ll be your users forever. So buy this book and do what Kathy says. All us users will be forever grateful.”
— Beth Robson
“Every once in a while, someone comes along who sees the world more clearly, and helps you to do the same. Every time I read Kathy Sierra, or hear her speak, I feel smarter, more thoughtful, and more caring. She has that gift of making everyone around her better. But what's even more special, the "better" she helps you with is the ability to help other people get better! Genius! ”
— Tim O'Reilly
“Kathy Sierra has an amazing ability to take something very complex and important and walk you through it such that you come out the other side feeling like a wizard. Top of her game as ever, Sierra has a winner that turns the "wisdom" upside down.”
— Chris Brogan
“Kathy Sierra wants you to understand this: If your users like themselves better when they use what you make, they'll recommend it with a fervor money simply cannot buy. No one gets this more clearly than Sierra, and "Badass" is her way of helping you get it too.”
— Clay Shirky
“Kathy's back, and her new book is simple, brilliant and useful. What else do you need to know?”
— Seth Godin
“In 'Badass,' Kathy Sierra--one of our brightest business minds--offers up a surprising insight into what makes certain offerings shine in a competitive marketplace. Believe it or not, many people don't care how awesome your product is. Instead, they care about how awesome they are when they use your product. If you can tap into that motivation, you've got gold. This books shows you how. ”
— Daniel H. Pink
“After reading Head First Design Patterns cover to cover, I don't think I could point to another book that is better tailored to my (and I hope your) kind of thinking. I've already used several of the chapters to help out with specific projects. Don't let the fact that this book is aimed at Java Developers. You can just as easily apply it's contents to C++ or any other object oriented language. Heck, I've even implemented some of the patterns in plain-old ANSI-C (i.e., a non-OO language), with great results (there are many books out there on how to implement objects in a non-OO language). If you are doing much code development, either as a student, hobbyist or professional, I can't recommend this book highly enough.”
— Chris Parker, Amazon.com
“A pleasant, somewhat goofy alternative.”
— Andrew Binstock, Dr. Dobbs
“If you're a beginner Java programmer or have no programming experience at all, this is a very good book.”
— Mostafa Farghaly, Amazon.com
“Not only is this easily the best design patterns book I have read, this may be one of the best books, teaching a complicated technology topic, I have ever read. This book was created with me in mind. The book is educational, entertaining, and does a good job of showing the practical side of the topic. The examples are all in Java, but I was able to easily translate them into C#. ”
— M.T. Birdsall, Amazon.com
“It is really amazing how can a book which such a great amount of information can actually be so easy and pleasant to read, without being overwhelmed by its size...The authors of the book seem to be most aware of the fact the secret of teaching someone and gaining his attention is called INTERACTION. All five sections described above are full of small quiz, exercises, handwritten notes, and questions addressed to the pattern trainee. Funny cartoons, imaginary characters that take part in the refactoring and humorous examples are all over the book catching the reader's eye and easing its initiation to the secrets of the design patterns. Emphasis on the detailed explanations and repetition of the principles learned reflect the attention paid to the reader's learning process.”
— Argyro Kazaki
“...provides a great reference for servlet and JSP development. ”
— Dave Fecak, Philadelphia Area Java Users' Group