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Blind Tasting: On the Net, even the winerati don't know you're a dog Paperback – September 15, 2010
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About the Author
More About the Author
I've loved the writing of so many authors: Shakespeare, Mark Twain, Edith Wharton, Arthur C. Clark, Robert Heinlein, Ayn Rand, John le Carré, Dorothy Parker, Lewis Carroll, Tom Wolfe, Joseph Conrad, V.S. Naipaul, Salman Rushdie and Annie Prouix. The list could include dozens more.
Anyone who reads books through the centuries knows that language has changed and will keep changing. I think it's fascinating to observe this through the shifts in slang and writing style that reflect different times and places. Writing about our current time and place will one day provide a snapshot for future generations, a window onto our particular piece of civilization's journey.
Top Customer Reviews
Initially the book was difficult for me to get into. Not because it was boring or poorly written. It wasn't. It's just that I'm not very fluent in "geek speak" and that was the first thing that jumped off the page at me in paragraph one, chapter one. I'm also not the most computer literate person and so, knowing this, I took a deep breath and prepared myself to read slower. This way I could hopefully better understand phrases like "plenoptic illumination function" or "NP-complete." *chuckle* Don't worry; the characters don't talk like that all the time.
Let me move on to the "meat and potatoes" of the story. Cory Wilder is the main character and he exemplifies the meaning of the word "geek." Three guesses who used that memorable phrase "plenoptic illumination function..." Besides being incredibly smart, he's also attractive; he has a great job and a gorgeous girl-friend. What more could a guy, geek or otherwise, really ask for? Unfortunately Cory's world is suddenly turned upside down. He has two choices. He can sit around and mope or he can pick himself up and start putting his life back together. One evening he comes up with a verifiably crazy idea. Can he train his beloved dog to identify and match wines? His two best friends, Dawn and Rob, throw themselves wholeheartedly into seeing if they can make this project work.Read more ›
This is a clever tale of Cory Wilder, a disgruntled Stanford PhD who jumps ship when their visual search startup changes course to follow the herd developing mobile phone applications. After half-heartedly interviewing other tech companies, and getting dumped a couple of times in the process by his gold-digging hottie girlfriend, the intrepid Cory decides to try his hand combining his two loves: Shepherd-Lab mix "Snoots" and wine. Taking advantage of a dog's superhero olfactory capabilities, Cory teaches Snoot to differential and match wine types, starting a blog that virtually overnight becomes an Internet and wine-world hit. The bar is raised when Cory is invited to a high profile Napa tasting - a dilemma solved when Cory poses as "the blind taster" and super-nose Snoots his service dog. Far fetched? Yeah, but fun - and hey, you couldn't really make dinosaurs from blood in fossilized mosquitoes, either.
So as a guy who's lived the valley life, done venture-backed startups, loves dogs (and has a shep-lab mix), and spends a lot of time in the wine country, Houston has a lot to offer.Read more ›
I'll admit that I was skeptical that a book about a wine tasting dog could actually be pulled off in a way that wasn't ridiculous, but the author does in fact pull it off. There are some technical sections in the book that make the story possible that that are explained in such a way that makes me wonder why wine tasting dogs aren't a reality.
Well written and thoughtful, Blind Tasting was an enjoyable read. While it isn't a book that I'll read again and again, I was impressed with the author's style, technical skills and ability to share her many passions through the pages of a novel.