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What does it mean that this year began with Facebook surpassing Google in hits? So large a fact, distilled from so many individual human choices, must mean something about what it is to be human in the 21st century. But what?

Does it mean that we’re more friendly than curious?

If so, that might be a good thing, but here at the start of 2011 and of this issue of PragPub, I’m banking on your curiosity.

If you have a healthy curiosity about programming languages, you’ll enjoy Bruce Tate’s exploration of language features that can make your individual coding style more powerful and artful.

If you’re curious about how you can get a better view of the big picture in your development work, seeing it whole and from the user’s perspective, you’ll appreciate Chris McMahon’s thoughts on software quality assurance, a discipline that doesn’t always get enough respect or attention.

Jeff Langr and Tim Ottinger will satisfy your curiosity about one particular aspect of agile development, Ian Dees’ series on everyday JRuby will enlighten you about methods for sharing your code, Dan Wohlbruck will satisfy your history itch with a shamelessly nerdy retrospective on the index register. Andy Hunt will tell you Why Johnny Can’t Be Agile, and John Shade will share his take on the phenomenon of wikileaks.

So that’s what’s in this issue. In case you were curious.