The Jolts are Back in Town

The Jolt Awards are back! Over the past year, the Jolt Awards underwent some restructuring. The group of judges spent a considerable amount of time and effort to redesign the process and format to adapt to changing times. Having been given the honor a few years ago to participate as a Jolt judge, I have been given a rare opportunity to be a part of the redesign, and I can honestly say that what we have now represents a great step forward.

A few months ago, though it seems like just yesterday, fellow Jolt judge, Mike Riley, contacted me about some ideas he had to revitalize the Jolt Awards process. The old format was a once a year event with awards being given to the top products, all at the same time. For the vendors and the software community in general, this event lasted a grand total of one day. For the judges, this process took about six months. The new format is based on a continuous cycle of reviews and awards, with one category under review per month. In a way, this represents a longer, continuous, effort on the part of the judges to evaluate products, but it also means that judges have more flexibility to participate and even dedicate more time to the process, based on our schedules. For the software community, people have a new awards event to look forward to every month.

It should be noted that none of this would have been possible, were it not for the dedication and support of Jon Erickson at Dr. Dobbs. His enthusiasm and evangelizing helped bring back the Jolts.

The Books category was first to be judged under the new format. We just concluded our reviews and announced the winners on the new home of the Jolt Awards - the Dr. Dobbs website. One thing that hasn't changed about the Jolt Awards is the difficult in choosing the finalists. With so many great titles to review, it was a real challenge to pick the winners. You can read the reviews of the Jolt Awards for the Books category here, here, and here.


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