Shafat Mubin is the author of Extending and Modifying LAMMPS – Writing Your Own Source Code, we got the chance to sit down with him and find out more about his experience of writing with Packt.
Q: What is/are your specialist tech area(s)?
Shafat: Molecular dynamics, LAMMPS, and Computational physics
Q: How did you become an author for Packt? Tell us about your journey. What was your motivation for writing this book?
Shafat: I noticed that although many resources are available to learn how to use LAMMPS, almost no similar resources existed for learning to modify the LAMMPS source code. Therefore, users often had to rely on the LAMMPS mailing list or on self-learning to be able to modify the source code, which presented challenges to new users especially.
Therefore, I decided to contribute towards bridging this gap by writing a book on modifying the LAMMPS source code geared towards new users. PACKT specializes in publishing instructional titles on using software, so it seemed like an appropriate channel to approach with my idea. I filled out an online form on the PACKT website, and it was swiftly followed by a voice call and a chapter outline of the book within two weeks.
Q: What kind of research did you do, and how long did you spend researching before beginning the book?
Shafat: Having used LAMMPS for years and written custom features, I had a well-defined idea of the book content and how to begin.
Q: Did you face any challenges during the writing process? How did you overcome them?
Shafat: Understanding the source code architecture and certain sections of the code in terms of their underlying functions, which are often not required during regular modifications.
Q. What are the key takeaways you want readers to come away from the book with?
Shafat: 1. Understanding the connection between the source code and the steps executed in the LAMMPS input script
2. Ability to change the source code to implement custom manipulation of the simulated system.
Q. Do you have a blog that readers can follow?
Shafat: Yes, visit the following page: www.hypermd.wordpress.com
Q. Can you share any blogs, websites and forums to help readers gain a holistic view of the tech they are learning?
Shafat: The LAMMPS website: https://lammps.sandia.gov/doc/Manual.html
Q. How would you describe your author journey with Packt? Would you recommend Packt to aspiring authors?
Shafat: If you have tech ideas and possess the skills associated to generate an instructional book out of it, then PACKT is a convenient platform to start your journey.
Q. Do you belong to any tech community groups?
Shafat: I’m included in LAMMPS mailing list.
Q. How did you organize, plan, and prioritize your work and write the book?
Shafat: The chapter deadlines provided by the publisher helped keep the writing process on track. Valuable help from my co-author contributed towards rescuing me from tight timelines.
Q. What is that one writing tip that you found most crucial and would like to share with aspiring authors?
Shafat: In a long writing assignment, maintaining continuity by connecting each sentence to the previous one (e.g. by using a term that was used in the previous sentence) helps clarify much of the content.
You can find Shafat’s book on Amazon by following this link: Please click here