My father recommended an essay that has been floating around the net for a while called In the Beginning was the Command Line, by Neal Stephenson. It covers the topics of human interfacing and culture in the context of operating systems. An excerpt:
Microsoft refused to go into the hardware business, insisted on making its software run on hardware that anyone could build, and thereby created the market conditions that allowed hardware prices to plummet. In trying to understand the Linux phenomenon, then, we have to look not to a single innovator but to a sort of bizarre Trinity: Linus Torvalds, Richard Stallman, and Bill Gates. Take away any of these three and Linux would not exist.
Though probably most appealing to the geekier among my readership, anybody who has the time to read it all could enjoy it.