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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Google Hacks, 2nd Edition (Hacks)
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Tara Calishain, Rael Dornfest
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Everything you ever wanted to know about Google


Upon picking up this book, I was immediately overwhelmed with the amount of "hacks" outlined. Basically, this book shows various different ways to get Google to provide you with the information you want. Additionally, there is a discussion on accessing the Google API, to integrate this search engine with your custom application. Finally, there is a discussion on what a webmaster can do to increase their "page ranking", the way Google ranks sites.
My favorite section of this book was on accessing the Google web API. Basically, this API allows you to integrate Google searches directly into your application via a web service. In addition to discussing the API, actual program examples are provided in Perl, Java, C#, Python, and VB.NET. For example, you could integrate Google's dictionary directly into Microsoft Word to provide a more comprehensive dictionary than is provided.
Another really cool example provided integrates the Google and Amazon.com's API. In this example, the author shows how these APIs are integrated to show a list of "most popular" books, followed by recent news articles on the books and a list of items that people bought who also purchased the book in question. It's pretty cool and quite impressive.
The book ends with a section dedicated to the web master. This section goes over a good guess for the mathematical equation used in Google's mysterious page algorithm, and describes what you can do to increase your visibility on Google. The book even includes a list of "thou shalt not", which can keep your site from being indexed by Google.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company
Publisher: No Starch Press
Authors: Owen Linzmayer, Owen W. Linzmayer
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A less depressing approach to the Apple story. WONDERFUL


Apple Confidential takes a unique perspective of the apple story. While I agree with the fact that the author sometimes repeats himself, the well researched facts and interesting trivia more than make up for those few mistakes. Mr. Linzmayer, amazingly enough, is able to dig under the huge pile of myths surrounding the mac and apple and tell the story, as it was written. The author is particularly good at pointing out credit where it is due, a shortcoming in other Apple books. This is one not to miss



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Inside LightWave 8
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Dan Ablan
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Say no more.


The other reviews have already said it all. Amazing book which I wouldn't like to be without. Although the number of pages could be daunting, especially to a newcomer to 3D, Dan has such an easy, chatty way of transferring knowledge that anyone will pick it up without a problem. If you want to get the most out of Lightwave 8, buy it. I also bought 'Lightwave 8 Killer Tips' and have found it worth every cent and more.



Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: The C++ Programming Language (Special 3rd Edition)
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Bjarne Stroustrup
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Good reference for the experienced C++ programmer


See the Ioannis Vranos review. This guy knows what he is doing.
This is probably the *worst* text to learn C++ from.
If you are an experienced C++ programmer, this is a must have reference.
DO NOT buy this book if you are looking for a book that will teach you C++. You will become very frustrated with this text.
As a side note, C++ is NOT a first language, despite what some Universities think. C++ is HARD. Approach it with respect.