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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The UNIX Programming Environment
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Authors: Brian W. Kernighan, Rob Pike
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
unix is no longer scary

Just started into this book and it immediately has me comfortable in the Unix environment. I run FreeBSD and this book works quite nicely with it. One thing to remember is to have a programmer's manual handy for your version. Great book for anyone with absolutely no Unix experience.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Database Design for Mere Mortals: A Hands-On Guide to Relational Database Design, Second Edition
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Michael J. Hernandez
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
This book was written for small children

Simply put this book assumes its reader is a complete and total idiot. 80% of the book is just filler...overexplaining almost every tiny detail to the point of absurdity. So much wasted paper is spent on interview techniques and field names which is all common sense. If you have any common sense, spend your money elsewhere.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Mastering Regular Expressions, Second Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Jeffrey E. F. Friedl
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Get this book and get over your fear

Regular expressions always terrified me. I really got tired of looking for related examples on the 'net and hacking sample code so I decided I had to take the plunge.
I can say that the first chapter of this book is one of the most important chapters of any book I ever read. It leaves you breathless. Actually you'll probably want to read it again as the first time round you were so glued to the pages you didn't have time to try out the examples yourself.
In a book such as this layout and typographical conventions are of utmost importance and this book gets this spot on. An author who can cover this subject without simply using masses of examples and dry outlines of selected syntax arrangements deserves an acolade. This book goes further. It stimulates the juices and is a struggle to put down (to the detriment of your hands-on practice as mentioned above).
I was quite wary of exploring the territory of regular expressions and used to be very ambivalent towards Perl but this book helped to ease me in to a whole new world of script programming.
This book is not just for Perl geeks. PCREs (Perl Compatible Regular Expressions) are creeping into other programming and scripting languages now and this book will serve you no matter where you're coming from.
Get this book and get over your fear!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Beginning XML (Programmer to Programmer)
Publisher: Wrox
Authors: David Hunter, Andrew Watt, Jeff Rafter, Kurt Cagle, Jon Duckett, Bill Patterson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A "must have" for web designers

If you have been designing web pages for at least the last couple of years, you have probably been beaten over the head with XML articles. Everyone saying that XML is the "wave of the future". Actually, it is the "wave of the present".
If you are a web designer and you still don't use XML, you are behind the curve. This book will catch you up quickly and help you understand how XML will organize you pages and save you time. Clearly written, this book was an ease to read.
If you aren't a web designer, don't start with this subject. Learn your HTML and then come back and get this book.