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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Extreme Programming Installed
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Ron Jeffries, Ann Anderson, Chet Hendrickson, Ronald E. Jeffries
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Highly recommended


Extreme Programming (XP) is a software development methodology. This is no ivory tower, academic exercise; the authors have used XP on large-scale projects and seen it work. This book is an introduction to XP for programmers. Chapters tend to be short and easily digested. The language is somewhat casual.
XP advocates unit testing and code review. Okay, what's so extreme about that? Unit tests are fundamental to the process. Tests are frequently written before the code to be tested. There should be a test for anything that could possibly break. Tests are run frequently and must run at 100% before integrating code. Note that refactoring (see Martin Fowler's "Refactoring") is an XP practice and is sensible only where there is an extensive collection of tests. Code review takes the form of pair programming. That is, two programmers sitting side-by-side, one driving and the other paying close attention to the task at hand. So, it's continuous code review.
Some of the other practices are simple design, coding standard, continuous integration, small releases and forty-hour week. All of the practices are directed toward simple, quality code with the highest business value (as determined by the customer) written against milestone deadlines that become increasingly accurately gauged.
I highly recommend this book. I would expect other experienced programmers to react as I do that XP makes good sense. It may be difficult to sell, but it is worth the effort.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Speed Up Your Site: Web Site Optimization
Publisher: Pearson Education
Authors: Andrew B. King
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
a book on a critical but often overlooked issue


King's book focuses on an overlooked but critical aspect of website usability: response time. I think it's often overlooked by developers because they tend to have fast machines and fast connections, but even if individual response time is not a concern, the techniques discussed in the book could save money by requiring fewer servers and lower bandwidth requirements.
There are two chapters on the psychology of performance, which might provide motivation or ammunition to convincepeople who need convincing. Many of the chapters focus on methods to reduce the size of textual languages likeHTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Better and easier gains are obtained by configuring the server for compression, but many sites do not have that sort of control. The benefits of all these methods are covered well. Optimizing graphics is covered thoroughly, explaining the properties of different formats. Although it is mentioned in a summary, the practice of specifyingthe height and width of images is not explained. It seems so obvious to many developers, but it's a disaster when not followed because the page can not be rendered until the sizes of all the images have been determined. Techniques for writing efficient code are applied to JavaScript, and there is good coverage of what takes a long time to execute on some browsers.
The book has a web site: http://www.....com/ It shows figures, chapter summaries, links to resources, etc.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Java 2: The Complete Reference, Fifth Edition
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: Herbert Schildt
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Not Bad....!


A good book which covers mostly 1.1 and very few topics in Java 2. Does not cover important topics such as JDBC. In a nutshell a good for good book for beginner and an average book for experienced person looking for advanced topics.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Beginning Active Server Pages 3.0 (Programmer to Programmer)
Publisher: Wrox
Authors: David Buser, John Kauffman, Juan T. Llibre, Brian Francis, Dave Sussman, Chris Ullman, Jon Duckett
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Should Be Clearer On The Target Audience


This book is decent, but it would be nice if they'd be clearer with their target audience. The first 7 chapeters are virtually useless to anyone with knowledge of html and forms. For them, it can be summed up in one chapter.
I bought it because it said beginner ASP. Little did I know it should have said Activer Server Pages 3.0 for Beginning Programmers (as opposed to ASP beginners).