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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Crystal Reports .NET Programming
Publisher: Bischof Systems
Authors: Brian Bischof
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Best CR.NET book around

I would like to thank Brian Bischof for taking the trouble to have this book published. I understand that he had problems in the past with this book, and I registered for it while he was still working on it from his website.
This is simply the best source for using Crystal Reports.NET that is out there. It has answered every question I have had (and even a few I was not aware that I had).
Thank you Brian!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: C++ Coding Standards : 101 Rules, Guidelines, and Best Practices (C++ in Depth Series)
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Herb Sutter, Andrei Alexandrescu
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Higher level than Effective C++

I love both this book and Effective C++ for different reasons. The Effective C++ series is mainly very low level hints that help you avoid the pitfalls that C++ has in store for you. This book, while showing a lot of code, gives a higher level perspective of the areas it covers (e.g. templates, STL, class design, namespaces, etc.). That perspective grounds you in an understanding of the topic, then binds that to some real world code examples. Both approaches are very valuable. I would recommend getting both books. You can't live without the practical advice of Effective C++ or the architectural material in C++ Coding Standards.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Black Ice: The Invisible Threat of Cyber-Terrorism
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: Dan Verton, Dan Verton
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Terrific, high-quality investigative journalism

Without a doubt a book of monumental importance to the nation during this time of war and increased threat from terrorism. I recommend this book to anybody who is interested in homeland security and how terrorism may be changing and evolving its strategy against the U.S.
Well-written, full of intrigue and first-hand interviews with top security officials from both the Clinton and Bush administrations. Verton had unfettered access to those directly involved in the Sept. 11 response, including Richard Clarke.
You will not find another book on this subject that is this well researched and written. And because Verton is a journalist, he wrote this book so that you don't have to be a computer expert to understand the issues.
Buy this book. You will not be disappointed.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Code Book: The Science of Secrecy from Ancient Egypt to Quantum Cryptography
Publisher: Anchor
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A page-turner, believe it or not (caveat Harry Potter!)

As he did in Fermat's Enigma, Singh succeeds in communicating recondite mathematical concepts to the non-mathematician in The Code Book. But the plot thickens in Singh's second; what if being the first to find, "The Proof," meant having the upper hand in matters of terrorism, or the key to victory in World War? Singh shows that cipher-math has played an important role in historical events, and will continue to play a role in the security of individuals, corporations, and countries.
While I won't be losing sleep trying to win the book's $15,000 Cipher Challenge, (I've got a Pentium II) I will now think hard about how cipher technology is used and regulated. Should the government be allowed to prohibit absolute cipher-security to protect citizens from harm, or does the right to privacy outweigh the risk of computer-aided crime and terror? I'm not the one with the recipe for Coke under his pillow, but if I were, thoughts of cipher legislation would keep me from resting easily.
I really enjoyed The Code Book, but it should have been thicker with the stories for which Singh suggested there wasn't enough room. I hoped for more stories about the race between cryptographers and cryptanalysts, desperate to gain any intelligence advantage, holding the future of the free world in their hands; as a diversion from the objectives of the book, Singh chose only to relate the cracking of Linear-B. (Not quite "The Day of the Jakcal.") Otherwise, however, The Code Book is, "Uif Tiju!"