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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: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Very Poor Indeed


Firstly, before you wish to study XML you're going to need to know a host of other languages. Below is a list of languages you'll need to have an understanding of if you want to use this book, as these languages are used in the chapters given:
Chapter 8 DOM - JavascriptChapter 9 SAX - Java or Visual Basic, you'll also need their respective expensive development studios.Chapter 10 SOAP - ASP, VBScript, Javascript. Also note SOAP encoding rules aren't covered.Chapter 11 Displaying XML - CSSChapter 12 XML & Databases - VBScript, ASP, ADO. You'll also require Microsoft Access.
You'll also need many of the languages listed above in order to follow the two case studies, and with case study one it will help if you know a bit about Java Servlets.
Even if you do have all this knowledge the book isn't very good anyway, as a matter of fact it's quite terrible. The chapter on XSLT is incomplete by far. XSL-FO isn't covered at all. XML Schemas are covered over two chapters but this is still far from complete. Web Services are mentioned but not covered. To be honest nothing is covered properly, you're given a taste and then told to buy another one of their books if you want to learn properly. Plugs for their other books occur over and over again, I lost count of the number of publications of theirs they wanted me to buy in order to teach me what this book was suppose to teach me. Note also that there aren't any questions at the end of each chapter, so you can't test what you have or haven't learnt, as the case may be. Basically they are talking at you and hoping you'll become an expert without getting you to attempt to apply what you are trying to learn. Also the books age is really starting to show. Bearing in mind this books size (about 800 pages) it really doesn't cover much. I also found the order of the chapters was ill thought out, there was no flow.
The annoying thing is that the book is full of babble, if they cut the babble they could of covered each subject more thoroughly, but of course if they did that then you wouldn't need to buy the other books they keep plugging. I don't think Wrox Press appreciate anymore the time and effort it takes to master computing languages. This book will only serve to increase the time it takes to learn XML and its related technologies.
I found Wrox support to be exceptionally unhelpful when I wrote to them with a few queries on areas that aren't explained at all, or are covered very poorly. I wrote several times and I was practically ignored, finally, when I complained quite heavily, they responded, but they still didn't answer some issues so I gave up on them. They claim in the book that they offer exceptional support, well that wasn't my experience. On one problem I encountered they responded by sending me to a web page with a sample chapter from their competitor's publication where my answer could be found. I couldn't believe it!!! Wrox support hindered my efforts in learning this technology further.
Don't buy this book, its old, massively incomplete, and leaves you hanging time and time again. It's really just a plug for their other books on XML and its surrounding technologies, so it is deliberately vague.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Pointers on C
Publisher: Addison Wesley
Authors: Kenneth Reek
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A useful book


The book carries through an interesting boarding in relation to the use of some more important resources of the C language, multidimensional arrays and pointers.

The comparison that is made between them, as well as the use most appropriate of each one is enlightening.

The author also carries through a soon however interesting explanation on the design and implementation of ADTs. At last, the book brings valuable tips and serves as reference for programmers of any level.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Getting to Know ArcGIS Desktop: The Basics of ArcView, ArcEditor, and ArcInfo Updated for ArcGIS 9 (Getting to Know series)
Publisher: Esri Press
Authors: Robert Burke, Eileen Napoleon, Tim Ormsby
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Works for me!


I purchased this book as a compliment to the text for an intro to ArcHydro course I am taking at university and find it to be a very useful tool. The software runs on 2000 or NT, however, I called ESRI and they immediately sent me a 60 day full license for version 8.3 for XP. It's a great tool for the beginner starting out in geodatabse design and the exercises are easy to follow and gratifying when completed. If you're new to ArcView this is a good buy.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Official Final Fantasy VII Strategy Guide
Publisher: Bradygames
Authors: David Cassady
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
This is a book that's not detailed enough and too many error


Much of the data in tables are wrong: looks like they didn't do ANY check. Ways to get chocobos are not accurate, the greens' table is wrong, too many enemies not listed in the end of the book, and among the ones listed much of the info is wrong, and some enemy's HP are even ??? (I can easily find the number out by using Gamehack) and they're calling this "OFFICIAL GUIDE"? Com'on, give me a break. None of the info in the book cannot be obtained by playing yourself a few times, it's like writtin just by someone who played the game, without ANY info from Squaresoft's game creators. When I compare this book to some good FF7 sites in the Internet, I found that I can really get more info on the game. The only good thing about this book is that IT'S A BOOK and it's easier to read then printed paper and has graphics, however, everything is black and white except the few maps section at the end of the book.