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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Coder to Developer: Tools and Strategies for Delivering Your Software
Publisher: Sybex Inc
Authors: Mike Gunderloy, Sybex
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
Average at best .Net

I really didn't get much out of the book. The .NET-specific content, of which there is plenty, wasn't useful or interesting for me, because I work on Java and Macintosh software.
If you're not a novice programmer, I'd strongly suggest looking over the text before purchasing.
It would, I think, be useful for a novice programmer, or someone fresh out of school who's been working on class assignments, rather than real-world projects.
The author is focused on individual or small-team development, but I would have liked to have seen quite a bit more on design and development processes.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Photoshop Book for Digital Photographers
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Scott Kelby
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Beyond wonderful!

I have used Photoshop since it was "Barneyscan" a proprietary program for a late 1980's slide scanner.
Yesterday this book arrived, and I was enthralled--it is not only beautifully written--in plain English instead of Technical-ese--but the step-by-steps are complete ... you don't have to be really conversant with the program to follow them. Within fifteen minutes I found a tip I used immediately (and that by 8 pm last night had saved me the price of the book!)
The title is too restrictive. This should be called The Photoshop Book for Everyone Who Uses Photoshop!
Thank you, Mr. Kelby!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Robot Building for Beginners
Publisher: Apress
Authors: David Cook
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Excellent work, with great attention to detail

I bought this book and the newer intermediate book (also by Cook) together to start a new hobby. It is very thorough, with great close up pictures, and aims to walk you through the entire process, from beginning to end, of constructing a single, relatively simple robot. If you are truly a beginner, I honestly believe you cannot do better. I have read through most of it once, like a novel, and have referred to it dozens of times since, more like a reference. I have all the major parts now, except the tires and M&M tube, and am about 65% finished. It is really fun, and having the book at your side is second only to having a wise grandfather looking over your shoulder as you work.

I was concerned that it would be overly simplified for me, as I have a master's in CS, and have tinkered with electronics before. It is true that certain parts have been review, but I must admit that after three or four times of saying, "Well that's interesting...", I must now concede that I have learned a great deal, all preconceptions aside. I can only conclude that there must have been several gaps in my knowledge, which I was pleased to have filled by reading this book. My only gripe with the book is that it's difficult to use as a reference. I'm not sure how you'd fix this, I only know I constantly find myself searching for something I read before, only to find it later when I'm no longer looking (and after I had spent several minutes trying). This is quite minor though, and I realize it's probably impossible to have a book that both reads like a novel and functions as a reference (after all, the book is already quite large).

I can't wait to finish construction - the next step is soldering, and I've got this fancy Hakko 936 I'm quite anxious to use. Also, I suspect the next book will be even more interesting, as I've been thinking a lot about how much fun it would be programming the microcontroller. I would guess after I'm done with that book that I'll either continue building more robots on my own, or move on to something else. One thing is for certain though, and that is that this has been great fun, and I would recommend it to any disciplined and curious beginning tinkerer. What better way to simultaneously advance your knowledge of several interesting scientific areas (mechanical engineering, electronics, etc.) while having a great time?

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Sun Certified Programmer & Developer for Java 2 Study Guide (Exam 310-035 & 310-027)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: Kathy Sierra, Bert Bates
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
The only book needed for passing the exam!

Excellent book!! This is the only book that you need to pass the programmer certification. I read this book twice, I got 93% in certification. Although I have 3years experience on Java, this book helped me more than my java experience to clear this exam. FYI:The author runs a web site, javaranch.com. Great site with a lot of tips and mock exams. all the best!!!