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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: C++ GUI Programming with Qt 3 (Bruce Peren's Open Source)
Publisher: Prentice Hall PTR
Authors: Jasmin Blanchette, Mark Summerfield
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
good, but could be much better


I've been programming in perl for a little while now, waiting to take the next step to c++. This book cought my eye because of the words "Open Source" on the cover. I then saw that Bruce Parens is having a series of books published on a type of open source license. While part of me wanted to wait for it to come out in electronic form because I'm a recent graduate with no job (though an interview... crosses fingers), I really wanted to take full advantage of my unemployed time doing something productive. (Like open source coding) So I bought the book.
Initially there are a lot of similarities to the online documentation and online tutorials that you can get from trolltech's site. But that's really just in the first chapter. The beginning of the book is a walkthrough of the programming of a spreadsheet program.
There are some bad points however... as a novice programmer, I thought they should have gone over the design process a little more. However, if you are familiar with designing a GUI program and just want to learn how to code stuff in QT and the online docs don't quite cut it, then this is the book for you. While I haven't found any errors yet, I have found that certain things aren't explained all that well. (like this referring to the parent widget... they never really explained that) However, as a novice, I was able to answer all my questions with the online documentation, it just forces you to look up a few things outside of the book.
The idea of signals and slots is pretty ingenious and the book covers how to use them quite well. I'm very happy that trolltech gives away qt free to Open Source developers. It's very well put together and I wouldn't hesitate in using it in a proprietary application (after paying appropriate license fees). Being free for Open Source isn't what makes qt popular, being easy and fun to use is. I think we'll be seeing a lot more qt in the future.
So if you feel that the online documentation is pretty good and are skilled at using qt's assistant program then you probably don't need this book. However, if you can't find good enough documentation on something like Database connectivity (like me) then this book will really help you.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web
Publisher: Pearson Education
Authors: Christina Wodtke
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
the "Don't Make Me Think" of Information Architecture.


Although best read by practitioners of information architecture (or those who peripherally practice it) this book is like Steve Krug's book in that it's no-nonsense, witty, erudite but not dry and has a solid thesis, readably espoused, passionately argued and well presented.
It should be on every web designer/ web project/ software architect's book shelf.
An A+



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Web Database Applications with PHP & MySQL, 2nd Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Hugh E. Williams
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
New feature


This book has its conceptual merits and demerits. But let's give the authors the benefit of the doubt, and let's assume that this is a decent introduction to its subject matter. I'd still advise against purchasing it, as in detail it's extremely unreliable and often confused.
Since I started counting, I've found an error every 4 to 5 pages. Some are cosmetic, but some seriously damage the value of the examples and descriptions. The text contradicts itself at several points; some examples don't produce the results the text says they will; some figures are glaringly broken.
This book is the victim of an obviously poor editing job, for which I blame O'Reilly more than the authors. Either way, you should probably look elsewhere unless you already know enough to silently correct all the errors you'll find.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Programming ASP.NET, 2nd Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Jesse Liberty, Dan Hurwitz
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Gold Mine!


This book is a gold-mine - explaining well the .NET concepts. As an experienced ASP developer, it gave me good background to understand the differences between ASP and ASP.NET. The examples are structured to build on each other and are well thought-out. I had a question about one of the examples and posted it to Jesse Liberty's web site (url included in the book). He answered it right away! Great book!