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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Ultimate History of Video Games: From Pong to Pokemon--The Story Behind the Craze That Touched Our Lives and Changed the World
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Authors: Steven L. Kent
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
The Semi-Ultimate History of Video Games

Just about wrapping up my read of The Ultimate History of Video Games by Steven L. Kent. Kent traces the history of video games from the early versions of pinball that made the novelty circuit back in the day to the latest consoles of today.
It was extremely interesting reading about the early days of computer gaming, from open source code sharing with Spacewar, which was developed at MIT, to the creation of arcade coin-op gaming post pinball and the rise (and fall) of Atari. The book delves into the histories of the greats, from SEGA to Nintendo, Bally and Williams, and even goes into a bit about the C64, which revolutionized gaming as we know it. Unfortunately, I think the only reason why the C64 was mentioned was because the guy that founded that company eventually bought Atari. Little was mentioned about PC gaming. Infocom... ignored. Origin... almost ignored... Myst and Doom had some highlights, but not much.
That's not to say it wasn't a good read. It was. The use of quotes throughout the book were great and enlightening. I learned a ton. But Kent seems more interested in telling Nintendo's story, and the fact that he pretty much ignored PC gaming only scores this book a 7 on my scale. Ultimate it is not. A shame, too.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Establishing a System of Policies and Procedures
Publisher: Project Management Institute
Authors: Stephen Page
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Quality Book about Writing Policies and Procedures

As a quality professional for 26 years, this was a great book and I was happy to see that the American Society of Quality gave it a great review on the author's web site. It has wonderful content such as research, writing format, communications, and information you don't find anywhere else.
I like the book because it is short and not full of fluff like a lot of authors write. You don't get bored and you stay focused. Thanks Steve.
I have read some of the other reviews, they are all positive except for one or two and it sure seems like they are bashing for no reason other than something to gain (like being an author of another book of similar content that isn't doing as well). I can't believe someone would do this.
Read the book and you will see why it is so good.
By the way, I believe he is writing a fourth book about how to ensure policies and procedures are effective and are cost effective. Sounds interesting to me.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Guru's Guide to Transact-SQL
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Ken Henderson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Run, don't walk, and get this book!

This is the best SQL Server-related book I have ever read. It beats the other Transact-SQL books hands-down. Two of my favorite things about it are its in-depth coverage of row-positioning problems such as statistical calculations and its exhaustive listing of undocumented Transact-SQL syntax. These alone make this a must-have for any serious SQL Server developer.
This book is a future classic. It goes on my shelf between Soukup's Inside SQL Server and Joe Celko's SQL for Smarties.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Photoshop Restoration & Retouching, Second Edition
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Katrin Eismann, Doug Nelson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Even Better than the 1st Edition!

I always thought it would be hard to top the first edition of Photoshop Restoration & Retouching...but Katrin has once again provided a "must have" book for any serious retoucher's library!I love the fact that her style of writing encompasses not only the "how-to" but also the "why?" Anyone can follow a recipe...but Katrin's insights and methods show you how to cook without one!Shan Canfield