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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: SQL Server 2000: The Complete Reference
Publisher: Osborne/McGraw-Hill
Authors: Jeffrey Shapiro
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5

I am writing this in respone to the 1 star review, particularly the XML and ISAPI comments. Chapter 23 covers ALL of the XML functionality in SQL2K. This is not a book on ASP development, that is why there is a SQL2k Web Applications Developer Guide, one by Osborne which is excellent written by Craig Utley, but probably 100 other ASP programmers guides. ASP has absolutely nothing to do with SQL Server. You can make a career writing ASP and never touch a SQL2K database. This book is for the beginner or experienced DBA who needs to get up to speed on SQL2K and what it does. The chapter on XML has a fully functional demo app that uses ASP, XML and VBScript and a SQL2K database.
I would reccomend this book to anyone that want to learn all of the ins and outs of SQl2K, and wants a good understanding of the XML support in SQL2K. There are tons of samples and code in this book, and i think that is what makes it so good, and a very good read. But in the end, it is a SQL2000 Complete Reference, so that is the main concentration. A must have for any serious DBA!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Ipod & Itunes: The Missing Manual (Missing Manual)
Publisher: Pogue Press
Authors: J. D. Biersdorfer
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Do More with an iPod

The iPod is of course a music player. Something like a CD player that is smaller, holds more music, can be down loaded to hold the songs you like. A simple minded, easy to use device.

In truth, however, it's far more. For one thing, the iPod is a very small machine with an incredible amount of memory. What you load into the iPod doesn't have to be songs. It can be any kind of data that you want to carry from one computer to another.

That's the sort of thing that you expect to get from the Missing Manual series. In this case, how to use the iPod for data storage is just one use you can get out of the little thing. Other such applications include calendar, address book, to-do list, notes, eBook, Game Machine and more.

Likewise the book covers the iTunes software that connects the iPod to a computer (either Apple or Windows based). Not only does it cover the standard things you can do with the software, but it goes into the details of how to do a lot of things.

The Missing Manual series is a great way to get more out of something you already have.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Confidence : How Winning Streaks and Losing Streaks Begin and End
Publisher: Crown Business
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5

Rosabeth Moss Kanter's latest work has successfully identified and elaborated an essential, but often glossed-over component of success (and failure): Confidence (and the lack thereof). The book does a terrific job at tackling a slippery subject -- one that would, at first glance, appear to be very hard to study, and even harder to explain. This book could have laid out a theory and left it at that - or it could have told stories without developing a robust conceptual framework. Instead, Kanter's book digs deep inside the concept with surprisingly in-depth case studies of winners and losers (including business leaders, sports teams, and political leaders), and also builds a fresh and incisive model, filled with valuable take-away lessons. Her penetrating analysis of confidence, though intellectual and serious, is written in a clear and accessible manner. I found it not only to be an interesting and fun read, but also a useful resource for work.

Although it is often implied that confidence is a special quality found only in extraordinary individuals - either you have it or you don't - or, alternatively, that "all it takes is believing in yourself," Rosabeth Moss Kanter shows, rather, that confidence is actually a purposeful endeavor, one that can be organized, systematized, and practiced. Only when we understand confidence better, can we successfully apply it in our own lives. And this is why this book is an important read.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Refactoring: Improving the Design of Existing Code
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Martin Fowler, Kent Beck, John Brant, William Opdyke, Don Roberts
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A Must-Have

If you write software for a living, and especially if you use an OO language, you should read this book. It's a guide on how to make your software better while keeping the risks to a minimum -- an essential task.
The writing is great; humor turns potentially dry examples into easy to read and comprehend lessons.