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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: OpenGL(R) Programming Guide: The Official Guide to Learning OpenGL, Version 1.2 (3rd Edition)
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Mason Woo, Jackie Neider, Tom Davis, Dave Shreiner, OpenGL Architecture Review Board
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Efficient Book !!! The Good and the Bad...


Straight to the facts...
This book is good on concepts and theory, a bit shadey in the area of actual code. To expand on that statement, some of the code is indeed buggy. You can work the logic errors easily by evaluating the code. But with that said, don't rely on the code all the time. The book's way of introducing and covering topics of geometry,algebra,trigonomtry, and physics is very comfortable. You will indeed learn the beautiful tricks of smoothing and shading/lighting when rendering your scenes.
If you are a beginner developer, know that this book is not intended as a good read at your level.
If you don't already know, OpenGL does not have any audio(music,sound,etc) capabilities. OpenGL is a Graphical Software Development Kit.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: C++ Primer (4th Edition)
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Stanley B. Lippman, Josée Lajoie, Barbara E. Moo
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
A Desperately Bad Book


When I was first using C++, I figured, "This book isn't working for me because I lack knowledge of C and overall programming rules." However, now that I know enough C++ to get me by, I realize that this book couldn't have worked for me at any point. It's 1300 pages long, so forget reading it sequentially, so one is left using the thing as a reference guide. But the amount of time I have spent wading through, for example, its abysmally bad section on class inheritance ("This, boys and girls, is a subclass. We'll just draw a fancy picture, but not tell you how to use them; we'll leave that as an exercise for the student") is enough for me to have authored a better work. And I don't believe I have encountered a worse index in any reference work ever: indiscriminate when it's not just plain wrong, finding an entry on a subject you're interested in is cause for celebration, while finding actual information on that topic within the book proper should merit a trip to Vegas. This book, unsatisfied with making me hate itself, made me hate the entire C++ language. Do not buy this book; buying a reference guide on maintaining your muffler is likely to teach you more about the language.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Windows Server 2003 for Dummies
Publisher: For Dummies
Authors: Ed Tittel, James Michael Stewart
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Dummier than other Dummies books


I bought this book to help study for the Windows 2003 server exams. Unlike the other Techno-Geek Dummies books, this book does not contain ANY exam practice questions or a CD with a sample exam. This book is also not as humorus or entertaining to read as other Dummies books. The first 9 chapters are a basic review of simple networking, like cables and how to install a NIC. You probably won't see much from the first 9 chapters on the Windows 2003 Server exam. Chapter 11 starts getting more technical and explains Active Directory fairly well, but this chapter also says that many topics are "beyond the scope of this book". This book is geared more towards a novice who has never setup a server before. I still think it's better than most of Microsoft's MOC books though. At least this book has real world examples and cuts through Microsoft's hype. If you are looking for an all in one study guide to pass the server exam though, keep looking.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Enterprise JavaBeans, Fourth Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Richard Monson-Haefel, Bill Burke, Sacha Labourey
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Contrarian


I am giving it a very low rating only to counteract all the O'Reilly groupies :-). This book could use a lot more editing. It is thorough, but disorganized. It explains well, but teaches poorly. I'd recommend it only to someone who has experience with another distributed object system (corba or dcom) or has learned to do EJBs using the Ed Roman book.
One of the problems with this book, and with many computer books, is that the author doesn't know how to explain a complex topic by unfolding it piece by piece. Instead, he begins by covering the entire topic in general terms, and then covers it over, successively, going into greater detail each time. Others have commented that it's repetitive -- it is.
This "peeling of the onion" should occur, not as the primary pedagocigal tool, but in parallel with a detailed study of the parts. It's the instructor's job to figure out the order in which the parts are explained, so that the material is learned quickly.
Personally, I ended up using it as a companion to the Ed Roman book, because M-H covers the same topics from a different angle.
In the absence of all the rabid fans, I'd have given it three stars for beginners, and four for people who have used EJB.