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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Building Robots With Lego Mindstorms : The Ultimate Tool for Mindstorms Maniacs
Publisher: Syngress
Authors: Mario Ferrari, Giulio Ferrari, Ralph Hempel
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Robots are the key


This is the most comprehensive book on building robots with Mindstorms yet published. It is mammoth (600+ pages) and has three sections. The first part deals with the basics, including chapters on such topics as walking, grabbing, and even a chapter on mathematics. The second section deals with specific projects. The final section discusses contests. The book is well written and even the math section is easy to understand.
Here are the pros and cons as I see them. Really, the cons exist by choice, as the authors chose to cover every imaginable design topic in detail and not use up space with programs or step-by-step diagrams.
Pros:
- Outstanding coverage of design principals, allowing the builder to learn concepts for building ANY robot.- Lots of cool demonstration projects and plenty of building projects to work on, including a 2 legged walker!- Open ended instruction lets you learn a design principal, then build and observe it.
Cons:
- No step-by-step building instructions and pictures. (Enough detail is provided by the photos that the models can be readily recreated.)- Very little programming. (The authors' intent was to focus on the mechanical aspects of robot design. If you really want to learn programming, Dave Baum's book is a great resource for NQC).



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Tricks of the Windows Game Programming Gurus
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Andre Lamothe
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Great book for beginners.


This book is great! I'm a beginner at programming games for Windows. Actually, I never wrote a Windows progam in C++. I found everything I needed to make a simple game in less than two weeks. This book made it incredibly easy! The book is well written and very detailed with lots of example code, tools, and articles. I'm aganist reinventing the wheel, so I was glad there was wav and bmp image loader code given. Who else but Andre would mention neural nets, fuzzy logic, and genetic algorithms in a book like this? This is book is a great buy! Kudos, Andre! I'll be looking for Volume II.



Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Internetworking with TCP/IP Vol.1: Principles, Protocols, and Architecture (4th Edition)
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Authors: Douglas E. Comer
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Must read for network community


We had this book for a networking class back in grad school (1997). S lot of people have said a lot of nice things about this book and I'll join the list as well.
This book taught me TCP/IP and its in outs. Admittedly, the book is not as detailed as Stevens' but for anyone starting in the field of networking this book should be a must read.
It comes as a handy reference as well while performing day to day job functions. This book is the theory behind cisco and juniper routers. You might find that it does not cover all the subtelties of routing protocols but whatever is in there is good enough for starters.
This book will give you a solid foundation and background to read other books such as 'Routing in the internet', 'Anatomy...OSPF' and 'BGP4' etc.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Microsoft Windows XP Professional Administrator's Pocket Consultant, Second Edition (Pro-Administrator's Pocket Consultant)
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: William R. Stanek
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
5 stars and then some!


I bought William Stanek's XP Pocket consultant when it first came out. When I saw the second edition, I grabbed it right away too and I am very glad I did. It is the only XP book I use now and it gets borrowed out so much I had my manager get a second copy for the office.

What's so good about it? For starters, there's over 200 pages of new material and it is the only book I've found that details every change from Service Pack 1 and Service Pack 2. Turn to page 55 and 56 for an example of how deep Stanek gets into the details. This covers Data Execution Protection, No execute page protection, and Physical Address Extension mode.

Like Stanek's Windows Server 2003 Pocket Consultant, I don't think you can find a better book for beginners and advanced. Plus there's details consultants and experts will find invaluable.