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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Information Architecture: Blueprints for the Web
Publisher: Pearson Education
Authors: Christina Wodtke
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Wake up the editor!

I suppose Wodtke knows everything there is to know about IA, but I not so sure about her book writing skills...
Given that she claims that "yes, it's a short book" (false modesty at 350 pages?) it's surprising to notice the number of digressions - into some pretty lame issues, perspectives and tips:
- How she got the idea of writing a book.- What the book is not about.- A 30 page discussion of guidelines she does not support.- A comprehensive guide to the pros and cons of different ways to draw people, e.g. stick people.- A note that you need a big notebook or a whiteboard and some markers if you want to do some topic mapping.- A tip that when receiving guests you might break the ice by asking if it was easy to find the way.
Actually, I learned quite a few things by reading this book, but I call for the editor to wake up and give Wodtke some decent advise if she decides to go for a follow up. Any half decent editor could take a hundred pages out of this book in an hour, ending up with a much better read.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Unix Power Tools, Third Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Shelley Powers, Tim O'Reilly, Mike Loukides
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A very much appreciated reference book!

A friend of mine recommended this book for me a couple of years ago and it took me a while to find it in the book stores. After finding and reading it I was absolutely amazed! Very full of information and tips, easy to understand and written with humor as well.
I have about a dozen of those Post-It flags in my book to mark the several sections that I am currently reading. The design and cross-referencing is excellent! I have yet to see a book as well-constructed as this one.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Network Security Assessment
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Chris McNab
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Excellent book to assess your own network security...

Target AudienceNetwork administrators or security administrators who want to assess the security of their systems.
ContentsThis book is a series of assessments that you can do to your systems to determine the level of your system security
The book is divided into the following chapters: Network Security Assessment; The Tools Required; Internet Host And Network Enumeration; IP Network Scanning; Assessing Remote Information Systems; Assessing Web Services; Assessing Remote Maintenance Services; Assessing FTP And Database Services; Assessing Windows Networking Services; Assessing Email Services; Assessing IP VPN Services; Assessing Unix RPC Services; Application-Level Risks; Example Assessment Methodology; TCP, UDP Ports, And ICMP Message Types; Sources Of Vulnerability Information
ReviewEvery day brings word of new exploits and new security bugs in various operating systems. Some are new and unique, and many are rehashed exploits made possible by the failure to patch and secure your systems. In order to see your system as a cracker would, you need to understand the mindset and toolsets that are used against you. This book, Network Security Assessment, will help you do just that.
Each chapter starts with a brief explanation of the area being discussed, as well as some of the overall security concerns related to that service. The rest of the chapter is then devoted to various exploits and tools that can be launched against the different operating systems. Chris McNab uses extensive illustrations and output listings to show the reader how the tools work and what type of information can be exposed to an attacker. Since many of the tools are Unix-based or are expected to be used against Unix-type systems, the author does assume familiarity with administration of Unix variants.
There are a lot of things to like about this book. The assessment methodology is organized and well thought out. It's not just a random scattering of exploits. The author also takes great pains to provide the sites where you can download the tools. In addition to that, the tools are also mirrored at the O'Reilly site so that you are protected against websites that may move around. The argument could be made that this provides a fledging cracker with all the information they need to break into your system. True, but the information already exists, and they will find it with or without this book. This book levels the playing field by making security information available to corporate administrators so that they have a chance against attackers.
ConclusionA worthy addition to the bookshelf of network and security administrators. By following the exploits and processes outlined, you'll be able to sleep well knowing that you've covered as many bases as you can.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Graphic Design Solutions, 2E
Publisher: OnWord Press (Acquired Titles)
Authors: Robin Landa
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5

This book is the essence of graphic design. It is a must for any design student. The book itself makes one of the strongest visual statements that I've seen in any Design text. It's great for both the experienced designer and those who aren't accustomed to the nuance that so many overlook. The best parts of the book are the exercises. With problems that are enjoyable and challenging, Ms. Landa has created something that Professors around the globe should take notice to. This is the bible for graphic design students and is a great improvement over the first edition (which was great in and of itself).
Also recommended: The Education of a Graphic Designer(Heller), Design Discourse, The History of Graphic Design(Meggs)