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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The PMP Exam: How to Pass on Your First Try
Publisher: Velociteach Press
Authors: Andy Crowe
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Let's just say...It gets the job done

I've been a Project Manager for many years now, have always been interested in obtaining a PMP but never found the time or the right resources. This book is a perfect combination of both. It is easy reading and easy to understand. If you are disciplined enough to read the book, take good notes, take and review the practice exams you can also be a PMP very soon. I waited too long to accomplish this goal because I didn't know what tools to use. If you've found this page, you've found the right prep book to get the job done for you.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Core Servlets and JavaServer Pages, Vol. 1: Core Technologies, Second Edition
Publisher: Prentice Hall PTR
Authors: Marty Hall, Larry Brown
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Marty Hall's Core Servlets JavaServer Pages is Great

Marty Hall's book "Core Servlets and JavaServlet Pages", is first rate. This book cleared up more for me in a week than I had been able to figure out in two months from other sources; especially the information on request and response headers in http, and URL encoding. I find that many books are either: too cookbook (follow the examples) or too advanced (no basic information)but this one was "just right". I have it on my desk next to another favorite, Bruce Eckel's "Thinking in Java".

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Drawing Shortcuts: Developing Quick Drawing Skills Using Today's Technology
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Jim Leggitt
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Better than chocolate!

The only way Jim Leggitt could make this book better would be to package it with a quarter pound of really good chocolates. I've chosen to overlook that omission since this book is exactly what I wanted to use in my rendering classes at the Savannah College of Art & Design. This is a twenty-first century handbook for rendering in color.
Thirty-one students (two classes) proved to me this summer that Drawing Shortcuts works for learning how to make and render drawings in color quickly, effectively and relatively economically. The final projects reflect ten weeks of increasingly stronger skills and confidence in drawing/rendering abilities. Both graduate and undergraduate students with varied levels of computer expertise found value in the Drawing Shortcuts approach of "Let Technology Do Your Dirty Work".
Bottom line: a relaxed learning atmosphere in studio, fearless renderers willing to experiment with color media and striking final projects. The studio professors are commenting on the improvement in rendered drawings in their classes, too. Leggitt's methods are weaning students from a dependence on computer-generated images. The enhanced freehand drawing skills complement the computer drawing skills. Students now have many options for graphic expression which reflect their individual needs and desires.
I teach rendering classes for interior design students in the School of Building Arts at SCAD. We'll be using this book every quarter. Thanks, Jim Leggitt. But think about the chocolates with the second edition of the book!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Developing Microsoft ASP.NET Server Controls and Components
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: Nikhil/Datye, V. Kothari, Nikhil Kothari, Vandana Datye
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Great book IF you already understand event programming

I came to this book with considerable experience in ASP, and with fair experience over the past year with ASP.NET, mainly in C#. I also have some experience with Java and object-oriented programming. I wanted to learn how to create custom web controls, and this is one of the few books on the subject. The authors are members of Microsoft's ASP.NET team, so they know the inside story, and technically, they show their knowledge of the topic.
However, the book basically assumes not only that you know C# thoroughly, but also that you understand the event model that is more along the lines of desktop applications. Chapter three hits you with an abstract discussion of component and event programming that is difficult if you're not already familiar with the topic, and the book never really looks back after that. I struggled through the first thirteen chapters before giving up, not feeling like I have a grasp of how I could build controls. At this point I'll either have to painstakingly go back through much of the book again, hoping to catch on, or else find another resource.
The other problem is that when introducing a topic, the text rarely gives a good explanation of why the topic is important; instead, it jumps into details of interfaces and methods. A good example is in chapter nine, when the book turns to processing postback data. Sure, it's important that the control be able to interact with the data in a form, but what does that mean for the control? An example of how this would work and be important would be key here, but instead, the authors open the section with:
"We'll now look at the postback data processing architecture that enables a control to retrieve form data submitted by a user, update its state, and raise events in response to changes in its state. To participate in postback data processing, a control must implement the IPostBackDataHandler interface and render elements whose HTML name attributes have unique values on the page" (p. 203). The discussion continues with the technical details of implementing the interface. By the time they get to the code sample, it's tough to see how the snippets of code added to the previous example helps handle postback data.
I expect that if you are an experienced C++ and C# applications programmer, you'll find the book a great help and reference. If you're fairly new to programming, or most of your experience is with Web applications, I would look elsewhere (perhaps the O'Reilly book by Lowy, though I haven't read that one so can't endorse it either). I realize that topics like event handling are more advanced, but there should be a book that can convey it understandably to the intermediate-level Web programmer.