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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Sams Teach Yourself Perl in 21 Days (2nd Edition)
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Laura Lemay, Richard Colburn, Robert Kiesling
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Gave me what I needed


The first book which I bought to try to learn Perl was a needlessly high hurdle to jump: Programming Perl, by Larry Wall (the inventor of the language). While I wouldn't go so far as to regret the purchase, Wall seems more interested in demonstrating whatever cute, obscure trick jumps into his mind at the moment, than in giving the reader a systematic grounding in the language. It isn't what one new to Perl needs-- especially being, as it is, a language with so many inelegancies and side-effects.
Then I bought and studied this book by Till, whose patient pedagogy allowed me to find my feet. I think, in fact, that Till is too humble. If one really sat at the computer and concentrated on the book for several hours a day, as he plans, one could learn what he teaches in no more than seven days. In my experience, it is also practical as a reference later, within the scope of the basic topics covered. Of course it is not exhaustive; but holding that against it is about like criticizing Euclid for not discussing calculus.
Now I can go back to Wall's book with some hope of appreciating what he says this time.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Sams Teach Yourself Perl in 21 Days (2nd Edition)
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Laura Lemay, Richard Colburn, Robert Kiesling
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Gave me what I needed


The first book which I bought to try to learn Perl was a needlessly high hurdle to jump: Programming Perl, by Larry Wall (the inventor of the language). While I wouldn't go so far as to regret the purchase, Wall seems more interested in demonstrating whatever cute, obscure trick jumps into his mind at the moment, than in giving the reader a systematic grounding in the language. It isn't what one new to Perl needs-- especially being, as it is, a language with so many inelegancies and side-effects.
Then I bought and studied this book by Till, whose patient pedagogy allowed me to find my feet. I think, in fact, that Till is too humble. If one really sat at the computer and concentrated on the book for several hours a day, as he plans, one could learn what he teaches in no more than seven days. In my experience, it is also practical as a reference later, within the scope of the basic topics covered. Of course it is not exhaustive; but holding that against it is about like criticizing Euclid for not discussing calculus.
Now I can go back to Wall's book with some hope of appreciating what he says this time.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Microsoft SQL Server(TM) 2000 DTS Step by Step (Step By Step (Microsoft))
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: Carl Rabeler
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Good for a Quick Introduction


This book makes for a well-written and relevant introduction for a beginner to DTS, which is what I was when I picked it up.

However, as a decade+ computer professional I was through it and the building of the sample application in a short time.

I have given 4 stars because the book is great for what it is; it does not get 5 stars because it makes for a lousy reference book. Not only is it not comprehensive, but the information is always tied in with the sample application you build throughout the book. So you almost have to stay familiar with the sample app (and where it is in the development process) to get what they're telling you about the subject.

I find myself turning to the Wrox DTS book over and over, and I probably won't open this book again. That said, I'm glad I started with this one.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Essential System Administration, Third Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Æleen Frisch
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Perfect Beginning



A great book for novice system administrators and system administrators that looks his/hers way through different versions of Unix.
For more in depth knowledge, there are better, more specific books.