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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: 50 Fast Photoshop 7 Techniques
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Gregory Georges
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Ignores Mac


Intended user: Beginning to Advanced
I knew just by thumbing through this book that I was going to enjoy the time I spent reviewing it. And then when I read these words on page two of the introduction - "If I had to make a single recommendation about how to quickly learn to successfully use Photoshop, it would be to learn all about those few features that you need to use to get your work done - and ignore the rest." - I said where was this book 5+ years ago? Oh sure there has always been instructional books similiar to this, but most are bible length epics and just as cryptic as the bible itself.
The book comes with a CD-ROM that not only includes:
* 50 sets of "before" and "after" images* A Photoshop tryout version: 6.0, but hey - beats having to download.* An ebook.pdf of the book that you can keep on your computer.* A slide show of all 50 techniques* A companion webpage: called www.reallyusefulpage.com, and* You can even email the author himself - right from the CD.
The first six chapters are set up as a Photoshop bootcamp, to help you become successful with the last 44 techniques. Even if you are an experienced user o f Photoshop, I recommend - as does the author - that you complete all six techniques in Chapter 1 before trying any of the other techniques. Then you will have the required knowledge to try any of the other techniques in any order that you want .
Take a Peek at All the Information Packed In This Book:
Chapter 1 - Photoshop 7 Fundamentals - Techniques 1-6:
Configuring Photoshop, Controlling Image Window, Automamating Tasks, Creative Experimentation, Calibrating Your Monitor, and Configuring Basic Color Management.
Chapter 2 - Correcting, Enhancing, and Restoring Digital Photos -Techniques 7-13:
Quick Image Correction, Advanced Image Correction, Increasing Color Saturation, Restoring an Old Image-(my personal favorite), Removing Noise or Grain, Sharpening Digital Photos, and Adding Information to a Digital Photo.
Chapter 3 - Working In Black and White -Techniques 14-19:
(2)Converting a Photo to B&W, Burning and Dodging with Masks, Using Scaling Masks to Speed Edits, Isolating and Extracting Detail using Values, and Selective Focusing.
Chapter 4 - Creative Experimentation - Techniques 20-25:
Hand-Painting a Black and White Image, Creating a Pseudolsolarization, Adding a Traditional Darkroom Texture Screen Effect, Fixing Images with a Digital Graduated Neutral Density Filter, Simulating an Infrared Film Effect, and Creating a Toned Image.
Chapter 5 - Combining Photos in Montages, Collages, and Composites -Techniques 26-29:
Creating Photo Objects, Making a PhotoMontage, Combining Bracketed Photos, and Using a Mask to Create a Collage
Chapter 6 - Fine Art Techniques - Techniques 30-35:
Total Color Transformation, Using Filters to Create Fine Art Prints, Coloring a Digital Sketch, Creating a Pen Ink Sketch Using a Watercolor Wash, Creating a Digital Painting, Creative Use of Filters and Commands.
Chapter 7 - Using Plug-Ins to Add Impact to Your Photos - Techniques 36-41:
Using Image Correction Plug-Ins, Using Grain Surgery to Remove Digital Noise, Convering Color to B&W Using Convert to B&W Pro, Creating Artwork with Buzz.Pro 2.0, Using a Pen Tablet and Pen Palette 1.0, and Using Special Effects Plug-Ins.
Chapter 8 - Making Photographic Prints - Techniques 42-47:
Using Print Preview (Picture Package and Contact), Increasing Image Size to Make Large Prints, Using an ICC Profile When Printing with an Epson 880/1280 Printer, Getting Fuji Frontier Prints Made, Using Shutterfly's Online Printing Service, Getting Lightjet 5000 Prints from Calypso Inc.
Chapter 9 - Creating An Online Gallery - Techniques 48-50:
Creating an Online Gallery, Creating Animations Using Digital Photos, and Creating an Image Map.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone from beginners to professionals who work with Photoshop everyday. Not only is it loaded with detailed, reference information - (and CD) - it's also a [great price]BR>MacMice Rating: 5 out of 5
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Trixie McGuire ...



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Java Servlet Programming, 2nd Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Jason Hunter
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Very good - but you have to be familiar with servlets.


As a java software developer, who works a lot with servlets, I found this book very useful. But it really isn't targetted towards novice programmers. You need to already have some background about servlets. I found the book especially useful in teaching some of the more advanced servlet programming issues. As well as the chapter which dealt with applet-servlet communication. (There is a basic chat system sample in chapter 10 which is written using applets and servlets. I learned a lot from looking at that sample, and I also learned a lot from the problems in it..) Overal, it's a good book, but you have to concentrate when reading the book, and sometimes, even read the chapter more than once.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Network Security Assessment
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Chris McNab
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Systematically understanding network access


A logically very systematic delineation of ways that your system could be attacked over the Internet. There are standard ways to access your computer like rlogin, telnet, ssh and ftp. But each implementation of these faces the risk that an error was made in its coding, which might then be found and exploited by a cracker. Plus, since the advent of the Web, there are Web services that have not checked for the stereotypical but very real case of buffer overflow in submitted input over the network.
McNab describes all these, and more. But perhaps more usefully, his book is not a simple recital of implementation versions and associated known bugs and available patches. He tries instead to guide the reader into understanding the broad ideas in network access, and using a viewpoint of logically analysing for any weaknesses. Because any static listing of versions and bugs runs the risk of being obsoleted in a few years.
He presents web sites that are good resources for patches or latest versions of key programs. If you are concerned about a specific program, try going straight to it in the book and seeing what advice he offers.
For all the programs he mentions, some prior knowledge of their use would be handy. He gives a succinct description of each, but really he assumes you have already used it.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Intermediate Robot Building
Publisher: Apress
Authors: David Cook
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Back Cover // Table of Contents


Since there is no description what-so-ever about this book, let me copy the back cover and table of contents. This way I won't leave something out and run off on a tangent and run out of room for this review. I hope you appreciate my soon-to-be cramped fingers...
Back Cover: "For readers of `Robot Building for Beginners', welcome to the next level. Intermediate Robot Building offers the kind of real-world knowledge that only an experienced robot builder can offer-the kind of knowledge beginners usually have to learn through mistakes. In this book, you'll learn the value of a rovot heartbeat and the purpose of the wavy lines in photocells. You'll find out what electronic part you should sand. You'll discover how a well-placed switch can help a robot avoid obstacles better than a pair of feelers. And you'll avoid mistakes that can cause a capacitor to explode. Want a robot that can explore rooms, follow lines, or battle opponents in mini-sumo? This book presents step-by-step instructions and circuit and part descriptions so that you can build the robot featured in this book or apply the modules to your own robot designs. Finally, you'll find the complete schematics for Roundabout, a room explorer that requires no programming and uses only off-the-shelf electronics. With Roundabout, you'll use many of the same techniques used by professional robotics engineers-and you'll experience many of the same challenges and joys they feel when a robot `comes to life.' Experience the next level of challenges with Intermediate Robot Building."
Table of Contents:Ch 1: Assembling a Modular Robot *Building Modules *Getting comfortable with machining *Putting it all together *Applying parts and techniques to other robotsCh 2: Comparing Two Types of Homemade Motor Couples and Common Errors to Avoid *Comparing two homeade coupler technologies *Identifying desired results in coupler drill holes along with common errors + effects *Getting ready to make a solid-rod couplerCh 3: Making a Fixture and Drilling Solid Rods for a Coupler *Gathering Tools and Parts *Preparing lengths of solid rod for the couplers *Making a coupler fixture *Getting the money shot *Drilling the motor-shaft and Lego axle coupler holes *Examining the coupler so farCh 4: Finishing the Solid-Rod Motor Coupler *Installing the coupler setscrew *Adding the Lego AxleCh 5: Building a Motor Inside a Wheel *Encountering danger: bent shafts ahead *Making a hub-adapter couplerCh 6: Understanding the Standards and Setup for Electronic Experiments *Reading schematics *Using solderless breadboards *Understanding oscilloscope traces *Riding the bandwagon of modern electronicsCh 7: Creating a Linear Voltage-Regulated Power Supply *Understanding Voltage Regulators *Understanding Linear Voltage-Regulated Power Supplies *Heading into OptimizationsCh 8: Making Robot Power Supply Improvements *Bulking up the input and output capacitors *Adding voodoo capacitors *Sprinkling with bypass/decoupling capacitors *Preventing damage from short circuits or overcurrent *Preventing damage from overvoltage in a regulated circuit *Putting it all together for a robust robot power supplyCh 9: Driving Miss Motor *Why a motor driver *Demonstrating the four modes of a motor *Driving simply with a single transistor *Putting the NPN and PNP motor drivers together *The classic bipolar H-Bridge *Interfacing with the high side *Mastering motor controlCh 10: Driving Mister Motor *Driving motors with MOSFETs *Driving motors with Chips *Evaluating motor driversCh 11: Creating an Infrared Modulated Obstacle, Opponent, and Wall Detector *Detecting Modulated infrared with a popular module, or, another reason to hog the remote control *Expanding the detection circuit to include an LED indicator *Completing the reflector detector circuitCh 12: Fine-Tuning the Reflector Detector *Tuning in 38 kHz *Limitations of the reflector detector *Getting ready for a practical robot applicationCh 13: Roundabout Robot! *Examining Roundabout *Roundabout's Circuitry *Building Roundabout's Body *Summarizing RoundaboutCh 14: Test Driving Roundabout *Preparing for the test drive *Preparing the robot and correcting minor glitches *Evaluating Roundabout's performance *Getting StuckCh 15: If I only Had a Brain *Considering the Motorola KX8 Microcontroller as an example *Comparing a microcontroller to a logic chip *Programming a microcontroller *Exploring common microcontroller features *Choosing a microcontroller *Graduating your robotCh 16: Building Roundabout's Daughterboard *Converting to a two-story configuration *Intercepting signals: meeting the new boss *Expanding functionality *Upgrading a robotCh 17: Adding the Floor Sensor Module *Sensing brightness with photoresistors *Sensing brightness with a photodiode IC *Following a line *Competing in Robot Sumo!!! *Expanding PossibilitiesCh 18: Cooking Up Some Robot Stew *Making Music *Scaling Up *Mounting Motors *Roaming the Solar Terrain *Standing in a Robot's Shoes for awhile