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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Software Project Survival Guide
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: Steve C McConnell
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Both classic and contemporary

Computer books written in 1997 are either obsolete or classics. This one is a classic and a timeless one at that because it gives a straightforward approach to development projects that is consistent with best practices. Best practices are usually born from lesson's learned from disasters. While there have been criticisms that this book might not be up to the realities of web development, I believe that the inverse is true: too many web development projects are initiated before they are properly planned, and are not effectively controlled because of unskilled project managers. But that's a personal opinion.
What you will find in this book that is applicable to any development project, regardless of whether the goal is a web- or e-commerce-based system, client/server or host-based. What you get is a structured approach to planning and estimating using proven methods (as opposed to pulling numbers out of thin air), excellent advice on organizing and motivating (and protecting) a project team, and how to manage delivery and release of a quality product. What I particularly like is the life-cycle framework, the controls provided to manage scope and product integrity and the emphasis on testing, release and quality. However, much of this can be mined from other books. What sets this book apart and makes it a classic is the wealth of tips and checklists and the way the author weaves his experiences into the approach. What makes this book effective is the copious advice given throughout about dealing with politics, people issues and other project and career killers. This book is about surviving projects and if the advice liberally sprinkled throughout is heeded it will go a long way towards helping you to do just that.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: The Executive's Guide to Information Technology
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Jon Piot, John Baschab
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5

I am about half way through this book, and I have to say it has been a life saver. I found other related books to be too entry-level to be helpful, but this book seems to hit the target with some heavy-duty advice for the experienced IT manager.
I found out about the book on Nicholas Carr's website where he recommended it...
see: related readingsTwo texts from Michael Porter, the book Competitive Strategy and the article What Is Strategy?, are essential for understanding the relationships among industry structure, firm strategy, and competitive advantage. An extremely lucid overview of the current state of thinking about business strategy can be found in Richard Whittington's What Is Strategy - and Does It Matter? Gary Hamel and C.K. Prahalad provide insight into the relationship between corporate capabilities and competitive advantage in their classic article The Core Competence of the Corporation.
On the technology side, Porter's Strategy and the Internet diagnoses the failures of e-strategy. Carl Shapiro and Hal Varian take a cold look at the economics of digital business in Information Rules. For a lively account of the commercial and social impact of the telegraph, see Tom Standage's The Victorian Internet. For a solid, practical overview of corporate information management today, consider Jon Piot and John Baschab's weighty The Executive's Guide to Information Technology.
Hope this is helpful...

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: C++ for Dummies (4th Edition, Completely Revised)
Publisher: For Dummies
Authors: Stephen Randy Davis
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
Not Meant for XP!

While I don't doubt the validity of this book and the breadth and depth of knowledge contained in it, it simply is NOT MEANT FOR WINDOWS XP! This edition was published in 2000, when Windows XP was not yet available. This book requires you to edit the autoexex.bat file and enter MSDOS commands. Windows XP, however, is NOT built on MSDOS and therefore can not execute commands in the same way. I'm hoping that the 5th edition will be available soon for use with XP, but until then, DO NOT PURCHASE THIS BOOK!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Mastering Microsoft Exchange Server 2003
Publisher: Sybex Inc
Authors: Barry Gerber
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Great Start

I haven't recieved my book yet. It will be here later today. When I first started working with Exchange Mr.Gerbers book on exchange 2000 was a big help to me. I imagine this book will be as good as well. If you are new to exchange this will probably be a great place to start.