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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Andrew Hunt, David Thomas
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
This book will show you how to save time by spending it


As a programmer, I like to think of myself as pragmatic. Programming is the most precise discipline there is and justifies the cynical joke, "How many character changes does it take to turn `success' into `failure'? Answer: Only one if you are a programmer." However, pragmatic is a very subjective word, so the obvious question that any reader interested in this book would ask is, "So what criteria do the authors use to define a pragmatic programmer?" In listing the criteria and explaining their reasoning, the authors show their depth of understanding of what is both right and wrong with the current state of the development art. Every keystroke or mouse click that we perform has a consequence, not only today, but in the future. When performing them, we should always be looking ahead to the future, whether that be thinking about how the code will be maintained, how the users will respond to what they find or how your current skill set is expanding or contracting. This eye on the future is the primary theme of the book. The tips are kept simple, which is effective and is consistent with the secondary theme of the book. Complex systems are what we build, but in totality we cannot comprehend them. Only by breaking a project down into manageable parts can we hope to interact with it in an effective manner. Furthermore, the inertia against changes is much less severe when they are small and simple. Whether it be Ockham's razor, Einstein's statement about the simplicity of theories or simply reciting the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) mantra, reducing complexity is effective. Some very good analogies are used to explain the principles, with my favorite being the broken window tale. The basic story is simple, abandoned buildings or automobiles on the street remain untouched until a window is broken. Left unrepaired, this sends a message that the object is fair game so within a very short time, vandals destroy the rest. The same thing happens in software development. Once a subpar feature is passed as acceptable, the signal to everyone is clear, and the quality of the remaining work suffers. Granted, most of us in development are severely time challenged and have little to spare to either read or perform code clean ups. However, this is a book where the interest paid over the short and long term will dominate the initial investment. Applying even a few of these principles will help reduce the load in the future as you begin spending less time in all phases of the software cycle. It takes approximately a one percent increase in efficiency to save a half hour a week. This is a book that should be read by all programmers, especially those who wish to control their own destiny.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Web ReDesign 2.0: Workflow that Works
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Kelly Goto, Emily Cotler
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
A must own book for anybody in the web business.


This book is brilliant, I meet the author last year when we were both speaking at the first ever dreamweaver conference in Monterey, Kelly Goto, changed the way I think about web design workflow. If you have anything to do with the designing or selling web sites you have to own this book.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Photoshop 7 for Dummies
Publisher: For Dummies
Authors: Barbara Obermeier, Deke McClelland
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
John Nemerovski MyMac.com Book Review


I'm saving the best for last, so I hope you're still reading! Deke McClelland sets the standard for Photoshop authors, and MyMac.com plans to cover every item he publishes on the topic. What makes this Dummies entry into the Photoshop 7 arena worth raving about?
Two pages (four sides) of card stock are the first items you encounter when opening Photoshop 7 for Dummies. These quick reference "cheat sheets" present separate Windows and Macintosh keyboard commands for toolbars, selections, layers, palettes, and more. Worth a hefty portion of the price of this book, all on their own.
These authors write with a zippy, witty style that makes learning and using Photoshop fun (almost) and enjoyable (always). Did you know about "Dr. Photo and Mr. Shop"? If not, you need to begin with Chapter One and turn off the phone until you understand the difference.
Both Windows and Mac (OS X) screen shots are plentiful, making this book truly cross platform. Illustrations are bold and easy on the eyeballs, and tutorial steps are printed in bold type. Why don't other publishers realize how important printing and inking are to readers learning difficult material from scratch?
You want tips? How about warnings? Photoshop 7 for Dummies has them in profusion, on page after page. Special mention is given to each feature new to Photoshop 7, for all you upgraders. The brief color section has some mind-expanding examples of projects enumerated within the text.
I'm having a difficult time maintaining focus on this review, friends, because I'm itching to use the book to help me learn tons more about Photoshop 7. So let's stop here, with our highest recommendation of MacMice Rating: 5 out of 5. Bravo, Deke and Barbara. Thanks for your terrific book.
WOULD I BUY IT? Yes, and give it as a gift.
WOULD I USE IT IF IT WAS THE ONLY PHOTOSHOP BOOK AVAILABLE? We should be so lucky!
DO I RECOMMEND IT? Ubetcha.
http://www.mymac.com/book_bytes/fiveps7_12.6.02.shtml



Product: Book -
Title: eBay Secrets : How to create Internet auction listings that make 30% more money while selling every item you list
Publisher:
Authors: Steven Ellis White, Bryon Krug
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Steve White is a fantastic teacher - Great, practical book!


I bought this book in desperation. I had not been getting what I wanted for items that I was selling on eBay. I realized that I was making some very serious mistakes - especially regarding the titles and descriptions that I was using. Further, the method that I was using (or, rather, not using) to tell the user what shipping would cost, and using reserve auctions was truly hurting my final prices. I really appreciated the practical tips on where to find items to sell. Steve gave me some ideas that I really would not have thought of on my own. I would highly recommend this book to those who want to improve their eBay selling success. However, the buyer should make sure that they have a basic working knowledge of computers, a photo editor, and an HTML editor. These skills will help you to implement the author's suggestions. These are not mandatory, but will definitely help.
This book is written in an informal, easy-to-read and pleasant manner. I read it in under an hour and learned at least 40 new things. That's money well spent.