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Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: MCAD/MCSD Self-Paced Training Kit: Developing Windows-Based Applications with Microsoft Visual Basic .NET and Microsoft Visual C# .NET
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: Microsoft Corporation, Microsoft Corporation
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
Poor Exam Preparation Resource.

Don't waste your money or your time with this book.While it does point out the required topics for the tests, the book falls way short on covering those key topics. Most if not all of the content is vague at best and it is seriously lacking in its coverage of ADO.NET and security which are heavily tested topics.
I passed my exam but NOT thanks to this book. Mostly based on experience which is why after taking the test I can tell you this book is not worth the pulp it is printed on.
I would recommend a nice book on ADO.NET such as Dave Sceppa's ADO.NET Core Reference and any of the Wrox books on Windows Forms for the rest. From MS Press there is "Visual C# Core Reference" (I myself just noticed my predilection towards "Core Reference" tomes!) By Mickey Williams.
For the test, there is no substitute for experience, but MSDN onlike is an EXCELLENT resource that everyone should leverage, test or real life.
If you are taking the test, good luck, otherwise happy .NETing!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Digital Lighting & Rendering
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Jeremy Birn
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Good, basic concepts

This is a good book for someone who wants to understand the basic vocabulary of rendering. It goes into how software works, not how one product works; it is not specific to any one application. There are one or two chapters that are not very clear (the one on light temperature was not very clear). You really should have some familiarity with some kind of software before you jump into this book. Without some familiarity with 3d, you could easily get lost. The book does have a lot of pretty pictures all in color. In the bookstore it is hard not to put it down. Every student in my school owns a copy for the imaging and textures class. It is a requirement.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: When Things Start to Think
Publisher: Owl Books
Authors: Gershenfeld Neil
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Computers are for people...not the other way around.

The author of this book is clearly of the opinion that the "Digital Revolution" is more of what he calls a 'disinformation campaign'. His arguments are to the effect that computers and gadgets need to be responsive to human needs, this not being the case to this date. Computers should be a suit of clothes a person can wear (literally!!) and not a straightjacket, the author seems to say. We should expect more from computers, and the Digital Revolution should be for people, not computers.
The author is definitely correct in saying this, as computers are still difficult to use for most people. The author's book is an attempt to propose remedies for this state of affairs, and some of these are highly creative, making the book very interesting to read. Some of the more clever ideas include smart paper, wearable computers, and smart money. He also overviews more exotic notions of computation, such as DNA and quantum computation. These ideas and developments are all very exciting, and no doubt most of them will come about....and soon.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The UNIX Programming Environment
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Authors: Brian W. Kernighan, Rob Pike
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
it helped me to learn about unix from nothing

First time Linux was introduced to me, I was a blind man in unix world, but after I read this book, it has opened my opinion about unix/Linux.
Thanks to Kernighan. His english was very ease to read, even a beginner (and not a English native speaker) in unix world can learn a lot from this book.
I suggest this book to people who want to learn unix/linux.