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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Elements of User Experience: User-Centered Design for the Web
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Jesse James Garrett
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
nice starter for newbie but not much depth...

First off, the author is reportedly disdainful of "design education" (ie, scholarly programs that foster legitimate inquiry and exploration of critical issues in user experience) so it's no surprise that this book, mildly sufficient for beginners puzzled as to how to even start a web project, lacks the necessary conceptual foundations of design thinking for examining complex, application oriented, "beyond the web" design problems: interpretations, perspectives, etc. to enable a designer/IA to step "beyond" the immediate problem and extrapolate principles and patterns. Fundamental issues of cognition, social interaction, drama, emotion, etc. are not even hinted. Also, the core diagram, while visually interesting, has many gaps and simplifications. The fact is, the areas of interaction design and information architecture are quite dynamic in practice (and theory) to be declared with such an "easy" diagram. And the false dichotomies between UI, IA, ID, etc. reveal a unhealthy temptation to simplify and codify, leading to false perceptions by newbies about design practice.
So, while the book offers the rudimentary basics of web projects (which are quite useful), the array of techniques and over-simplification of process/forethought can be a disservice for someone truly trying to understand "user experience" elements. Instead, I'd highly recommend Clement Mok's "Designing Business", Veen's "Art and Science of Web Design" (especially the last chapter), HIllman Curtis' "Making the Invisible Visible", and Shedroff's "Experience Design" (though it is hard to "read" his book :-)

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Cascading Style Sheets 2.0 Programmer's Reference
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: Eric A. Meyer
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
It's what it says it is

The book calls itself "The Most Authoritative Quick Reference for Programmers"...it is. I've been lucky enough to be writing CSS since its beginnings and this book is right now the most current and definitive resource I can find for CSS. Echoing other comments, this is not for beginners. Get Jason Teague's DHTML/CSS Visual Quickstart book if you need a beginner's book. This book, in hand with Bradsoft's TopStyle Pro 2.5+ on your desktop, and you'll be doing what the book says: *programming* with CSS. If you're designing web application GUIs, you need this book. It's a cinch buy with Eric Meyer's name as the author. This volume also bookends quite nicely with the JavaScript Bible by Danny Goodman. One negative note: the organization of this book leaves a little bit to be desired...the black printed "tab" sections are not intuitive. I have purchased stick-on tabs to mark specific sections for quick location.
The opinions expressed above are personal and do not represent Mr. Sobkoviak's employers or clients.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Resilient Storage Networks : Designing Flexible Scalable Data Infrastructures (Digital Press Storage Technology (Paperback))
Publisher: Digital Press
Authors: Greg Schulz
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
In-depth and comprehensive information on storage networking

Resilient Storage Networks picks up where other books leave off. The author walks the reader through the fundamentals of storage networking and then dives deep into the data storage technologies used in building a resilient storage infrastructure. Business continuation, data management, protection and recovery, networking access interfaces and protocols, cabling, distance extension, storage I/O, and storage devices are among some of the topics discussed in detail. The author gives examples and "how-to's" in implementing appropriate solutions for different requirements. The book is particularly effective at illustrating best practice methodologies for designing and implementing storage networks. Excellent technical content and effective use of diagrams. Greg's experience and vendor-neutral approach shine through in this book.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Debugging Applications for Microsoft .NET and Microsoft Windows
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: John Robbins
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Very well done book!

This book is a book for the advanced programmer who says "I already know how to build a halfway decent windows app, how do I take my debugging to the next level and deliver truly good apps?"
This book covers real-world debugging issues that plague programmers and are difficult to solve, such as multi-threading and memory issues amongst others. Also this book has several entertaining real-world scenarios that can help give you perspective on debugging.
However this book is not for the beginner, a solid grasp of programming is essential for this book. However those with a good grasp of what programming is about with at least a basic knowledge of .NET will be right at home with this book.