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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Applied Cryptography: Protocols, Algorithms, and Source Code in C, Second Edition
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Bruce Schneier
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Still the best cryptography book you can buy....


For a subject like this....one would expect a lot of mathematics involved but this is not the case.....
First of all this requires min. knowledge of common algebra ( I believe this is good).... secondly it does not go into full detail.
Well, the book covers all the cryptographic algos/ protocols possible......in that sense its good.........Secondly.....the language and the explanation is very easy to follow.....
I gave this book 4 stars because I feel it does not cover the mathematical aspect of cryp. in right amount of depth and essence.
Definately a must read....



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Applied Cryptography: Protocols, Algorithms, and Source Code in C, Second Edition
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Bruce Schneier
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Still the best cryptography book you can buy....


For a subject like this....one would expect a lot of mathematics involved but this is not the case.....
First of all this requires min. knowledge of common algebra ( I believe this is good).... secondly it does not go into full detail.
Well, the book covers all the cryptographic algos/ protocols possible......in that sense its good.........Secondly.....the language and the explanation is very easy to follow.....
I gave this book 4 stars because I feel it does not cover the mathematical aspect of cryp. in right amount of depth and essence.
Definately a must read....



Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Structured Computer Organization (4th Edition)
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Authors: Andrew S. Tanenbaum
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Not for the self learner


This textbook is used as the mandatory textbook for the computer organization course I just completed. I had no prior exposure to computer hardware or digitil circuits before I took the course. Since the course covered only chapters up to chapter 4, parts 5.1 to 5.4 and 7.1 to 7.3, my comments reflect only these parts of the book.
Overall, I found that the discussions to be too vague that the book would not serve as a self teaching text. The material is meant to be concise but often ends up vague. The material would follow logically but when attempting to answer a problem, I found my understanding to be incomplete. There are many cases where the concepts are not followed by a concrete example so that I end up not being able to test the concept. The questions at the end of the chapters often refer to some of these concepts but there is no way to confirm whether the concepts were understood because there are no answers to these questions in the book.
Two parts of the book require special mention. I thought the material on digital logic circuits was insufficient and although the idea was to provide only sufficient concepts to understand the rest of the chapter, I had to go to another source to advance my understanding of these concepts. I thought the explanations in section 4.5 on improving pipeline performance were poor. The reader would have to make too many extrapolatons to be able to understand the direct and associative types of cache to be able to derive the bit size of the tag, set, and word given the necessary block and cache size information. I had to reference the Hamacher book to understand the issues related to branch prediction. I don't understand why the author included the second paragraph on page 275 as the explanation was so incomplete to convey any useful information. Why not just refer to the referenced document?
There are a few significant errors in the text. The author does not have an errata for the text.
I don't know why so many readers gave this book high ratings. If this text is to used as an introductory text, the quality of the explanations for this level of readers does not merit the high rating.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Software Configuration Management Patterns: Effective Teamwork, Practical Integration
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Stephen P. Berczuk, Brad Appleton
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Great Book ... Formalizes Gut Instinct


The writing style is excellent and flows nicely, suiting a wide range of SCM folks from newbies to old hands. There's a lot of really good advice for small teams, well.
Some examples of real-world setups would be nice, as I'd assume it's hard to go from this text directly to concrete details. Additionally, some of the patterns encouraged don't scale well past teams of about 50 developers or when you're dealing with a long-term multi-version piece of software that has folks working on the version 2 but also issuing QFEs, GDRs, and SPs concurrently on the old version and trying to keep them in sync on the new version. Of course, not many folks but MSFT have to do that! Still, making sure that your SCM story will work in servicing is arguably the hardest thing after making sure that you've got something developers can understand and use on a daily basis, and it's something that can really bite you if you do it wrong.