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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Adobe Photoshop CS Book for Digital Photographers (Voices That Matter)
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Scott Kelby
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Excellent resource / reference


I'm a professional digital photographer, and while I'm not a Photoshop guru I have learned my way to good results through endless trial and error. Most digital photography and Photoshop reference books are either too basic or needlessly complicated. Kelby's "...CS Book for Digital Photographers" is neither -- it's exactly the right balance of simplicity while attacking advanced techniques for improving one's digital images.

This title is the one most frequently removed from my shelves and placed beside my computer for reference. When I can't find the book, it's because my husband -- also a professional photographer -- has borrowed it and placed it on HIS computer desk.

Yes, there are a number of techniques presented that are geared to portrait photographers (and advanced users who want to take better family photos). However, as outdoor photographers (wildlife, landscapes and natural light portraits), my husband and I still get good mileage from this book. In particular, his experimentation and documentation with various "Unsharp Mask" values is universally useful, as are the tips on color cast removal/color correction and Photoshop workspace optimization/personalization.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Securing Web Services with WS-Security : Demystifying WS-Security, WS-Policy, SAML, XML Signature, and XML Encryption
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Jothy Rosenberg, David Remy
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Securing .NET example available for download


From one of the authors: we have available some material on how to build secure .NET Web services. Some readers of the book may find this helpful in their efforts to build secure Web services on the .NET platform.
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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Testing Applications on the Web: Test Planning for Mobile and Internet-Based Systems, Second Edition
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Hung Q. Nguyen, Bob Johnson, Michael Hackett, Hung Q. Nguyen, Robert Johnson, Michael Hackett
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Major rewrite of the best web testing book


This is more than a minor update of the first edition of this highly regarded book - it's a major rewrite with added material on mobile web testing.
As in the earlier book, this one clearly shows the differences between traditional testing and web testing, which will provide QA professionals who are moving from older environments into web-based systems an orientation and direction. For new QA professionals the chapters on software testing basics, networking and web application components provide a solid foundation. The chapter on mobile web application platforms is unique to this book, and adds true value. Other core material includes test planning, and a sample application and test plan to add realistic scenarios to the material.
Web-specific test advice encompasses UI, functional, server-side, database, help, installation, compatibility, security and performance testing. These cover all facets of the test process and associated procedures in a web-centric environment. Additional chapters include using test scripts, testing mobile web applications, and web testing tools.
While the core content is on the mark and accurate, the appendices are as invaluable. These include a test plan template, weekly status report template, error analysis checklist (with error examples), UI test-case design guidelines (common keyboard navigation/shortcut matrix and mouse action matrix web), test-case design guideline: input boundary and validation matrix, display compatibility test matrix, and browser/OS configuration matrix.
If you test web systems this is the most complete book you can read, and it is destined to attain the same 'classic' status as the first edition.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Eclipse
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Steve Holzner
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Perfect for people who have never used Eclipse


Eclipse certainly breath new life into IDE based software development. Its capabilities are so impressive that even die-hard VIM developer like myself switch to use it as the main Java development tool. After using Eclipse for about a month, I am still running into new impressive functions. I wanted to find out all the cool stuffs Eclipse offers, thus I turned to this book by Steve Holzner.

I would say that this book is most suitable for those who have heard of eclipse but never had a chance to really use it. The first 5 chapters cover the daily operations a Java developer would do: coding, testing, debugging, committing, and building. Reading these chapters the reader can get the basic idea of how Eclipse differs from traditional IDEs, especially how well Eclipse supports refactoring, unit testing, and team development. For me, having used Eclipse for a month, these are all essential stuffs that I have already mastered. I was hoping to find out more tricks and secrets that can further improving the development process. For instance, I discovered code template the other day, which allows you to insert frequently used code snippets very quickly. I later find that this useful feature was introduced in page 59 of the book, which out any headings.

Chapters 6 up to 12 discuss specific development scenarios, including developing Swing applications, Struts applications, and plug-ins. These are interesting chapters to understand the concepts of plugins in Eclipse. They also introducted plugins that are quite useful, such as the V4ALL GUI designer, the Sysdeo Tomcat plugin, and the Easy Struts plugin. If you are planning to develop based on these frameworks, good for you. In addition, I would recommend trying the XML Buddy plugin (for editing XML files), Spindle (for developing Tapestry applications), and Jetty Launcher (for quick web application development).

Overall, the book can be a good starting point if you cannot find any Eclipse users around you. Otherwise, spending some time watching your friend perform magic with Eclipse and then start doing it yourself!