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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Degunking Windows
Publisher: Paraglyph
Authors: Joli Ballew, Jeff Duntemann
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Degunking Windows Saved my Butt!


I have to the authors Jeff Duntemann and Joli Ballew to thank for saving my PC! Sunday morning as I went to check email, I found that my system had had a full-out meltdown. Not just a crash, a REGISTRY crash with nothing but an error message that said something like "try installing your disk to restart." This is Microsoft's nice way of saying "you might as well shoot yourself, your computer is toast." I had Degunking Windows and had cleaned up my computer pretty well (I thought), but never dared to get back to the back of the book discussing registry problems hoping it would never happen to me. Since it did, I figured I had decided to try to save nothing left to lose and decided to try to save 3 years of data, personal information and a few critical items from work. I followed the instructions in the book sweating blood all the while, backed up the registry, was able to make the repair and was able to walk away from the crash shaken but with data intact and a revived PC. This is something I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy and hope never to have to attempt again, but I have to say the information in the book worked and calmed my panic a little. I Thank you Degunking Windows for helping out of a terrible situation.



Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: The C++ Programming Language (Special 3rd Edition)
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Bjarne Stroustrup
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
The definitive C++ book. . . but it has a terrible index!


I agree with everyone who says that this is the definitive guide to C++ and would like to agree that all C++ programmers should have it. But like its predecessor, it has a very serious drawback that limits its usefulness as a reference book: the index is *terrible*. Stroustrup seems to have decided to sacrifice completeness for conciseness in the index. At least the second edition had the reference manual in the back.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Final Fantasy X-2 Official Strategy Guide
Publisher: Brady Games
Authors: Dan Birlew
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
About as helpful as a fart in a windstorm


Oh dear God, where do I begin... First of all this guide has so many inconsistences that I promise it will ruin your enjoyment of the game. I spent so much time scared half to death that I wasn't doing something right. I would get to a point in the guide where they told me I was supposed to get an item or some event would happen, but it didn't. Some of the maps are all wrong. And don't even get me started on that "100% percent completion guide" in the back of the book. I just beat the game by strictly following that entire guide for over 3 months and it told me that I only had 99% completion and therefore I missed out on the PERFECT ending. AGH! I am so angry that it makes me sick. If you look, you can see there's a glaring error in the percentage points at the end - 95% + 2.6%= 96% WWWWHHHHAATTTT?!?!?! Oh and thanks for waiting until Chapter 5 before telling me I should have talked to some guy in Chapter 1 to get the best item in the game. That's like working all week at your job and then when payday comes your boss says "We're going to have to dock your pay and not give you 100% because you didn't do this little task earlier on in the week. We probably should have told you to do it first before we penalized you, but oh well." They left out a LARGE section near the end that is crucial to getting 100% completion and the PERFECT ending. You're better off finding an online guide on some fanboy's website. It's obvious that they didn't even test out this guide first before spreading it to the public like sickness and it's also obvious that the glowing review in here from "kaitlyn" is someone connected to the publisher of the book. If you sort the reviews by "highest rating first" you'll see it and promptly become infuriated just like I did at the bitter thoughts of wasting time AND money on this crap. It doesn't tell you how to get the majorly important items even though they say it does. It's a whopping 350 pages of wasted paper. This guide RUINED my enjoyment of the game completely! I spent $90 getting ALL 3 limited edition guides with ALL 3 covers, only to get a big fat slap in the face from the folks over at Bradygames. Thanks for nothing Dan Birlew and if I see you crossing the street, I'll be sure not to brake.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Perl Pocket Reference, 4th Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Johan Vromans
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Don't program Perl without this cool reference book


If you are not one of the great Perl Wizards that know the syntax for every commands by heart, you should by this very handy book. This booklet is a reference book. Do not expect to learn Perl from scratch with this booklet (although I learned a lot of details :-). If you do not know Perl I recommend "Learning Perl" first.
The 4th edition of "Perl Pocket Reference" has been enhanced to cover Perl 5.8. It adds some small enhancements for the new IO libraries, regular expressions and Unicode handling. The basics are still as good as in the 3rd edition (although a bit more cleaned up).
I love this book because it is without any useless overhead. The information density is very high so make sure that you read this book slowly.
This book covers "only" the Perl language (which is quite big compared to e.g. "C") It does not cover your favourite Perl module (e.g. DBI, LWP and so on). There are almost no examples in this book. If you look for examples I recommend e.g. "Perl Cookbook" from O'Reilly.
I really like this book. What it tries to do, it does very well (small reference book of the Perl language). I have it always on my desk at work and I already gave away more than 20 copies (German and English versions) to my coworkers.