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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Learning Python, Second Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Mark Lutz, David Ascher
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Very clear text and organized structure

I liked the first edition of this book, which gave a decentinroduction into Python at a little more than 300 pages. When the 2nd edition came out I ordered a copy blindly, because I expected a lot more information on latest Python features and modules from its 580 pages. However, this book disappointed me very much. The presentation of Python basics has been bloated so much that it just bored me to death. For example, it takes Mr Lutz 189 pages and 11 chapters to get to functions basics, which is twice as much as in the first edition (now compare this to 24 pages in Kernighan/Ritchie's C-book). On the other hand, there are only a couple of pages on new-style classes. I cannot imagine an experienced programmer who likes to sift through all that fluff. I am also wondering if this book is exciting for newbies, but maybe todays newbies are different. This book reminds me a lot of "Programming Python" (by the same author), which I also hated for its tediuos and bloated style.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: MCSA/MCSE Self-Paced Training Kit (Exam 70-284): Implementing and Managing Microsoft Exchange Server 2003
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: Ian McLean, Will Willis, Microsoft Corporation
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
The other reviews are correct..

I just had to add in my 2 cents. I too am teaching a course on Exchange from this book, and I wish that we had used another book. The organization is not good, for example, it discusses connecting Exch 2k3 in an Exch 5.5 environment as well as migration in chapters 4 & 5, and has not even addressed what Exch 2k3 is and does and how to configure it at that point. Ch 3, on Administrative and Routing groups is severely lacking (no diagrams at all and does not go into any length about connectors, the routing engine, etc...). Chapter 6, on clustering and NLB, again should have been placed near the end of the book so that you would have covered virtual servers before the chapter on clustering. Additionally, in chapter 9, when they finally do talk about virtual servers, they repeat information from chapter 6, and muddy the distinction between the virtual server that encompasses the clustered installation with the virtual servers (such as POP3, IMAP4, NNTP, etc..) that you need to configure to provide services. Chapter 9, on virtual servers, is extremely repetitive.. It looks basically like they cut and pasted the same material from POP3 to the IMAP4 and NNTP sections and just noted a few of the differences. Rather than bringing out the commonalities, and saying it once, and then pointing out the differences, they say it over and over and over.. I'll spare the zeros and ones on the rest of the book. I've already used my 2 cents worth and don't want to add any more. I just really wish that I had read the reviews before we decided to use this book for the class.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Alison Balter's Mastering Microsoft Access 2000 Development
Publisher: Sams
Authors: Alison Balter
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
One Stop Guide

This is a great book! It has the essentials to Access development. This book provides wonderful examples and is a great reference book. I especially like the section on ADO and DAO this book provides a wonderful reference for those making the transition.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Beginning JSP Web Development
Publisher: Wrox Press
Authors: Jayson Falkner, John Timney, Casey Kochmer, Romin Irani, Perrumal Krishnaraj, Meeraj Moidoo Kunnumpurath, Sathya Narayana Panduranga
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Great content, iffy editing

This book has been invaluable in teaching me how to code JavaServer Pages, which is why I gave it a high rating.
That being said, the editing job left quite a bit to be desired. Even recognizing that this is a book for propeller-heads (hey, I am one), the grammar should have been much better.
Finally, the coding styles were inconsistent across chapters. Again I recognize why this is so (with so many authors, I can see why), but the inconsistency of tagging standards was confusing.
Nevertheless, I really got a lot out of this book, and recommend it to people who are already salted coders from other traditions. I don't think it would be as useful to a rank novice.