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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Newton's Telecom Dictionary: Covering Telecommunications, Networking, Information Technology, Computing and the Internet (20th Edition)
Publisher: CMP Books
Authors: Harry Newton
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Newton's Telecom Dictionary by Harry Newton


This book is perfect for computer enthusiasts, business owners who utilize computers and telecommunications, scientists, a wideconstituency of educators, computer programmers, web designers and just about anyone who may need to understand computerese in simple English. Important definitions are listed; such as, ADCU, back lobe, card cage, isochronous distortion, etc. There are strategies to minimize calling charges by utilizing prepaid cards for national and international calls. Important computer user groups may be accessed at:o atmforum.como ectaportal.como ecma.cho gigabiethernet.orgo 10gea.orgo 3GPP.orgo aitp.orgo ansi.orgo apcointl.org
The book is a solid investment for any computer professional, teacher, computer user group or business person.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: XSLT
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Doug Tidwell
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
IBM Cert. ->You will need NewRds' Inside XSLT CH4,7,~8 too


This will form the basis for preparing materials for the World Wide Web for years to come. XML/XSLT are sufficiently usable examples of SGML potential to make possible the "everyone, everything connected" dream that we all long for.
The only real "problem" is that it's in print so you can't contract/expand the too-lengthy code examples that interfere with a smooth read of the essential materials. The code is, after all, for machines to read. The rest of us just jump over it.
A really nice book.
Love.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Mastering Regular Expressions, Second Edition
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Jeffrey E. F. Friedl
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
Appallingly chatty and unprofessional style.


The author's unamusing cuteness is a constant distraction. In the single brief section explaining NFA vs. DFA regex engines, for example, we are treated to:
"We (humans with advanced neural nets between our ears) can see that if we're matching 'tonight,' the third alternative is the one .... Despite their brainy origins, a regex-directed engine can't come to that conclusion ...."
"What this really means may seem vague now, but it will all be spelled out just after the mysteries of life are revealed (in just two pages)."
"(You know, if I could find a way to include 'It's not over until the fat lady sings," in this paragraph, I would.)"
With phrases like this throughout the text (and even in the table of contents -- e.g. one section is entitled, "A Really Crummy Analogy"), one wonders how O'Reilly editors could possibly have OK'ed this immaturity.
The few uses I made of the index suggest many omissions and errors. "\A" for example cites only page 236 (Dec. 1998 printing), although no hint is offered there of its definition. "\c", for another example, is nowhere to be found. (It is incompletely explained in the text at p. 241.)
The index also reflects indifference to the reader's time and productivity. A high proportion of entries force a second lookup ("see ...") by not providing any page numbers themselves.
I found the discussion of subtleties involving matching with the "\G" Multi-Match Anchor clever and informative. The author probably knows his stuff and has things to say. Much of the guilt for the book's overwhelming defects can be laid at the door of the editors at O'Reilly.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Building Cocoa Applications : A Step by Step Guide
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Simson Garfinkel, Michael K. Mahoney
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
Content OK; Needs Editing


This book's content is all right. The authors have a writing style that keeps you moving along. Unfortunately, the numerous editing errors (both in the text and in the code) keep tripping you up.
I gave up after finding many, many errors, both of simple grammar/punctuation/spelling, and of the more serious coding sort, in the first five chapters. So many of the things they tell you are just wrong. Examples contradict what is written in the previous paragraph. Sometimes it appears as though someone's search-and-replace went wild and the wrong word appears repeatedly in a paragraph. And on and on.
This is another disappointing Cocoa book from O'Reilly. I hope they will stop rushing things and make sure the next one is done right.