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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: SQL: The Complete Reference, Second Edition
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: James R Groff, Paul N. Weinberg
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Superficial Treatment - Not a useful reference

Covers a lot of topics but only at the most basic level. I was particularly interested in complex DML statements such as updating one section of a Table based on data contained in the latest entries. I got more information from the Transact-SQL help screens from Microsoft. I suppose this would be a useful introduction for someone who new absolutely nothing about the topic, but as a professional reference it was a waste of money.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Guru's Guide to Transact-SQL
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Ken Henderson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
One great book

This book helped me a lot. I liked the conversational approach and the lucid explanations. I'm excited about all I've learned to do in Transact SQL. If you're trying to get your arms around SQL Server and Transact SQL, this is the book for you.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Leo Laporte's 2005 Technology Almanac (Leo Laporte's Technology Almanac)
Publisher: Que
Authors: Leo Laporte, Michael Miller
Rating: 3/5
Customer opinion - 3 stars out of 5
unsatisfying format

Laporte uses a format that lets him roam over many aspects of personal computers. The title says 'Technology', but the emphasis is mainly on PCs [including Macs]. A free wheeling, informal style that I personally found unsatisfying. I prefer a text to be in a more structured format. But some of you will hark to his style.

Topics include using Google, running Microsoft XP Special effects, using Internet Explorer, and good notebook usage. On each, he gives brief descriptions and tips that should be quite understandable to you. Trouble is, just when a topic might be getting interesting, he's often done with it. This bite-sized brevity makes for easy reading, but that is its drawback.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Design Patterns
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Erich Gamma, Richard Helm, Ralph Johnson, John Vlissides
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Great but difficult to read.

This is a book where very simple concepts are explained using the most difficult to read English you can imagine. You will need to re-read every sentence at least twice. Every time I get done reading about certain pattern and understand what the author is trying to explain I wonder why it was explained using such arcane sentences.
Other than that it's a great book for anyone who is designing large apps and is looking for organization and design efficiency.
I disagree with a reviewer who said that patterns are not applicable to web-based apps. I see a lot of uses that I am going to utilize in the coming projects.