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Learning XML: Guide to Creating Self-Describing Data Paperback – Jan 11 2001


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (Jan. 11 2001)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 0596000464
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596000462
  • Product Dimensions: 22.9 x 17.5 x 2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 567 g
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,800,968 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By njbulitka on Oct. 3 2006
Format: Paperback
I found this book to be 'OK'. The author does a good job describing the core concepts of XML. Overall, the book does a good job introducing a person to XML and provides a solid base on which to build. It covers the major bases (schemas, CSS, XSLT, etc). The glossary was fairly complete.

Some other O'Reilly books in the 'Learning' series have exercises with solutions in the back which I have found very useful. This book unfortunately did not have exercises with solutions. More examples would also have been appreciated.
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By A Customer on Jan. 23 2004
Format: Paperback
I was hoping for more, but this book does a good job describing all of the elements of XML. Not a book on writing XML.
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Format: Paperback
This is a good XML book for those that have no previous knowleadge of it. It starts slowly and speed up as you read the chapters.
Unfortunately as with all printed media some references and items discussed have already evolved and replaced.
The DTD/XML Schema is one example.
Still a good book if you want to start from the basic.
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Format: Paperback
The first few chapters of this book on the basics of XML are good, but stay away if you're a software developer wanting to learn about XML in depth. Even if you're an XML author, you will find this book lacking in the latter chapters. Almost all the discussion is extremely general and theoretical. Occasionally the author sprinkles in a few fucntional XML snippets, but they are not nearly enough. Furthermore, there are only about a dozen complete examples of functional XML available in the tar/zip file available online at O'Reilly.
The paucity of examples was particularly frustrating in the XSLT chapter. By its very nature, XSLT screams out for illustrative examples showing 'before' and 'after' transformations, but the author provides very few such examples.
Another thing that really irked me was the condescending writing style of the author. Here's an example from Ch. 4 on CSS:
"A CSS stylesheet is a collection of rules... An analogy for this process is painting-by-numbers. In this activity, you purchase a painting kit that comes with paints..."
Really now! This style of writing is not necessary and is frankly offensive. XML inherently is not a beginner's topic; a reader who picks up this book is most likely an IT manager or a developer and does not need to be talked-down upon.
If you're a java developer, I suggest you take a look at "Processing XML with Java" by Harold.
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Format: Paperback
I have to say that the first 5 chapters, served as a good introduction to XML. It was much much better than any Dummies book of the subject. Actually I found them to be treating the subject at some depth.
But then came the most important chapters on XSLT & Programming Tools. It was completely confusing not because the subject was a tough one, but because the treatment was bad.
I would have given 1 star had it been not for the first chapters.
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Format: Paperback
By page 177 I realized that I was never going to touch a keyboard while reading this book. I can't speak for everyone, but when I pick up a book expecting to learn the topic, I need theory, reference, examples and structured "assignments". This title offers the first three, but I never get to apply what I am learning hands-on in a graduated fashion. When I am finished, I have little more than the ability to recognize the components of XML. Just because you can recognize all the foods in a grocery store, and know the origins of all the spices on your spice rack, doesn't mean you can cook; the same principal applies here. I am fully aware that XML is comprised of many different elements, and many of the XML development environments are very expensive, but many are free and could have been used to teach the concept clearer.
The title also has many errors, so the errata list on the publisher's web site is important. The book does not include any of the source code, so if you want that, you have to download it. Even then, it is not complete and file titles in the book do not always match the provided code file names.
If you are looking for a hands-on book to learn XML, this isn't the title. If you know XML and are looking for a reference, again - not for you. However, if you are interested in it from more of an administrative overview position, then the title is worth the read. It can provide many answers and give a good base of information without the need to actually write any XML on your own.
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By anonymous on Dec 27 2002
Format: Paperback
Learning XML provides a relatively useful overview of the topic, though it doesn't go that much in depth.
I'm giving 4 rather than 5 stars because I found the discussion of entities and notations somewhat confusing.
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Format: Paperback
This book straddles the fine line between "for developers", and "for executives" - it does the Jack of All Trades things well, it Masters none however.
If you're a developer: get this book, read it, and then after figuring out what XML-based tools you need, get another book that goes into more detail - you're not gonna find that in this book.
If you're an executive: get this book, and read the introductions to each chapter - the code is relatively easy to understand, but certainly unnecessary if you're looking for a definition what what things are in the *ML world
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