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ueberhund "ueberhund" (Salt Lake City, UT United States)

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Digital Photography Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools
Digital Photography Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips & Tools
by Derrick Story
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 33.97
35 used & new from CDN$ 0.22

5.0 out of 5 stars Very useful and fun to read, June 6 2004
If you haven't picked up a book from the O'Reilly "Hacks" line, then you're doing yourself a disservice. Each book contains 100 or so tips on the subject of the book. Depending on the subject matter, some of these are actual hacks, while others are simply really cool tips. Like the other "Hacks" book, this one is not only fun to read but very well worth the tips it provides.
In what I found to be a very welcome step, the authors have provided only a few Photoshop hacks. Instead they have opted to concentrate on the many various other issues involved in digital photography. Some of the hacks you might find interesting include how to un-erase an erased CF card, how to use various filters and gels to make photos with impact, and how to use your iPod to store your photographs. While there are a couple of hacks involving Photoshop, they are totally appropriate for this type of book (which include tips for resampling and sharpening) and are not simply a rehash of what you might read in other digital photography books.
The hack I most enjoyed reading was #25 (Painless Infrared Photography). Having done a fair amount of traditional infrared photography (it's a pain), I was pleased to read just how easy it is to do with a digital camera. Some other hacks I enjoyed include #74 (Hand Color with the History Brush) and #55 (Virtual-Reality Movies from Your Digicam).
This is a really fun book to read and has a lot of very useful and interesting digital photography information that I haven't seen in other books. This is definitely a book that digital photography enthusiasts and traditional photographers who are turning to digital will enjoy.

Digital Photography: Expert Techniques: Professional Tips for Using Photoshop & Related Tools to Enhance Your Digital Photographs
Digital Photography: Expert Techniques: Professional Tips for Using Photoshop & Related Tools to Enhance Your Digital Photographs
by Ken Milburn
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 65.95
25 used & new from CDN$ 6.05

5.0 out of 5 stars Above and beyond the typical digital photography book, June 6 2004
There are many books available explaining how to make the most of Photoshop or how to get everything you can out of your digital camera. While this book goes into some of these topics, it goes a step further by looking at it from the point of view of a professional photographer. This insight is particularly welcome, which shifts the focus of the book from knowing how to use Photoshop to how to be a better photographer.
The author takes the professional photographer's perspective (although this book can really be read and enjoyed by anyone serious about digital photography), which includes discussing issues such as storage, cataloging, CCD basics, and software. The author discusses some of his file naming techniques, shows some of the tools he uses, and provides recommendations for camera purchases.
Rather than simply rehashing the same Photoshop tricks available in every other digital photography book, the author shows what professional photographers do (bracketing photographs) as well as different software that might be better suited for a specific task (stitching software to combine many individual photographs into one large image). Naturally, many other image manipulations are discussed, however, the central point of the discussions are always how to make a better photograph. I found discussions that focused on the photograph rather than the software tool very refreshing and quite interesting and useful.
The author wraps up the book by providing some ideas on how to break into the business as a professional photographer. There is a discussion on printing photographs and how to create some beginning marketing materials. In all of these discussions, the focus remains on the photograph. I enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it to individuals interested in a book that gives you more than the rest of the digital photography books out there.

Oracle Database 10g: A Beginner's Guide
Oracle Database 10g: A Beginner's Guide
by Ian Abramson
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 32.57
26 used & new from CDN$ 0.66

4.0 out of 5 stars Solid beginner's book, May 20 2004
This book is a great place for inexperienced Oracle developers to begin learning about the new 10g architecture. Designed as a crash-course in everything one would need to know to effectively maintain and develop for an Oracle database, this book does a good job to quickly get the reader in control of this potentially complex data system.
After a brief introduction to Oracle data types and the basic environment (like tables, views, and indexes), the authors present a fairly detailed section on writing data queries. While much in this section can be applied to some of the more recent versions of Oracle, it is targeted to the 10g platform. The reader interested in this section will also likely want to read Chapter 6, which focuses on writing PL/SQL.
For the aspiring database administrator, there are some very good sections on what an Oracle DBA should do. While simply reading these sections won't make you a DBA, they contain a lot of good information including discussions on networking issues and disaster recovery.
The rest of the book contains a lot of information on Oracle features, which can be used by both database developers and DBAs. Examples include Oracle's use of XML and Java, as well as database maintenance issues for supporting large datasets.
This is a great beginner's book to Oracle 10g, as it includes just enough information to be useful, but not so much that it becomes overwhelming. This is definitely a good book to pick up if you are new to Oracle or the 10g platform.

Effective Oracle by Design
Effective Oracle by Design
by Thomas Kyte
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 44.70
33 used & new from CDN$ 15.35

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Oracle design book, May 20 2004
If you've ever looked over anything about the Oracle database, you've likely come across the name of this book's author, Tom Kyte. Like his articles, this book is designed to help the reader get the most out of the Oracle database. This is an excellent book for understanding the inner workings of Oracle database engine.
The theme of this book is that by understanding how Oracle works, you can write highly scalable, high performing applications. If you don't know how your database works, you'll always be frustrated and less likely to have a well-performing database. The author is absolutely serious about this point and drives it home by dispelling many myths surrounding Oracle (e.g. partitioning is always better than not partitioning). By discussing these technical details, the reader is equipped with the knowledge to build an application designed to perform.
If you're looking for a book to learn how to write effective PL/SQL, then you might be slightly disappointed by this book. While there is a great chapter on the Oracle specifics of writing SQL, this book is designed to architecting the entire database, not just the SQL statements run inside the database. I think this a very effective (and sadly novel) approach to database design. There are all too many books out there which concentrate on writing fast SQL, with little regard for the underlying data design and structure.
This is by far the best book I have read on understanding how Oracle works. The author covers everything from design to disaster recovery. If you are responsible for maintaining an Oracle database, I would highly recommend this book.

Programming ASP.NET
Programming ASP.NET
by Jesse Liberty
Edition: Paperback
17 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Best ASP.NET book available, May 20 2004
This review is from: Programming ASP.NET (Paperback)
As with the first edition of this book, the second edition continues to be the best ASP.NET book available today. This edition has been updated to include information on the 1.1 version of the .NET framework as well as Visual Studio 2003.
Unlike many other ASP.NET books I have seen, you can actually pick this one up and begin writing ASP.NET applications quickly. The book begins with an introduction to the Visual Studio development environment, which is necessary knowledge to be able to effectively write and compile code. This introduction does a very good job quickly describing the most important features of the IDE. For a more thorough introduction to the Visual Studio .NET IDE, pick up a copy of O'Reilly's Mastering Visual Studio .NET.
This book then proceeds to discuss each of the ASP.NET server controls in detail. Examples are provided in both C# and VB.NET, with clear preference given to C#. Some of the more difficult concepts are clearly explained, with enough information provide to satisfy more advanced readers.
Personally, I found many of the highlights of this book to be toward the end, where an excellent section on data access can be found. This has often been a point of contention with me: most applications today have some amount of data access involved. Unfortunately, most .NET books have only a small (and largely inadequate) data access chapter. The data access section in this book is one of the best I have seen. Even if you know a lot about ASP.NET, you'll probably learn a thing or two from the data access section.
The authors also have written an excellent chapter on creating custom controls for applications. There is a very good discussion on creating user controls and custom controls (both of which can be used as re-usable components in web applications).
Like the previous edition, this book doesn't disappoint. This is a must have for ASP.NET developers and an excellent tutorial for individuals trying to get their hands around ASP.NET.

101 Killer Apps for Your Pocket PC
101 Killer Apps for Your Pocket PC
by Rick Broida
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 23.28
18 used & new from CDN$ 3.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Very fun to read!, May 20 2004
If you have a Pocket PC, you're probably always looking for cool new programs to run on it. If you're that kind of person, then you'll really enjoy this book. The authors have compiled a list (along with descriptions, prices, and screenshots) of various Pocket PC applications that are really cool. Included in the book is a CD-ROM containing trial versions of many of the programs they discuss.
These programs are divided up into nine sections: programs for work, travel, multimedia, games, utilities, learning, web, money management, and the authors' favorites. All in all, they've found some really interesting programs. Plus with most of them available on the included CD, you can try them out before buying them.
I think my favorite program discussed in this book is Mapopolis, which is one of the great Pocket PC mapping programs available (think MapQuest in a Pocket PC). Other great programs include Pocket Stars (obviously for astronomy), eXPerience (a Windows XP-like skin for your Pocket PC), and Total Remote (which allows you to control your TV from your Pocket PC).
This book is a lot of fun to read, and highly enjoyable by any Pocket PC enthusiast. I'd recommend picking it up and seeing what your Pocket PC can do!

101 Killer Apps for Your Pocket PC
101 Killer Apps for Your Pocket PC
by Rick Broida
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 23.28
18 used & new from CDN$ 3.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Very fun to read!, May 20 2004
If you have a Pocket PC, you're probably always looking for cool new programs to run on it. If you're that kind of person, then you'll really enjoy this book. The authors have compiled a list (along with descriptions, prices, and screenshots) of various Pocket PC applications that are really cool. Included in the book is a CD-ROM containing trial versions of many of the programs they discuss.
These programs are divided up into nine sections: programs for work, travel, multimedia, games, utilities, learning, web, money management, and the authors' favorites. All in all, they've found some really interesting programs. Plus with most of them available on the included CD, you can try them out before buying them.
I think my favorite program discussed in this book is Mapopolis, which is one of the great Pocket PC mapping programs available (think MapQuest in a Pocket PC). Other great programs include Pocket Stars (obviously for astronomy), eXPerience (a Windows XP-like skin for your Pocket PC), and Total Remote (which allows you to control your TV from your Pocket PC).
This book is a lot of fun to read, and highly enjoyable by any Pocket PC enthusiast. I'd recommend picking it up and seeing what your Pocket PC can do!

Security Warrior
Security Warrior
by Cyrus Peikari
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 29.78
30 used & new from CDN$ 1.79

4.0 out of 5 stars Eye-opening, April 22 2004
This review is from: Security Warrior (Paperback)
The whole concept of this book is: know your enemy. If you are a software developer or systems administrator, something you touch is bound to be attacked. Software developers need to understand this when writing programs. Likewise, systems administrators must protect their system from outside attack. This book proceeds from the premise that attack is inevitable, but we are more effective in dealing with it if we know the tactics of hackers. As we understand how they think and act, it helps us write and maintain a higher level of security within applications or network infrastructure.
This book is very interesting to read and amazing to see how easy it is to "hack" various kinds of applications with just a few tools. The book discusses the basics of reverse engineering on Windows, Linux, and Pocket PC. Additionally, the authors step through a couple of examples, to show just how easy it is to bypass entering a serial number in a software install. Other "hacks" shows include buffer overflow, TCP/IP, SQL injection attacks, and even social engineering.
I would recommend this book to anyone interested in any kind of software or network security. It is very eye-opening to see just how easy it is to compromise a system. Once you know how your enemy attacks, you can proceed with ways to combat them.

Hardware Hacking: Have Fun while Voiding your Warranty
Hardware Hacking: Have Fun while Voiding your Warranty
by Joe Grand
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 41.95
24 used & new from CDN$ 17.47

4.0 out of 5 stars A very cool book if you've got the guts, April 22 2004
The title explains it all: how to get your hardware to do things it wasn't designed to do. This is a really cool book, a very interesting read, and a primer in basic electronics. It covers topics as varied as how to install a bigger hard drive in your iPod, how to add more memory to your PalmPilot, and how to build your own media center PC. But the book gets into some really interesting modifications, like re-housing your old Macintosh into an entirely Lego case, updating the audio and video outputs of your Atari 2600 system, and how to make your Atari 7800 play 2600 games.
Since you're dealing with sensitive electronics, which damage very easily, the theme carried through this book is "do not have fear". Once you overcome any fear about damaging any of your equipment, these hacks become very entertaining and a good way to pass the time. Moreover, if your hack is actually successful, you've got something to brag about to your buddies. What's more, the various hacks covered will provide the skill to move to increasingly complex projects.
The book begins with a very useful introduction to basic electronics. You learn the difference between capacitors, transistors, resistors, etc. The chapter then proceeds to discuss the basics of soldering and other electronics basics.
This is a very fun book to read, and it contains a lot of fun projects. If you like taking things apart and have no fear, this is a book you certainly want to get your hands on.

Databases Demystified
Databases Demystified
by Andrew Oppel
Edition: Paperback
32 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent beginning book!, April 22 2004
This review is from: Databases Demystified (Paperback)
The purpose of this book is to get the reader to the point where they know enough about databases that they can perform specific database tasks (e.g. query a table, create a new table, understand an ERD). I think actually, that this book succeeds in achieving this goal. While the reader certainly shouldn't expect to be a DBA once complete, they should expect to be able to begin performing certain basic database tasks. In fact, they should have enough knowledge that they'll know where to go for more advanced help.
This book begins with a basic introduction to the various types of databases, explaining the rationale for each, before explaining why this book concentrates on relational databases. After the required introduction to querying data in Microsoft Access, the book really starts to get good. The introduction to SQL is very good with examples provided in SQL*Plus.
The reader is then taken through a discussion of database design. This discussion goes through the differences between various normal forms (especially the more common first through third normal forms). Next, the reader learns how to read an interpret ERD diagrams. Finally, there is a good discussion on how to actually design a database, with discussion on different kinds of constraints and keys.
The last section of the book touches on some of the more complex aspects of database design and maintenance, including security, transaction support, and basic tuning.
I think this is an excellent introduction to common database practices and procedures. Again, the reader shouldn't expect to be an advanced Oracle developer simply by reading this book, however, the reader should expect to know enough to complete basic database development tasks. It's a great way to start.

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