CGI/Perl Paperback – Aug 9 2001
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1. An Introduction to CGI and Perl 2. Sending Data Using a Hyperlink 3. Sending Data Using an Online Form 4. Array and Hash Variables 5. Data Files 6. The Selection Structure 7. User-Defined Functions 8. String Manipulation 9. DBM Databases 10. Hidden Fields and E-Mail 11. Cookies 12. Redirection Appendix A: UNIX commands (ls, cd, mkdir, rmdir, rm, chmod, ls -l) Appendix B: Using pico and gedit
About the Author
Prolific author and respected professional, Diane Zak continues to provide an inspiring and uncomplicated learning experience for students through her widely popular programming books. Recognized for their unique, readable, and friendly style, each book reflects Zak's knowledge of student needs and her extensive understanding of computer programming and its use in business today. Each book is carefully crafted with the modern student in mind. Diane Zak holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Information Systems, a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting, and a Master of Arts degree in Adult and Continuing Education. She has taught at various computer training centers and most recently served as professor at College of DuPage in Illinois.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I own a rather extensive library of computer technology books, most are well weathered, dog eared, and marked up with highlighters and notes in the margins. I use them all the time - even the outdated ones.
But not this book. It is excrutiatingly tedious, and the other students in my class are constantly having problems with it that require them to depend upon the more advanced students to explain subject matter in a straight-forward and concise manner.
This book covers, in 348 pages, what most of the classic Perl books and books on CGI cover in about 4 or 5 chapters. This book doesn't even introduce 'here-doc' formats until page 276 - and then only briefly and coverage using that standard format for generating CGI with that method is virtually abandonded throughout the rest of the book.
The book begins using CGI.pm without even explaining what a Perl module is, and coverage and usage of other modules that have been around for years are virtually non-existent. DBI isn't even really part of this 'course', and it's the framework for using CGI in the first place.
This book follows the following format: Type this in exactly like this. Now do this. now do this. Gee! Aren't we learning? The one thing that I can say was written well are the end of the chapter questions. They really provide good coverage. It's simply "Programmed instruction", stiff, rigid, and with a complete lack of insightful gleanings.
This is a really BAD book (and I don't mean BAD as in BOSS or NEATO either), yet fortunately, I have other Perl books that I can turn to instead for learning the content covered in the course, and write my own code to generate the HTML output that my instructors assignments ask for.
Oh, did I mention the infinitesimally small text that dictates what to type? I'm not kidding when I say I have to use a magnifying glass.
Avoid this book like the plague!
Perhaps this book would be fine in an "on campus" environment, but where there is no instructor to get help face to face, a better book is definitely needed. I just ordered "Perl Black Book" and "Perl Cookbook" which were recommended by an online tutor.
Hopefully they arrive quickly, and can help me get through the course this time around.
The book is short and straight to the point, if you read it carefully you will do fine. If a college is using this book without properly preparing students it is the colleges fault. I also think many of the students in Comp Sci programs are not actually cut out for computer science. Computer Science concepts are very hard, and you have to love everything about computer science, actually be a real geek to excel. I own at least 200 books on all subjects of computer science, including 16 books on Perl alone. From my experience no one book covers all concepts in detail.
This book will show you how scripts work with html forms and process information on the server, that is all it is meant to do, if you want to know Perl in dept, then you may want the Perl by Example book, which I am reading along with this book. If you have no programming experience, then you may want to learn the basics of programming before attempting this book, it will not explain how to program.
Many people have a very hard time with programming classes, and other Computer Science, IT concepts. I love all of it and blast right through these books, my main goal is to master these concepts, I currently have a 4.0gpa and go entirely online, which is really hard since you have no one to directly ask questions. But I have been teaching my self for several years, I started while working on a boring degree in Accounting, which did no good for getting me a job, even though I graduated with a 4.0gpa.
If you are not obsessed with computer science concepts maybe you should consider a different field of study and work, many people start these programs and soon drop out that is why there is a shortage of people entering the field, there is absolutely nothing easy about it. I find it to be fascinating and my brain will not stop thinking and wanting to know more, to me all of it is fun to learn, no matter how hard or complicated.
The book uses a walkthrough tutorial technique that very effectively steps the students through working Perl websites while providing excellent exercises at the end of the chapters for enrichment. It also comes with a test bank and answer key (only available to teachers through the publisher).
It is unfortunate that so many have taken it upon themselves to diss this book. No, it is not a comprehensive book for learning Perl, but there are many books available for that purpose. You may want to look at Learning Perl by Randall Schwartz, for example. For what it is, however, it is the best!
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