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All articles tagged with Book Reviews

No avatar April 08, 2006 00:00 Time Management for System Administrators

Time Management for System Administrators contains useful advice for SysAdmins looking to use their time more effectively. If you are a techie who wonders why you get bogged down with little tasks while not getting your projects done, this is the book for you. If you don't have the time to read this book, you definitely need to read it.

No avatar September 24, 2005 00:00 AppleScript: The Definitive Guide

AppleScript: The Definitive Guide most certainly is a definitive guide, with an awful lot of information about anything and everything you could possibly want to know about AppleScript. The problem is that the nuggets of useful information are often hidden deep within either complicated examples revolving around expensive specialist software, or in amongst extremely detailed in-depth examinations of the underlying processes running AppleScript. Although interesting to some, this will be a little daunting to the average programmer attracted to AppleScript. However, the book is definitely an excellent reference for existing AppleScript programmers, those who have some previous knowledge in programming, or those interested in MacOS X technology.

No avatar September 10, 2005 00:00 The Debian System

As the title of the book suggests, this isn't about GNU/Linux. It's not about the GNU programs that come with the Debian distribution. Instead, the book with its 600 pages (including a Debian Sarge DVD) is fully loaded. Martin F. Krafft, an active Debian developer, goes to great lengths to describe the interplay of Debian's tools and the project's philosophy.

No avatar February 12, 2005 00:00 Integrating Agile Development In The Real World

I have been interested in practical software process improvement initiatives for a number of years now, and I stress the word practical. The world of theory is fine, but what most people want is help and advice based in the real world, the world where companies, projects, teams, people, and processes are not perfect.

No avatar July 31, 2004 00:00 SQL in Easy Steps

At $14.95 CDN (approximately $10.00 U.S.), SQL in Easy Steps is very reasonably priced for a computer book. If you're anything like me, you probably have quite a few doorstop-sized books for which you paid a fortune only to read once. It's a refreshing change to find a book that doesn't cost so much. That said, the low price does come at a cost that users new to SQL/MySQL may not want to pay: gaping holes in content.

No avatar November 15, 2003 00:00 AI Application Programming

Books on Artificial Intelligence (AI) have to walk a line between being too scholarly and too fluffy. Some books are very academic, with lots of formulas and symbols and a dearth of practical applications. Others are high-level, with much visionary hand-waving but no code. M. Tim Jones' book manages to maintain a nice balance between these extremes.

No avatar June 07, 2003 00:00 Bioinformatics: Sequence and Genome Analysis

I first met this book at a bioinformatics course I attended at NCSU last year. I've been reading books on bioinformatics since 1997, and I was a little skeptical about this one. I thought it was "just another bioinformatics book". I was wrong. It has some really outstanding features I'd like to highlight.

No avatar December 21, 2002 00:00 Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams

I first read "Peopleware..." in the late 80s while working at a struggling vibration analysis company that was mightily attempting to create chaos out of order. The management was affronted by the book (I had stupidly lent a copy to the V.P. of engineering) and I only retrieved it when I proved that it was a public library book. At the time, I was excited by its approach and readability, and I greatly enjoyed reading it and sharing it with my downtrodden peers.

No avatar December 07, 2002 00:00 Absolute BSD

Some of you may know me, either by name or by my work with FreeBSD. I will bet that even more of you are familiar with Michael Lucas and his widely-read and highly-regarded articles at OnLamp. It should come as no surprise to those people that he has written a very good book on FreeBSD. "Absolute BSD" came out in July 2002 and has proven to be a great resource for people new to BSD and those who have been using it for years. Michael Lucas has a writing style which is very easy to read and absorb.

No avatar November 16, 2002 00:00 Open Source E-mail Security

Richard Blum's Open Source E-mail Security is poorly organized, rarely topical, and betrays the author's fundamental failure to understand the topic at hand. While some of the underlying technical material is useful and relevant, the author seldom supplies the details needed to proceed to a general understanding.

No avatar November 09, 2002 00:00 Maximum Linux Security

Maximum Linux Security's author is clearly ignorant of cryptographer Bruce Schneier's claim that "Security is a process, not a product." At its best, this book is a catalogue of useful security tools. However, very little context is provided for these tools. There is no discussion of particular vulnerabilities and how they are exploited, of network architecture and the difficulties inherent in TCP/IP networking, or of application-level problems.

No avatar October 26, 2002 00:00 Linux Routers: A Primer For Network Administrators

Linux Routers is a quirky, very personal look at implementing TCP/IP networks using Linux servers by an obvious master of the field. Despite the book's subtitle, however, this book is much better suited for Linux system administrators thrown into the world of network administration than it is for network administrators who are looking to save money on hardware costs by moving to Linux.

No avatar August 24, 2002 00:00 Linux Cluster Architecture

I've been using Beowulfs for a while now and have seen a number of tutorials, articles, and books on how to go about building a Beowulf cluster or writing programs for a Beowulf cluster. However, when it comes to job scheduling or cluster monitoring, the topic is usually relegated to a small paragraph (or even a few lines) mentioning that using a job scheduling package such as PBS makes one's life easier. I can say from experience that such a statement is very true, but I haven't seen many mainstream articles on implementing a job scheduler or methods and techniques for measuring cluster performance. If you've ever been interested in the implementation of a job scheduling and performance measuring system, "Linux Cluster Architecture" by Alex Vrenios is just what you (and I) have been looking for.

No avatar August 03, 2002 00:00 The Career Programmer

In "The Career Programmer", Christopher Duncan provides a very understandable, cogent summary of solid project management principles for technical projects. He also gives quite a few real world examples of how projects can go awry. However, his style alienates the audience that would benefit most from his message: Management.

No avatar July 27, 2002 00:00 XML and PHP

"XML and PHP" is designed to teach you just one thing: How to use PHP to create XML-based applications. Unlike some of the heavier books out there, it does not attempt to cover every single PHP function; rather, it zooms in on the XML API built into PHP and illustrates, with some well-thought-out examples, how they can be applied to different situations.

No avatar July 20, 2002 00:00 Early Adopter Curl

Curl is an attempt to replace HTML, JavaScript, Java, and Flash with a single easy-to-learn language platform. Since I am a computer language junkie, it didn't take much convincing to get me to try Curl. To dive into new technology, I like to quickly devour a book on the subject, and, fortunately, there was one available. It proved to be sufficient for the task, despite some shortcomings.

No avatar July 06, 2002 00:00 The Hacker Ethic

Pekka Himanen's "The Hacker Ethic" is an intriguing, if ultimately disappointing, book. It suffers from being both unsure of its audience and overly broad in its claims.

No avatar June 22, 2002 00:00 The Book of Zope

Zope is perhaps the best known of the Python Web publishing frameworks. It includes its own Web server (though you can run it behind Apache or IIS, for example), FTP server, and ACID-compliant object database. There is more to it than that, but that's Zope in a nutshell.

No avatar May 18, 2002 00:00 The Book of Linux Music and Sound

Musicians aren't always technically inclined. When they look for music software to run on their computers, they're apt to buy something for the Windows system they already have or believe the advice that anything artistic is supposed to be done on a Mac. Linux systems provide cheap and powerful alternatives, and this book tells you how to get started with them.

No avatar May 11, 2002 00:00 The Ruby Way

Many Ruby programmers learned the language from Andrew Hunt and Dave Thomas's excellent "Programming Ruby: The Pragmatic Programmer's Guide". For over a year, it was the only English language Ruby book available. Now, Hal Fulton's "The Ruby Way" comes at just the right time for those of us ready to move up to the next level.

No avatar April 20, 2002 00:00 Linux Device Drivers

I'm afraid to read Linux Device Drivers. It's not that I didn't do a good first reading; of course I did. It's not that I'm not prepared. I read K and R (The C Programming Language), lovingly doing every exercise, around 1986, and have used C on-and-off since then. These days, I read man pages and info documentation on a daily basis, and am thoroughly comfortable with compiling and installing kernels. You will need these skills to read Linux Device Drivers.

No avatar March 23, 2002 00:00 The Linux Cookbook

On my Linux Users Group's mailing list, an old question recently surfaced again: What book would you recommend for someone who is new to Unix (but not to computers)? I didn't have any suggestions at the time, but after looking at "The Linux Cookbook", I do. It's a book I wish I'd had when I started, and one I'm happy to have beside me now.

No avatar March 09, 2002 00:00 How to Build a Beowulf

I've set up two Beowulfs so far, and in both cases it involved gathering material from various Web sites and somehow putting it all together. I got everything up and running, but it was quite a "time sink" for me, so I was interested to receive a book entitled "How to Build a Beowulf". Finally, information regarding Beowulfs would be available in one place and I could save my bandwidth for other stuff!

No avatar February 23, 2002 00:00 Weaving the Web

I finally got around to reading the book everyone told me not to bother with, and had a pleasant surprise, as I expected I might. While I'll admit that it's heavy going at times, it's also sadly underrated and misunderstood.

No avatar December 01, 2001 00:00 The Practice of System and Network Administration

Thomas A. Limoncelli and Christine Hogan's recent book "The Practice of System and Network Administration" breaks new ground in its coverage of Systems Administration.

No avatar October 20, 2001 00:00 Programming Linux Games

I really enjoyed reading this book. John "Overcode" Hall obviously likes playing and programming games, and his enthusiasm is contagious. His book is both an entertaining read and a useful tutorial and reference for people who want to do game programming on Linux.

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