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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Sun Certified Programmer & Developer for Java 2 Study Guide (Exam 310-035 & 310-027)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Osborne Media
Authors: Kathy Sierra, Bert Bates
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
The Only Book You'll Need (for the Programmer test, anyway)


I just got back from the testing center, passing with a 90%.
So why four stars instead of five? Glad you asked. To be fair, I'll give the pros first, then the cons.
Pros:
1. The practice questions are almost exactly like the questions you'll see on the exam. Be sure to download that extra exam!2. Coverage was complete and well-explained.
Cons:
1. Lots of errors in the text. Thankfully, the authors are maintaining a web site with errata.2. The MasterExam didn't do a great job mimicing the behavior of the real test; you can't mark questions for later review, code snippets are always displayed in the same window with the answers (unlike the real test, which sometimes forces you to view an Exhibit), etc. That said, MasterExam _did_ help me prepare.3. The book is, I feel, somewhat misleading in referring to itself as a guide for the Developer exam as well as the Programmer. This is _not_ one-stop shopping for both exams, whatever the cover might suggest.
This book will definitely help you pass the Programmer exam. What higher praise can I give it? After all, that's why you're looking at this, right?



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Professional Assembly Language (Programmer to Programmer)
Publisher: Wrox
Authors: Richard Blum
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
best introductory assembly book ever on linux environment


This book is the best book ever written in introductory assembly language book focusing on linux environment.
The author introduces assembly language on Unix environment using GNU binutils gradually over chapters and leads any novice to understand whole concept of using assembly language easily. Assembly language by nature requires lots of knowledge about hardware (processors) but author's focus on assembly language itself kept properly throughout the book without jumping here an there as the other books on same topic.

As he mentioned in introduction, one of the goals of this book is to help understand programs written in HLA (High Level Language) like C/C++ deeply and find out compiler's inefficiency and correct them to increase performance or provide new functionality. I think his goal is well achieved throughout the book.

If you're working on Linux kernel, this is "MUST READ" book since it uses gas and AT&T style syntax so that it can help a lot to understand and write low-level (boot code) stuffs or in-line assembly to increase performance in Linux kernel.
Even though this book is written only for x86, the same concept can be applied without difficulty to the other architecture. If you're working for the other architecture than x86, this book can still give you very fundamental basic about assembly language programming environment.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Advanced Perl Programming
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Sriram Srinivasan
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
one of the better ones


Normally, I would not feel the need to review this book, had I not seen the review: "Why are there so many good reviews for this book?" by Eric Vogan (see above). I would like to add that it is a great book and that it has thought me a lot. Having mastered basic to intermmediate Perl, "Advanced Perl Programming" really took me further. But as the name says, this is "advanced" Perl programming, and not a beginner's book. So Eric, even though you are a C++ programmer, you have to go through the basics before you try to use this book. The Preface clearly says what you are expected to know before you start with this book. For beginning Perl programmers I would recommend the "Perl 5 by Example" and "Programming Perl", both of which are an excellent entry point to Perl. But for taking your studies further, "Advanced Perl Programming", among others, is a gold-mine.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Windows 2000 Device Driver Book: A Guide for Programmers (2nd Edition)
Publisher: Prentice Hall PTR
Authors: Art Baker, Jerry Lozano
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
The PRIMER for budding Windows NT device driver writers



I write NT drivers and kernel extensions for a living so I have already been baptised so to speak. Even so, because Microsoft has been so tight lipped about NT's internals, there is much I have to learn. And, indeed I did by reading Art's book.
I just finished Art's book and I must say that I am impressed with his choice of subjects, his clear style and his light humor throughout. Moreover, his examples teach in fact what his narative imaginatively presents. If you are buying this book to teach you about writing a certain kind of driver, say NDIS 4.0, then don't. It's very short on specifics of that kind. But, if you want to learn the "basics" about writing NT drivers, this will get it done. The gift that Art brings through his book is more than dry facts about NT driver lore and technique. Unlike the DDK Guide, Art has placed the process into perspective by presenting the material in a logically progressive manner. Further, we benefit from Art's long experience at teaching the subject as well as, I suspect, his hobknobbing with the MS development folks and having had many a question answered. I would not be surprised to learn that he has "even" seen NT's sources since he formerly worked for DEC with their intimate association with Uncle Bill's Belleview Works. I know that I have come to understand some things that, frankly, I thought were in the realm of accepting on faith.
To sum up, though experienced, I learned alot, and, I am convinced I will continue to do so every time I pick it up in the future. I do have one caution to offer. Art's book is no substitute for the DDK Guide -- I think after reading Art's book, you should then skim through the Guide. It's in the neighborhood of 1000 screen pages of if you want to print it out, it's much shorter. Since the Guide was written as an online reference, it tends to repeat a lot of information. This can be tedious reading but, hey, that's how I learned -- I only wish that I had had Art's book as a primer