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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: eBay Hacks: 100 Industrial-Strength Tips and Tools
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: David A. Karp
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Phenomenal


Reading through this book, one gets the sense this could be a slightly abbreviated "how to use eBay" guide, rather than a book of "eBay hacks." Many of the hacks offered in the book are not only informative and helpful, but a few almost seem like common sense tips, such as ways to avoid having bad feedback written about you when you sell an item to someone on eBay.
Since I'm a "eBay novice," I found a few of the hacks a bit confusing. But I think this is due much more to my inexperience with eBay than anything else. And after reading this book I will attest that it has increased my curiosity and willingness to both buy and sell items on eBay in the future.
The book offers numerous excellent "tips" (er hacks) in several main areas. As with other books in the O'Reilly Hacks series, these areas are divided into several chapters. Areas covered in various chapters include Diplomacy and Feedback, searching for auction items, ways to bid on items offered, using photos to help "sell" your items, and completing transactions.
If you do any buying and/or selling on eBay, you need this book.



Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: 3G Wireless with 802.16 and 802.11 (McGraw-Hill Professional Engineering)
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
Authors: Clint Smith, John Meyer
Rating: 1/5
Customer opinion - 1 stars out of 5
Not good


This book is not worth the price. I read the first 2 chapters and only skimmed the rest before deciding to return it. Even though it's a recent book, it covers in part technology that's 20 years old, so the title is misleading. On the new technology, it only skims the surface, not really going into details as any book on 802.x would for half the price. As far as how 802.x and 3G cellular networks and devices (UMTS, IMS) are going to co-exist and converge, it's silent. A real disapointment



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Photoshop Restoration & Retouching, Second Edition
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Katrin Eismann, Doug Nelson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
The one advanced PS book to have ...


... if you're buying only one.

Solid, hands-on instructions, with just enough theory that you understand what you're doing. She covers a broad range of restoration and retouching subject matter, going just deep enough into each one to prove genuinely useful without trying to be the 1200-page comprehensive back-breaker of PS books.

There are other books that covers specific subjects in more detail(Michael Kieran's book on color correction is one), but Eismann's does a great job of touching all the bases in an understandable and helpful way.

This is not the first Photoshop book to buy, but it should get very serious consideration as the second.

One thing I especially appreciate is the straight-up presentation. Too many computer book authors (Kelby and McClelland come immediately to mind) think they have to mix sophomoric humor in to stay "interesting." If I want to laugh, I'll watch Letterman - if I want to learn Photoshop, I'll read Eismann.



Product: Book - Paperback
Title: SQL Queries for Mere Mortals: A Hands-On Guide to Data Manipulation in SQL
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Michael J. Hernandez, John L. Viescas
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Very good but flawed


First, I have to say that I liked this book very much. It is clear and to the point. The examples and excercises are also extremely helpful. I particularly like the fact that they include several very different sorts of databases on the attached CD ROM.
There are two things that keep me from giving it the full five stars. The first problem is that the autthors introduce a method for converting requests in english into SQL queries that is next to useless. It starts with a request for data (in english) and proceeds to a "translation" into something like SQL. Finally you are supposed to convert the translation into valid SQL by "cleaning it up" (i.e. deleting extraneous words). However, there is no explanation of how you get from the request to the "translation". Luckily this method is not necessary to follow the otherwise well thought out explanations in the book.
The second problem is that the excercises in the book don't work out the way they are supposed to (i.e. the number of rows returned by the query is not always the number of rows they tell you it is supposed to return). This is because the excercise databases are slightly different than the solution databases. This caused me plenty of headaches trying to debug my SQL until I discovered the problem.
Even with these problems, this is the best beginners book on the subject I've yet come across.