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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Proven Portals: Best Practices for Planning, Designing, and Developing Enterprise Portals
Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
Authors: Dan Sullivan
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Very good high level management/project management info

ReviewThis last year has seen a lot of industry focus on portal technology and how it can change the way companies operate. And while there are numerous books that cover the technical "how to" of a portal package, there are fewer books that take a higher-level view about the "whys" of portals. Management is left without a complete understanding as to why portal technology matters. This book is designed to fill that gap.
Managers will appreciate the chapters on how to calculate the Return On Investment (ROI) on a portal implementation. Since portals tend not to be inexpensive, the practical knowledge in this area is beneficial. The author also mixes in a number of real-life case studies that will illustrate industry problems and how successful portal implementations solved those issues.
Project managers and portal architects will find even more highly practical information. The architecture of a portal design is examined, as well as the options present for implementation (such as J2EE vs. .Net). By the time the reader finishes the book, they should have a firm understanding of how to structure a portal architecture, as well as how functions such as searching and data warehousing fit into the picture. There is also good information on what types of requirements need to be gathered in order to successfully design an effective portal.
If you are a developer or administrator who is responsible for installing the actual portal software that is chosen, you might not find this book to your liking. Since much of the information is not tied to a specific brand of portal, it is not the book you will turn to for help in running the portal. But it is still advisable to understand the bigger picture, and this book can help you get there.
ConclusionIf you are an IT manager or a project lead who has been assigned to a portal project, this is the book you need to understand the overall implications of your portal implementation.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Introduction to the Theory of Computation
Publisher: Course Technology
Authors: Michael Sipser
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Probably the best computation theory text for students

This book is suitable for beginners and graduate students who want to explor the theory of computation . It explains the hard theory and logic by easy sentences and words. Even if you use English as foreign language , you can read this book by yourself and understand its contents easily. This book is near perfect.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: MCAD/MCSD Self-Paced Training Kit: Developing Windows-Based Applications with Microsoft Visual Basic .NET and Microsoft Visual C# .NET
Publisher: Microsoft Press
Authors: Microsoft Corporation, Microsoft Corporation
Rating: 2/5
Customer opinion - 2 stars out of 5
OK as an overview of what to study

This book was ok from a stand point of giving you a high-level overview of the main subject areas covered by the test. However, it does not go into enough detail on most concepts and doesn't provide any references for the reading to do further reasearch.
Also, I found the mix of VB.net and C# examples to be distracting. You have to pre-read each section to see if it applies to the test that you're studying for and then skip over the sections that are not relevent. However on the positive side, the book is an excellent comparison of the language difference between VB.net and C#.
My other complaint about this book is the test prep software that comes with the book. It tries to simulate the actual exam to the point where it doesn't give you any options for how many questions to ask and it doesn't tell you which questions you got wrong. Thus you cannot use the practice exams to identify areas that you need more time studying.
If you buy this book, definately suppliment your studies with actual practice, reading the MSDN Docs, and purchase some 3rd party test prep software.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Adobe Photoshop Elements 3.0 Idea Kit (Idea Kit)
Publisher: Adobe Press
Authors: Lisa Matthews
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
You can use this on 2 levels

Adobe Systems' main product is Photoshop. So to gin up sales and usage, they want to offer many handy ideas that add value to it. Thus one of their employees, Matthews, came up with this slender guide. Unsurprisingly, the information is laid out very clearly for the reader, given that Photoshop is about visual presentation of images and text.

The design tips are given in a nontechnical prose, for a general audience. There are two levels at which you can use this book. Firstly, and obviously, for the tips themselves. But at a metalevel, look carefully at how she arranges her graphics and text. A clean and minimalist design, that does not attempt to overwhelm the reader on any given page. Uncluttered. Quite unlike, say, Wired magazine. So you can try using this book as an implicit design document for your own work. Most readers will never try this, even though it's right in front of them.