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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Programming PHP
Publisher: O'Reilly
Authors: Rasmus Lerdorf, Kevin Tatroe
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
Good introduction to the language

This book is a good introduction to the language. Veterans may not get a lot out of it, but might still find the chapters on dealing with databases, images and PDF useful. Newbies, beginners and intermediate users will probably benefit most from this book. PHP is a fairly easy language to learn, and this is a very good book to learn it from.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: High-Speed Digital Design: A Handbook of Black Magic
Publisher: Prentice Hall PTR
Authors: Howard Johnson
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Useful for Analog Work, too!

Being a hardware designer for DSP and CPU boards, this is the most interesting book I have read the last 10 years. I read the entire book nodding my head and saying "This all makes sense". All the theory is there, but what makes it readable is the autor's comments on what really matters; such as: "The inductance of vias is more important than their capacitance to digital designers"

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Definitive XML Schema
Publisher: Prentice Hall PTR
Authors: Priscilla Walmsley
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Excellent resource! A must-have guide to XML Schema

As a professional application developer I don't have the luxury of time to read through massive "door-stops" to get up and running with a new topic. I'm sure many other programmers out there share the same constraint. I normally will not give a computer reference book, or any book for that matter, a chance if it isn't clear, concise and well organized. In short, if it cannot explain a concept clearly in the first few pages or if I find myself reading a chapter over and over again, it isn't worth the little time I do have.
After reading the positive reviews on Amazon I decided to take a chance and purchase it. Even after I received the book I approached it with the same air of skepticism as any other book I pick up and I must say that I was "hooked" the moment I started to read it. I found Priscilla's writing style to be effortless and fluid, clearly explaining the topic with plenty of examples to illustrate each concept. The topics are presented in logical order, but the book is approachable from any starting point within it. A fantastic read and an invaluable reference for anyone seriously involved with XML Schema. I place this book within quick reach in my library.
When learning to apply a new technology such as XML Schema, XSLT, XPath, etc, I will sometimes approach it with a misconception of overcomplication, thinking that the topic will be so difficult to understand that it will take months to grasp. Picking the right book can make all the difference. Some books only aim to exhaustively detail the mechanics and spew theories without any consideration for the practical application of the technology. And that type of book may be for some, but when you're under the constraint of time, there is little use for theory for the rest of us who need to have a product done by yesterday! This book is immediately practical and approachable from page 1! XML Schema is very easy to understand when it is explained by a professional who can effectively communicate. If you want this in a book, then Priscilla Walmsley is the person that delivers. If you are looking for the best guide to XML Schema on the planet, your journey has come to and end; look no further.
"Definitive XML Schema" is excellent and I highly recommend it for anyone wanting to learn more about this technology!!

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: The Data Warehouse Lifecycle Toolkit : Expert Methods for Designing, Developing, and Deploying Data Warehouses
Publisher: Wiley
Authors: Ralph Kimball, Laura Reeves, Margy Ross, Warren Thornthwaite
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Number-one in Data Warehousing Literature

Ralph and his colleagues wrote a wonderful book about Data Warehousing. Ralph's objective is to make user happy. He want's to build intuitive and user-friendly Data Warehouses with a good performance and in this book he tells us how to succeed. He guides you through the Data Warehouse process form initialize interviews to design staging area and dimension models and lots more. I found this book to be the perfect answer to bringing myself up to speed. Not too technical -- but enough information to answer all the important questions which can occur in a Data Warehouse project Easy reading as well for people who native language is not english. Just read it and lets make users happy.
By the why: I would like to recommend this book to NCR's Rob Armstrong.