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Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Microsoft Reporting Services in Action (In Action series)
Publisher: Manning Publications
Authors: Teo Lachev
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
The only Reporting Services book you will need!

This book was great for giving me a better understanding of the workings of Reporting Services. I do have one other book on RS but it did little to get me beyond the hands-on labs I'd already been through. This book takes you to the next level (and beyond) to really tap into the flexibility of RS and how to get it to do what you want. It does have a developer slant to it, but I am not a developer and was able to stay with it. It reviews the anatomy of a report and takes you through sample reports, building from simple reports to more complex ones that resemble more of what you'd find in the real world. It even talks about creating external assemblies and invoking that code from RS. It also addresses report management, security, OLAP, and performance considerations.

This book also tells you what cannot be done with RS (in this version, anyway) potentially saving me alot of time and effort in trying! I highly recommend this book I don't think I'll need another RS book until the next version comes out. Hopefully, this author will produce an updated version at that time.

Product: Book - Hardcover
Title: Envisioning Information
Publisher: Graphics Press
Authors: Edward R. Tufte
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Simply Remarkable

Edward Tufte sees things most of us do not initially, then manages to render his vision in exquisitely illustrated, well-written texts. He identifies the attributes of effective communication of information and then illustrates what works and why in very understandable terms.
For instance, in his chapter "Layering and Separation," Tufte dissects the problems with array of marshaling signals then reworks the presentation and provides a step-by-step explanation of his process. His coining of the wonderful notion of an "information prison" shows that his cleverness extends from the visual to the written.
As Tufte writes in his introduction, "The principles of information design are universal-like mathematics-and are not tied to unique features of a particular language or culture." He proves this point amply by drawing on myriad sources and examples.
His comments and insights of the power of color are especially enlightening, and if you have ever been subjected to a particularly hideous PowerPoint slide show where the presenter got more than a bit carried away with the technology, you will be agreeing more than disagreeing with the ideas here.
Finally, I acknowledge there is bound to be some sticker shock associated with Edward Tufte's books. But if you consider the amount and quality of color (which requires special press runs), the quality of the paper, the amount of press time (Tufte oversees and approves the printing), and the vast scope of timeless information contained in each book, then these books are a deal.

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Official Final Fantasy VII Strategy Guide
Publisher: Bradygames
Authors: David Cassady
Rating: 4/5
Customer opinion - 4 stars out of 5
This is one good guide

This is a good guide for a novice or a master. It give you almost a total walkthrough and still lets you have fun. If I had to say one thing I did not like it woulb be that a their are some minor mistakes but Who is perfict. It has a great wepons guide and maps....

Product: Book - Paperback
Title: Photoshop 7 Down & Dirty Tricks
Publisher: New Riders Press
Authors: Scott Kelby
Rating: 5/5
Customer opinion - 5 stars out of 5
Photoshop recipies

For the beginning to intermediate Photoshop user, this is a really cool book. It is just a collection of recipies leading to tasty finished products. If the pictures of the finished pieces look good to you, just follow the recipie to make it. After creating a number of these pieces, those learning PSP will begin to understand how certain core functions of the software work. It's up to them to strike out on their own using these concepts to create new artwork. This book doesn't pretend to be an all-encompassing guide to the details of PSP. It's a guide in how to create cool stuff. And those learning the software will love the fact that they can create pretty impressive stuff by following the recipies.