Book Reviews

One of our members regularly writes reviews for IT related books. He's graciously offered to let us host them on our web site. These books and others all become part of the Library of LUV ( also known as "LoL"). If you're interested in borrowing one of these books, put your name on the wiki page and come to one of our regular Tuesday meetings. If you have books you no longer need that may be of interest to our members, you can add them to the LoL by putting them on the wiki page.

Computer Networking Illuminated

Diane Barret and Todd King: Computer Networking Illuminated; ISBN 0-7637-2676-1; Published by Jones and Bartlett, 832 pp., RRP AU$ 120

This is not an introduction for computer novices, nor those readers who are looking for how-to instructions on setting up a small network. The Illuminated series is published by Jones and Bartlett, whose books may not often be seen on bookseller shelves, but are excellent resources for anyone who wants clear, well-presented information with real technical depth. Titles in the series are designed as both texts for formal courses and for self-study.

Programming Python 3/e

Mark Lutz: Programming Python 3/e; ISBN 978-0-596-00925-0; Published by O'Reilly, 1552 pp., RRP AU$ 125

For over a decade O'Reilly's Programming Python has been regarded as a classic text, presently in its third edition that has grown to over 1500 pages. Programming Python is not designed to teach the use of Python (Learning Python is the book for that), but is focused on an advanced audience that already knows the fundamentals of the language.

Network Know-How

John Ross: Network Know-How; ISBN 978-1-59327-191-6; Published by No Starch Press, 266 pp., RRP AU$ 55

The sub-title of Network Know-How, AN ESSENTIAL GUIDE FOR THE ACCIDENTAL ADMIN, describes the book's purpose: to be every computer user's guide to designing, mapping, and maintaining a network that works. Its focus is on the practical and no prior knowledge of networking is assumed.

Unicode Explained

Jukka Korpela: Unicode Explained; ISBN 0-596-10121-X; Published by O'Reilly, 658 pp., RRP AU$ 110

Unicode or Unicon? That is a question outside the scope of this review, but it is worth noting that two decades ago ISO found itself in a position of having multiple standards for the same character sets—a situation brought about by different "streams of interest": data processing and library automation. A decision was taken to develop a single code that would accommodate every known writing system; it would be a four-byte code, thus enabling each and every alphabet, syllabary, or character set to be represented in individual, stand-alone sections of a four-byte encoding system. Alas, DIS 10646 was shot down by—primarily American—vested interests and, in effect, we have been left with a two-byte system: Unicode. It has been criticised on a number of issues that are discussed in Unicode Explained.

Beginning GIMP: From Novice to Professional 2/e

Akkana Peck: Beginning GIMP: From Novice to Professional 2/e; ISBN 978-1-4302-1070-2; Published by Apress, 528 pp., RRP AU$ 89.95

This is not simply a how-to book, but provides the user with an understanding of the many aspects of image manipulation. Plug-ins and scripting facilities are a feature of image manipulation software; the author discusses the GIMP's library of plug-ins, and provides a detailed tutorial on scripting.

The Manga Guide to Databases

Mana Takahashi: The Manga Guide to Databases; ISBN 978-1-59327-190-9; Published by No Starch Press, 213 pp., RRP AU$ 37.95

CJKV Information Processing 2nd Edn.

Ken Lunde: CJKV Information Processing 2nd Edn.; ISBN 978-0-596-51447-1; Published by O'Reilly, 864 pp., RRP AU$ 125

The initialism, CJKV, stands for Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Vietnamese; it has become a standard term in the fields of information processing and character encoding.

Fonts & Encodings

Yannis Haralambous (trans. P. Scott Horne): Fonts & Encodings; ISBN ISBN 978-0-596-10242-5; Published by O'Reilly, 1016 pp., RRP AU$ 110

Fonts & Encodings Reviewed by Major Keary

The Definitive Guide to MySQL 5

Michael Kofler: The Definitive Guide to MySQL 5; ISBN 1-59059-535-1; Published by Apress, 748 pp., RRP AU$ 90

  The Definitive Guide to MySQL 5 Reviewed by Major Keary   This third edition of The Definitive Guide to MySQL covers version 5, which has a number of significant new developments. It is a text that both teaches MySQL and provides an in-depth reference for ongoing use.

High Performance MySQL 2/e

Baron Schwartz et al.: High Performance MySQL 2/e; ISBN 978-0-596-10171-8; Published by O'Reilly, 684 pp., RRP AU$ 79.95

The second edition of High Performance MySQL "includes deeper coverage of all the topics in the first edition and many new topics as well … partly [as] a response to the changes [to MySQL] that have taken place …" and reflects the developments that have resulted in the current version (5.0 and 5.1).

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