Books I’ve read in 1st quarter of 2014

Working in IT sector means that you have to spend considerably amount of your time in educating yourself if you want to be up to scratch. I am sure you have seen it yourself that everyday people above you demand more and more. Of course if you are like me, a lifelong learner, then every time you finish reading a book you have that nice feeling that you achieved something. So I am starting these post series with my small reviews about some of the books I’ve read in the past months.

In these first three months of the year I read 6 books. Most of them were disappointing but a couple were good enough to be suggested. Lets see the list:

 Dependency Injection with AngularJS

Dependency Injection with AngularJS

This one is probably the worst of all. I still can’t believe how you can make so many mistakes in only 78 pages. The subject of the book supposed to be dependency injection in AngularJs but this is only a few poorly written pages(if I remember well, less than ten!). The rest is about general development with AngularJS. Clearly Alex Knox is not a professional writer. Amazon reviews confirms my words. Mark 1/5. Price:~ 18£ Amazon link

Instant Ubunt

Instant Ubuntu

Working as a developer doesn’t mean that you have to read books only about development, at least this is my point of view. I really want to have knowledge in other areas of IT. I am not saying that I want to be specialist in everything, its impossible after all, just that I feel better when in a chat with colleagues from other IT departments I understand what they are talking about and I can easily jump to the conversation to give my input. Said that  few weeks ago I thought that reading the book “Instant Ubuntu”  will be a good idea to understand better the Ubuntu OS. I’d say it was a complete failure. Not because of the book, but because of my expectations. This book is clearly written for very very beginners to Linux/Ubuntu OS. It would be great to give it as a Xmas gift to your father who is just going to try something except Windows for the first time in his life. It has many screenshots and some good explanations but that’s it. After all what did I expect from a 54 pages “book”. Mark 2/5. Price:~13£ Amazon link

Software Development Fundamentals (MTA98-361)

98-361-mta-software-development-fundamentals

This book was my main studying source for the Microsoft exam MTA 98-361. As a web developer my knowledge in developing Windows applications or Windows services was limited. By reading this book it really helped me to understand those areas and best of all it helped me to pass the exam! The book has 6 chapters, Introduction to programming, Introduction to Object-Oriented programming, Understanding General Software Development, Understanding Web applications, Understanding Desktop applications and Understanding Databases. I recommend this book to junior developers or to students that want to follow a carrier as software developers. It is very well written and I noticed only a few typos. Mark 4/5. Price: ~ 40£ Amazon link

Instant Selenium Testing Tools Starter

Instant Selenium Testing Tools Starter

I really wanted to learn more about Selenium, in fact I wanted to get a better understanding and some useful technics in order to apply them mostly to my personal projects. Unfortunately this book is not what I wanted. It starts with some basic usage of selenium and then out of nowhere it drops the reader to Java code blocks. I would like to give it a second read but for the moment it didn’t help me at all. Probably because I am working on a different environment. Mark 2/5. Price:~13.5£ Amazon link

The Problem with Native JavaScript APIs

The Problem with Native JavaScript APIs

I am not really sure if we can call book a 16 page “book”. It would have easily be a great blog post. Anyway, the reason I decided to spend an hour before going to bed with it was because Nicholas Zakas, the writter, is one of the very best developers out there, with deep knowledge in JavaScript language and I always enjoy his books. In this one he express’s his views about the use of Native javascript Api’s and I have to admit that I agree with most of his words. Mark 3/5. Price: free Kindle edition Amazon link

Raspberry Pi Cookbook

Raspberry Pi Cookbook

That was the best book I read in this quarter. I really enjoyed every page of it. If I remember well I’ve read it in just 3-4 days. It is very well written and the idea to learn through recipes is innovative. By reading this book you can become an expert in Raspberry Pi even if you are at a  beginner level at the moment. You will also learn some basic electronics by reading it. I totally recommend it and it will always have a place on my desk in my lab as a quick reference. Mark 5/5. Price:~15£ Amazon link

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