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The following reviews were written by Michal Owsiak (, Enjoy and feel free to write a few reviews of your own on Safari Books Online.

“After reading this book chapter by chapter you will most probably notice something – it wasn’t that hard to start working with R after all. What I really like in Paul’s approach is that examples are really, really simple and straightforward. No messing around, just plain, clear, simple examples – very often single liners. But don’t think that this is all about. After each solution there is a time for a deeper analysis of the problem.”

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“97 Things Every Programmer Should Know edited by Kevlin Henney

What I have liked from the very beginning of the book, was the way the content description was organized. There are two tables of content – first one, regular one, second one divides book into different categories, thus you can read just essays related to particular topic. Another great advantage of the book is the way essays were prepared – two pages per each of them. No wasted space, no elaborates, just the core of the problem that is discussed. The same thing refers to the index – I like books where you can find things within index easily and accurately.

  Technical part of the book is the one side of the coin, second one is the content. 97 Things is a book that covers topics you can find in many other books (Pragmatic Programmer, Agile Developer, Developers Notebook, Productive Programmer). What distinguish this book is the way topics are presented. Usually authors do not go deeply into details, they just sketch the issue, provide readers with the starting point and don’t give them ‘silver bullet’. Many times you will fell like – ‘hey, I knew that already’ – but that’s OK, because you started to think about it again. I liked the book, I liked the topics, however different style of each essay might be confusing a little bit. If you like consistent style over the whole book, this will be a drawback. Another thing is. If you have read books I have mentioned few sentences above, rethink buying this book – you might feel disappointed. If you haven’t read them – it might be a good starting point for getting better programmer.” Check out 97 Things Every Programmer Should Know on Safari Books Online. 
  • Title: An Introduction to iOS Programming: From Getting the SDK to Submitting Your First App
  • By: Alasdair Allan
  • Publisher: O’Reilly Media, Inc.

“An Introduction to iOS Programming: From Getting the SDK to Submitting Your First App by Alasdair Allan

Introduction to iOS Programming is a practical guide to iOS programming and to becoming Apple Developer in general. It is divided into few parts: how to become a developer, how to write simple application (start developing using XCode), how to build and distribute application within iTunes. If you have never ever coded using Objective-C, Alasdair will show you the basics of Objective-C and Cocoa Touch as well.

  Material in Objective-C related section is well prepared and well presented, however. If you are not aware of the langue and you are about to start working with it make sure to buy some other books – devoted entirely to Objective-C. I think that ~25 minutes lecture, no matter how well conducted, is not enough to provide audience with the required level of knowledge. I have watched the video just after purchasing Apple Developer program and one thing is great for sure. When it comes to all the certificate related issues video worked just great – each and every developer has to have certificate in order to develop for iTunes. All you have to do is follow the video. After 20 minutes you are done. Your environment is ready to go and you can connect your devices to XCode. Of course you can learn it by yourself, or by reading Apple’s tutorials. In my case it was simply much easier to follow the tutorial.When it comes to developing applications using Objective-C I’d argue whether you will heavily benefit from the Introduction. If you are new to Objective-C and XCode you will have to dig for more information anyway. However, it is a good start. You can, at least, get in touch with XCode, project concepts and so on. You will also gain basic knowledge regarding Objective-C and Cocoa Touch.Lastly, you will be guided how to put your application into iTunes and how to avoid common mistakes. This section is very similar to the first part. All you have to do is follow the instructions.This is very interesting material, however, it is targeted at people who are at the beginning of the iOS adventure. On the other hand, even though it is simple it will not provide you with a comprehensive knowledge. You will have to look for some additional resources – definitely. But still, this is very gentle and very well organized introduction to iOS Programming.”Check out the video on Safari Books Online: An Introduction to iOS Programming: From Getting the SDK to Submitting Your First App

Andy and Greg collected quite impressive set of IT related essays and enclosed them within Beautiful Code. These are the texts that refer to various topics and treat them in a hard, engineering way. There is no place for humanity science like stuff. There is quite a lot of examples getting to bare bones of the problems.”

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“Recently, I am involved with a roject where Android is one of the technologies we use. This is a new experience for me, since I am a server side and iOS developer. I wanted to see how is it to be at the Android’s side, thus I decided to read something devoted strictly to Android. It turned out that Beginning Android 3 was a nice read and a good choice for a beginner. The book is all about starting your experience with Android 3 development. It will guide you through all the basics, mostly using Eclipse.” Read the full review


“Peter is perfectly right with his introduction to the book – “Let me tell you a little about who I think you are: You’re a web professional who’s been hand-coding HTML and CSS (…)”. This sentence, probably, describes most of the home grown HTML developers around the world. If you are working with CSS and you want to know what to expect when it comes to CSS3 this book is quite useful. Peter goes over the features of CSS3 while at the same time presenting them in a structured way.” Read the full review


“This book is really short one. But don’t be fooled by its size. In fact it’s very comprehensive. One remark here – regarding title. It might be slightly misleading.The book is related to queue mechanics within Mac OS X and iOS rather than treads. But let’s take a look at the content.”

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“I really, really, enjoyed this Video. But before I tell about my feelings, let me first tell you about what the Video is all about. Internet is one of the major sources of the information today – you can’t claim it is not. And the Internet is a big place with lots of bad guys hanging behind one or another web link. How do you know who’s good and who’s bad? How do you determine whether information is right or wrong? It’s not eas;, however, Howard Rheingold addresses many issues related to this topic. During his 1.5h discussion with Mark Brokering, he talks about how we should approach information we find on the Net.”

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About the Author

Michal Konrad Owsiak is a computer scientist and a hobbyist philosopher. He develops applications within Java, and Objective-C related environments. Recently, he is involved into Nuclear Fusion, HPC and GRID related projects. He reads lots of books – both philosophy and IT related. He can be followed at and at his blog

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