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review 2017-02-26 10:08
Use the Internet
HTML5 and CSS3 All-In-One for Dummies - Andy Harris

Well, I reckon it took me almost two years to actually get through this monstrosity and I don’t think I know any more about web programming than I did when I started. Well, okay, that’s a lie, I know quite a lot more, especially since when I started I claimed that being able to use the HTML tags in Goodreads counted as having a basic understanding of web programming. It turns out not to be the case, and in fact the HTML tags that Goodreads uses are woefully out to date. In fact the amount of HTML that you can use on your posts is minimal (though it is somewhat more than some other sites that I have visited). As for Booklikes, there is so much more scope in their posts that it actually leaves Goodreads for dead.


The question that I raise though is whether this book is actually useful. The problem with the development of software is that it is always on the move you may discover that a version that he uses in the book is no longer available – this was what happened when I tried to play around with MySQL and with AJAX – his versions are out of date which means that if you try to type his programs out then they don’t actually work. Mind you, I ended up getting MySQL to eventually work and even through together a basic PHP website (though it is pretty basic).


Interestingly ,I have noticed that there are a number of people claiming that if we go and learn the latest programming languages we can all go off and make heaps of money. Some dude on Youtube made this claim with PHP (and reckons that he even dropped out of university) while I get all of these spam emails trying to get me to part with my money so that I can learn Python or Agile. The catch is that even though you may know how to program those languages, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you are suddenly going to make lots of money – if a stranger walked in off the road and made a claim that they were this hot shot computer programmer and had absolutely no references whatsoever, would you hire him? The thing with making your way in this world is to be able to sell yourself, and to get practical experience.


This is where I believe this book falls down. Sure, he has lots and lots of examples, but that is basically where it ends. Sure, it may work as a reference book but the problem is that pretty much everything is available on line these days. Further, while one may be able to show you how to do something that doesn’t necessarily make you a programmer – to be a good programmer you need to be able to solve problems, to be able to work on projects, and to be able to work as a part of a team. That last one is important because while one could program alone (you can tell be age since I still use the term programmer, which is an Eighties term), the scale of some of the programs out there, and the needs of businesses these days, generally means that the small scale projects are few and far between – everybody has a website these days, and if they don’t Wordpress and others are just a click away.


The other thing is that there are so many websites out there that offer tutorials that I am wondering whether actually purchasing this book was actually worth it. In fact, it has now been put back into my garage (where I store stuff that I don’t need ready access to) and I doubt I am going to be pulling it out again. The thing is that there are videos on Youtube, and the aforementioned tutorial sites such as CodeAcademy and W3Schools (among others). The other thing that I think this book lacked, which would have been something that would have gone a long way to actually helping me at least to learn, is the lack of exercises to do and problems to solve. Reading about something is all well and good, but the best way to learn is to actually get out there and do it.

Source: www.goodreads.com/review/show/1226977695
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review 2014-04-05 11:02
For the Not At All Serious web developer
The Really, Really, Really Easy Step-by-Step Guide to Building Your Own Website: For Absolute Beginners of All Ages - Gavin Hoole,Cheryl Smith

I sort of have a strange desire to go out and develop a website so I decided to grab the first book that I saw in the library to tell me how to do it – this book. Look, this book is incredibly basic and is more designed for a small business, or hobbiest, to develop a site based upon their specific industry – the sample site in this book is for a woodworking business (or hobby). The thing is that these days there are a plethora of sites out there which means that you do not necessarily need to construct your own site to be able to run or advertise your business, or participate in a hobby.


For instance we have Facebook and Ebay that enable you to run a business, and then there are the numerous blog sites out there (as well as Facebook, which is a basically a generic, all-purpose, social networking site) if you simply want to write stuff. However, for those who wish to create their own specific site then this book can be quite useful as it does outline a number of things that you need to know in not only creating your site, but also getting traffic to your site.


I remember years ago, back when I was at university and the internet was still in its infancy, I created a very, very basic website where I could post reviews of movies. However that it no longer necessary as I now post all of my movie reviews here:



and, well, obviously all of my book reviews are posted here:




Since I don't actually have any formal money making hobbies (such as wood carving, or selling meat over the internet as one farmer friend of mine does, though he does it over Facebook by simply sending out a post asking his friends if they would like some meat) I don't really have any need for such a site (and even then my extra-work money making activities, such a share trading, would require me to have a license if I were to establish such a site). As for my writing, well there are always the blogs (though I have not got to that just yet). As for any other forms of websites that I have in mind (such as a Facebook for pubs) I would need to create something substantially more complicated than what is outlined in this book.

However this little book still has some interesting things in it that I didn't know, such as how pages are ranked on the search engines and how to construct your page so that it gets the higher rankings. In fact there are computer programs that can be downloaded from the website that enables you to crawl the internet to work out the best terms available. It also have a link to a program called Pagebreeze which is a free webpage developing program (please do not think you can create a webpage using this program:




because, well, that is a word processor and not a webpage development tool.


I also learnt a few things about developing a webpage, such as using tables (which are very common in webpages). Tables are actually the way websites are formatted (though I am surprised that you cannot simply format them the way that you format a Microsoft Word document, but I guess it has a lot to do with compatibility issues). Finally, the other thing that I discovered is that just like our ISPs generally have a cap on the amount of data that we download (and upload) website hosts also have a cap on the number of people that can visit your page, and the more people that you want visiting the page the more you have to pay.


In the end, just hope you do not that the amount of traffic that tends to go through this page:





Source: www.goodreads.com/review/show/902226298
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review 2011-06-15 07:00
Bulletproof Web Design: Improving flexibility and protecting against worst-case scenarios with HTML5 and CSS3 (3rd Edition) (Voices That Matter)
Bulletproof Web Design: Improving flexibility and protecting against worst-case scenarios with HTML5 and CSS3 (Voices That Matter) - Dan Cederholm Must read for every web designer! The example made fade but the concept is timeless.
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review 2009-11-01 00:00
Web Component Development with Zope 3
Web Component Development With Zope 3 - Philipp von Weitershausen This is a good introduction to Zope 3. I've been reading it off and on since I started working on Launchpad, which uses Zope. The book was good for helping me get the terms and conventions of Zope development, but Launchpad has a very particular use of Zope 3. Some of the more general web dev uses of Zope 3 covered in the book don't apply, for that reason.But still, this is a good overview of web development using Zope 3. I would recommend the book if you're trying to get up to speed with Zope.
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