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XML: Visual QuickStart Guide (2nd Edition) Paperback – December 21, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-0321559678 ISBN-10: 0321559673 Edition: 2nd

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Peachpit Press; 2 edition (December 21, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321559673
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321559678
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 0.6 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #57,362 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

What is XML? XML, or eXtensible Markup Language, is a specification for storing information. It is also a specification for describing the structure of that information. And while XML is a markup language (just like HTML), XML has no tags of its own. It allows the person writing the XML to create whatever tags they need. The only condition is that these newly created tags adhere to the rules of the XML specification.

In the seven years since the first edition of “XML: Visual QuickStart Guide was published, XML has taken its place next to HTML as a foundational language on the Internet. XML has become a very popular method for storing data and the most popular method for transmitting data between all sorts of systems and applications. The reason being, where HTML was designed to display information, XML was designed to manage it.

This book begins by showing you the basics of the XML language. Then, by building on that knowledge, additional and supporting languages and systems will be discussed. To get the most out of this book, you should be somewhat familiar with HTML, although you don't need to be an expert coder by any stretch. No other previous knowledge is required.

“XML: Visual QuickStart Guide, 2nd Edition is divided into seven parts. Each part contains one or more chapters with step-by-step instructions that explain how to perform XML-related tasks. Wherever possible, examples of the concepts being discussed are displayed, and the parts of the examples on which to focus are highlighted.

The order of the book is intentionally designed to be an introduction to the fundamentals of XML, followed by discussions of related XML technologies.

    •    In Part 1 of the book, you will learn how to create an XML document. It's relatively straightforward, and even more so if you know a little HTML.

    •    Part 2 focuses on XSL, which is a set of languages designed to transform an XML document into something else: an HTML file, a PDF document, or another XML document. Remember, XML is designed to store and transport data, not display it.

    •    Parts 3 and 4 of the book discuss DTD and XML Schema, languages designed to define the structure of an XML document. In conjunction with XML Namespaces (Part 5), you can guarantee that XML documents conform to a pre-defined structure, whether created by you or by someone else.

    •    Part 6, Developments and Trends, details some of the up-and-coming XML-related languages, as well as a few new versions of existing languages.

    •    Finally, Part 7 identifies some well-known uses of XML in the world today; some of which you may be surprised to learn.

This beginner's guide to XML is broken down as follows:
    •    Introduction
    •    Chapter 1:  Writing XML

    •    Part 2:  XSL
    •    Chapter 2:  XSLT
    •    Chapter 3:  XPath Patterns and Expressions
    •    Chapter 4:  XPath Functions
    •    Chapter 5:  XSL-FO

    •    Part 3:  DTD
    •    Chapter 6:  Creating a DTD
    •    Chapter 7:  Entities and Notations in DTDs
    •    Chapter 8:  Validation and Using DTDs

    •    Part 4:  XML Schema
    •    Chapter 9:  XML Schema Basics
    •    Chapter 10:  Defining Simple Types
    •    Chapter 11:  Defining Complex Types

    •    Part 5:  Namespaces
    •    Chapter 12:  XML Namespaces
    •    Chapter 13:  Using XML Namespaces

    •    Part 6:  Recent W3C Recommendations
    •    Chapter 14:  XSLT 2.0
    •    Chapter 15:  XPath 2.0
    •    Chapter 16:  XQuery 1.0

    •    Part 7:  XML in Practice
    •    Chapter 17:  Ajax, RSS, SOAP and More
 

About the Author

Kevin Howard Goldberg has been working with computers since 1976 when he taught himself BASIC on his elementary school’s PDP 11/70. Since then, Kevin’s career has included management consulting, lead software development and in his current capacity,  he runs technology operations for a world-class Internet Strategy, Marketing and Development company.
 
Kevin holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Entrepreneurial Management from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, and is a candidate for a master’s degree in Computer Science at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Customer Reviews

I highly recommend this book for anyone wanting to learn the XML.
Frank G
In any case the examples are easy to follow, the author does a great job of breaking things down into nice digestible chunks.
Kurtis A. Staples-king
This is by far the best investment I made and the books is well written.
Max Monterrey

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

55 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Robert F. Sullivan on January 27, 2009
Format: Paperback
Truth be told, I do not work as a Web developer, but on a daily basis my job has me in contact with business clients and Web application developers. My clients require robust Web applications, my developers make it happen. Because of legacy data issues, shared disparate databases, and the need for them to handshake; XML Web services have become a standard solution in many commercial Web solutions. Though I am somewhat familiar with the basics of XML I wanted to go deeper to better myself and better my knowledge in client/tech conversations. What I did not want to do is to go so deep as to read a monster 1000+ page tome that would require weeks of book study, application and befuddlement.

Instead, Mr. Goldberg's book provided me a concise break down the structure of XML markup language in a detailed/digestible enough manner to keep me engaged and participatory. Each chapter cleverly builds on previous topics, so as to provide a pyramid learning approach. This enabled me to go deeper than before into the more arcane areas of the language (XPath patterns, functions, expressions, XSL-FO, DTD's, schemas, etc.) so it could be more easily understood.

If you are new to XML, curious, or need enough to know to be dangerous in your job, then this book is for you. BTW, I highly recommend that you download his chapter samples so as to follow along and to tinker with. I read the entire book in a weekend and returned to work on Monday loaded for bear. Now I keep it at my desk for easy reference.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Chris on December 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
XML: Visual QuickStart Guide (2nd Edition)

I highly recommend this book for anyone wanting to learn the basics of XML.

I have about an intermediate level of HTML acumen and wanted a book that would cover enough of the rudiments to get a good grasp of the subject. It does that, as well as cover a myriad of related apps such as XPath, XSLT, and XQuery.

I also really appreciated the comprehensible instructions, visual examples, recommended tools, and the applications that give XML its currency in the real world.

All in all, an excellent source.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Tim Robertson VINE VOICE on April 19, 2009
Format: Paperback
XML (eXtensible Markup Language) has become the medium to move data in efficient and predictable ways. Derived from a similar markup language, SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language), XML is structured, but not as highly as SGML. Structure is what itís all about. The very loosely structured HTML (HyperText Markup Language) is also derived from SGML. Even the XML markup looks amazingly like HTML, except, as the author explains, HTML defines how information will look, while XML defines how the information is formatted.

Here is a portion of an XML file:

<?xml version="1.0"?>
<my_siblings>
<sibling>
<name>Norm</name>
<gender>Male</gender>
<age>65</age>
</sibling>
<sibling>
<name>Nancy</name>
<gender>Female</gender>
<age>52</age>
</sibling>
<sibling>
<name>Guy</name>
<gender>Male</gender>
<age>48</age>
</sibling>
</my_siblings>\

If you analyze the code sample above, you should be able to see that there are three siblings defined. Each siblingís information is contained, or wrapped, between the <sibling> and </sibling> tags, and that the information on those three siblings is wrapped between the <my_siblings> and </my_siblings> tags. Taking this one step further, you can think of these sibling "chunks" as parts of a database: the content between the <sibling> and </sibling> tags would be defined as a record, while the <name></name>, <gender></gender>, and <age></age> tags define fields within a record. This content can then be transformed into content in a different format and reused in many different ways.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Kurtis A. Staples-king on March 19, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a good book. I would highly recommend that you have some experience with HTML prior to reading it, I hadn't looked into HTML for a while (10 years) and so it was an extremely hypothetical reading. Had I caught up on my HTML first I am certain I would have got even more out of it.

In any case the examples are easy to follow, the author does a great job of breaking things down into nice digestible chunks. If you're looking to take your XML to the next level this is not the book for you, if you are however looking for a solid foundation to build from I would certainly recommend this book without hesitation.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By rg61 on May 8, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Exactly what I (an IT professional with over a decade of experience but minimal XML exposure) was looking for -- a reference to bring me up to speed quickly so that I could read & understand existing XML constructs and converse intelligently about them with colleagues.

The book provided what I needed to know, with limited errata and without fluff.

Highly recommended.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By E. Andrews on April 16, 2009
Format: Paperback
"Learn XML the Quick and Easy Way" is an excellent comprehensive overview of the XML vocabulary and surrounding technologies. It is simple enough to be easily understood by non-technical and novice readers, and powerful enough to prepare them to get started using XML right away." -- Elizabeth Andrews, Technical Marketing Manager, Altova, Inc.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews


More About the Author

As Partner/Chief Technology Strategist at imagistic, Kevin oversees and directs all projects with a business-forward technology approach that has led to hundreds of successful technology implementations, corporate recognition, and long-term clientele.

From his early experience in management consulting and software development, Kevin offers more than twenty years experience combining business and technology, helping serve executives at many Fortune 500 companies.

Since 1997 at imagistic, Kevin has delivered successful business and technology strategies for such clients as GE Capital, California Pizza Kitchen, Boston University, the ACLU, Franchise Services, Inc., Move.com, Disney, UCLA, and Reed Publishing, meeting corporate objectives, tight deadlines, and even tighter budgets. His leadership and unparalleled ability to align business and technology needs are key imagistic value-adds that keep former clients coming back for new engagements year after year.

Before starting imagistic in 1997, Kevin held senior positions in multi-million dollar video game divisions at Film Roman, Lionsgate (previously Trimark), and Philips Interactive Media, where one of his innovations resulted in an audio compression / decompression scheme, which doubled the sound effects storage capacity for all of Philips' video game titles.

Kevin holds a bachelor's degree in Economics and Entrepreneurial Management from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. He has also completed coursework towards a master's degree in Computer Science at the University of California, Los Angeles. In the fall of 2010, Kevin will serve as instructor for an introductory course on programming concepts through eClasses.org.

Publications include the critically acclaimed book: "XML: Visual QuickStart Guide (2nd Edition)," published in December, 2008 by Peachpit Press. He is also an author on the IBM developerWorks site, focusing on open-source technology applications.

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