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Beginning XML (Programmer to Programmer) 3rd Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
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ISBN-10: 0764570773
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"…a comprehensive text for anyone who is serious about learning XML…" (International Developer, June 2005)

From the Back Cover

Now firmly established as a mature technology with numerous applications, XML has spawned additional functionalities, each with its own specifications. This edition of the highly popular guidebook for beginning XML programmers teaches you not only what XML is and how to use it, but also how it partners with XPath™, XSLT, XQuery, XHTML, and others.

You’ll learn XML basics, then explore an XML-based programming language that enables you to transform XML documents into different formats. You’ll discover how to query databases for XML information, publish XML documents on the Web, and create interactive forms and graphics with XML. By the end of this book, you will feel confident applying XML in real-world situations.

What you will learn from this book

  • Basic concepts of XML and how to define elements, tags, and attributes
  • Rules for naming and structuring elements to produce well-formed XML
  • How to validate XML using Document Type Definitions (DTDs)
  • Guidelines for structuring documents with DTDs, XML schemas, and RELAX NG
  • How to use XPath and XSLT to process documents
  • Communication techniques using RSS, Web Services, SOAP, and WSDL
  • Ways to manipulate documents for display with XHTML, CSS, SVG, and XForms

Who this book is for

This book is for any programmer interested in learning to use XML. Some knowledge of Web programming or data exchange techniques is helpful but not necessary.

Wrox Beginning guides are crafted to make learning programming languages and technologies easier than you think, providing a structured, tutorial format that will guide you through all the techniques involved.

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Product Details

  • Series: Programmer to Programmer
  • Paperback: 1032 pages
  • Publisher: Wrox; 3 edition (September 24, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764570773
  • ASIN: B00A18GPHI
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 2.1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,526,379 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
(I don't have time for a full review right now,so I will write a few comments and try to add to them.)

I knew very little about XML, so this sounded promising. As of Chapter 8, my general comments are:

1. The teaching structure is often murky. At many spots, the authors don't seem to grasp what a beginner needs to know first in order to go to the next step. This makes the material unnecessarily difficult and confusing.

2. Instead of one example page, for some reason the authors will sometimes create one XML page to illustrate a point, then create another completely different page to illustrate the next point, then go back to the first one for the next point, etc. It's inexplicable. The book would be much easier to follow, and probably easier to write, if they built one XML page from scratch and used/modified it throughout the book.

3. There are too many editorial screw-ups, such as "Figures" that are labeled incorrectly or don't exist -- that is, the text will say "see Figure 7 for the output" and Figure 7 will be the wrong one. I really have no patience with expensive books that don't bother to pay for one thorough copy-editing.

I am currently on Chapter 8 (XSLT), one of the worst-written ones. After a completely unnecessary discussion about "procedural" versus "declarative" programming (I imagine every reader is at least basically familiar with css, and if not, it is hardly difficult to understand "declarative" programming), the book just starts throwing XLST terms at you, with no foundation as to what they are doing or why. I finally gave up and pulled up the online W3C tutorial. This tutorial is free, covers most of the material, and is well-organized and easy to understand. Teaching in logical order isn't that hard.
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Format: Paperback
Any review prior to May 2007 has to refer to one of the 3 older editions. The 4th edition adds a new chapter on Ajax, simplifies some of the examples to focus the learning more on the concept and less on the example data itself, and is rearranged for some better flow. There were also fewer working authors on this edition for better cohesion from chapter to chapter.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am taking an XML class at the University using this book as the required course text. The authors do a good job at highlighting the key technologies, and the examples and tutorials significantly enhance the material. I enjoy the straight-forward manner with which Hunter and his friends explains what the example code in the book does. My only disappointment is that the book does not explain in enough detail how to use XML technologies on non-Microsoft systems. I believe a greater emphasis on Java and non-VB/ASP/.NET can extend the benefits this book otherwise offers.
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Format: Paperback
This book is for beginning programmers only and also in need of some serious editing.

I have to agree with other comments which describe this as a poorly written book. I have read other Wrox books and have enjoyed them. This book is torturously wordy. Annoying, unfunny jokes and quips abound. (as opposed to "fine ham") I found myself skipping/speed-reading entire paragraphs and pages just to get to the meat of the subject. Fortunately, once you do find the meat, the book seems very helplful.

If you have experience in programming and want a book that quickly brings you up to speed on XML and its associated technologies, this is NOT the book. Try O'Reilly's XML in a Nutshell instead.
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