- Series: In a Nutshell
- Paperback: 498 pages
- Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (January 11, 2001)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0596000588
- ISBN-13: 978-0596000585
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 40 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,058,797 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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XML in a Nutshell : A Desktop Quick Reference (Nutshell Handbook) 1st Edition
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Continuing in the tradition of the Nutshell series, XML in a Nutshell provides a dense tutorial on its subject, as well as a useful day-to-day reference. While the reader isn't expected to have prior expertise in XML, this book is most effective as an add-on to a more introductory tutorial because of its relatively fast pace.
The authors set out to systematically--and rapidly--cover the basics of XML first, namely the history of the markup language and the various languages and technologies that compose the standard. In this first section, they discuss the basics of XML markup, Document Type Definitions (DTDs), namespaces, and Unicode. From there, the authors move into "narrative-centric documents" in a section that appropriately focuses on the application of XML to books, articles, Web pages and other readable content.
This book definitely presupposes in the reader an aptitude for picking up concepts quickly and for rapidly building cumulative knowledge. Code examples are used--only to illustrate the particular point in question--but not in excess. The book gets into "data-centric" XML, exploring the difference between the object-driven Document Object Model (DOM) and the event-driven Simple API for XML (SAX). However, these areas are a little underpowered and offer a bit less detail about this key area than the reader will expect.
At the core of any Nutshell book is the reference section, and the installment found inside this text is no exception. Here, the XML 1.0 standard, XPath, XSLT, DOM, SAX, and character sets are covered. Some material that is covered earlier in the book--such as Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)--is not re-articulated, however. XML in a Nutshell is not the only book on XML you should have, but it is definitely one that no XML coder should be without. --Stephen W. Plain
- XML history
- Document Type Definitions (DTDs)
- XML-based data formats
- Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
- Document Object Model (DOM)
- Simple API for XML (SAX)
'It is truly an amazing book '- Greek TeX Friends Newsletter, August 2001 '...there is the usual thoroughness one associates with O'Reilly publications. The coverage is totally comprehensive, and all the data is displayed in an attractive and consistent format.... It contains all the basics of the XML standard. Serious web developers will find topics ranging from the most basic syntax rules, to the details of document type definition (DTD) creation. For more advanced users, they also include details of Extensible Stylesheet Transformation (XSLT) and the document object model (DOM). MANTEX Information Design
Top customer reviews
One of the authors, Elliotte Rusty Harold, is no stranger to the technology. He is an early adopter who has written two previous XML books (and several good Java books) and created a web site devoted to XML (Cafe con Leche).
This book is divided into 4 parts. The first covers the essentials of XML including XML syntax, DTD and namespaces. The second covers 'Narrative Centric Documents' involving XSLT, CSS, XLinks, XPointers and XPath. The third covers 'Data Centric XML, ' involving DOM and SAX. The final part is a quick reference to all the above. Each part contains tutorials that are concisely written and packed with practical examples. Beginners can use it to jump-start their learning experience and experts can use this as a indispensable ready reference.
XML Schema is mentioned but not covered in this book.
Hats off to O'Reilly Associates for producing a professionally attractive, well-designed and portable book. It is comfortable to read and to hold. Stranded on a island and allowed only one XML book, this is it!
This book's an authoritative document: covering XML basics like DTD authoring and detailed discussion of attribute types - through to the more esoteric issues of character sets and the tricky XML namespace standards.
At every step, I found it easy to follow. It's not a book for the non-computer literate though; more aimed at people with an existing basis of technical knowledge. A techie web-designer would find it a good start. About a third of the book is filled with references. I don't know why, but my heart usually sinks when I see page-filling content like this - that said, ultimately it's the reference books like this that end up covered with scribbles and post-it notes, so while they might not make good reading, they're very useful.
It touchs on all the necessary bases - XSLT, XPath, XHTML, XLink, XPointers, CSS - I could go on. This book does. Heck of a basis for future reading: after two and a half years in XML, there's stuff in here that I haven't come across before!
This book scratches the surface of several XML topics like DTDs,XLink,XPointer,DOM,SAX,CSS etc, but doesn't explore any subject in detail. However one glaring omission is XML schema.
If you are a techie trying to learn XML or an experienced professional looking to enhance your understanding of XML and the related technologies, then Professional XML from Wrox press is a much better bet of your money.
Overall the most useful section of this book is the reference section at the end and is well worth the money if what you want is a good reference book.