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Dry, at times confusing, but I guess I'm learning something
on December 2, 2010
While the author clearly knows what she's talking about, the way the information is presented in this book, it's very difficult to follow at times unless you are an experienced programmer. It reads less like a friendly instructor bending over your shoulder guiding you along, and more as someone standing at a podium reading from an encyclopedia using incredibly distilled language that gets quite tedious after a while. As others have already pointed this out, I thought I would include some specific examples to illustrate.
Here is a sample of text from Chapter 7:
"The XHTML transitional and strict DOCTYPEs trigger standards mode for most browsers, depending on whether the page is served up as XHTML with an optional XML prolog."
I had to read this several times to first find the verb. At no time is 'transitional' defined, nor is the concept of 'XML prolog'. It's mentioned once here and then dropped. Head swimming. I want to roll up this sentence and toss it back.
Not to belabor the point, but there was one needlessly complicated example (5-5) to illustrate embedded functions where a function is called from within a return statement from inside a function inside another function. This makes my head want to explode. I wish the author spent at least a paragraph trying to explain exactly how this would work, because it's not at all clear.