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Steven Mandel

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One of the most powerful tools that a developer can use for validating data is the regular expression. A regular expression makes use of pattern matching to determine if an item fits within the definition of the pattern. Some validation that might take many lines of code to validate can be simply validated by building the correct pattern. However, many developers are put off by the feeling that regular expressions are too hard to master. Several months ago, I started reading a book called Regular Expression Recipes: A Problem-Solution Approach by Nathan Good. It became quite clear to me as I began the first chapter that while the recipes were quite good, they really applied to solutions in the Unix world as opposed to the .NET universe. Wistfully I thought, wouldn't it be nice if Mr. Good came out with a book that targeted regular expressions for the .NET developer? ... (more)

Book Review: Sams Teach Yourself ASP.NET 4

There are certain authors whose books I look forward to reading because they don't just repackage a manual but offer practical real-work examples and advice. One such author is Scott Mitchell. He has revised his previous version of this book to encompass ASP.NET 4 . This book is well written and directed at beginners. If, however, you have the 3.5 version of this book, I would not recommend this version as there is very little new being offered. On the other hand, if you are new to ASP.NET, this book is a great starting-off point to learning the basics of ASP.NET 4 The book is d... (more)

Book Review: Murach's SQL Server 2012 for Developers

Murach's SQL Server 2012 for Developers by Brian Syverson and Joel Murach is an introduction to SQL Server 2012 and to developing key T-SQL (Transaction SQL) skills to become a successful developer. T-SQL is the language used by SQL Server to communicate with SQL Server databases. This book continues the Murach philosophy of using twinned pages to enhance the learning experience by repeating and enhancing the information on the first page with information on the facing page. I like this approach as it helps to reinforce the concepts being presented. The book contains 23 chapters... (more)

Book Review: Expert T-SQL Window Functions in SQL Server | @CloudExpo #API #Cloud #TSQL #SQLServer

There is an old saying that good things come in small packages. This saying definitely applies to this book, which focuses in on a set of functions that most people are not aware of that are available in SQL Server. To start off with we need to answer the following question: What are T-SQL Window functions? These functions have nothing to do with the Microsoft Windows API. They are in essence a way to create a window into your data as you process each line in a query. Their strength lies in the ease with which you can solve tricky queries. The authors also point out that these fu... (more)

Book Reviews

Making the Technical Sale I came upon this book under very odd circumstances, to say the least. I am a developer first and foremost, so the suggestion by my employer that I sit through a half-day seminar on the art of making technical sales was greeted with less than enthusiasm. Thankfully, the speaker turned out to be a fellow techie - none other than Rick Greenwald, author of several highly technical O'Reilly books about Oracle database technologies. Once I knew this, I was prepared to at least listen. Rick shared with us numerous tips and tricks about making technical sales, ... (more)