Steven Mandel

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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 functions don't add any new functionality per se as you could create the queries the old way; however, in general the functions are much more efficient. One very neat capability of these functions is to allow you to include non-aggregated columns in an aggregated query, which is a big limitatio... (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)

Book Reviews

Murach's Beginning Visual Basic .NET Ms. Prince's goal in writing this book is to teach beginners how to develop simple but complete Windows applications. She shows users how to code, test, and debug their applications as well. The book is divided into five sections. The first section teaches you how to code and test object-oriented programs. The second section teaches you how to develop graphical user interfaces. The third section introduces you to .NET classes, arrays, structures, and XML. The fourth section touches upon database development using ADO.NET. For the examples in t... (more)

Book Reviews

.NET - A Complete Development Cycle It's all a question of balance. You can apply these words of wisdom to managing software development projects and to planning out the contents of a book, but it's still a tightrope walk. Gunther Lenz and Thomas Moeller have learned this balance from their many software projects and now try to reflect their experience in this book - which, as the cover says - covers the complete development cycle of a .NET software project. In almost minute detail then we are taken through the analysis, design, implementation, deployment, and maintenance strategi... (more)

.NET Gotchas

You might be wondering what this book is all about. As the author explains, the dictionary's definition of a gotcha is "an unexpected usually disconcerting challenge, revelation, or catch". Mr. Subramaniam defines the gotchas in his book as "those things that pop up unexpectedly when you're programming in .NET. … In this book I focus on the .NET framework and features that have consistently exhibited behavior that was not obvious to me." Mr. Subramaniam explains that the purpose of his book is not just to explain how to use a technology "but how to use it well and do thing... (more)