.NET Patterns Architecture, Design and Process
As you all can probably tell, Addison-Wesley has definitely worked thier way into my favorites list as far as book publishers go. Their Microsoft .NET Development Series is like one hit title after another. Microsoft Press obviously is a strong player in this market and for a while it looked like Dan & Gary and the guys at APress was going to give them some serious competition. Then I think AW decided they wanted to play in this game and came out strong. I have yet to come across anything they've put out (with the possible example of Shaun Wildermuth's ADO.NET stinker) that didn't kick a33 - and I have to admit that even Shaun's book is still a first rate job and my gripes with it are mostly personal. I still think Apress has a lot of talent and Kathleen Dollard's Code Generation title is proof of that but AW seems poised to run the show in the .NET Book market. I just came across another shining example of some of their stuff... .NET Patterns Architecture, Design and Process . Now I have to admit that i've had some trouble really getting my arms around Patterns. Sure, I understand what they are and what they do, but as far as intentionally using them, or 'thinking in patterns', well, it just hasn't happened. I've read quite a few books on Patterns but they have seemed like this foggy topic that I just never could seem to really 'get'. This book changed all of this. I loved it from start to finish. You don't have to be a Pattern junkie to understand it but it's not a book for rookies either. I guess what I liked best is that it's focused on .NET and that happens to be what's occupying most of my life right now. As such, everything seemed familiar and it wasn't hard to envision scenarios that I could employ them in regarding my existing code. The only really hard part of the book is trying to prononce Christian Thilmany's name.
Paul Yao just put out two CF books, which are the same book written in both C# and VB.NET. Every book on the CF that I've come across so far has been great. Dan Fergus and Larry Roof's The Definitive Guide to the CF was one of the best books I've come across on the subject. Rob Tiffany's Sql Server CE Database Development with the .NET CF is another Gem. Similarly, Andy's book is a must have for any CF developer. But AW Press decided they were going to get into this market and started off with a bang. First they got Jon Box, a Microsoft Regional Directory and Dan Fox (both of Quilogy ) together for a short but very well done book on best practices for the CF. Then they got Paul involved. His book is like nothing I've come across before. When I was reading the credits I noticed that Paul worked with Charles Petzold and Peter Norton on a few books which says quite a bit. When I finally read through his book (which is actually two books - two for C# and two for VB.NET) I was shocked. Every single detail that you can possibly think of is covered. He's an amazing writer and his passion for his work is very clear here. I had the privilege of meeting Paul at the MVP summit and I was lucky enough to get to sit next to him on the last day. The guy is a machine. He had his laptop out and was jamming away on OneNote and was the most focused person I think I've ever seen - Computer Science's answer to Lance Armstrong.
Anyway, if you want to learn about the CF, you will want to buy each of the books above, and Paul's is no exception. The only thing I can criticize about it is that it's huge and if you are scrawny or weak, moving it around will be a chore. All I can say is AW picked another Winner and after reading Paul's stuff, there's no doubt he's a winner.