MariaDB Crash Course

Author: Ben Forta
Publisher: Addison-Wesley, 2011
Pages: 286
ISBN: 978-0321799944
Aimed at: New users of MariaDB who don’t know SQL
Rating: 4.5
Pros:Clearly written and doesn’t stray from what you really need to know
Cons:Some underlying concepts are skimmed over
Reviewed by:Kay Ewbank

As an open source offshoot of MySQL, MariaDB may well tempt database novices. Does this book help?

 

MariaDB Crash Course is based on Ben Forta’s Teach Yourself SQL in 10 Minutes, but is obviously designed for use with MariaDB, the offshoot of MySQL. MariaDB Crash Course is designed to take someone who’s new with databases from the absolute beginning of connecting to a MariaDB database all the way through ‘basic’ SQL, ending the main coverage with triggers, stored procedures and transactions. It is split into short, well explained chapters each concentrating on a single SQL command. The book is well laid out, the examples are simple and clear, and there’s very little waffling.


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Some concepts are described in very basic terms, but the descriptions should be enough to give the reader a grasp of the underlying idea and why it’s important. This isn’t the book to go for if you’re trying to understand ideas such as third normal form in relational databases, but it’s not claiming to cover such material. It does what it says on the can, it gives a crash course in MariaDB.

The one caveat in this relates to the final section of the book. This looks at areas that are probably beyond the scope of the readership of the rest of the book - using different character sets and collation sequences, managing database users, reviewing log files, and improving performance. Forta does stick to the basics in each of these cases, so the chapter on improving performance is a two page list of dos and don’ts such as using UNION on multiple Selects rather than a sequence of OR conditions.

Overall, I thought the book was well written and well placed for its target audience. Of course, you may think that a database novice is unlikely to end up using MariaDB. However, the advantages MariaDB offers in terms of being open source, having Monty Widenius as one of its creators, and essentially of being Oracle-free MySQL may well tempt database novices.


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Java for Programmers (2e)

Author: Paul J. Deitel & Harvey M. Deitel
Publisher: Prentice Hall, 2011
Pages: 1168
ISBN: 978-0132821544
Aimed at: Programmers moving to Java; students
Rating: 3.5
Pros: Comprehensive, suitable as a text book
Cons: Poor organisation of ideas
Reviewed by: Ian Elliot

The latest edition of the Deitel tom [ ... ]



Making Things See

Author: Greg Borenstein
Publisher: O'Reilly
Pages: 440
ISBN: 978-1449307073
Aimed at: Kinect enthusiasts
Rating: 4.5
Pros: Lots of hands-on projects
Cons: Uses the open source drivers so misses some features
Reviewed by: Harry Fairhead

At last a book about how to use the Kinect to do interesting things.


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Last Updated ( Tuesday, 22 November 2011 )
 
 

   
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