Pragmatic Guide to Subversion
Author: Mike Mason
Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf, 2010
Pages: 150
ISBN: 978-1934356616
Aimed at: Team developers
Rating: 3
Pros: Reference, suitable for beginners to Subversion
Cons: Lacks depth
Reviewed by: Alex Armstrong

A slim, task-based guide to the Subversion source control system.

While Git might be gaining ground as the source control application of choice, a lot of people still use Subversion and a lot make a positive choice to use it. This is a small book packed with instructions on getting using Subversion.

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The first part is composed of six tasks that get you started. At this stage it assumes that you have a Subversion server ready to use or that you are using a hosted service, so getting started means using a command line or graphical client. Part II is composed of 16 common tasks - checking out , making changes, committing changes and so on.

From here we have working with a team, using the history, creating a branch and file locking. Part VII is about setting up a server including using a hosted service. It also covers details such as backup and restore. Finally we have a section on advanced topics which deals with working with properties, externals and so on.

In total the book covers 48 tasks and many of them are fairly short - the sort of thing you could discover how to do in a few minutes of searching the documentation. They really only serve to make sure you know what to do next. You also have to know a little about version control to make sense of what the tasks are telling you to do - this isn't a tutorial on the problems of version control.

I'm also not sure it is senseitble to have the section on installing a subversion server so later in the book. It isn't a difficult task and many readers might well want to set up a local server just to try things out. The final warning is that the tasks don't go deep into what can go wrong.

Overall this is a book suitable for the complete beginner who is too lazy to read the documentation or who needs a printed copy. If you know anything about Subversion then it could also act as a reference guide. So the final verdict has to be that this book isn't essential reading, but you might find it useful nevertheless.


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New Programmer's Survival Manual

Author: Joshua D. Carter
Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf, 2010
Pages: 300
ISBN: 978-1934356814
Aimed at: New entrants to professional programming
Rating: 5
Pros: Readable and relevant
Cons: Less applicable to small workplaces
Reviewed by: Sue Gee

If you are embarking on a career as a programmer will this bo [ ... ]



Programming With Javascript

Author: John David Dionisio & Ray Toal
Publisher: Jones & Bartlett
Pages: 670
ISBN: 978-0763780609
Audience: Students enrolled on CS1 courses
Rating: 4
Reviewer: Mike James

A book that aims to teach you about computer science and the bigger picture using JavaScript.


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