Tuesday, July 13, 2004

The Bookstore - Yippie Skippie

I went to the bookstore the other day. I love bookstores! - they are my college library. In college I was one of those kids that actually went to the library. When I pledged with my fraternity - I already knew where the library was - some of my pledge brothers actually had to dig out the map and locate the building on campus.

It could also be that as a little boy my father owned a college bookstore (same campus where I would end up going to school) and I grew up in a crib in the back among the books.

It might be that I was the only kid growing up that had a room in his house called the library, big chairs, well the old white oak house had big chairs and an ugly couch. The room had walls with shelves of books, and my dad; being the eclectic he was, had a book on every subject.

Anyway back to the post - I picked up two new books to add to my growing collection of Web/PHP/MySQL books and then as an after thought I picked up a new hacking/security book.

MySQL/PHP Database Applications
To quote the review, "Rather than make up trivial programs just to illustrate aspects of the MySQL/PHP environment, this book features code snippets, each half a page or so in length, that illustrate the behavior of key code structures. For example, in explaining conditional statements in PHP, the book gives you a no-frills IF statement with real values in place. It's not always obvious how the code structures will behave in practice, but the book does a consistently good job of commenting intelligently on the place of each aspect of the language in a well-designed application. The latter half of the book attacks specific problems--a chat system, a guest book, and so on--and walks through the setup of MySQL and each important PHP function for each. --David Wall" Couldn't have described it any better.

Dreamweaver MX 2004 - The Missing Manual
If you haven't ever picked up a missing manual - you have been missing out on the secrets of most every operating system, software application currently being used. I have read the OS X book, the iPod book, and even the Windoze XP book. These are great, nice simple lessons that show me how to easily take my raw php/mysql and add it to beautifully created web pages. Anything that helps me look better than I normally look works for me.

and finally a book that scares me a lot -

Stealing the Network: How to Own a Continent
This books scares me in multiple ways - First as a wannabe hacker in my youth I am frightened to see how I could have been so easily swayed to make a real nuisance of myself for someone else's gain. Secondly as the acting Director of Security, building a FTTH network that will give some awesome capabilities to some misguided youth (nothing wrong with this - I was misguided) I see the endless possibilities that someone could take this network too. Finally I read this book and wonder to myself, (me wondering) "This book teaches those script kiddies that if they actually learned 2+2=4, or how to use MS Project, they too could be real nuisances to society. So in the end I give this book all my recommendation - want to understand how that dark world you are trying to protect your systems from work - read the first book in the series Stealing the Network: How to Own the Box Want to understand how your whole network could fit into someone's puzzle and be used to for their gain read the second book. I can't wait for the next book.

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