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Web Development Books

Special Request: If you click through to Amazon.com using one of these book links . . . and decide to order that book from them . . . please come back to this page if you wish to check out any other titles below. Thank you!

Stephen W. Plain (editor, Amazon.com Delivers Web Development) selected these as his top 10 titles for 1999:

1. HTML 4 for the World Wide Web: Visual QuickStart Guide -- by Elizabeth Castro

Ask any burgeoning Web-page author what would be ideal in an HTML guide, you'd hear something like this: concise, informative, plenty of examples, kind of fun without being too cute. Elizabeth Castro's "HTML for the World Wide Web" is that dream guide to learning this Web language. Unlike other books that lumber along feeding the reader arcane details, Castro's book keeps to the basics. You'll still learn everything you need to create a great site (where to start off, how to nest tables, how to add in video), but you won't feel overwhelmed by the process.

2. Adobe Photoshop 5.5 Classroom in a Book, Special Web Edition -- by Adobe Creative Team

"Adobe Photoshop 5.5 Classroom in a Book, Special Web Edition," like others in the fine Classroom in a Book series, is somewhere between a manual and a tutorial; the lessons can be read straight through or referenced on a need-to- know basis. Photoshop 5.5, a significant upgrade to the top image-manipulation software, now comes packaged with ImageReady 2, Adobe's Web graphics application. Combined, they comprise an extremely powerful and very user- friendly set of tools for creating well-executed and optimized JPEGs, GIFs, GIF animations, sliced GIFs, rollovers, and many other complex images.

3. Web Style Guide: Basic Design Principles for Creating Web Sites -- by Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton

In 160 pages of expert instruction, authors Patrick J. Lynch and Sarah Horton put the essence of the Yale University Center for Advanced Instructional Media's wonderful online site design guide into traditional print. "Web Style Guide: Basic Design Principles for Creating Web Sites" begins the presentation of its helpful and forward-looking advice with a discussion of the overall process of defining the objectives and users of your Web site, as well as the goals you will use to measure your progress.

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4. JavaScript Bible, 3rd Edition -- by Danny Goodman and Brendan Eich

Danny Goodman has repeatedly proven himself an excellent teacher of programming languages, and this latest edition of the "JavaScript Bible" reinforces his reputation. If you're familiar with HTML and want to endow your pages with the kind of animation and interactivity that JavaScript can provide, this book is the best one you can buy. Goodman covers the JavaScript 1.2 language comprehensively, and focuses on developing documents that fully exploit the capabilities of Netscape Navigator 4.0x.

5. Professional Active Server Pages 2.0 -- by Alex Fedorov et al.

"Professional Active Server Pages 2.0" is a thorough and intelligently organized text that covers all the bases for developing state-of-the-art Web sites powered by Microsoft Web technologies. The book discusses the Internet in terms of the history of client/server systems and describes why it is a better way to deliver scalable, maintainable systems using thin clients. It describes basic Microsoft tools, such as NT4, Internet Information Server (IIS), and Personal Web Server. It then moves toward the basics of using Active Server Pages (ASPs), starting with basic objects (such as the Request, Cookies, and Response objects).

6. XML Bible -- by Elliotte Rusty Harold

The emergence of XML is having an enormous impact on Web development, and scaling the learning curve of this new technology is a priority for many developers. The "XML Bible" offers a superb introduction to the subject and the groundwork for understanding XML's future developments. Author Elliotte Rusty Harold uses a patient, step-by-step discussion that clearly points out the potential of XML without boring his readership with tons of SGML spec-speak. He opens quickly with a "Hello World" example to get the reader coding early, and follows that with a simple but powerful example of XML's data management benefits, which presents baseball statistics.

7. HTML: The Definitive Guide -- by Chuck Musciano and Bill Kennedy

In the most recent edition of the acclaimed "HTML: The Definitive Guide," Musciano and Kennedy look closely at every aspect of HTML and show how to use it wisely to create top-quality Web pages. The book covers HTML 4, Netscape Navigator 4, Microsoft Internet Explorer 4, and the various extensions of each. "HTML: The Definitive Guide" is aimed at beginners as well as those who have more practice in Web-page creation. Readers are assumed to have at least a basic knowledge of computers, including how to use a word processor or text editor and how to deal with files.

8. Dreamweaver 2.0 Hands-On Training -- by Lynda Weinman

Dreamweaver is hot. It seems like every article on Web design focuses on this wildly popular authoring application. So "Dreamweaver 2.0 HOT: Hands-On Training" is an apt title for Web design guru Lynda Weinman's latest how-to manual, a cross-platform tutorial that teaches in a concise and straightforward manner. Everything necessary to create a Web site is covered: image placement, color schemes, links, tables, frames, rollovers, cascading style sheets, DHTML, and more. Even complicated page structuring is made easy.

9. Dynamic HTML: The Definitive Reference -- by Danny Goodman

Danny Goodman felt that he couldn't trust any of the documentation on Dynamic HTML (DHTML) that he read (too many contradictions), so he wrote "Dynamic HTML: The Definitive Reference" for working with his own clients. After testing tags and techniques on multiple releases of the main browsers, Goodman came up with very practical information-- some of which you may not find in any other resource. Goodman assumes a solid foundation, if not expertise, in basic HTML and an understanding of what DHTML is all about.

10. JavaScript: The Definitive Guide -- by David Flanagan

In typical O'Reilly & Associates fashion, "JavaScript: The Definitive Guide" documents every nuance of the JavaScript 1.1 language specification. It may appear dry on the surface (many pages have the spare style of Unix online documentation), but this is the book you'll pull off your shelf when you want to know which method returns the primitive value of an object.

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