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Science Fiction Databases XML/XSLT

Science Fiction
An astounding book. Vernor Vinge is a computer science teacher - and it shows. The technology he creates is not the common sci-fi fare that barely makes sense or is the exact same gizmos that every other book already used, it is really feels new and the same times it feels just like a logical step on our own development.

Really worth reading.
Excellent. I particularly love the faster-than-light logic of the universe and the AIs. The "zones" division of the galaxy makes for some very cool concepts in the technology as well.

The biggest reason to get this book is the Metaverse. It's an spectacular vision of virtual reality. I've read at least a dozen VR concepts, but none had the clarity of this. The way the US government got divided into franchulates is also very cool.

I've read it 3 times and I'm about to read it again, it's one of my favorite books. Don't miss it!

Databases Joe Celko's Database Books I've read several of Joe Celko's books, all were excellent and I highly recommend them:
cover Joe Celko's SQL for Smarties: Advanced SQL Programming

This is not an SQL Beginner's Book. When they added 'Advanced' to the title they were not kidding!
There are a lot of amazing solutions to everyday problems in this book, including some you were probably sure couldn't be solved using SQL alone. Some topics covered are Views, Joins, Partioning Data, Temporal Datatypes, Statistics, Optimization and much more.
coverJoe Celko's Data & Databases : Concepts in Practice

A non-formal book on Data and Databases. Modeling, relational concepts, normalization, denormalization, transactions, etc. Even if you had a formal education in the area, you will find this book worth reading.
cover Joe Celko's Sql Puzzles & Answers

A series of puzzles to make you think on how to solve SQL problems. It also focus on how the answers to the puzzles could be used on your own programming problems.
cover Fundamentals of Database Systems
A more formal look on database theory and practice. A lot of classical relational theory explained in depth, but also covers Object-Oriented Databases, Distributed Databases, Data Warehousing, Data Mining, GIS and Multimedia Databases among many other topics.

XML Books
cover Inside XML
This is an excelent XML tutorial and reference. Not only it explain the basic, but it also goes and explain how to use XML on Javascript, Java, Perl and ASP. Many other topics are also covered, among them, DTD, Schemas, XSL, DOM and SAX (on several parsers), XHTML, RDF, VML, WML, XLinks, XPointers,etc.

The only annoyance it has is the author's tendency to repeat whole examples for highlighted passages, thus using up much more space than just showing the relevant fragments would. The Javascript and Java tutorials felt a bit off-topic as well. However, the clarity of the text does more than make up for it.
coverXML Pocket Reference
A simple, easy to carry XML reference. A bit out of date now.
coverXSLT: Working with XML and HTML
A great reference and tutorial on XSLT. XSLT Programmer's Reference (below) usually have more extensive explanations on reference examples, however I feel the basic explanations of this book are much clearer. The transformation chapters are more extensive, and go into the general process in more depth.
coverXSLT Programmer's Reference 2nd Edition
A very good XSLT reference. Note that it is not very good as a tutorial, but the reference examples and explanations are quite extensive and tend cover various aspects, not only the most obvious ones.