Elliotte Rusty Harold is that rare technical author who can write about anything and make it interesting. In this case, he has written 1,000 pages on XML providing us with an excellent guide book to this technology. Whether you are a beginner or advanced user of XML, there will be something in this book for you.
The book is divided into five parts. The first part discusses the basics of XML giving us an introduction to what XML is, what it is used for, and explaining the basics of creating a well-formed XML document. Part two discusses DTDs and explains how namespaces are used. Part three looks at various style languages including CSS and XSL. The section on CSS will be useful to anyone wishing to use CSS to format their HTML documents. Part four gives us a tour of some supplemental XML technologies including XLinks, XPointers, XInclude, and Schemas. The chapter that most interested me was on Schemas and the explanations were clear and complete, leaving no mystery about how to use this technology. The final part looks at a few XML applications including XHTML, RDDL, and SVG. The book does not cover writing programs to process XML documents using SAX or DOM, for example. The author has another book on that topic if that is of interest to you.
Each part of the book does an exceptional job of explaining the topic. The author gives us plenty of examples to make the text crystal clear. The author writes as a colleague helping out fellow programmers and not as an instructor droning away at a blackboard. You really get the idea that the author enjoys XML and enjoys explaining it. If you are interested in working with XML this book is truly an indispensable guide.
This earned 5 stars on Amazon. The book is published by Wiley.
This review and all my other reviews can be seen on My Amazon Reviews page.