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CGI Programming 101

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List Price: $24.95
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Spotlight Customer Reviews

Average Customer Rating: 4.45

Customer Rating: 4
Summary: Can't beat this if you want to start rightaway.
Comment: I have only some basic programming experience. I wanted to go beyond HTML and bought some books including Perl & CGI for the WWW by Elizabeth Castro.

CGI 101 does not waste any time getting you started. But the pace remains easy and steady. This book teaches with examples. The author does not explain all the theory behind Perl and the example scripts. But the examples are kept very simple and illustrate their point really well. Sometimes I did wish for a little more explanation of certain lines in the example scripts. But the author does not attempt to force too much on you all at once. Advanced topics are introduced by going back and applying them into the earlier basic scripts really beautifully. What's special about this book is that it keeps things so simple that you will just read and go "Aha! So that's how they do it." You will want to sit down and try out the examples straightaway. I was pleased to find out that this little book covers almost all the things you may want to do on your website including connecting and using databases. For a programming book I really enjoyed reading this one! Definitely worth more than the low price.

Customer Rating: 5
Summary: A "MUST HAVE"!
Comment: This book is the single most helpful text around, in my opinion. I have been looking in "How to write CGI Programs" books in major bookstores for quite a while, but I have not found anything nearly as comprehensive and easy to read as this book. It taught me, a virtual Perl novice (but not a programming novice!), how to write a comprehensive Internet questionnaire in a matter of a couple of days. An added bonus is the Internet site linked to the book, including the discussion board where the author actually answered my programming questions.

Customer Rating: 5
Summary: Best Concise Treatment Available
Comment: I have spent approx. $500 on Perl/CGI books and I will tell you that this is the best concise treatment available. There is no other book that provides as good an overview without leaving out critical issues, such file locking and security considerations. It remains my most frequently used reference. It is very well written and it does not go into unnecessary details.

My recommendation for anyone considering using Perl/CGI is to start with this book and then to build your library based on your specialized needs (algorithms, pattern matching, exotic data structures, etc). If all you wish to do is some solid Perl programming or to power up a basic web site, this is all you will need.

Do not forget to look at the free preview chapters available at the author's web site. You will also find the code for all the examples there, which I have found myself constantly reusing.