February 18, 2005 Newsletter

O’Reilly News for User Group Members
February 18, 2005
Book News
-Head First Java, 2nd Edition
-Linux Device Drivers, 3rd Edition
-Surviving PC Disasters, Mishaps, and Blunders
-Linux Network Administrator’s Guide, 3rd Edition
-Windows XP in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition
Upcoming Events
-Adam Goldstein (“AppleScript: The Missing Manual”), Apple Store,
Short Hills, NJ–February 25th
-Jim Aspinwall (“PC Hacks”), Golden Gate Computer Society,
San Rafael, CA–February 28
-O’Reilly at PhotoShop World, Las Vegas, NV–March 9
-Gordon Meyer (“Smart Home Hacks”), North Coast Mac Users Group,
Rohnert Park, CA–March 15
-Sarah Milstein (“Google: The Missing Manual”), Golden Gate Computer
Society, San Rafael, CA–March 28

Conference News
-Register for the 2005 O’Reilly Emerging Technology Conference,
San Diego, CA–March 14-17
-Register for the 2005 MySQL Users Conference,
Santa Clara, CA–April 18-21
-MAKE on Slashdot
-Getting Real-Time Data From the Web in Excel
-Stewart Butterfield on Flickr
-Jolt Awards Finalists
-500 O’Reilly Books on Safari
-Fear and Loathing in Information Security
-Object Oriented PHP Programming & Performance
-Michael Stutz on Computer Outlook/KLAV Radio
-Writing Apache’s Logs to MySQL
-iPod shuffle Tips and Tricks
-Apache and AppleScript
-Encrypting Connection Strings in Web.config
-Building the Perfect Budget PC, Part 1
-JDMK and Legacy IT Management
-Eclipse Plugins Exposed, Part 1: A First Glimpse
-High Definition in Focus at 2005 Sundance Festival
-Raymond Soemarsono: Natural Eye
-Introduction to Browser Specific CSS Hacks
-Web Programming Certificate Series Extended until February 28

Book News
Did you know you can request a free book to review for your
group? Ask your group leader for more information.

For book review writing tips and suggestions, go to:

Don’t forget, you can receive 20% off any O’Reilly, No Starch,
Paraglyph, Pragmatic Bookshelf, SitePoint, or Syngress book you
purchase directly from O’Reilly.
Just use code DSUG when ordering online or by phone 800-998-9938.

***Free ground shipping is available for online orders of at
least $29.95 that go to a single U.S. address. This offer
applies to U.S. delivery addresses in the 50 states and Puerto Rico.
For more details, go to:

New Releases
***Head First Java, 2nd Edition
Publisher: O’Reilly
ISBN: 0596009208
“Head First Java, 2nd Edition” delivers a highly interactive,
multi-sensory learning experience that lets new programmers pick up the
fundamentals of the Java language quickly. Through mind-stretching
exercises, memorable analogies, humorous pictures, and casual language,
“Head First Java” encourages readers to think like Java programmers. This
revised second edition focuses on Java 5.0, the latest version of the Java
development platform.

Chapter 2, “A Trip to Objectville,” and Chapter 8, “Serious
are available online:

***Linux Device Drivers, 3rd Edition
Publisher: O’Reilly
ISBN: 0596005903
Over the years, this best-selling guide has helped countless programmers
learn how to support computer peripherals and how to develop new hardware
under the Linux operating system. Now, with this third edition, it’s even
more helpful, covering all the significant changes to Version 2.6 of the
Linux kernel. The guide even includes full-featured examples that
programmers can compile and run without special hardware.

Chapter 13, “USB Drivers,” is available online:

***Surviving PC Disasters, Mishaps, and Blunders
Publisher: Paraglyph Press
ISBN: 1932111980
“Surviving PC Disasters, Mishaps, and Blunders” is the must-have survival
guide for every PC user. Written in an engaging, reassuring, and fun
style, it gives you the answers you need immediately to fix the thorniest
PC problems. It also provides valuable insight on measures that can
prevent a difficult and often expensive cure. (Who’s got money to waste
these days on fixing mishaps and blunders anyway?)

***Linux Network Administrator’s Guide, 3rd Edition
Publisher: O’Reilly
ISBN: 0596005482
This refreshed resource takes an in-depth look at everything you need to
know to join a network. Topics covered include all of the essential
networking software that comes with the Linux operating system, plus
information on a host of cutting-edge services including wireless hubs,
spam filtering, IPv6, OpenLDAP, and more.

Chapter 18, “Wireless Networking,” is available online:

***Windows XP in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition
Publisher: O’Reilly
ISBN: 0596009003
“Windows XP in a Nutshell, 2nd Edition” documents everything there is to
know about the world’s most widely used operating system. Updated to
include information on the security technologies featured in Service Pack
2 (SP2), this must-have desktop reference is dedicated to making your
time at the computer safer, easier, and more fun. It’s the ultimate
resource for IT professionals and Windows XP power users everywhere.

Chapter 8, “The Registry,” is available online:

Upcoming Events
***For more events, please see:

***Adam Goldstein (“AppleScript: The Missing Manual”), Apple Store,
Short Hills, NJ–February 25th
Adam will be giving and talk and signing books. Adam was a technical
editor for O’Reilly’s “Mac OS X: The Missing Manual.” When he’s not
writing books or code, Adam attends high school in New Jersey, where he
is captain of the Debate and Quizbowl teams and an editor of the school

Read a recent review of Adam’s book on Slashdot:

Apple Store Short Hills at 7pm February 25th
1200 Morris Turnpike
Short Hills, NJ 07078
(973) 467-4890

***Jim Aspinwall (“PC Hacks”), Golden Gate Computer Society,
San Rafael, CA–February 28
Jim will be giving a talk on “Computer Security, PC Hacks, and
Troubleshooting Tips.”
The meeting starts at 7:15 pm at the Embassy Suites Hotel,101 McInnis
Parkway, San Rafael.

***O’Reilly at PhotoShop World, Las Vegas, NV–March 9
Come by and say hi and check out our latest Digital Media books at our
booth (#220).
Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas, NV.

Photoshop World | Replay Sale

***Gordon Meyer (“Smart Home Hacks”), North Coast Mac Users Group,
Rohnert Park, CA–March 15
Gordon will be presenting automation tips and hacks from his book. The
meeting starts at 7pm at the Rohnert Park Senior Center, 6800 Hunter
Drive–Suite A, Rohnert Park.

***Sarah Milstein (“Google: The Missing Manual”), Golden Gate Computer
Society, San Rafael, CA–March 28
An O’Reilly editor and author, Sarah will start with the Google basics
and quickly move on to the sophisticated ways to search, covering
search syntax, techniques, and hidden tricks to hone in on relevant
content. The meeting starts at 7:15 pm at the Embassy Suites Hotel,
101 McInnis Parkway, San Rafael.

Conference News
***2005 O’Reilly Emerging Technology Conference,
San Diego, CA–March 14-17
This year’s conference theme is “Remix,” which infuses ETech’s
roll-up-your-sleeves tutorials, to-the-point plenary presentations, and
real world focused breakout sessions. Come to ETech and discover how
applications and hardware are being deconstructed and recombined in
unexpected ways. Learn how users and customers are influencing new
interfaces, devices, business models, and services. For all the scoop on
tutorials, featured speakers, and conference events, check out:

User group members use code DSUG when you register, and receive 20% off
the registration price.

To register for the conference, go to:

***Register for the 2005 MySQL Users Conference, Santa Clara, CA–
April 18-21
The MySQL Users Conference, co-presented by O’Reilly Media and MySQL AB,
brings together experts, users, and industry leaders with unique MySQL
insights, offering attendees a detailed look into new features in MySQL
5.0, sessions and workshops designed to teach best practices, and
exposure to new open source technologies.
For more information, go to:

User Group members who register before Febuary 28, 2005 get a double
discount. Use code DSUG when you register, and receive 20% off the
early registration price.

To register for the conference, go to:

News From O’Reilly & Beyond
General News
***User Groups Benefit from Safari
When O’Reilly developers needed someone to user-test the new Safari
Affiliate Program, Stephen Henry from the North Coast Mac Users Group was
the ideal choice. Situated 40 miles north of San Francisco, NCMUG has
been active since the Mac first arrived in 1984. Henry created an excellent
working example of how user groups can implement the Affiliate Program to
benefit their members. Ed Stephenson brings you the details.

****MAKE on Slashdot

The MAKE blog is available at:

MAKE Subscriptions Available
The annual subscription price for four issues is $34.95. When you
subscribe with this link, you’ll get a free issue–the first one plus
four more for $34.95. So subscribe for yourself or friends with this
great offer for charter subscribers: five volumes for the cost of four.
Subscribe at:

***Getting Real-Time Data From the Web in Excel
Did you know that you can use Excel for more than just storing and
organizing static data? In this article, Matthew MacDonald, author of
“Excel: The Missing Manual,” shows you how to use Excel as a tool to
handle up-to-the-minute information like sales figures and currency
exchange rates.

***Stewart Butterfield on Flickr
Not even a year old and still in beta, Flickr is a revolutionary photo
storage, sharing, and organization application boasting roughly 270,000
members. Richard Koman catches Flickr CEO Stewart Butterfield for a few
words on what has made Flickr so revolutionary and where it may be


***Jolt Awards Finalists
“Software Development Magazine” recently announced the finalists for the
15th Annual Jolt Product Excellence Awards. Several O’Reilly titles and
sites were nominated: “Head First Design Patterns” in the General Books
category; and “Better, Faster, Lighter Java,” “Head First Servlets &
JSP,” “Hibernate: A Developer’s Notebook,” and “Mono: A
Developer’s Notebook” in the Technical Books category. Java.net
and the O’Reilly Network were named finalists in the Web
Sites and Developer Networks category.

***500 O’Reilly Books on Safari
O’Reilly now boasts over 500 books on Safari, the premier electronic
reference library for IT professionals and programmers. With Safari, you
can search electronic versions of a broad range of the best technical
books from leading publishers including O’Reilly. Check out our newest
title, “All About Your iPod Photo,” and learn how to get the most out of
your favorite toy. Give Safari a try today with a free trial

Open Source
***Fear and Loathing in Information Security
“Society has always treated innovators and whistle blowers with
ambivalence,” writes author Michael D. Bauer in reference to hackers. In
this article, Michael discusses why information security professionals
demonize hackers and why that tendency is both irrational and
counterproductive. Michael is the author of “Linux Server Security, 2nd

***Object Oriented PHP Programming & Performance
Harry explores the trade-offs between object oriented and procedural
programming in PHP in a lengthy discussion on the pros and cons of each.

***Michael Stutz on Computer Outlook/KLAV Radio
Listen to the author of No Starch’s “The Linux Cookbook, 2nd Edition.”

***Writing Apache’s Logs to MySQL
Adding a few performance statistics to your Apache httpd logs can help
you profile your applications. Digging through flat files for information is
a drag, though. Logging to a relational database can make reporting and
analysis much more convenient. Chris Josephes demonstrates how to install
and configure mod_log_mysql and shows off what you can do with it.

***iPod shuffle Tips and Tricks
The iPod shuffle is the easiest-to-use iPod to date. But that doesn’t
mean you can’t customize how you listen and upload music. Scott
Knaster shows you some very handy tips and tricks for the shuffle
and iTunes 4.7.1.

***Apache and AppleScript
AppleScript traditionally interacts with Mac applications and Apache is
the web server that powers most of the Internet. David Miller shows you
how AppleScript can invoke Unix utilities through its do shell script
command, thereby creating some interesting intersections with Apache.

***Encrypting Connection Strings in Web.config
One of the best practices in ASP.NET is to save your database connection
strings in the Web.config file instead of hard-coding it in your code.
It’s not such a good idea to save your connection strings as plain text
in Web.config–you should ideally encrypt the connection strings so it
leaves no chance for a potential hacker to easily get more information
about your database server. In ASP.NET 2.0, Microsoft has taken this further
by allowing you to encrypt the connection strings in Web.config, all without
much plumbing on your part. In this new article by Wei-Meng Lee, he shows
you how it works.

***Building the Perfect Budget PC, Part 1
You can build a powerhouse system without breaking the bank. In this
first part of a two-part article, Robert Bruce Thompson and Barbara Fritchman
Thompson, authors of “Building the Perfect PC,” show you which components
to buy.

***JDMK and Legacy IT Management
Keeping a network with legacy (and possibly unreliable) devices is nearly
impossible without some automated help. Stephen Morris shows how to use
the Java Dynamic Management Kit to keep tabs on your network and find
potential points of failure.

***Eclipse Plugins Exposed, Part 1: A First Glimpse
Many developers use Eclipse out of the box as an IDE, never investigating
its powerful extensibility. But as Emmanuel Proulx shows in this first
installment of a new series, Eclipse’s modular system of plugins allow
you to customize it to your suit your development needs.

Digital Media
***High Definition in Focus at 2005 Sundance Festival
Cheaper than film, bigger and better than plain, old digital video,
high-definition digital video definitely came into its own during this
year’s Sundance Film Festival. According to Sony, nearly half of the
features, documentaries, and shorts screened in Park City were shot in
Susan Boyer reports.

***Raymond Soemarsono: Natural Eye
Some people are meant to be artists. Self-taught photographer Raymond
Soemarsono has a natural eye for composing stunning landscape scenes,
then taming his digital camera to record them according to his vision. His
gallery features many places with which you’re probably familiar. Maybe
it’s time to get in the car and revisit them?

***Introduction to Browser Specific CSS Hacks
CSS leaves your layout open to interpretation by browsers…or does it?
In this hands-on trouble-shooter, Trenton explains why and how different
browser-specific CSS hacks work–and provides code to help you regain
control over your layouts.

***Web Programming Certificate Series Extended until February 28
This six-course series from the O’Reilly Learning Lab teaches you the
skills needed for web programming, web administration, and web site
development. You’ll learn HTML, JavaScript, XML, SQL, Perl, and Unix.
Upon completion of the series, students receive a Certificate of Professional
Development from the University of Illinois Office of Continuing Education.
Sign up today and save 40% on all Web Programming Certificate courses.
Offer extended until February 28.

From Your Peers
Don’t forget to check out the O’Reilly UG wiki to see what user groups
across the globe are up to:

Until next time–


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