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[techbooks] REVIEW: "Dictionary of Networking", Peter Dyson

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  • Rob Slade, doting grandpa of Ryan and Tr
    BKNPDCNT.RVW 990911 Dictionary of Networking , Peter Dyson, 1999, 0-7821-2461-5, U$29.99/C$45.00/UK#19.99 %A Peter Dyson %C 1151 Marina Village Parkway,
    Message 1 of 1 , Oct 26, 1999
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      BKNPDCNT.RVW 990911

      "Dictionary of Networking", Peter Dyson, 1999, 0-7821-2461-5,
      U$29.99/C$45.00/UK#19.99
      %A Peter Dyson
      %C 1151 Marina Village Parkway, Alameda, CA 94501
      %D 1999
      %G 0-7821-2461-5
      %I Sybex Computer Books
      %O U$29.99/C$45.00/UK#19.99 800-227-2346 Fax: 510-523-2373
      %P 448 p. + CD-ROM
      %T "Dictionary of Networking, Third Edition"

      The title of the first edition was "Novell's Dictionary of
      Networking," and it still shows in the significant number of entries
      that are specific commands for Novell Netware. A large number of
      entries still relate to personal computers, as opposed to networking
      or communications. The Internet now gets a few more terms included,
      but those are not always reliable. The dropping of any modifiers and
      the claim to the complete field of networking is not supported by the
      material included in this book.

      While the entries are generally more extensive, the number of listings
      is not much greater than for the old glossaries that got used as
      promotional giveaways by various networking companies. In most cases,
      the explanations and definitions are quite sound, although the
      professional will note many omissions or not-quite-right errors. ATM
      (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) has been corrected since the second
      edition, but a number of errors still remain. It is true that, if you
      are using four bit packets, Hamming code must attach three redundant
      bits to each. However, it is much more effective in a larger scale,
      requiring, for example, only eight redundant bits for a 56 bit data
      packet. Cable testers use the nominal velocity of propagation to test
      the length of an intact cable segment, but, more importantly, a
      reading less than the cable length indicates an internal break in the
      cable being tested. Most people will only have seen a bang path in an
      older email address, but it is a machine, rather than email, address
      and also carries routing information.

      In terms of organization, symbols are spelled out. Numbers are
      written in digits, but listed in order as if they were spelled out.

      Yes, it has an entry for virus. No, it's not any good.

      Microsoft terminology joins Novell jargon in this latest edition. In
      fact, a very significant proportion of the material in the glossary
      relates to companies, organizations, or proprietary programs. While
      this might seem, at first thought, reasonably useful, it turns out to
      be rather annoying in practice. The number of proprietary terms
      possible are enormous, and, unless you are actually using that
      technology, irrelevant to anything else. The end result tends to feel
      like a bunch of unboxed ads slipped in between the material you are
      looking for.

      Unfortunately, this work simply does not have any distinctive that
      would recommend it above what is already available.

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 1999 BKNPDCNT.RVW 990911

      ====================== (quote inserted randomly by Pegasus Mailer)
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      The Holocaust was an obscene period in our nation's history. I
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      I didn't live in this century. - Dan Quayle, 9/15/88
      http://victoria.tc.ca/techrev or http://sun.soci.niu.edu/~rslade
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