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[techbooks] REVIEW: "The Internet Complete Reference", Harley Hahn

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  • Rob Slade, doting grandpa of Ryan and Tr
    BKINCORF.RVW 981024 The Internet Complete Reference , Harley Hahn, 1996, 0-07-882138-X, U$32.95/C$47.95 %A Harley Hahn %C 300 Water Street, Whitby,
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 7 11:43 AM
      BKINCORF.RVW 981024

      "The Internet Complete Reference", Harley Hahn, 1996, 0-07-882138-X,
      %A Harley Hahn
      %C 300 Water Street, Whitby, Ontario, L1N 9B6
      %C 2600 Tenth St., Berkeley, CA 94710
      %D 1996
      %G 0-07-882138-X
      %I Osborne/McGraw-Hill
      %O U$32.95/C$47.95, 905-430-5000/800-227-0900/800-2MCGRAW
      %P 802 p.
      %T "The Internet Complete Reference, second edition"

      You have to warm to the enthusiasm of a book which says that the
      Internet is more impressive than the pyramids, more beautiful than
      Michelangelo's "David" and more important than the inventions of the
      industrial revolution. In the first paragraph of the Introduction.
      Those of us who are barraged with calls for "point-and-click-
      everything" can be equally heartened by the statement that the
      Internet is not for dummies, though not only for nerds: "It is for
      those people who are willing to think and to learn."

      Having said that, this guide is particularly suited to the new user
      unsure of what to use the Internet for. The material is of limited
      technical depth, and is delivered with humour which lightens the tone.
      Unfortunately, this edition has started down the slippery slope of
      sarcasm that has limited other works.

      Topics covered in the book include a conceptual background to the
      Internet, an overview of applications, as well as the hardware,
      software, and service requirements for connecting to the net. In
      this, and in later chapters discussing specific applications, the
      author recommends some study of the UNIX operating system and its
      tools. In this day of graphical interfaces it may be felt that UNIX
      is redundant, but an understanding of the system can go a long way to
      explaining seeming oddities in net behaviour. As well, many people
      still access the net through community based systems that rely on text
      based tools such as pine and lynx.

      Discussion of mail involves email addressing (with perhaps a little
      too much coverage of sending mail to other networks), email concepts,
      and the pine mail agent. (Oddly, the chapter on mailing lists comes
      near the end of the book.) The World Wide Web has chapters on
      background, graphical browsing, advanced topics, and lynx. There are
      solid explanations of Usenet, gopher, ftp, telnet, talk, IRC (Internet
      Relay Chat), and MUDs (Multiple User Domains).

      Those who know what they want from the Internet may wish to look at
      more specific and detailed works. Too, this volume does tend to
      emphasize Unix and the Unix applications. (Hahn does not neglect
      chances to promote his other books, particularly those on UNIX.)
      Still, this primer does cover much ground that a lot of the newer
      Internet guides neglect.

      Worth considering for the beginning browser.

      copyright Robert M. Slade, 1994, 1998 BKINCORF.RVW 981024

      rslade@... rslade@... robertslade@... p1@...
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