REVIEW: "Wireless Web", Frank P. Coyle
- BKWRLSWB.RVW 20010925
"Wireless Web", Frank P. Coyle, 2001, 0-201-72217-8, U$39.99/C$59.95
%A Frank P. Coyle
%C P.O. Box 520, 26 Prince Andrew Place, Don Mills, Ontario M3C 2T8
%I Addison-Wesley Publishing Co.
%O U$39.99/C$59.95 416-447-5101 fax: 416-443-0948 bkexpress@...
%P 248 p.
%T "Wireless Web: A Manager's Guide"
The introduction outlines three audiences for the book. They can be
condensed into two: executives and consultants who only need to know
the implications of the technology, and technical managers, who need
to know the gritty details. These two groups are almost completely
disjoint, and so it is odd that the author even attempts to address
both. However, a significant effort has been made to design the book
in such a way that the core text can contain the details, while
highlights are addressed in marginal notes that can be skimmed.
Chapter one provides an overview of the convergence of the Internet
and wireless technology. While it touches on the significance of the
change in technology, ultimately the document gets bogged down in
voice command examples. Devices are discussed in chapter two, but in
spite of the problems noted with incompatibility there is no
examination of standardization. A blue sky future is predicted for
the Bluetooth protocol. in chapter three, but no information about how
to implement real applications. A mixed bag of protocols, some
addressing different levels of the communications stack, are very
tersely introduced in chapter four. Protocols still on the drawing
board are mentioned in chapter five. Chapter six looks at the
Wireless Application Protocol (WAP). The usual non-explanation of XML
(eXtensible Markup Language) is given in chapter seven: it would
probably be better to say that WML (Wireless Markup Language, used in
WAP) and VoiceXML are XML applications, and leave it at that. Java,
and its close relation to small devices, gets a decent accounting in
chapter eight, although extraneous details do obscure the issue. Bits
and pieces of security technologies are discussed in chapter nine, but
not in a way that comprehensively and usefully addresses the topic.
Each chapter ends with a list of resources: mostly Web pages that can
be researched for more information on specific topics.
By and large, details of the various technologies are almost
completely absent from the book. Thus, while it may be suitable for
providing a vague idea of the possibilities of wireless applications,
the work certainly does not set forth any data or guidance necessary
to implement anything. The executive summaries and marginal notes
serve only to reduce what is already primarily a promotional piece
(albeit free from particular bias) to a pamphlet.
As a quick introduction to terms and technologies involved in wireless
communications, this volume has something of a place, although an
expensive one. For anything more, you will have to look elsewhere.
copyright Robert M. Slade, 2001 BKWRLSWB.RVW 20010925
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