Book Review: Visual Basic 2005 Cookbook
 
Published: 13 Dec 2006
Unedited - Community Contributed
Abstract
Cookbooks provide answers to real world questions. Is it true with Visual Basic 2005 Cookbook? Find out by reading Anand's review.
by Anand Narayanaswamy
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Introduction

Visual Basic 2005 is becoming very popular among developers and many of them are on the lookout for a different type of book rather than conventional programming books. In fact, I was looking for a book which teaches us the concepts that are beyond programming. Visual Basic 2005 Cookbook by Tim Patrick and John Clark Craig provides clear cut coverage about the tips and tricks involved with the language in a concise manner. While traditional programming books examine only the basic fundamentals, this cookbook provide ideas for improving your knowledge by teaching how to actually perform a specific task which you will not find anywhere else.

Inside the book

The book contains 17 chapters of high quality content. It begins with a short coverage about the creation of Windows Forms, Console and ASP.NET applications. I feel that the creation of console applications should be discussed first. The next chapter examines the various factors associated with the Visual Basic 2005 development environment such as creation of code snippets, accessing environment variables and registry in addition to a brief coverage about obfuscating an application. It would have been great if the authors had also examined some recipes targeting Visual Basic 2005 Express Edition.

While chapter 3 examines classes and namespaces, Chapter 4 provides comprehensive coverage of Forms, Menus, usage of Timers, creation of shortcut menus and much more. The remaining chapters provide a detailed coverage of Strings, Numbers, Arrays and Collections, Graphics, Multimedia, Printing, Files and Databases in addition to the usage of Math, Date and Time classes. I am impressed by the efforts put up by the authors to provide a high quality programming book in a comprehensive manner.

Among other recipes you will also learn about the creation of a Graph paper, Thumbnails and many other interesting topics.  I wonder why the authors have included the Graph paper creation in Chapter 11 – Printing. From my point of view, the recipe should be accommodated in Chapter 9 – Graphics. You will also learn some of the advanced tips and tricks such as accessing XML files, verifying a credit card number and rebooting the system in Chapter 14.

While chapter 15 examines Exception handling, Chapter 16 provides a detailed coverage of Cryptography and Compression. The book wraps up with an exhaustive coverage of web development and it includes recipes for pinging an IP Address, Calling a Web service, Sending Email using SMTP, Sending a message to another computer and much more.

The writing style followed by the author is very lucid and each chapter has been presented in a systematic format such as Problem, Solution and Discussion. The problem section specifies the purpose of each recipe. The Solution section provides answers to solve the specific recipe and also specifies the folder in which the relevant source code is located. The Discussion section includes a detailed explanation along with complete source code and relevant screenshot(s). I hope the screenshot(s) will surely help readers to view the output before attempting to run it on their system. The See Also section provides references to other useful resources for learning more about the discussed recipe.

Conclusion

Finally, I must say that the book is a complete reference manual for crazy Visual Basic 2005 programmers as it contains a bunch of useful information which is not readily available anywhere and I have no hesitation to give this book a five star rating.

About the Book

Title

Visual Basic 2005 Cookbook

Author

Tim Patrick and John Clark Craig

Publisher

O'Reilly

ISBN - 10

0-596-10177-5

ISBN - 13

978-0-596-10177-0

Edition

First, September 2006

Pages

713

Price

US $49.99

Rating

*****

 



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