Building Online Communities with phpBB 2
A> first of all the price: £23* , I don't think I have ever paid so much for a book in my life and for that money, I was expecting a book 1000 pages wide not just 343 but still - it's not all doom and despondency
B> next, the foreword by Patrick O'Keefe himself, well Patrick not too long ago, was kind enough "to have me back" after a ban of 4 months from his phpBBHacks site. The fact that he considers banning issues at all, makes him a good guy in my book. So it was, that I was quite amazed to be reading his words, as the first page in the book.
Goodness knows what I would have written if I had been given the task of writing a foreword, but Patrick has done a good job alright, I enjoyed reading it and there's a whole load of truth there too! I liked the "Welcome" ending, gives a good feeling to the start of the book. And who else could have written the foreword anyway? Good choice I think.
C> Table of contents, well there's no doubt about it, it's detailed, but for me I went straight to the back of the book thinking "IS THERE AN INDEX?" Yep! There is - tons better than a contents I do believe and under D 'database backup and restore' my chosen subject in the phpBB2 mastermind,
it just gets better
D> Introduction :As an experienced administrator myself, I enjoyed the Introduction, which describes enthusiastically what lays ahead for you in the coming pages. I was actually licking my lips thinking this is gonna be good
E> Chapters 1 - 5 covered topics that any administrator with a year's experience will know inside out. I certainly knew the whole lot - easy peasy - learnt nothing much there, BUT to a newbie admin this stuff is laid on the line very nicely. I just wish I had had that 2 years ago, would have been very handy indeed.
F> Chapters 6 - 7 Creating your own template? Creating your own MOD? Yikes - do me a favour? NO WAY!! But to have the chapters there at all, is great to delve into if you want to. Here is the guide to putting down your own template or MOD, it is something I would not be tempted to do, but makes the book very complete. The whole lot is here isn't it?!!
G> Chapter 8 Programming phpBB? hehe GREAT! Now this is something I want to know about, marvellous! Yeah BRING IT ON! and check out the "Creating the 'Hello phpBB World" script, this made me smile, now what does that remind me of? Errrrr computer programming? The first section where you learn print "Hello world".
The parallel is there and it's a good start for sure.
H> Appendices: Some great information here, I knew most of it but it's nice to have it in the book
I> HIDDEN GEMS: I'm not saying ANYTHING but 3 or 4 times I'm reading through this book and all of a sudden "WHAT? I DIDN'T KNOW THAT!!" Really good stuff .... on a par with finding out about Ctrl and F5 (force new page) when you had no idea
this existed, I'm not saying what, as it will probably spoil it BUT I can tell you the book has some very coooool info hidden away in those pages. I guess you could argue "well you can't know EVERYTHING about phpBB2, you are bound to come across some stuff you didn't know and are surprised about, no matter who you are!" Yep and that was definitely the case for me.
J> Finishing the book. At the end I was left wanting more. A great read, but over way too soon for me. Maybe because I knew so much of the material already, I got through it in quick time I don't know. Even so I found it a great read and will certainly read it again for sure.
Newbie admin? ESSENTIAL ITEM: GET IT NOW! Average ADMIN? A great reference book, get it for sure! Very experienced ADMIN? Hmmm have you got £23 you don't need? Or could you get the book at half the price? If so, get it anyway! Like somebody else said on the forums "I'd probably just get it so that I could just "have the book" - YEP me too!
* just one thing about the price, yep if you go to Amazon - you pay the whole £23 but go direct to the publisher and get it for a discount price £17
the whole book is ONLINE FREE at the publisher's website