HTML 4 Interactive Course

COMPUTER BOOK REVIEW  

422 words

Title: HTML 4 Interactive Course; by Kent Cearley; Waite Group Press;
ISBN 1-57169-130-8; softcover, 606 pages, US$49.99 CAN$70.95 UK46.95

Reviewer Lorna Ens, "HTML 4 Interactive Course is ideal for users who
wish to learn about this dynamic language on their own schedule."

A Hands-on Path to HTML Proficiency

HTML 4 Interactive Course is ideal for users who wish to learn about this
dynamic language on their own schedule. The book offers comprehensive
lessons and interactivity through an easily navigable web site. The hardest
part for me about reviewing this book was having to stop working on the
course to read on.

This volume is one of the latest offerings from Waite Group Press. The
course is designated beginner to intermediate and covers basic HTML 4 tags
to small slices of Perl, VisualBasic and JavaScript. Between the languages
comes the fun creating a Web page with video or audio clips, cascading
style sheets, and animated GIFs.

Early in the book is a section called eZone Guided Tour which provides a
thorough overview of the online portion of the course. Newcomers are
encouraged to tour eZone as a "guest." This allows a peek at the first
chapter, a quiz of a course, and,  registering as a student. There are
online Mentors to answer questions and the Chill Zone, a virtual student
lounge where the reader can "chat" with fellow classmates.

Following a brief history lesson on the Internet and the Web, and some
basics on the technology involved in accessing them, Cearley guides the
reader into writing some very basic HTML and publishing it to a website.
Lessons built on this beginning are relatively brief, but cover each topic
with theory and hands-on exercises, followed by short quizzes which are
taken online for grading.

On successful completion of the course, the reader may download a
certificate0, or even apply for continuing education units from Marquette
and other accredited universities. 

He also touches briefly on Web page content and design, warning budding Web
authors of practices that will incite the wrath of Webmasters and surfers,
such as spamming, posting pages to more than five groups, or failing to post
the size of files for download. 

Kent Cearley handles, what can be a pretty dry subject, by writing in plain
conversational English and has an effectively wry sense of humour. 

One caveat; the CD Rom included with the book does not have a comprehensive
section on contents or installation procedures, it may be necessary for the
resder to go to eZone and request assistance.

At the time of this writing, the Programmer's File Editor (PFE) program was
not included on the disk but is available for download through eZone. Also,
the LiveWire software on the disk is a 21 day trial version, so keep that in
mind when setting out to do the course.


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