The Complete Idiot's Guide to Mosaic

COMPUTER BOOK REVIEW  

484 words

Title: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Mosaic;  
Joe Kraynak; alpha books; ISBN: 1-56761-588-0; 
Paperback, 294 pages, $23.95

Reviewer:  A. T. Connellan, "Good book, 
good price, good buy." 

We're Not Dummies, are We?

Mosaic is the front door to the World Wide Web 
house. It is the convenient software tool that helps 
us take advantage of the multimedia features 
of the World Wide Web. Unfortunately, as with 
many other aspects of the Internet there is a tendency, 
on the part of people in the computer business, to 
overly complicate a simple subject. Not in this book. 

Joe Kraynak's breezy guide to Mosaic is written in 
hyper-simple style and liberally laced with humor. 
It won't intimidate anyone, and while you're laughing 
at the cartoons and other clever stuff, he slips the 
serious knowledge into your subconscious. 

Layout and delivery of information are Kraynak's 
secret. Each chapter begins with a list of subjects 
to be covered, and ends with a summary "The 
Least You Need to Know." The pages in between 
have clear screen reproductions, shaded panels 
with cartoons setting out hints and tips. Page layouts 
are easy to follow, a much-appreciated feature for 
the reader covering information for the first time.

His book is set out in 3 parts or blocks of knowledge. 
Part 1 provides the information that enables the reader 
to acquire a basic understanding of Mosaic and where 
to apply it. One of the more important points he makes 
in this section; "...have some fun, get lost, and don't take 
the error messages too seriously." 

Part 2 is the hands-on guide on how to run every aspect 
of this software. Entitled "Mastering Mosaic," its purpose 
is to facilitate a comfortable level of operating expertise, 
or to put it plainly, to relax your backside in the driver's 
seat. Readers discover the mechanical techniques 
of finding, moving, and managing desired information 
from anywhere. 

With the training wheels off, the last section steers the 
reader to all the wonders of the World Wide Web that 
can be discovered through the use of Mosaic. He sets 
out the paths to; FTP, Gopher, Telnet, WAIS, Finger, 
and Whois. Exotic sounding, but very effective additional 
tools.

There is an extensive list of Web Sites that provide 
information that ranges from job hunting, to hobbies, 
to shopping. He even includes the essential glossary 
under the title, "Speak Like a Geek," I love it. 

I hate computer books entitled "...for Dummies,
" or "...for Idiots." I'm not an idiot, and you're not dummies. 
That aside, these yellow or orange simplified "how to" 
books for beginners are selling in the millions. Now we 
know why. Joe Kraynak delivered the message without 
making us feel like one.

Good book, good price, good buy.


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