O'Reilly Book Reviewer

I review for the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program

Friday, August 30, 2013

Book Review: Samsung Galaxy S4: The Missing Manual by Preston Gralla (O'Reilly)

The Samsung Galaxy S4 is a beautiful, sophisticated piece of art. Nothing short of amazing. However, to be able to use it like a pro, the manual that ships with the phone is pretty insignificant. You could either discover by talking with fellow S4 owners or look up videos online. This book seeks to put all that information in a simple-to-understand format so you can easily go through it step-by-step.

Wow, I didn't know my Galaxy S4 could do that! Many a time, this was my reaction when I read about something that I wasn't aware of. The book has a lot of graphics and screenshots that make it a real pleasure to read and understand. When I got my new S4, I had often wondered what certain options meant and how some apps were used and this book actually covered those topics very well. I actually started using some of the apps, like S Health, after reading this book.

Of the many things I learned, I could sync my calendar with Google Calendar and Outlook, start watching movies and TV shows while they are loading, send pictures and videos wirelessly to your TV, etc. Pretty neat book and expansive coverage overall. This book is actually 485 pages but you should be able to skim through it pretty fast. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Book Review: The LEGO Build-It Book, Vol. 1 Amazing Vehicles By Nathanael Kuipers, Mattia Zamboni Publisher: No Starch Press

The LEGO Build-It Book, Vol. 1
Amazing Vehicles
Publisher: No Starch Press
Released: July 2013
Pages: 136

When I showed the book cover to my 8-year old son, he just couldn't resist the temptation. He kept on asking me to get the book for him which I eventually did. I must say this book has made him happy and engaged.

I am glad that the book has a one-pager with a "bill of materials". That allowed me to take a printout with me and my son to the Lego shop "pick  a brick" section. If you already have a couple of Lego toys for building cars, you probably don't need to buy the parts at all.

The graphics in this book are really crisp and delightful unlike the Lego manuals. The detail step by step instructions make it easy to make progress for a kid. If you have Super Speedster Item: 5867, then you don't need to buy the parts.

Have fun for hours with your kids. I loaded the ebook on my laptop and projected to my big screen TV and enjoyed with my son.