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Recent Books

These are books that I’ve done in the past few years.


Microsoft Office for iPad: An Essential Guide to Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and OneDrive

Peachpit Press, 2014
This was a relatively quick book to write, after Microsoft came up with the excellent idea to port its big productivity suite to first the iPad (and several months later, too late for this book, to the iPhone). It was fun to write, mainly because of the differences between being so familiar with the Office products on the Mac and Windows desktops and explaining how they solved those problems for the touch interface. Microsoft uses their cloud storage product, OneDrive, to tie all the documents together, so that was another interesting fillip to teach.

This was a sad milestone in another way; it ended up being my last book for Peachpit Press, a relationship that went back almost two decades, because Peachpit's corporate parent, Pearson, decided to let Peachpit die on the vine over the following year. Pearson laid off all the Peachpit staff in a series of waves, including some of the finest editors I have ever worked with. It was a pleasure and a privilege to know and work with them.

JavaScript: Visual QuickStart Guide (9th Edition)

Peachpit Press, July 2014
I was busy writing the Office for iPad book, so this revision to our best-seller about JavaScript was pretty much all Dori's baby in terms of writing. In a switch to some of our previous projects, I ended up doing the edit and polishing pass after Dori has done the heavy lifting.

It focuses not just on JavaScript basics for the beginner, always our strong suit, but delves deeper into using JavaScript frameworks, mainly jQuery. It goes almost without saying that we revised the book entirely to cover standards-based browsers and spent a lot of time getting rid of the cruft that piles up in books that have been through any revisions.

It's a shame that Peachpit is more or less out business; it would have been cool to end up with a Tenth Edition.

Upgrading to Mavericks: 10 Things To Do Before Moving to OS X 10.9

Peachpit Press, 2013

This one was probably a mistake in idea and execution. The previous Upgrading to Mountain Lion book had sold well enough for us to give this one a shot, but there weren't a ton of differences between the two books. It was sold as an EPUB-only book on just the iBookstore (like the Mountain Lion book, the Apple Store reps pushed us to write this one) for $2, so there wasn't much of a financial downside if it flopped, which I believe it did. On the other hand, it was very quick to do (just a few weeks), as I basically just rewrote the previous book.

Adobe Dreamweaver CC: Visual QuickStart Guide

Peachpit Press, August 2013

This update to our best-selling Dreamweaver book covers the evolution of Dreamweaver as it becomes a subscription product, along with the rest of Creative Cloud. Adobe is beginning a process to rethink the Dreamweaver user interface, and this release better integrates modern technologies such as HTML5 and jQuery. Perhaps the biggest change to Dreamweaver is the introduction of the CSS Designer panel, a way to add visual cues to creating CSS rules. We cover it all in this edition.

iCloud: Visual QuickStart Guide, Second Edition

Peachpit Press, February 2013

This update to my previous iCloud book covers the changes made to iCloud along with the switch to iOS 6 and OS X Mountain Lion.

10 Things To Do Before Upgrading to OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion

Peachpit Press, July 2012
Sure, you can simply purchase Mountain Lion from the Mac App Store and click the Upgrade button, but we think it's a much better idea to prepare your system so that after you upgrade, you can get back to work with the least amount of trouble and disruption. In this to-the-point ebook, OS X expert Tom Negrino walks you through the steps you should accomplish before clicking that fateful button. You'll lay the groundwork for the upgrade, evaluate your Mac and your apps, and learn how to protect your work in the rare event that something goes horribly wrong.

Note that my enthusiasm for this book was so great I simply used the marketing copy from the iBookstore above. This was a quick, EPUB-only book that I wrote because a favorite editor asked me to, more or less as a favor.

Adobe Dreamweaver CS6: Visual QuickStart Guide

Peachpit Press, June 2012
This was another update to our best-selling Dreamweaver book. This one delves deeper into using CSS to lay out Web sites, including Dreamweaver CS6's new Fluid Grid layout feature. I also used the opportunity to bring into the paper book the additions I'd made and released on the Peachpit Web site for Dreamweaver CS5.5. So there's now plenty of discussion of Dreamweaver's HTML5 and capabilities to design for multiple screen sizes.

iCloud: Visual QuickStart Guide

Peachpit Press, January 2012
This book shows you how to use Apple's iCloud service to share your content across all your Apple devices. You'll see how you can share your iTunes songs, photos, books, apps, files, email, contacts, and calendars across your Mac and iOS devices, and even with your Windows PC. You'll also learn how to back up important information via the cloud, so if something happens to your mobile device, you can restore it from iCloud's servers.

Keynote for iPad: Visual QuickStart Guide

Peachpit Press, October 2010
This is a short but fun book about Keynote for iPad. One of three books about the iWork programs for iPad (the others being Pages and Numbers), it's was written in a month, and the screenshots are all in color. It shows you how to build a presentation in Keynote for iPad, how you can move presentation documents between the Mac and iPad, and gives tips of making your iPad-based presentation effective.

Program note: this was also my fortieth book since I started as a book author in 1994. What a long, strange trip it's been.

JavaScript: Visual QuickStart Guide, 8th Edition

Peachpit Press, August 2011
We extensively revamped this edition of our bestselling book, condensing some chapters, adding new chapters on jQuery, and adding a focus on using frameworks to make your life easier. We're still teaching the basics, but towards the end of the book, we show how to leverage jQuery to achieve powerful and complex behaviors on your sites.

Dreamweaver CS5: Visual QuickStart Guide

Peachpit Press, June 2010
Another Creative Suite release means another revision of our Dreamweaver book. In this one, we cover most of the new features, including the new support for PHP-based Content Management Systems, such as WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal. This is the first edition where we ran out of room in the printed book (due to publisher-imposed page count limits) and moved some of the chapters as bonus material to Peachpit's site (you'll have to register at that site to gain access to the bonus chapters).

Styling Web Pages with CSS: Visual QuickProject Guide

Peachpit Press, February 2009
There are many books out there that teach CSS, but most of them are not meant for absolute beginners. This book is. If you've never used CSS before, ths book will get you up and running fast. We don't pretend (or even try; the book is only 150 pages) to teach you everything you need to know about CSS. Instead, we show you how to create a clean, standards-compliant Web site using CSS from start to finish. This book was written with Dori Smith.


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