Ged Mead (XTab) is a Microsoft Visual Basic MVP who has been working on computer software and design for more than 25 years. His journey has taken him through many different facets of IT. These include training as a Systems Analyst, working in a mainframe software development environment, creating financial management systems and a short time spent on military laptop systems in the days when it took two strong men to carry a 'mobile' system.
Based in an idyllic lochside location in the West of Scotland, he is currently involved in an ever-widening range of VB.NET, WPF and Silverlight development projects. Now working in a consultancy environment, his passion however still remains helping students and professional developers to take advantage of the ever increasing range of sophisticated tools available to them.
Ged is a regular contributor to forums on vbCity and authors articles for DevCity. He is a moderator on VBCity and the MSDN Tech Forums and spends a lot of time answering technical questions there and in several other VB forum sites. Senior Editor for DevCity.NET, vbCity Developer Community Leader and Admin, and DevCity.NET Newsletter Editor. He has written and continues to tutor a number of free online courses for VB.NET developers.
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Who would have thought that a 350 page book that probably contains less than 100 lines of .NET code would be useful? Surprisingly perhaps, to many people this book will be very helpful because it fills a very useful purpose in a particular niche market.
One of the much heralded advantages of ASP.NET 2.0 and the newly minted free editions of VS2005 is that the amount of code required to produce useful, usable basic applications has been dramatically reduced. In the case of ASP.NET 2.0 the figure of 70% reduction has often been bandied about as the target. Whatever the actual final figure turned out to be, one thing is true - you can drag and drop items from a whole mountain of new and easy-to-use features via the Visual Web developer 2005 Express Edition (VWD for short) and create limited but functional starter applications with almost no code of your own.
And it is this ability upon which the book is based. It homes in on those built-in features that enable complete novices to create basic websites. It covers all the basics, including Master Pages, CSS Styles, Themes, Navigation, validation, some of the ASP.NET controls, and a short SQL Server crash course.
Two CDs are bundled with the book. The first contains a copy of VWD itself, which seems now to be a fairly standard feature for 2005 books. The second CD contains a range of video tutorials from the LearnVisualStudioNet site plus some useful links to videos from Wintellect and various other online resources.