Summary and Info
This book is by no means an introductory text. To grasp the majority of the material, one needs to be past the beginner level in understanding compression. Waggoner is writing to those who already know quite a bit about compression, though I'm not so sure that he realizes that. That often happens when a writer knows a subject so well that he has forgotten what it is like to know little of the subject, and so his explanations assume much more than the uninitiated reader knows. Example: There are numerous abbreviations for a myriad of compression terms. So if you don't know what those abbreviations mean, it is extremely tough to follow along. And even if you knew what all those letters and numbers stood for, in the text of the book, Waggoner does not explain them to where a beginner would understand them.
To make matters worse, a glossary was promised in the introduction of the book, but there is none to be found. My copy has a bunch of blank pages where the glossary should be!
I am certain that this is a fantastic text for those who already understand compression, but beginners will need to go elsewhere to get the basics, and then use Waggoner's reference text to perfect their knowledge. To be sure, if you are able to plow through the book, it WILL give even a beginner "a sense" of what is going on. But, as one who has only a light understanding of compression, I was hoping for explanations that I could grasp.
And hopefully your copy will come with the promised glossary.
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