Even if you feel you are ready for this book, you may want to explore some of the XML technologies in greater depth than is possible here. The following lists offer some good places to start.
Appendix A provides a brief orientation to XML, but other books that go into far more depth are readily available. For a solid grounding in XML, consider these books:
Appendix B provides a brief orientation to XSLT, but many projects may require a more sophisticated understanding of XSLT. For more information on XSLT, try these books:
Appendix C explores W3C XML Schema briefly, but this topic is definitely worthy of a much larger book. Some good options include:
Appendix D briefly describes how to use RELAX NG, a simpler alternative to W3C XML Schema, to create W3C XML Schema files. For a more thorough explanation of RELAX NG, see:
You may also want to complement your XML knowledge with more information on the rapidly growing world of Web Services. For a lot more detail, see:
O'Reilly also offers a collection of programming books on XML that may prove useful. They include:
There are also many online resources for XML. Two particularly good places to start looking are XML.com and xmlhack.com. XML.com is part of the O'Reilly Network, and covers the latest news in XML on a weekly basis. For smaller stories and a less formal approach, try xmlhack.com. Both have a variety of links to other XML resources and mailing lists.
There is an enormous number of books on Microsoft Office and its component applications. My best advice in this field is to visit a bookstore and examine a few books to see which best fits your learning style and your interests. (The same is true of the XML books, but the list above provides a starting point.) Also, if you'd like to know more about how Office's competitor OpenOffice.org handles XML processing, see J. David Eisenberg's excellent OpenOffice.org XML Essentials at http://books.evc-cit.info/.