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Writing a book like this doesn't just happen. It takes encouragement and motivation, and I'd like thank my prime encourager, Dawn, and my prime motivator, Nicholas. Dawn, thanks for giving up so much of our time together and for keeping the household running while I was locked in my cave, basking in the eerie blue light of my computer monitor. Nicholas, who knew you'd be here before the book was finished? But here you are, making our lives interesting, and the book is finally done.

I have to thank my editors at O'Reilly: John Osborn, Brian MacDonald, and, most of all, Simon St.Laurent, who picked up the pieces when things looked darkest. I'd also like to thank Keyton Weissinger and Edd Dumbill for encouraging me to write, despite the months of pain and suffering involved. Thanks must also go to Kendall Clark, Bijan Parsia, and rest of the folks on #mf and #pants, for serving as a constant sounding board and for enduring my occasional griping.

I'd be remiss if I did not acknowledge my technical reviewers: Shane Fatzinger, Martin Gudgin, and David Sommers. Their input was invaluable in making this a book worthy of being published and read.

And finally, thanks to my bosses at Radiant Systems for giving me the opportunity to learn on the job. Nothing teaches like real-world experience, and in the past 18 months I've had enough experience with .NET and XML to make this, I hope, a really good book.

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