A couple of hours ago I finished chapter 6 of Wendell Odom’s ICND1 640-822 Official Cert Guide which comprises Part I of the text. I am essentially 25% of the way through the 24 chapters even though I feels some of the upcoming chapters are going to require more time than the first 6 did. Part I was an exploration of the first 4 layers of the OSI model with some security topics thrown in at then end. Using this book has been a bit different than the other certification books I have used in the past. My previous method was to read a chapter, sleep on it, and then do the end of chapter review questions the next day. However, the Odom book does not have end of chapter questions. Instead you are faced with a “Do I Know This Already” (DIKTA) quiz at the beginning of the chapter. I’ve committed to reading the entire text so I take those quizzes and read the chapter regardless of how I do. I’ve done fairly well on the DIKTA questions and have only missed 1 question per chapter on average.
The Odom ICND1 book has been called dry and I can see where people get that impression. It has not been than dry for me, but I honestly feel that if I did not have some knowledge of this material already that I would be a little bit lost at this point. For example, I thought Lammle did a lot better job of explaining basic network concepts in his Network+ book than was presented here. It is not that it bad, but rather than it just is not as good in my opinion. Some of this may be preference, but I feel that those totally new to the topics would definitely be best served by not using the Odom books as their sole reading material. However, I have definitely picked up a few things in Odom’s book that I had not seen or learned elsewhere. For those with some networking experience, Part I is more of a review than anything else. I have a gut feeling that Odom is going to get a lot more thorough in the upcoming chapters in the book.
So next up is chapter 7 which represents the deepest I have ever read into any Cisco Press book thus far. It feels pretty good.