* Intelligent Network Video: Understanding Modern Surveillance Systems. By Fredrik Nilsson; published by CRC Press; available from ASIS, item #1831, 703/519-6200 (phone), www.asisonline.org (Web); 389 pages; $79 (ASIS members), $87 (nonmembers).
This is an exceptional reference book that provides a thorough understanding of the multifaceted products and rapid technological developments of modern video surveillance. Author Fredrik Nilsson expertly describes these systems, the products that compose them, and the characteristics that can sway a buyer’s decision for one feature over another.
Nilsson is an employee of CCTV vendor Axis Communications, so it may be tempting at the outset to dismiss the text’s objectivity. Yet it is Nilsson’s intimate knowledge of these products—and his objectivity—that make this book an excellent choice for your reference library. At no point in reading the book does the reader get the impression that Nilsson is making a one-sided pitch for his company’s products. The topics are described in a balanced fashion, looking at the pros and cons, and the relevant characteristics and details of these systems.
The book is well structured and the examples are relevant. Specific subject matter is easy to find, with clear chapter delineation. Not only is the book well-written, but the illustrations are excellent and enhance the reader’s understanding of the text. Similarly, the book’s photographs clearly demonstrate the descriptions in the text. One shortcoming, however, is that interrelated photographs are often spread out over several pages, requiring the reader to constantly flip back-and-forth between pages to understand the comparisons Nilsson is making.
Despite the challenge of constructing a reference for a constantly evolving market, Intelligent Network Video is a top-notch resource that should hold up over time. This text is a must-have for the reader who wants to understand this industry’s ever-changing technologies.
Reviewer: Susan Gallagher is director of Susan Gallagher Consulting Ltd. in Canada and New Zealand. She is an independent specialist in security risk management, training, and security program management for the government and private sectors and a member of ASIS International.