Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Book Rview: Javascript Phrasebook

I've been reading through the new Javascript Phrasebook from Sams recently. I'm not much of a Javascript guy (which is why I wanted to get the book), but I'm liking the style, content, and concept of the book.

Sams' phrasebooks, if you haven't seen one yet, are a cross between a pocket guide and a cookbook. The basic unit of the book is a section (a phrase or recipe), with most sections being composed of a snippet of code with some narrative context to help you make sense of it and a larger script showing the snippet in situ. The approach works pretty well.

The one thing I wish they'd had more coverage of was the use of Javascript oustide of web development. That's a pretty esoteric topic though, so I'm not surprised that it's not well covered — in fast, I'm kind of surprised that there was any coverage of the prototype based OO system that makes javascript interesting from this perspective.

I thought the sections were well written and useful. The value of the text coupled with the portability and the US$15 price tag make this a very attractive little book. If you're getting into web development, or just need to sharpen up your javascript, this book is a nice little investment.

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