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Closure: The Definitive Guide [Paperback]

Michael Bolin
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)

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Book Description

September 27, 2010 1449381871 978-1449381875 1

If you're ready to use Closure to build rich web applications with JavaScript, this hands-on guide has precisely what you need to learn this suite of tools in depth. Closure makes it easy for experienced JavaScript developers to write and maintain large and complex codebases—as Google has demonstrated by using Closure with Gmail, Google Docs, and Google Maps.

Author and Closure contributor Michael Bolin has included numerous code examples and best practices, as well as valuable information not available publicly until now. You'll learn all about Closure's Library, Compiler, Templates, testing framework, and Inspector—including how to minify JavaScript code with the Compiler, and why the combination of the Compiler and the Library is what sets Closure apart from other JavaScript toolkits.

  • Learn how the Compiler significantly reduces the amount of JavaScript users have to download when visiting your site
  • Discover several ways to use the Compiler as part of your build process
  • Learn about type expressions, primitives, and common utilities
  • Understand how Closure emulates classes and class-based inheritance
  • Use Closure Templates on the server and the client from either JavaScript or Java
  • Test and debug your JavaScript code, even when it's compiled

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Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Tools for adding power to your JavaScript

About the Author

Michael Bolin is a former Google engineer who spent his four years there working on Google Calendar, Google Tasks, and the Closure Compiler. As a frontend developer, he used the Closure Tools suite on a daily basis and made a number of contributions to it. His last project at Google was to open-source the Closure Compiler. He is a blogger, often writing about web development, and graduated with both Computer Science and Mathematics degrees from MIT.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (September 27, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449381871
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449381875
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 7.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #384,244 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great technical book on a must-have toolkit October 2, 2010
I read Closure: The Definitive Guide as part of O'Reilly's rough cuts program, and I can honestly say that the book is one of the best technical books I've read in quite some time. It's clear that the author sought to leave no stone unturned in writing this book; he succeeded brilliantly. His writing style is concise but not at all confusing, leading to a great book that lends itself just as well to sit-down reading as it does a reference guide.

This book is definitely targeted towards developers, not managers. You should have at least some experience with JavaScript and the DOM before reading this. The author thankfully doesn't rehash the basics of such material before digging into Closure, but he also doesn't make the assumption that you need to have written a book on JavaScript in order to understand how to use everything. After you read the introduction chapter, you can safely skip some parts and come back to them later as you begin to understand Closure's design patterns. I thoroughly read most chapters and just skimmed others, which was great because it let me get familiar with the material without getting bogged down in all the details present in such an immense SDK.

Closure is most likely overkill if you're just building one-off websites, but if you want to build something more, do yourself a favor and buy this book and read it. Don't sell yourself short. Otherwise you'll be doomed to blindly throwing jQuery, MooTools, Prototype, or the like onto your canvas and hoping it'll work just as well for your large app -- it won't. Soon after you begin developing with Closure and reading this book, you'll experience the joy and relief that only a proper JavaScript TOOLKIT can provide.

Overall, this is a really great book that I wouldn't hesitate to recommend to any front-end developer who is tasked with building a web application that they want to be fast, browser-agnostic, and bug free.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Any other closure books? July 4, 2011
This book is a good reference and description of what the closure library is about. I think it fails as a guide to putting it all together into an application though. I was dissapointed that the chapter on user interface components really only partially covered buttons and a combobox in 16 pages while there's a whole 49 page chapter on the editor which I don't really care about. It is a good book though and explains a lot about how the compiler works and how to avoid pitfalls. The plovr tool the author created is awesome and makes using Closure much, much easier, especially on Windows. I would have given this book 5 stars if it either included a longer chapter on ui components or had an example that showed how to bring it all together.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The why, the how, and practical examples November 13, 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great introduction to Closure: explains the core concepts behind the why and the how of Closure without getting bogged down in the API details. Unlike many other technical books of the kind, this one can actually be read from start to finish and every chapter is well worth it. You'll learn the design principles and motivations behind the Closure compiler, the many ways you can lean on the compiler to help you manage your Javascript codebase, and also take a look under the hood to learn how to extend it and customize it for your own project.

Of course, Closure is more than just the compiler, so you'll learn how to use Soy / Closure Templates, as well as many other supporting tools. At this time, the only large omission is Closure Stylesheets - likely released after the publication. If you're curious about Closure, or joining a project, which is using it currently, then this is your shortest path from zero to mastery.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The book on closure September 13, 2012
By Malte
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I was surprised how good this book is! It is a worthwhile read even if you care little about the closure library just for the gems on JS design.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Important book August 20, 2012
This is a very important book about an important topic. Closure powers some of the most heavily used web properties on the internet, and while this book isn't perfect, the spirit of the book is awesome because the author is a Javascript fanatic. It's very obvious from checking out his blog and throughout the book that he's a total stickler for details. I wished the book would've talked about plovr more because I learned how to do it the hardway without plovr, and I don't appreciate it now having plovr. It's way easier to get started with Closure when you have plovr.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Definitive Book January 24, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is definitive. This book covers it all and covers it very well. I am excited to get throught the book and start using Closure on mopre projects. This book is not for the JavaScript newcomer. It is best if you already have experience with other JavaScript libraries and are familiar with Unit Tests and feel comfortable with JavaScript since it is best to program specifically for the compiler you need to be aware of the differences.
Over all it is a great book and a must for anyone who wants to take up Closure.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Helpful - detailed August 27, 2011
By Eric
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Helpful and detailed introduction to closure and java script. Good working examples and set up instructions. Excellent intro. Points out many important details. Worth re-reading.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading February 27, 2011
Good book, well-packed with information and examples. Complexity of the toolkit dawns on you when reading introduction but Michael does a good job explaining it bit by bit. Occasional in-depth reasoning for not so obvious design decisions makes this book more then just a reference guide and lets you get better understanding of javascript internals.

Being javascript newbie I underestimated Closure level: it's way too sophisticated for my purposes, but nevertheless reading this book was educative and well worth time spent on it. It's always interesting to know how things are done at "industrial grade".
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars You'd better be smart if you want to use this to learn Closure.
I really admire Michael Bolin, and his intelligence and experience. But this book doesn't have much you can copy into an editor and use. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Robert M. Reed
5.0 out of 5 stars Great resource for the most powerful JS framework out there
This book has been an invaluable resource in developing and improving the frontend code for our (funded) startup. Read more
Published on March 15, 2011 by Nicholas Baum
5.0 out of 5 stars Sadly, unrelated to breaking up...
I thought I'd get some kind of relief from reading this. But no, it's about some computer thing. Sad. Guess I'll have to go back to stalking...
Published on January 27, 2011 by D. Turner
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended guide to Closure
Google Closure is a set of libraries and tools for developing large Javascript applications with minimal errors. Read more
Published on December 18, 2010 by Fawad Halim
4.0 out of 5 stars "Closure: The Definitive Guide" by Michael Bolin does a nice job
"Closure: The Definitive Guide" by Michael Bolin does a nice job on explaining a battle-tested, very complex tool that helps maintaining very complex JavaScript codebases... Read more
Published on December 12, 2010 by Ricardo Bánffy
5.0 out of 5 stars Just Great!
This book changed everything to me, related to JavaScript. Google Closure go beyond my expectation - ending with cross-browser problems and giving a great compression to . Read more
Published on November 21, 2010 by T. W. Freres
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