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Head First HTML5 Programming: Building Web Apps with JavaScript [Paperback]

Eric Freeman , Elisabeth Robson
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)

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Book Description

October 21, 2011 1449390544 978-1449390549 1

HTML has been on a wild ride. Sure, HTML started as a mere markup language, but more recently HTML’s put on some major muscle. Now we’ve got a language tuned for building web applications with Web storage, 2D drawing, offline support, sockets and threads, and more. And to speak this language you’ve got to go beyond HTML5 markup and into the world of the DOM, events, and JavaScript APIs.

Now you probably already know all about HTML markup (otherwise known as structure) and you know all aboutCSS style (presentation), but what you’ve been missing is JavaScript (behavior). If all you know about are structure and presentation, you can create some great looking pages, but they’re still just pages. When you add behavior with JavaScript, you can create an interactive experience; even better, you can create full blown web applications.

Head First HTML5 Programming is your ultimate tour guide to creating web applications with HTML5 and JavaScript, and we give you everything you need to know to build them, including: how to add interactivity to your pages, how to communicate with the world of Web services, and how to use the great new APIs being developed for HTML5.

Here are just some of the things you’ll learn in Head First HTML5 Programing:

  • Learn how to make your pages truly interactive by using the power of the DOM.
  • Finally understand how JavaScript works and take yourself from novice to well-informed in just a few chapters.
  • Learn how JavaScript APIs fit into the HTML5 ecosystem, and how to use any API in your web pages.
  • Use the Geolocation API to know where your users are.
  • Bring out your inner artist with Canvas, HTML5’s new 2D drawing surface.
  • Go beyond just plugging a video into your pages, and create custom video experiences.
  • Learn the secret to grabbing five megabytes of storage in every user’s browser.
  • Improve your page’s responsiveness and performance with Web workers.
  • And much more.

Frequently Bought Together

Head First HTML5 Programming: Building Web Apps with JavaScript + Head First HTML and CSS + Head First JavaScript Programming
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eric Freeman is described by Head First series co-creator Kathy Sierra as “one of those rare individuals fluent in the language, practice, and culture of multiple domains from hipster hacker, to corporate VP, engineer, think tank." Professionally, Eric recently ended nearly a decade as a media company executive, having held the position ofCTO of Disney Online & Disney.com at The Walt Disney Company. Eric is now devoting his time to WickedlySmart.com and lives with his wife and young daughter on Bainbridge Island. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Yale University.

Elisabeth Robson is co-founder of Wickedly Smart, an education company devoted to helping customers gain mastery in web technologies. She’s co-author of two bestselling books, Head First Design Patterns and Head First HTML with CSS & XHTML.


Product Details

  • Series: Head First
  • Paperback: 610 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (October 21, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449390544
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449390549
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 8 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #60,185 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
67 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Introduction to JavaScript and HTML5 November 2, 2011
Format:Paperback
The first 6 chapters blew me away with its coverage of JavaScript. I really wasn't expecting an introduction to JavaScript from an HTML5 Book, but I am glad it did, however, as the first half of the book is an excellent introduction to using JavaScript for DOM Manipulation as well as passing data to and from web servers and 3rd party services using the XMLHttpRequest Object. If you are unfamiliar with JavaScript, I would recommend this as your first book for learning JavaScript. The focus on fundamentals was really refreshing. The examples were believable, interesting, and challenging. And, the whole problem-solution approach used in the Head First Series Books is very useful for both learning the theory and applying it in real-world scenarios.

The last half of the book takes all the JavaScript you learned in the first half and applies it to some of the new features in HTML5 like Geolocation, Canvas, Video, Web Storage, and Web Workers. I am still amazed by the Geolocation and Google Maps API example as I just did something similar for a client. Just like the coverage of JavaScript, you get a really solid introduction to using the HTML5 features as well as background on the problems they solve. As you can see from the list of features I mentioned above, the book doesn't cover all the new features in HTML5. As with all the Head First Books you get a list of the top 10 things they didn't cover and there is an appendix that lists many of the new HTML5 Tags that aren't covered, too.

If you haven't read a Head First Series Book, be prepared for a lot of diagrams, puzzles, pictures, speech bubbles, games, and other visual and gaming strategies to help you learn.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not up to par for the Head First series September 14, 2012
Format:Paperback
First let me say that I am a huge fan of the Head First series. However, this is not one of the better books in the series. It's ok, but not great.

I am a college professor and assign these books regularly to my students, who usually find them very helpful and accessible. The main problem with this HTML5 book is in the first 4 chapters: while it attempts to provide an intro to Javascript as needed for HTML5, the chapters don't result in any working code by the end. There are no themes to the chapters, and there is no overall project that the book helps you make as an example. The chapters in this book don't build up to a solution, either individually or as a book.

The reason this is bad is twofold:

(1) I can't say "get the code in chapter 3 working before next class" because the chapters are just a jumble of disconnected examples. The exception to this is chapter 2, but chapters 1, 3, 4 should have also followed this model since those chapters are all attempting to teach the rudiments of Javascript.

(2) Newbie students have enormous difficulty generalizing and reapplying generic, disconnected solutions. They need a consistent set of working examples that they can refer to again and again. The consistent set of examples in a book like this provides common ground for everyone in the class. The way this book is designed, there are too many different tiny examples. In Chapter Four, should I talk about the Dog example, the Movie example, the Game example, or what? There is too much inordinate context switching within each chapter.

The Head First Javascript book is much, much better as a teaching book for Javascript basics. It uses one example per chapter, and covers the basics very well.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Head First and hip deep into HTML 5 November 16, 2011
Format:Paperback
This is not an HTML 5 reference book and does not pretend to be. Go through the easy-to-follow book page by page, exercise by exercise. Come out at the end understanding how to program in JavaScript and knowing enough about HTML5 to build superior websites. Head First HTML5 Programming: Building Web Apps with JavaScript

You can always pick up a reference book to pick up the odds and ends, if you need to do so.

Don't be intimidated by the alleged 600 pages in a tutorial format. First, lots of white space, graphics and big type mean you won't be looking at sheets of man pages. Moreover, all those design elements serve real purposes. Each topic gets a breezy, easy-to-assimilate intro. Then it presents the key concept with clear illustrations. Next, you have to think about what you just learned and construct real-world examples.

After the overview, each of the nine main chapters follows the same pattern. You learn as you go. The authors present the key basic information and techniques for each category. Sure, you have to follow the book in order to build on each topic, but you really only have to work on one at a time. You won't find yourself hitting the TOC and index to try to tie in the related content. Freeman and Robson have handled that in background.

For just one peek, the web storage (chapter 9) starts off with a cutesy closet analogy in words and a 50s photo. It jumps directly into a history of the development of browser storage, particularly cookies. It illustrates the functions of cookies and presents a quiz on what problems using cookies might present.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Best way to learn JavaScript.
Best beginning book on learning how to use JavaScript with function and objects. How to use the Document Object Model in JavaScript to show data on the page dynamically. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars I am having a blast with this book
At first I would like to say that I was very skeptical about the Head First series. I’m an old fart and I didn’t think it would fit in with my style of learning, that being... Read more
Published 2 months ago by J. Dadlez
4.0 out of 5 stars Get up to speed and learn new stuff
Good exercises. Some dated work for Twitter JSON-P exercises. Great source code. Helpful commentators on GitHub for code problems. Read more
Published 3 months ago by GuitarPost
4.0 out of 5 stars Good choice for "not so experts"
I have 20 years experience of computer programming with different languages, so I probably don't belong to the target group of this book. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Jamppa
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, comprehensive introduction to HTML5
At the other end of the spectrum from the O'Reilly series we're used to (with the beautifully drawn animals on the covers), which are great references for the experts but short on... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Alan Crossley
5.0 out of 5 stars Good, quick, overview
A complete and easy presentation of the technologies of HTML5. I come to it with a programming background, and had picked up a good bit on the job. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Randolph A. Long
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Teaching Book
This was one of my college textbooks for a web design class, and I was very happy with the presentation style. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Michael Skyward
3.0 out of 5 stars Difficult to read
The book had a lot of good information, but some of the graphics were really light which made them difficult to read on the kindle.
Published 5 months ago by Shawn Legge
3.0 out of 5 stars Way too wordy
The book helped me learn HTML5, but the book is way way too verbose. Somewhat entertaining, but not very helpful. Could reduce the book size by 50% and still get the job done.
Published 6 months ago by Mr Peter
2.0 out of 5 stars Gets lost in cleverness
The author is so busy being clever that what is attempted to teach gets lost in the process. After two chapters, I put the book back on the shelf...wish I could get my money back.
Published 7 months ago by G. Jernigan
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