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Mastering Dojo: JavaScript and Ajax Tools for Great Web Experiences (Pragmatic Programmers) 1st Edition

3.6 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1934356111
ISBN-10: 1934356115
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  • Mastering Dojo: JavaScript and Ajax Tools for Great Web Experiences (Pragmatic Programmers)
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Very nice book, it feels so thought through and advanced, really pragmatic and useful stuff ;)"

—Roman Heinrich

"Let me first say that this is the most inspiring software book I have bought in while!"

—Joakim Marner
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Product Details

  • Series: Pragmatic Programmers
  • Paperback: 555 pages
  • Publisher: Pragmatic Bookshelf; 1 edition (July 5, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1934356115
  • ISBN-13: 978-1934356111
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,149,619 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Bin Hu on August 23, 2008
Format: Paperback
One line conclusion: Recommended for serious developers using Dojo.

Comparing this book with the other two Dojo books (one published by O'Reilly and one by Addison-Wesley Professional), I feel the title of this book is justified. The contents of the other two are greatly overlapped with the free online documentation of Dojo [...]. If all you wanted is a Dojo book that resembles a print copy of the free on line book, then you can buy the other two. If you are asking for something more, like how Dojo actually works and how to customize Dojo build (a pivotal step to speed up your product) then this is the one you need. You will not find such detailed documentation from either the Dojo documentation or the other two books.

I take one star out because the contents of the book does not fully cover the functionality of Dojo, which is somewhat understandable as Dojo itself keeps evolving.
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I'm up against a deadline for a web application. The going is slow when you
have to hand-carve the HTML, JavaScript, CSS and PHP. Dojo saves you at least
two-thirds of the work, so I'm very grateful for it. But it takes some getting
used to, and the on-line documentation is, well, succinct.

Russell's book came along just in time. It's a lifesaver.

The Introduction alone is worth the price. I found out about
some invaluable Web development debugging tools that I'd never seen before.
Russell provides a clear, concise explanation of some very important JavaScript
notions: Closures, Context, and Anonymous Functions. And all of this before
we even get to the toolkit!

The book makes the Dojo easy to use and easy to understand. There's a wealth
of coding examples, as well as complete lists of objects, methods, and so forth.
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Great material for Dojo v1.5 and earlier. Unfortunately, I had to use Dojo v1.8.1, and the book was useless, since the entire syntax for Dojo commands changed for v1.8... I had to go online to get the new syntax for v1.8.1, and there is no book available for this version...
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Great material for Dojo v1.5 and earlier. Unfortunately, I had to use Dojo v1.8.1, and the book was useless, since the entire syntax for Dojo commands changed for v1.8... I had to go online to get the new syntax for v1.8.1, and there is no book available for this version...
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Matthew Russell has captured what makes Dojo the "magic sauce" of the Ajax world. As he indicates in the book's dedication, Dojo can be your friend in combating browser idiosyncrasies. Since Russell has been an active participant in the Dojo development community for a long time, he's in an excellent position to write from an expert's viewpoint. Another Amazon reviewer has covered the book's contents thoroughly. "Dojo: The Definitive Guide" is very well-organized and covers lots of ground. I appreciate the fact that the author doesn't simply rehash online documentation; instead he provides real insight and coherent explanations. Like most O'Reilly books, the table of contents and index are invaluable in rapidly honing in on a particular subtopic.

To get the most out of this book, you do need to have some web development background (JavaScript, CSS, HTML), but then who else would be purchasing this book? While the book might have benefited from a discussion of Dojo use with YUI, Google Gear, or other toolkits, the author points out this is out of scope. I imagine this saved more than a few trees. (Check out the ongoing efforts of the OpenAjax Alliance if you need to combine multiple frameworks.) I would have preferred access to the code examples packaged in a convenient zip file; perhaps the author will add that to his O'Reilly catalog page (URL given in the preface or just search for "Dojo" at oreilly.com). However, these points do not detract from the thoroughness in which Russell has covered a difficult and rapidly changing topic.

This book is certainly worthy of the fine O'Reilly imprint. The fact that it is edited by the always discerning Simon St. Laurent is definitely a plus. If you are a web developer who needs cross-browser support, you need this book in your library.
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This book is an outstanding resource for anyone who plans to work with the Dojo Toolkit. Dojo is my personal favorite toolkit for JavaScript development. This book really helps to explain not only the "how to" of Dojo but also the "how come". It is a great reference for Dojo's core functionality, for Dojo's Dijit widgeting system and for the Dojo build system and test harness. It gives great practical advice on how to exploit the power of dojo.query, and provides great coverage of Dojo's data stores for data source abstraction. It has excellent coverage of dojo.fx for animations, it provides an invaluable desktop reference for Dijit. There is also a excellent coverage Dojo's Data Transport apis like XmlHttpRequest, dojo.io.script(Dynamic Script Tag injection for JSONP or JSON with a check string mechanism), as well as the use of iframes for data transport.
If you are working with Dojo this book will make your life a whole lot easier.

One thing you should know before buying this book. It does not have in depth coverage of anything in the Dojox package, so you will not find anything in this book on the Data Grid!

Take a few days and give it a read, then keep it on your desk for reference. You can't go wrong.
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