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No Code Required: Giving Users Tools to Transform the Web Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-0123815415 ISBN-10: 012381541X Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann; 1 edition (April 19, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 012381541X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0123815415
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 7.4 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,087,385 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The web is becoming not only a venue for people to receive information but increasingly a place for them to create new forms of information and to share them. The transition in the role from being a passive consumer to an active consumer as well as contributor is made possible by exactly the kind of work described in this book." -- Dr. Margaret Burnett, Dept of Computer Science, Oregon State University

From the Back Cover

Revolutionary tools are emerging from research labs that enable all computer users to customize and automate their use of the Web without learning how to program. No Code Required takes cutting edge material from academic and industry leaders - the people creating these tools -- and presents the research, development, application, and impact of a variety of new and emerging systems.

*The first book since Web 2.0 that covers the latest research, development, and systems emerging from HCI research labs on end user programming tools

*Featuring contributions from the creators of Adobe's Zoetrope and Intel's Mash Maker, discussing test results, implementation, feedback, and ways forward in this booming area

*Companion Web site features video demonstrations of each system


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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Reader Jon on November 8, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is simply a collection of essays. There's nothing wrong with that. However, my frustration is with the discrepancy between expectation and reality. Perhaps I expected too much? Maybe. I stumbled across this book, skimmed a few portions using "search inside", and read a few quick reviews. I got very excited as I thought I'd discovered some great new tools. At the same time, I wondered how in the world I'd never heard of these things when they appeared to be so useful! I was a little taken aback by the $40 price tag for a Kindle edition, but felt confident that the end result would be more than worth it.

I was extremely disappointed to discover that the vast majority of tools listed in this book are not available. This doesn't seem to correspond very well to the subtitle: "Giving Users Tools to Transform the Web". The majority of items listed are either unavailable or only available to people within select groups (MIT for example).

If you'd like to learn about some of the great tools that may some day be part of our daily computing, this may be the book for you. If you want to find tools that will help you today, I'd suggest you skip this one.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robert L. Stinnett VINE VOICE on September 17, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The web (and the internet in general) has changed so much in it's short time span. What once was a static means of delivering content electronically has now turned into a fully interactive, customizable, multi-platform information delivery vehicle. Today people don't just read about information online, they interact with it through various tools and resources. In this book you will get to read about some of the great projects underway at some online firms to help grow that interaction, as well as read some of the more theoretically "what if's" that could very well transform the web in the years to come.

This book is not your ordinary tech book. It's written on an academic level, but that shouldn't scare you away if you truly want to understand what is helping drive the online revolution. It's not a book you can finish reading in a week, but rather becuase of the depth of information you will want to read it in chunks and then come back and start on the next chunk. I found it to be a great way to relax in the evenings, or even over my lunch hour, by just reading a bit and then trying to imagine how what I just read could apply to my company's website, or my own online adventures.

This would be a great gift for that inquisitive teenager who is thinking about a career in computer science or starting their own online business. It's also a great book for those of us, like myself, who are always curious about what lies around the corner -- what will technology bring us next, and how can I be a part of that change?
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Alan Moore VINE VOICE on September 15, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is not a book, more a collection of essays published over the last few years. It really has little practical application for the commercial web designer, but some interesting ideas.

It is, however, based on an idea which is technically correct, but has little use in the real world: If you had to be a systems programmer to use a computer in the 1940s up till the advent of the Microcomputer, then that makes every computer user a programmer. The tools have evolved, from assembly to languages like C and a command line to the GUI and now web apps - many levels of abstraction from the circuitry inside. Inadvertently, we are all programmers when we use our computers, or even a web browser.

Therefore, it is possible that, will enhanced tools, we can all actually program our computers, regardless of ability. It's a nice idea, but it doesn't hold water. Just because a user can upload their photo, attach a geolocation code, and have it show up on Google Maps, only for another user to take the data and use a mash-up tool to do something else, does not make the first user a programmer.

The age of the materials also shows itself up - who uses 'mash-ups' any more? It's as dated as references to home pages or the information superhighway. As a collection of theoretical essays by people entrenched firmly in research and academia, this book has merit. As a useful guide enabling web designers and programmers to offload work on the user, it has no value.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
As the title suggests, the purpose of this book is to explain tools that can be used to make a user much more efficient when using the web. The tools are designed to be easy to use, well within the skill set of a non-programmer, requiring little in the way of coding. To be more precise, little in the area of traditional programming that requires detailed knowledge of control constructs such as if's and loops is needed.
The book is split into seven categories:

*) Introduction
*) Customizing and automating
*) Mashups
*) Visualization and exploration
*) Natural language
*) Accessibility
*) User studies

Each section contains at least three chapters covering various aspects in the area of the section title.
While the tools were designed to be used by non-programmers, detailed knowledge of the web and the many ways it is used is essential to understand the purpose of the tools. The discussions are generally based on "given the follow situation where the user wants to ..." and then the ways in which the tool is used to accomplish the task are explained. For example, when the Atomate tool is being explained the three scenarios are:

*) Simple contextual reminding - using the tool to generate a reminder to do something. The reminder can be an e-mail, alert, text message or tweet.
*) Social coordination - users can set rules for reminders where the rules have several levels of condition clauses. The tool will also explain why a rule was fired.
*) Extending the system - the system can be configured to get data from an RSS feed or to scrape data from a web site. The example used is an organic grocery store that posts the latest fresh items online but does not have an RSS feed.
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