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PhoneGap Beginner's Guide Paperback – September 23, 2011

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About the Author

Andrew Lunny is a programmer at Nitobi Software Inc in Vancouver, British Columbia. He has worked with the PhoneGap team since the project's inception, and currently works on the PhoneGap Build web service for building PhoneGap applications in the cloud.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 328 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (September 23, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849515360
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849515368
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.7 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,960,904 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Paul T. on October 14, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought my Kindle in June 2009 and have been using it pretty much non-stop since then for both fiction and non-fiction (mostly tech books). The only time I ever contacted Amazon for a refund on a Kindle book was with "PhoneGap Beginner's Guide". It is so riddled with incomprehensible sentences that I can only suspect the publisher skipped any serious editing in the rush to get it to market.

I'm not talking about technically difficult sentences. This book (or at least the first few chapters) is full of read-them-six-times-and-still-don't-understand-them grammatical train-wrecks.

For the record, I make part of my living writing instructional books and material. I do not leave a review like this lightly. I understand the consequences of bad feedback. I also have no doubt that Mr. Lunny is a decent guy. Based on his role at Nitobi, he's probably a thousand times smarter than me. His editor, though, should be fired.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By E. Mitchell on November 11, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Now that I have the book, I agree with the reviewer that complained about the writing style and poor editing.

Here is an example of the mangled text found in the book:
"It is not a JavaScript array the object is an instance of the native Storage class which doesn't have constructor access to from inside the browser environment but it has array-like features, such as a length property."

Lunny, Andrew (2011-09-23). PhoneGap Beginner's Guide (p. 66). Packt Publishing. Kindle Edition.

There are many sentences like this, often several on each page, which make reading the text difficult. Yet the overall content is very valuable for learning PhoneGap. I am also learning Javascript at the same time, but using a different book for that.

As this is the only book covering PhoneGap that is available now, I do recommend the book. But I wonder why the publisher released this book before it was edited?

4 stars due to the problems with the writing mistakes and lack of editing.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Randy Fay on November 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
I am really motivated to make something of Phonegap (or Titanium, the most important competing platform) so I spent a full day with this book attempting a quickstart on the platform. Unfortunately, as often happens, the book was outdated before publication. The key Droidgap class and utility were obsoleted in the current release of Phonegap, so none of the beginning instructions even work at all. This isn't the author's fault, but it is a really sad thing for a book that took a huge amount of time to write to be shot in the knees at release. I note that even the Phonegap.com getting started instructions ([...]) haven't been updated to take care of this yet.

I did tweet about this and @phonegap did respond with plans for an errata site but no news yet.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. Garcia on January 10, 2012
Format: Paperback
First let me start off my saying that this book did have many typos from a lack of thorough editing, but since many typos were obvious and Google was available to get past some of the other setup issues, the rest of the book provided much valuable information.

Just an FYI, some simulators are OS specific, for instance the official iPhone simulator is only available to iOS (Mac) and BlackBerry is specific to Windows. This book shouldn't be docked for this, because the author of this book doesn't control these facts.

Some may complain about this book being out-of-date, I would disagree. You could write a mobile web app using a Mobile Web Framework such as Sencha Touch if you want to be not he cutting edge, or you can "roll your own" mobile web by writing your own HTML with some JavaScript libraries, but much of the information covered in this book is information any good Mobile Web Developer should know because not every company you work for will be working on the latest frameworks. Therefore, you need to know how to do these things from scratch!

This book starts off slow with setup of PhoneGap for various devices, basics of Mobile Web development with choosing a JavaScript framework to develop with, using some new features HTML5 and CSS3 and being familiar with the Web Inspector for debugging then making some simple mobile web pages just to get everything working together. The examples are about the right pace, teaching only the content that is covered and progress with complexity nicely always showing a better way of getting the job done using some new approach.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 26, 2011
Format: Paperback
This book covers a lot of material (emphasis on "a lot"). This review will cover the breadth of this book's content. It starts you at the beginning, with downloading PhoneGap and the Software Development Kits (SDKs) you'll need to create and install applications for each of the mobile phone frameworks (Xcode for iPhone, Eclipse for Android, and Blackberry Webworks). We are introduced immediately to Git, ant, and Ruby, so we can start using them in our workflow.

The author encourages us to build our apps in a WebKit-compatible browser like Safari or Chrome and use their debugging tools. We get to sample their use with simple scripts so we can experience these tools ourselves. So far, these few pages have shown me several sloppy habits I've developed when making apps, and given me the steps to correct myself. I'm not a Javascript programmer, so some of this was all new to me.

We are guided to building our first simple app (on each platform, no less) with an Javascript alert, then on to local storage to help us persist the information the user enters. Complete code is given to show us how simple this storage is. (You can download all the book's code from the Packt web site.) We get a sample of mustache.js, which is a view template, and displays the information in our local storage in the places we want the information to appear.

All that in the first three chapters. With humor. The chuckle train keeps on rolling as we integrate Twitter (retrieving those feeds containing our key words) and JSON to the app.

With the above foundation out of the way, the author tackles cross-platform headaches, introducing tools that help us to format our code for the different mobile phones.
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