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Developing Backbone.js Applications 1st Edition

3.7 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1449328252
ISBN-10: 1449328253
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Editorial Reviews

Book Description

Building Better JavaScript Applications

About the Author

Addy Osmani is a writer, speaker, and a JavaScript developer.He is a member of the jQuery core [Bug Triage/Docs/Learning] teams where helps with bugs, documentation, and developer evangelism.

When not working at AOL his personal OS projects include jQuery UI Bootstrap and TodoMVC, which help developers compare JavaScript MVC frameworks. Addy is the author of the popular ebook, Essential JavaScript Design Patterns. His personal blog is http://addyosmani.com/blog/

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 374 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (June 1, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449328253
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449328252
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #777,861 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Daniel Howard on September 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like this book but I don't care much for the layout. It starts with an introduction, crams Backbone.js basics into a single chapter, presents two solid Backbone.js examples and then uses the rest of the book to cover Backbone.js extensions (e.g. Marionette, Thorax, Paginator) and other JavaScript libraries (e.g. RequireJS, jQuery Mobile, Jasmine, QUnit, SinonJS). It's unnerving that 60%+ of the book only has a tenuous connection to Backbone.js. The author probably wrote this book to show how he develops single-page applications and the Backbone.js-focused title was bolted on to help with marketing.

I've been working my way through the code samples. As expected, there are a few places where the code has editing/syntax errors, there are a few places were the code works but it does not do much to improve understanding (and could be improved to make it crystal clear) and there are a few places where Backbone.js has since changed since the book was published. The Backbone.js basics chapter is long but, in several cases, glosses over important topics, especially the Backbone.js REST support. Through trial-and-error and continued reading, I have gotten to understand them but I would have preferred the book to explain them thoroughly and in one place. The Backbone.js basics chapter is tough and tedious to work through and required several attempts. It is tough and tedious because I am actually typing and executing the code and, due to the errors, lack of clarity and Backbone.js changes, I need to spend 1/2 hour to enhance and experiment with the code every 1/3 of a page.

The two Backbone.js chapters with sample applications (a To Do list and a Library) are significantly easier and a bit better than the Backbone.
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Format: Paperback
I come to this book after having read "Single Web Page Applications" and so my expectations were set. Sorry to say they were not met with this book. This book is most definitely not for the beginner in OO-jQuery. There were a lot of things left unexplained. But the thing that bothered me most about this book is that the code examples were not well laid out and so it took some time to figure out what code example went with what chapter. And after I got that figured out, the first two code examples did NOT work out of the box which is very frustrating. I am returning my copy. The author would do well to look at how the code examples are given in the other aforementioned book.
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This book provides a good overview of developing a Backbone.js application. Unfortunately, once you go back and try to implement a Backbone app based upon the examples you'll begin to find omissions and things glossed over. One example is the book never mentions the different ways to associate a view with a model and the pros and cons of each approach. You have to examine the example code to infer how it is done.

Also, the examples are not representative of what most developers will be writing. I am currently looking for another Backbone text which is more concise. So far, I have not seen anything to get excited about. Junk from Packt mostly.
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This is one of the few books that are written on the subject of Backbone.js, framework that I think is very powerful. The author is very familiar with the subject and has wast knowledge about the other surrounding plugins/add on's that can be used/combined with Backbone.js.

In my opinion this book is for intermediate and advanced users of Backbone.js and is not attended for beginners. There are a lot of subjects that are covered inside: building desktop application, building mobile application, testing with Backbone.js and many others. The examples that the author is using are great and there is additional source code for the ToDo application.

In my opinion it is 4/5 stars because there is not enough explanation about the code examples, I think that the explanation should be more deep and explaining new functions. And some how for me the flow of the book is discontinued.

But all and all this is a great book that is worth having.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The first half of the book was very good. Osmani introduces the reader to the theory behind Backbone.js, then carefull walks through the development of a simple “To Do” application, providing code (error-free!) and discussion of how newly-introduced code parts integrate with what we've already done and what they mean in the Backbone.js environment.

After two courses through the increasingly complex demo application, the book went beyond my level of interest, introducing extensions like Marionette and then covering modularization using Require.js. No doubt those latter parts were as carefully written and reviewed as the first parts, so developers with a deeper interest in the framework shouldn't take my lack of interest as any sort of criticism.

Osmani comes across as good-natured and certainly knows the material. The code samples work, explanations are thorough without any sort of condescension, and the content is well-organized. A developer with some JavaScript experience can pick things up typing through the code samples – I completed my first (small, but non-trivial) Backbone application with little trouble immediately after completing Osmani's first two demos.

I did notice in my first solo project that I had little idea how to implement the “model” part of the MV* (as he calls it) framework. Looking back, I saw that the total utilization of that part of the framework in Osman's first demos totaled a dozen lines of code, mostly setting some defaults. I see that as a shortcoming of the book and is the reason for 4 rather than 5 stars.
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