- Series: Essentials
- Paperback: 1000 pages
- Publisher: Apress; 1st ed. edition (November 26, 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1430216107
- ISBN-13: 978-1430216100
- Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 1.9 x 9.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 26 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,462,409 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Essential Guide to Dreamweaver CS4 with CSS, Ajax, and PHP (Essentials) 1st ed. Edition
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About the Author
David Powers is an Adobe Community Expert for Dreamweaver and author of a series of highly successful books on PHP, including PHP Solutions: Dynamic Web Design Made Easy and Foundation PHP for Dreamweaver 8. As a professional writer, he has been involved in electronic media for more than 30 years, first with BBC radio and television and more recently with the Internet. His clear writing style is valued not only in the English-speaking world; several of his books have been translated into Spanish and Polish. What started as a mild interest in computing was transformed almost overnight into a passion, when David was posted to Japan in 1987 as BBC correspondent in Tokyo. With no corporate IT department just down the hallway, he was forced to learn how to fix everything himself. When not tinkering with the innards of his computer, he was reporting for BBC television and radio on the rise and collapse of the Japanese bubble economy. Since leaving the BBC to work independently, he has built up an online bilingual database of economic and political analysis for Japanese clients of an international consultancy. When not pounding the keyboard writing books or dreaming of new ways of using PHP and other programming languages, David enjoys nothing better than visiting his favorite sushi restaurant. He has also translated several plays from Japanese.
Top customer reviews
Right off the bat, this book starts off with an introduction of the *new* features of Dreamweaver CS4, giving me a 'jumpstart' in using Dreamweaver CS4 and getting comfortable with it. The CS4 version dropped mainly three chapters from the CS3 book; Building Dynamic Websites with PHP & Ajax, Getting the Work Environment Ready, and Setting up MySQL and phpMyAdmin. The 'dropped' content wasn't as so much as cut out of the book entirely, but re-edited to suit other chapters in the book in a more seamless fashion. (i.e., instead of a full chapter on MySQL, the book now touches on it in talking about creating/accessing a database.) On thing that seemingly did get cut out from the CS4 book entirely was the 'Getting the Work Environment Ready' chapter, so readers may want to borrow a book (or two!) from a library about creating a LAMP server on the same machine or elsewhere.
The CS4 book has added new content, and updated other chapters. The new content mostly covered...
* Creating a Web Page and Adding Content
* Using Spry Dynamic Effects and Components
* Going Beyond the Basics with Spry and Ajax
* Working with Templates and InContext Editing
* Deploying Your Site on the Internet
* Generating XML with PHP
What I loved most about the new content focused on Spry, Ajax, and Dynamic website building. One particular thing I've loved about the book was that the author made several attempts to explain what the Dreamweaver server-side PHP (or client side Spry) code was actually doing, and how to 'tinker' with them in achieving a desired result.
Overall, this book will give you a solid introduction in using Dreamweaver CS4 in creating standards-compliant dynamic websites with a minimum amount of pain associated with hand coding.
The reasons I like his books are:
1) They are totally on topic, he covers what he says he will
2) They are written in simple non-technobabble, his style of writing is simple to read and understand
3) He takes the time to cover what you need to know and stays on subject, no wandering mind issues
4) As far as I have seen, all of his code works, I have not covered all of his books from cover to cover, but as a comp sci student who reads butt loads of these type books and finds errors often, I can say these are some of the least error filled books, I own well over 200 books on programming, web development and all computer science subjects.
5) He has some really cool, really useful examples, all of which are the things you would encounter and need in the real world.
This book is cool because he shows you how to totally set up a local test environment with Apache, PHP, MySQL and Dreamweaver, and even how to create virtual hosts in apache(I have not found a book yet, other than books on apache,that tell you how to do it with pictures)the explanation of how to set up your testing environment makes the book worth owning alone.
This is not a beginners book, this is not going to hold your hand and teach you the subjects , it would be beneficial to have some HTML,CSS,Ajax, MySQL and PHP experience. What this does show you is how to incorporate all of these subjects and how to use Dreamweaver to do it effectively and efficiently. However you do not need to know anything about Dreamweaver, that is mainly what the book is about, if you know HTML, CSS and PHP, this book will show you how to create entire sites with Dreamweaver and those languages, that is what it is about, not teaching you anyone of those subjects, but how to use them in Dreamweaver.
As a computer science student I run into many people who should not be going into the field, who will not be successful, those same people tend to give these kind of books crappy review. It is their frustration in not understanding the subject, usually, I do have some crappy books though, and unfortunately one of my next classes uses one of the crappy books. It is full of errors, both in syntax of the language and the concepts of or lack of security. Davids books even cover security issues, they are really great books, this one is well worth whatever you buy it for.
However, that proved to be impossible. I couldn't find the complete PHP code examples in the book. What I did find in the introduction section of this book, under the subtitle "Using the download files" directions to the author's websites ([...]) where all the book's example are available for download. Which would be great, accept the server hosting the author's website requires a user name and password; and without this information the author's website cannot be accessed.
If you are a newbie to PHP and interested in the learning PHP code for sending information to the server; I recommend you find another book. In my opinion by failing to make the complete code examples available to the audience, the authors botched the delivery of the most significant self-help tool for do-it-yourselfer like me--the ability to investigate your success or lack thereof.
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