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GWT in Action: Easy Ajax with the Google Web Toolkit Paperback – June 15, 2007
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About the Author
Robert Hanson is an Internet application maintenance specialist dealing with ahost of different languages, databases, platforms, and frameworks. He has beenprogramming professionally for over 10 years, half of which has been spent maintainingand enhancing existing web applications. Robert is the maintainer of thepopular open-source project, GWT Widget Library, a collection of tools andwidgets for the Google Web Toolkit.Adam Tacy is an IT consultant with a track record of delivering Java applicationsacross the energy and automobile industries. He is involved in evaluating andbringing structure to new development technologies, often in early adopterprojects as the project manager. Adam has contributed a number of widgets to theGWT Widget Library.
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I have found this book really useful for getting to grips with some of the more cutting edge and esoteric features of GWT. It covers such things as superdev mode and generators - features that you'll find little information on elsewhere. Because of the book's size and depth it might be intimidating to a complete beginner, but the authors do provide plenty of worked examples to tinker with. In contrast to some other GWT books I've tried I also found this pretty readable.
In summary, I'm a fairly seasoned GWT developer and I still found much to learn from this book. I wish I'd had it a year ago.
This book covers things I've never used, and opens up a world of functionality that I had previously been unaware of. The biggest thing: RequestFactory is no longer a mystery to me.
Another big plus: this book helped me clean up my MVP implementations. I had a little bit too much going on in my view layer previous to reading this book, and now, all cleaned up.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who uses GWT even if you are an expert. It's well written with barely any errata. Well done!
In general, I expect a book to present the development of a topic, and to define terms before using them.
This book (which both seems to have been written by a committee and was written by a committee) freely references concepts that it not only hasn't defined first, but hasn't defined at all.
GWT is changing quickly, and one of the frustrations of GWT documentation is that it's often out-of-date.
Overall, I used GWT In Action as a book to go to when GWT In Practice was a little harder to understand. GWT In Practice teaches GWT, but at a faster pace and using stronger software development techniques. When I needed to dive in deeper to a specific subject, GWT In Action was the perfect book.
I found the explanations easy, straight to the point, and very thorough - something which wasn't quite the same in other textbooks. Whereas GWT In Action may not be an advanced textbook in creating commercial applications, it is a perfect intro book to get the core concepts learned thoroughly and well.
The textbook is a little dated now, and the sample applications show it. However, as of the time of this review, most of the material is still perfectly relevant. There are some new features / objects available in GWT now that were not before, but all the old ones are still there. The textbook is not too outdated - it's still worth the purchase if you want a thorough coverage of the core GWT features.
Simply put - an easy to understand, thorough book on GWT.
1. GWT history. Vaguely talks about how to record it but not how to handle it (History.addValueChangeHandler is not mentioned)
2. Properties. The section on providing and extending properties is exceedingly confusing. I didn't have the time to try and make sense of it and went elsewhere for information.
Unfortunately it took me too long to find out how crappy this book so I can't send it back to get my money back. As I've paid for it I will still attempt to use it as a reference when I need to, but I suspect before long it will end up gathering dust with the other out of date books that I can't bare to throw out and the crappy books I've bought over the years that I try and justify ownership of.