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Practical Rails Projects (Expert's Voice) 1st ed. Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1590597811
ISBN-10: 1590597818
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eldon Alameda is a web developer who currently resides in the harsh climates of Kansas. He works as a regional webmaster for the U.S. National Weather Service; prior to this, he did development for a variety of companies including local start-ups, advertising firms, Sprint PCS, and IBM. During the 1990s, he also acquired a nice stack of worthless stock options from working for dot-com companies.
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Product Details

  • Series: Expert's Voice
  • Paperback: 621 pages
  • Publisher: Apress; 1st ed. edition (October 28, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590597818
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590597811
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,348,301 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By James Stewart on December 1, 2007
Format: Paperback
Practical Rails Projects is a weighty tome, coming in just shy of 600 pages, which led to this review taking a little longer than it otherwise might: not just because the book took a while to get through, but also because it wasn't quite so practical to lug it on the bus as some of the others I've recently covered. A result of that heft is a fairly comprehensive volume, but one that doesn't feel quite so consistent as it perhaps should.

Eldon Alameda has written the book for people who have some previous Rails experience or may have cracked open one of the introductory books on offer, but who want to learn the framework by observing a number of working projects. In some ways that leads to overlap with a book like Practical Rails Social Networking Sites (Expert's Voice), but whereas that built up one example this book covers seven ranging from a system to track progress through an exercise programme, to an appointment scheduler that interfaces with 37signals' Highrise using ActiveResource.

The first few projects proceed at an even pace and are likely to be helpful to a newcomer to Rails, there's a fair bit of overlap with examples available in other volumes, but they work well together. While the author discusses the decision to skip over the writing of tests and/or specs, it did seem that in a volume of this size that topic should have been given a little space, even if that involved sacrificing one of the sample projects.

Unfortunately the book loses pace a little later on, particularly with the introduction of the Ext JS library which is used to build user interfaces but ends up occupying far more space than the actual Rails code in the later chapters.
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Format: Paperback
I initially had some complaints with this book as the source code was not up on the Apress Website. This has been rectified in less than 24 hours and I want to thank the Author, Eldon Alemeda for making it happen.

I have finished the my first quick read, and now with the required source code online I have made it through the first 5 chapters of excercises, and I am impressed with the breadth that is covered in 621 pages.

This book would be a great book for someone who is an advanced beginner (admittedly an oximoron) or intermediate Rails programmer. It takes the reader through 7 short projects with only 23 pages of space on initial handholding on how to get your development system up and running.

While the author skips the usual Test/Behavior Driven Development paradigm, it is a logical course in this case in order to cover so many topics.

This book covers many topics in with lots of breadth including Rest Based Authentication, Advanced Caching, converting PHP game sites that I found quite useful.

Lastly and most importantly for me was the last 4 chapters of the book that focused on a project using Rails 2.0 + some nifty integration with Yahoo Maps.

Especially with the active participation of the author in supporting this book and its readers, I strongly recommend it as an addition to any rails advanced beginner/intermediate programmer.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I knew that it was out of date when I bought it, but this is just a reminder for anyone who didn't check the publication date. I bought it because reimplementing the applications for Rails 4 sounded like it would be interesting. This makes it somewhat more advanced than it was intended to be, and it requires some extra research to find out the Rails 4 way of doing things, where that's appropriate.
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