Learning Web App Development
Build Quickly with Proven JavaScript Techniques
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: February 2014
Pages: 306

Grasp the fundamentals of web application development by building a simple database-backed app from scratch, using HTML, JavaScript, and other open source tools. Through hands-on tutorials, this practical guide shows inexperienced web app developers how to create a user interface, write a server, build client-server communication, and use a cloud-based service to deploy the application.

Each chapter includes practice problems, full examples, and mental models of the development workflow. Ideal for a college-level course, this book helps you get started with web app development by providing you with a solid grounding in the process.

  • Set up a basic workflow with a text editor, version control system, and web browser
  • Structure a user interface with HTML, and include styles with CSS
  • Use JQuery and JavaScript to add interactivity to your application
  • Link the client to the server with AJAX, JavaScript objects, and JSON
  • Learn the basics of server-side programming with Node.js
  • Store data outside your application with Redis and MongoDB
  • Share your application by uploading it to the cloud with CloudFoundry
  • Get basic tips for writing maintainable code on both client and server
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oreillyLearning Web App Development
 
4.2

(based on 5 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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    (2)

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80%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (5)
  • Helpful examples (5)
  • Well-written (4)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Novice (4)
    • Student (4)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Developer (3)

    Reviewed by 5 customers

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    (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    4.0

    Great intro, fun book

    By Ken

    from Irvine, CA

    About Me Developer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about oreilly Learning Web App Development:

      I'm an experienced software developer but I'm new to JavaScript. I found this book to be a great introduction to JavaScript, as well as basic HTML and CSS. I'm looking forward to following this with more in-depth books on jQuery, Node, Express, and the other tools.

      I also liked the "along the way" introduction to significant concepts like the use of a virtual environment for creating a web server.

      Great book for getting started with web development.

      (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

       
      3.0

      Basic, with a big step in the middle

      By Manaus

      from Torino, Italy

      About Me Designer, Developer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

      • Too basic

      Best Uses

        Comments about oreilly Learning Web App Development:

        Although well written and easy, more than the half of the book is about the very basics of html, css and js. After that, you get right off to a js framework on node, a VM, two nosql databases and tying it all together. Maybe useful.

        (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Excellent Overview of Development/Design

        By Tim

        from Little Rock, AR

        About Me Developer

        Pros

        • Concise
        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

        • Minor Extra Work Needed

        Best Uses

        • Intermediate
        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about oreilly Learning Web App Development:

        I have been developing a Java based web application for my job for the past two years. Unfortunately I never had any formal training about how a web application works or how to code in JavaScript. I really wish I had a copy of this book two years ago.

        This book assumes basic knowledge of programming principles and would make a perfect follow up to any intro to programming book or course you have just completed. The author starts from scratch and walks you through every step of designing your first JavaScript project. I liked the fact that the book started from the absolute beginning, even explaining how to manage your code with GitHub and which Text Editor/IDE to use. All of the code is available but its nice that the author challenges you as a programmer every step of the way, often allowing you to first try coding something on your own before seeing the proper or "best-practice" way of achieving the same goal.

        Every step of the Model, View, Controller structure is fully explained with examples that gradually build out your first project.

        What I liked most was that all of the web technologies used are fully current and relevant and are actually what would be used in a typical work environment.

        The only problem I had is that some of the instructions didn't quite work as expected, especially when dealing with project dependencies, versions, operating system differences etc... I understand that its nearly impossible to create one size fits all instructions when dealing with so many different systems that developers are coding on. A simple google search or a visit to the author's constantly updated git repository often fixed any issues I had.

        In summary, this book was absolutely perfect for learning how to build a web application from scratch. It teaches you everything you need to know to create a database driven web app and how data is posted to and from the client and server. Even experienced programmers could use this book as a great refresher and way to correct bad coding habits.

         
        5.0

        Systematically

        By Millie

        from Hong Kong, China

        About Me Designer, Maker

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Accurate
        • Easy to understand
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Intermediate
          • Novice
          • Student

          Comments about oreilly Learning Web App Development:

          This is a book that systematically describe the workflow and good method of how to develop a web application with the most popular tutorials in the latest common way.

          I am not with the engineer background. I know HTML, CSS and a bit javascript before. The author is a teacher and he wrote it in the way that is easier for me to understand. The book the author recommended is also worth reading if people what to go deep in an espect.

          It

          (7 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

           
          4.0

          Solid introduction to web app tools

          By jmxp

          from Durham, NC

          Pros

          • Easy to understand
          • Helpful examples

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Novice
            • Student

            Comments about oreilly Learning Web App Development:

            Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this work under the O'Reilly Blogger Review Program.

            You've got to hand it to anyone these days willing to say, "Yes, I'll teach you web app development. I'll do it from ground zero and in under 300 pages." Not only because modern web development offers so many toolchains to choose from, but because many of the standards involved were designed at different times, weren't designed to play nicely with others, still have to accommodate legacy cruft (i.e., IE), or are just plain confusing. It's a recipe for frustration.

            Enter Semmy Purewal, whose Learning Web App Development is, in all, a respectable shot at getting you up to speed with at least one version of a modern development stack. Up front, it's necessary to mention that Purewal's audience is students. He's taught some version of this class to college kids with very little background, as a means of preparing them to move on to more sophisticated frameworks like Ruby on Rails. That's interesting in itself for those in a position to teach similar material, or to recommend a book to a novice (spoiler: I would). But it's also important because Purewal's goal isn't to show you how a professional would go about building a web app, it's to give you a sense of what that professional's tools are doing for him under the hood.

            Personally, I'm just off center of the target audience for this book. I have never done web development. My HTML is painfully basic. My JavaScript is pretty weak. I am unlikely to spend a year getting really good at Rails, but I'm a scientist who might want to throw something together for a small, data-driven project.

            For which this book is just about right. Through chapters on HTML, CSS, Javascript, JSON, MongoDB, and Node.js, it builds up a single web app, a process that roughly approximates the history of web technology. The approach is example-based and pedagogical, and all the code is available on GitHub for download. By the time I was finished, I was far from an expert, but I knew enough to organize the pieces of a basic app in my mind and know where to go searching for more focused help.

            All in all, I'd call that a success.

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