JavaScript: The Good Parts
Unearthing the Excellence in JavaScript
Publisher: O'Reilly Media / Yahoo Press
Final Release Date: May 2008
Pages: 172

Most programming languages contain good and bad parts, but JavaScript has more than its share of the bad, having been developed and released in a hurry before it could be refined. This authoritative book scrapes away these bad features to reveal a subset of JavaScript that's more reliable, readable, and maintainable than the language as a whole—a subset you can use to create truly extensible and efficient code.

Considered the JavaScript expert by many people in the development community, author Douglas Crockford identifies the abundance of good ideas that make JavaScript an outstanding object-oriented programming language-ideas such as functions, loose typing, dynamic objects, and an expressive object literal notation. Unfortunately, these good ideas are mixed in with bad and downright awful ideas, like a programming model based on global variables.

When Java applets failed, JavaScript became the language of the Web by default, making its popularity almost completely independent of its qualities as a programming language. In JavaScript: The Good Parts, Crockford finally digs through the steaming pile of good intentions and blunders to give you a detailed look at all the genuinely elegant parts of JavaScript, including:

  • Syntax
  • Objects
  • Functions
  • Inheritance
  • Arrays
  • Regular expressions
  • Methods
  • Style
  • Beautiful features

The real beauty? As you move ahead with the subset of JavaScript that this book presents, you'll also sidestep the need to unlearn all the bad parts. Of course, if you want to find out more about the bad parts and how to use them badly, simply consult any other JavaScript book.

With JavaScript: The Good Parts, you'll discover a beautiful, elegant, lightweight and highly expressive language that lets you create effective code, whether you're managing object libraries or just trying to get Ajax to run fast. If you develop sites or applications for the Web, this book is an absolute must.

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oreillyJavaScript: The Good Parts
 
4.3

(based on 43 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (24)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (13)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (4)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (1)

84%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Concise (29)
  • Accurate (26)
  • Well-written (24)
  • Helpful examples (20)
  • Easy to understand (19)

Cons

  • Difficult to understand (6)
  • Not comprehensive enough (4)

Best Uses

  • Intermediate (31)
  • Expert (22)
  • Novice (17)
  • Student (12)
    • Reviewer Profile:
    • Developer (33), Designer (7), Educator (3)

Reviewed by 43 customers

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5.0

Amazing Book

By LiuChaofan

from Beijing

About Me Designer, Developer

Verified Reviewer

Pros

  • Concise
  • Easy to understand
  • Well-written

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Expert
    • Intermediate
    • Novice
    • Student

    Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

    If you want to begin learning JavaScript with a book, this book will be definitely the best.

     
    5.0

    Still timely and insightful

    By Ben

    from Atlanta, GA

    About Me Developer

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

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

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Intermediate
      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

      Remains one of the best JS books out there. It's size belies the density of the material.

      Should be on every JS dev's bookshelf. I was concerned that its age might undermine its value, but that proved to be an unfounded fear.

      Crockford's lectures reveal that he has dropped a few more parts from the 'good' list, but the concepts here are still very sound.

       
      5.0

      Excelent JS Book

      By João Nabais

      from Lisbon

      About Me Developer

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Concise
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Expert
        • Intermediate
        • Student

        Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

        The book focus on how to do things "the right way" highlighting the good subset of javascript. The examples are explained in a good and simplistic fashion. Good Job!

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        As expected

        By Chris R.

        from Mississauga, ON, Canada

        About Me Developer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Concise
        • Helpful examples
        • Well-written

        Cons

          Best Uses

          • Intermediate

          Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

          I have been looking for months through lots of web sites, magazines and books, to be able to wrap my head around the way JavaScript deals with certain OOP aspects. As I went along I got more and more confused rather than enlightened, because of contradictory advice. This book is one of the books I consulted after having seen it referred to positively in some articles. It did not clear up the question about which approach to use, but everything is presented in a way that made it certainly a lot easier than through many other books to condense a lot of the issues to the essentials, without detail overload leading to confusion. All in all one of the better books I consulted over the last few months.

          (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          Must read

          By Bernard_J

          from Brussels, Belgium

          About Me Developer

          Verified Reviewer

          Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

          You cannot say you know JS until you have read this book. You need to know the basics of JS first.

           
          5.0

          Very enlightening JS book

          By João Nabais

          from Lisbon

          About Me Developer

          Pros

          • Accurate
          • Concise
          • Helpful examples
          • Well-written

          Cons

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            • Expert
            • Intermediate

            Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

            Excellent coverage of JS in a concisely manner, without waisting too many pages.

            Great Work!

            (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

             
            5.0

            Good/Quick Intro and Read

            By SlurpTheo

            from Verona, WI

            About Me Designer, Developer

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

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

            Cons

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              • Intermediate
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              • Student

              Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

              If you want an introduction to bare, raw JavaScript, I'd start here.

               
              5.0

              Not just Good, These are the BEST parts

              By Amjad Tabassum

              from Pakistan

              About Me Developer, Educator, Web Designer

              Pros

              • Accurate
              • Concise
              • Easy to understand
              • Helpful examples
              • To the point
              • Well-written

              Cons

              • None Found Yet -

              Best Uses

              • Expert
              • Intermediate
              • Novice
              • Student

              Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

              Have read many other books on JavaScript which are for beginner to expert level but never read anything cool like this.

              (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

               
              5.0

              The book that made me love javascript

              By Endeios

              from Milan

              About Me Designer, Developer

              Verified Reviewer

              Pros

              • Accurate
              • Concise
              • Easy to understand
              • Well-written

              Cons

              • Doesn't Cover Last Versio

              Best Uses

              • Intermediate
              • Novice

              Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

              I think that javascript is an abused language. Is too flexible, really easy to learn but a bit hard to master. It has also much people, like me before reading this book, that thinks they know the language.

              Do you think that javascript is just biblical plague you have to deal with?
              You just shiver at the thought of having to write javascript?

              Trust me and all the ones that red this book before me. You just don't know the "Good Parts". They are beautiful.

              (3 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

               
              2.0

              Hard to extract the useful information

              By Rob

              from Toronto

              About Me Developer

              Pros

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Novice

                  Comments about oreilly JavaScript: The Good Parts:

                  This book goes into rigorous detail on things like the grammer of a for loop but fails to go into enough detail on things like common inheritance patteres in JavaScript becasue it writes off the new operator as a bad part of JavaScript.

                  There are some gems of wisdom in this book but they can be hard to find.

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