Using Google App Engine
Building Web Applications
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: May 2009
Pages: 262

Build exciting, scalable web applications quickly and confidently using Google App Engine and this book, even if you have little or no experience in programming or web development.

App Engine is perhaps the most appealing web technology to appear in the last year, providing an easy-to-use application framework with basic web tools. While Google's own tutorial assumes significant experience, Using Google App Engine will help anyone get started with this platform. By the end of this book, you'll know how to build complete, interactive applications and deploy them to the cloud using the same servers that power Google applications.

With this book, you will:

  • Get an overview of the technologies necessary to use Google App Engine
  • Learn how to use Python, HTML, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS), HTTP, and DataStore, App Engine's database
  • Grasp the technical aspects necessary to create sophisticated, dynamic web applications
  • Understand what's required to deploy your applications

Using Google App Engine is also an excellent resource for experienced programmers who want to acquire working knowledge of web technologies. Building web applications used to be for experts only, but with Google App Engine-and this book-anyone can create a dynamic web presence.

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Product Details
About the Author
Recommended for You
Customer Reviews


by PowerReviews
oreillyUsing Google App Engine

(based on 5 reviews)

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Reviewed by 5 customers

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Great Introductory Book

By gpanterov

from Washington, DC

Verified Buyer

Comments about oreilly Using Google App Engine:

This is a great introduction to the Google app engine. I was a little apprehensive at first because the book was a bit old and some reviews pointed out that some of the code doesn't work (this is true) but nevertheless the book helped me out a lot. My entire previous experience with GAE was with their official tutorial which was helpful only up to a point. The book has a very very good basic introduction on html, a little python the internet etc. The only reason I give it 4 out of 5 is because of the code is designed to work with an earlier version of GAE. But this wasn't too bad as you can figure out where things break and you can easily fix it yourself.


Good value

By peterretief

from Cape Town

Verified Reviewer

Comments about oreilly Using Google App Engine:

I found the book a good base to teach appengine

(2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)


It's perfect for getting a good base

By elpuercoespin

from Spain

About Me Developer

Verified Reviewer


  • Easy to understand
  • Helpful examples
  • Well-written


    Best Uses

    • Intermediate
    • Novice

    Comments about oreilly Using Google App Engine:

    It`s a course in a book, as it explains in the Preface. It's very didactic. Explains a little about css/html, python, and ajax, but only for understand the application that is developing along the book. The code of GAE itself is very useful, but it's true that it's outdated. It would be interesting a web page where the code was update, and the typos corrected.

    (7 of 11 customers found this review helpful)


    There are errors in the code

    By shel

    from Van Nuys

    About Me Developer, Sys Admin

    Verified Reviewer


    • Took my and ran


    • No errata
    • No way to contact author
    • Too many errors

    Best Uses

    • Intermediate

    Comments about oreilly Using Google App Engine:

    The author says "this book assumes no knowledge of programming or web technologies and is written in a way that is understandable to non programmers... it starts from the beginning and covers the necessary prerequisite technologies..." while all this may be true and the background data on the http protocol and html/css are great. The code still has errors. The two examples using the webapp frame work and templates don't work with the code shown. From my research it appears that the book was taken from a series of lecturs the author did when google app engine was first released in 2008. The book was released in may of 2009 and it appears that google has made some changes in the way the appengine works with templates. However, the author makes no mention of these changes offers no errata nor any way to contact him from the publishers site or his own. Too bad I did not know that before I blew [$]

    (4 of 9 customers found this review helpful)


    A carefully written guide to building a Google App internet web site

    By Lee McKusick

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly Using Google App Engine:

    Using Google App Engine a review by Lee McKusick 7-30-2009

    Last year, Google Apps as I understood it was a free office and communications suite with a spreadsheet, blog, photo storage and word processor. The Apps were available online with free file storage and a file sharing provision.

    Now Google Apps has added a free (for limited use) website construction toolkit. The toolkit is offered in Python with a parallel toolkit in Java. This toolkit can be downloaded and used on a personal computer. An application developed on a personal computer can be uploaded and run on Google's servers. Quite a bit of traffic and data is allowed under the "free" service.

    Note that the Google AppEngine is a rather extraordinary business proposition. For moderate amounts of web traffic, Google is allowing you to create a website, run the website in their cloud of servers and store data on their servers for free. All the free websites appear as

    I have not figured out the strategic and social considerations of the Google free web site offer. The posted demo websites are pretty impressive.

    So skipping that issue, back to the book review:

    The main URL for accessing the Google Web Apps toolkit is:

    Using Google App Engine is an introduction and tutorial with the development of an example program.

    The audience being addressed is both first time web site builders and persons with considerable web experience.

    The Google software package is mainly conventional Python. Additional Python library code with specific functions is supplied by Google. The Google supplied libraries provide the connections needed for your app to run on Google's servers.

    Chapter by chapter Using Google App Engine explains how Google has implemented each of the usual website components. The book explains how a browser to server transaction works, how Google provides a kind of data store, how you attach a name to your web application, and how you do a testing and a production version of your software.

    The explanations strike me as very careful, tested writing. The explanations reveal the system in layers, show where the details lie that may be revisited later, and model the simplicity and clarity of programs written in Python.

    Google Apps does not have testing in the sense used by Rails developers. Instead of testing, Google Apps provides the user with a local development environment, then after uploading to the Google cloud, the user can operate a production and a separate testing version of her App

    This review also published in the book reviews.

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