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CodeIgniter for Rapid PHP Application Development Kindle Edition
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|Length: 263 pages|
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And now, there are two books out on CodeIgniter. I purchased both books, read this one from cover to cover, and am 1/3 of the way through the "Professional CodeIgniter" book, which is much slower going. I figure folks might want to know the difference before they buy.
"CodeIgniter for Rapid PHP..." is a detailed overview of CodeIgniter. First, I have to disagree with the previous reviewer. This book does not walk you through a complete application. There is part of an application in Chap 13 & 14, but that's it. This is an overview book. It is more verbose than the User's Guide, and arranges the topics in a different, perhaps, more understandable format. This is a reading book. You're not meant to sit at your computer, and input the code with this book. Instead the code is presented in a "how to do this" type of format, and now, let's move on to the next topic. There is not a consistent application throughout the book that glues all the chapters together. This could be a reference for CodeIgniter, except I wish it had a better Index. For example, there is no Model topic under M in the Index which lists only "Menu" under "M." In contrast, "Professional CodeIgniter" lists 24 subtopics under "Model" in its Index.
Having gone through the negatives, I still rate this book 4 stars, because it is very readable, and there is value to be gained from the read. It's an excellent detailed overview. There are pearls and tidbits that you pick up in the book that make it worthwhile. You get a good overall feel of CodeIgniter from the book. It's also nice to read a computer book without necessarily running to the computer every two pages. You don't need your computer to benefit from this book, unlike the "Professional CodeIgniter" book which you do need a computer, and is not as easily read which I'll review on its page.
As soon as I got a grasp on what it was doing and why, I dove into the excellent User Guide and began to feel all warm and fuzzy inside. This felt like home. The user guide is written in such a non-intimidating manner that it invites even the most timid of PHP developers. To this day, I still refer to the user guide when I forget specific syntax or function names and it's a guick in-and-out routine. Nothing at all complex about it.
Not too long ago I came across a book by Packt Publishing called 'CodeIgniter for Rapid PHP Application Development'. At first, I thought to myself, "Why?". The combination of the user guide, the forum and CodeIgniter's well structured code is surely enough for anybody to learn, right? What could this book have that any potential developer could not obtain through these natural resources?
Throughout the fifteen chapters in the book, the author walks you through building a functional application from start to finish (well, at least as finished as any web application truly is). At first I thought the choice of the application to build was rather odd, but as I continued reading the book, I realized it was a good example because of the wide array of helpers, libraries and other standard CodeIgniter components and logic the application uses. Specifically, the example application provides a way to monitor several different aspects of remote websites by performing tests and generating reports. The author does a great job of walking the reader through the process step by step while explaining why and how the various CodeIgniter components are being used.
However, I did find the odd spelling error here and there and I don't necessarily agree with outputting HTML from a model, but overall this book is a great addition to the natural resources that the user guide and forum provide. This book will be of no help to the (albeit few) people that immediately jump into the forums asking "how do I..." without taking a little time to read through the user guide and searching pre-existent forum threads to find a solution for their problem, but for those who truly want to learn more about the framework and want to have a good book on hand, then this book certainly does the trick.
This book is very easy to read and does not feel like a "tech" manual at all. Don't let that fool you though, it is very informative, just not at the cost of being boring. It exposed some of the more interesting aspects of CodeIgniter, such as the test suite, FTP class, as well as many other nuances of the framework.
Since the writing of this book, CodeIgniter has grown to version 1.7.2, which is far beyond the 1.5 that the book refers to. I know that there have been many updates to CI and thus rendered some of the techniques shown to be outdated. The form validation section is one that stands out to me as being greatly improved in version 1.7+.
Considering that this book is a bit dated, it is still a great asset to anyone desiring to learn the basics as well as some logic behind CodeIgniter.
CodeIgniter is a perfect compliment, perhaps a PHP 201 guide. It takes all of the rigorous PHP hard-coding and supplies a framework to develop code faster and with the best practices of a MVC system. Aside from being well-written with tons of real-world examples, one of the things I like best about this book is that it explains what it's not. CodeIgniter is a home-grown open-source framework. As such, it has some admitted limitations. The book is refreshing and honest.
The book is a perfect way of learning advanced development techniques, not just using CodeIgniter though. I'd highly recommend the book. The book states "Improve your PHP coding productivity with the free compact open-source MVC CodeIgniter framework!". This is both honest and accurate!
This could be a good book, if it were just accurate. Upton does a good job of holding your hand and giving you encouragement, but he walks you down a dead end path.
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