This book covers all versions of the Yahoo! Mapping APIs a lot better than the online documentation from Yahoo. First off the author talks about the four types of mapping apis and the specific common features tools (widgets) like zooming, panning, geocoding, overlays, and navigation types. A very good starter to whet your appetite for things to come.
The second chapter talks about obviously what this book is about, mashups. Mashups are simply a mixture of two or more sources of content that creates a new web application. Of course this is where web 2.0 started and the author gives a great explanation of this phenomenon that happened the in the past 2 years. The author goes through its explanation by giving examples of mashup content sources like flickr, HotJobs, Upcoming.org, etc.
Then in chapter 7, the author goes in to the meat and potatoes of the book with showing you how to create your first mashup with using flickr. The example shows the reader how to integrate the flickr api with photos and mapping them to a Yahoo! custom map. Details covering transferring data with JSON and creating a callback and request. most of the code itself is hidden with the api so a lost of the coding is not needed to know.
The rest of the book goes through the same process in explaining the other types of apis such as the flash and flex api. The author has a great of explaing just enough to get the point across with going into too much detail, like when using other tools such as flash. I like how the author doesn't try to overload the reader like other books and gives the information in "easy to swallow" bites. This book assumes no programming knowledge or development experience, but of course it would be helpful. The author takes it step-by-step in explaining each technique in showing examples along the way with short chapters.
This first book on creating mashups using the Yahoo Maps API is really a great way to create some very cool web applications with a limited amount of time and coding. It helps put in perspective what the next generation of web apps will become.