Beginning PhoneGap Paperback – Dec 6 2011
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From the Back Cover
Now web developers can create cross-platform mobile apps in a language they already know
Walks you through the entire process of creating a PhoneGap application, including contacts, the camera, media files, storage options, and more
Demonstrates how to install and configure PhoneGap for iOS, Android, BlackBerry, webOS, and Symbian
Reviews event objects and event types
Shares techniques for working with the network, the device, and notifications
Provides essential guidance on mastering the filesystem, web databases, and storage
Encourages you to make the most of Geolocation, Compass, and Accelerometer
Includes an array of exercises throughout the book where you can apply what you just learned
Wrox Beginning guides are crafted to make learning programming languages and technologies easier than you think, providing a structured, tutorial format that will guide you through all the techniques involved.
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About the Author
Thomas Myer is a consultant, author, and speaker. He owns Triple Dog Dare Media and specializes in Linux- and Mac-based development, including iPhone apps, CMS, blogs, wikis, dashboard widgets, UNIX systems, and Applescripting. He is the author of several books, including Professional CodeIgniter, Apple Automator with AppleScript, and Mac OS X UNIX Toolbox, among others.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
There is quite a bit of fluff in the book and examples have all been taken from the developer API on the phone gap site.
Almost every example has errors in it.
I recommend working through the examples in phonegap API and skipping this book.
The book was easy to read and follow. Every chapter describes the key elements for the main platforms (iPhone, Android and BlackBerry), this key points are like a checklist to me that helps reduce the time on fixing the app of each one of them..
The author starts by giving a very practical tutorial explaning how to start with PhoneGap. Screenshots and hyperlinks explain every step from downloading to installing. After that the key API's are explained: media, camera, storage and more. The author goes into great dept to show all details. Every chapter describes the key elements for iPhone, Android and BlackBerry development. The other platforms are also mentioned, but in less detail.
The book itself was good to read, and it showed that the author did everything he could to be as precise as possible. However, I am not sure if the content justifies a book. Some chapters (like chapter 7 "Compass") feel more like a large blog post. The web is stuffed with blog posts about these techniques. Although it is nice to have everything combined, a book suffers from the speed of development. During writing PhoneGap released a new version, the author updated everything. But what if PhoneGap releases a new version next week? Or maybe tomorrow? To justify a book, I would expect eloboration about the technique and platform, not screenshots of applications using a compass. But that would also need another title, not Beginning PhoneGap.
Myers covers the basics: an introduction, (very) brief showcase, installation and basic walkthrough of using PhoneGap win your chosen environment. While this information is helpful, I'd researched those steps before choosing to learn more about PhoneGap and was most interested in the heart of the book, the API components.
And the book delivers. Using an efficient but accessible tone, Myer introduces PhoneGap API components in separate chapters, putting all (or most) of the pieces together in basic application near the end of the book.
API Components (and chapter topics)
Like a cookbook, each section helpfully highlights differences you might encounter between platforms. For example, Android and Blackberry devices can capture multiple audio clips while iOS devices can record once per invocation. Understanding these differences is particularly helpful during application planning stages. You can adjust your app knowing that one feature will work on the iPhone but not on an Android. Myer does an excellent job of reminding you that you're working in a cross-platform environment. (Or at least will be if you publish an app to more than one mobile OS.)
The end of each chapter also provides a section of text-book like questions for review. (Answers appear in Appendix A.) I did not use these review questions, but an instructor might find them useful.
I found the book exceptionally useful and enjoyed the author's no-nonsense style. The book works as either (or both) a cookbook or a reference. Having previously researched and used PhoneGap, I now feel very well prepared to use it to create a production app.
I read an ePub version of the book on an iPad and am reviewing this book as part of O'Reilly's Blogger Review Program.
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