Even Faster Web Sites: Performance Best Practices for Web Developers Paperback – Jun 20 2009
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About the Author
Steve Souders works at Google on web performance and open source initiatives. His books High Performance Web Sites and Even Faster Web Sites explain his best practices for performance along with the research and real-world results behind them. Steve is the creator of YSlow, the performance analysis extension to Firebug with more than 1 million downloads. He serves as co-chair of Velocity, the web performance and operations conference sponsored by O'Reilly. Steve taught CS193H: High Performance Web Sites at Stanford, and he frequently speaks at such conferences as OSCON, Rich Web Experience, Web 2.0 Expo, and The Ajax Experience.
Steve previously worked at Yahoo! as the Chief Performance Yahoo!, where he blogged about web performance on Yahoo! Developer Network. He was named a Yahoo! Superstar. Steve worked on many of the platforms and products within the company, including running the development team for My Yahoo!. Prior to Yahoo! Steve worked at several small to mid-sized startups including two companies he co-founded, Helix Systems and CoolSync. He also worked at General Magic, WhoWhere?, and Lycos.
Top Customer Reviews
The examples are poorly explained and not much useful.
The title is misleading.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
As with Souders previous book, there is little that will be new to professionals who've kept up with best practices via blogs and the like, but it's still nice to have all the information in one handy book. For those who are just starting to investigate web performance optimization, High Performance Web Sites plus Even Faster Web Sites will get you up to speed quickly.
* lesser known http features (e.g., chunked encoding for incremental page rendering or low-latency data transfers from server to browser in support of near-realtime applications such as chat, stock quotes, etc), or
One theme that runs throughout this newer book is that in order to squeeze more performance out of a next generation web application, developers would have to become more and more adept with using asynchronous techniques (which could involve tricky issues); by this I don't just mean using Ajax which could involve asynchronously pulling data from server to browser, but also asynchronous techniques for facilitating parallel component downloads, etc.
Given the cutting-edge and more complex nature of some of the discussed techniques, this book is an invaluable aid to anyone itching to experiment: it lays out a problem, suggests approaches and related tools whenever appropriate (e.g., no access to Doloto?, here are alternative do-it-yourself implementation approaches), provides lots of sample code, calls out potential gotchas and how to workaround them, and then with the support of empirical data, tells you the relative pros and cons of each suggested approach. Highly recommended!
Souder finished this book with an Appendix on performance tools that can be used to help in the improvement of a web site, which I found to be immensely helpful. While many tools he listed are well known to developers, there are some I was unaware of and began making use of immediately on my own sites.
/Even Faster Web Sites/ is an excellent follow-up to High Performance Web Sites, giving new best practices for making your web sites even faster. As I see it, even hundredths of a second begin to add up when you put all of these techniques together, and most of the techniques presented in this book are practical for any web site being developed. I would recommend this book to any developer looking for ways to improve the performance of his web site, as Souder has certainly demonstrated his knowledge and expertise on improving the speed of a site.
I don't think I have had a book this intriguing and valuable in my hand in a long while. You will harvest a measurable return on investment from "Even Faster Web Sites" if you are concerned with both the technical implementation and user experience aspects of your Web work.
Chapter 4 (Loading Scripts Without Blocking) introduces and reviews several ways that the referencing of scripts can degrade page performance and user experience. Test pages are provided to make clear each assertion by the author. After the *problem* is clarified, the author discusses alternative solutions and their impact on a range of circumstances. The details can get involved, but the writing is clear and focused. The ends that *you* need are kept to the fore. Souders summarizes all his tests in a decision tree that gives you the preferred approach depending on your requirements. That decision tree and the motivations behind it in this chapter alone reduce the price of this book to insignificance.
Any Web team with a copy of this book handy will surely waste less time debating "truisms" and "old developer lore" that often intrudes into our discussions. Souders and the other contributing authors have done us a great service here.
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