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Programming in Lua Paperback – Mar 5 2006
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The excellent book "Programming in Lua" by Roberto Ierusalimschy provides developers with a broad summary of the language. The author includes a myriad of small examples, each of which is well focused and easily grasped. Different solutions to a given problem are often accompanied by benchmark figures. Prof. Ierusalimschy has an educator's gift for finding the appropriate level at which to write, and readers will appreciate the conversational nature of his writing. Unlike many programming language books, "Programming in Lua" has a strong content-to-fluff ratio throughout.
The book provides valuable explanations of language and library features which even the careful reader of the Lua reference manual might miss. In addition, over twenty C library entry points are discussed (and, thankfully, indexed) which are not mentioned in the reference manual.
It is hard to conceive of a software project which would not benefit from using Lua, both as an embedded component and as a standalone interpreter of scripts. The book "Programming in Lua" is valuable for anyone with an interest in this lovely language.
The book begins with the basic Lua elements and structures and then advances through control structures, functions, iterators and coroutines. Iterators and coroutines are one of those language features that may confuse the first timers, but the author manages to show the concepts and inter relations between them in a way that clarified the issues even for a seasoned Lua programmer. Alas, make no mistake, the whole first part is totally worthwhile for non beginners.
The second part of the book shows one of Lua biggest assets: tables and metatables. I've seen people sneer at Lua at first glance and then convert themselves to Lua evangelists simply for the features of tables and metatables. The author does his magic and makes a whole set of apparently complex concepts flow by the reader as fluid and logical as they can be.
By the way, fluency is arguably one of the major benefits of this book. The reader is taken from substrate to substrate of the Lua way of life without even taking notice. Every end of chapter left me with the satisfaction of having been presented with one more facet of Lua and with the tranquility that everything was falling in place at the right timing.
After tables and metatables, the book presents the concepts of Packages and Object Orientation in Lua. If you had any doubt ever that Lua was able to sustain "real" Modular/OO programming, be prepared to replace your dogmas.Read more ›
Written by the chief architect of the language, this book is aimed at programmers whishing to approach or to better understand Lua and the (often unsuspected) capabilities offered by a fully dynamic language.
Despite its deceptively small size (260 pages) and a plain, readable style with an eye-resting typesetting, "Programming in Lua" packs an impressive amount of information peppered with small, clear code examples to help digesting it; it reminds me of my favorite programming book: the K&R (Kernighan and Ritchie's "The C programming language"). It is a multi-level book that always gives something new at every reading.
Rather than offer a catalogue of functions (left to the downloadable reference manual), the book's four sections introduce capabilities, concepts and interesting techniques that may surprise programmers used to static languages.
The first section is devoted to the language itself, including not-so-common subjects like dynamic typing, multiple results, first-class functions, closures, iterators and coroutines. The following section shows how to build all sorts of data structures, from simple arrays and lists to packages and objects, using Lua's "tables" and the powerful idea of "metatables" that makes the language easily customizable.
The third section introduces the standard libraries (they are actually optional, e.g.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I bought this thinking i could learn lua without any previous experience. i have terribly mistaken, it was difficult to understand, confusing at times but overall this *just* makes... Read morePublished on Jan. 18 2013 by Frank Graetz
Don't waste time getting those so called beginner manual. This book speaks to you like an intelligent person and breaks down the LUA scripting language in an efficient and sensible... Read morePublished on Jan. 3 2012 by Kevin D.
I found Programming in Lua a good complement to the resources already available online.
Roberto shows flair in his writing and his various points about the language are... Read more
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