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Best Books for Learning JavaScript

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Selected Computer Books

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Introductory
(K12)

Intermeduate
(university level)

Advanced

Reference

Jscript

Web/CGI

HTML

WSH

 Random Findings

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JavaScript is the most popular programming language on the Internet. It's not as difficult to learn as some other programming languages like C++  or Java. But it's still a powerful language that you can use to learn programming,  to create interactive web-based applications that make your web sites more useful to visitors. Microsoft provides a decent interpreter and debugger with IE5 so this is essentially a free educational environment suitable to novices.

JavaScript is a developing language and the latest version is 1.5. That means that books that are two or more years old do not describe the version supported by IE5.5 and Netscape 6. Sure, you can live with than, but still it's better to be aware about new features in the language. Actually language was substantially improved along the road and IMHO 1.5 is the first really decent version of the language.

I am convinced that it is an excellent introductory programming language. Moreover Microsoft introduced it as a shell language in Windows Scripting Host. See my JavaScript Links for details.

But the problem is that there are no really good introductory book on JavaScript. Average yes, overhyped (Definitive Guide ;-) yes, but really good -- no.  Paul Wilton  Beginning Javascript shows some promise for introductory courses and I consider it is probably one of  the best,  but we still need a second edition to polish the book in order better explain language constructs for novices, to improve exercises, etc.

Nikolai Bezroukov


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[Oct 24, 2015] Eloquent JavaScript A Modern Introduction to Programming Marijn Haverbeke

December 14, 2014 | Amazon.com

Paperback: 472 pages
Publisher: No Starch Press; 2 edition (December 14, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1593275846
ISBN-13: 978-1593275846
Product Dimensions: 1 x 7 x 9.2 inches

FeFiFoFu on February 16, 2015

It's about programming, not javascript.

This is book is phenomenal - the best book on programming I've ever read. But it's important to note: it's about programming. The programming just happens to be in in Javascript. If you are looking to learn a few JS commands for your website, this is probably not the right book.

Contrary to the other reviews, Eloquent Javascript is for beginners. This can been seen in Chapter 1... it starts with the number "13". Then goes to arithmetic with "100 + 4 * 11", then boolean "3 > 2". Definitely for beginners.

No, the code examples are not superficial. It's similar to Zed Shaw's exercises in Learn Python the Hard Way - they are specially crafted to teach you something. You should type out the examples on your computer, write comments on what each line does, download the data files from the website, and get the examples to run.

The author put this quote in the introduction:

"I do not enlighten those who are not eager to learn, nor arouse those who are not anxious to give an explanation themselves. If I have presented one corner of the square and they cannot come back to me with the other three, I should not go over the points again." -Confucius

The reason I like Eloquent Javascript so much is that, unlike textbooks, it is written in an easy-going manner, like he's talking to you. Each example builds on previous examples, each chapter builds on the previous chapters. Slowly building up your knowledge. Sometimes without me realizing how much I'm learning.

An example is functional programming. I never understood it or the hype. I read many articles and discussion forums, but I never really got it. In Chapter 5, Higher-Order Functions, the author doesn't even mention the buzz-words "functional programming". He simply starts off with the typical for-loop to print each item in an array. Then he shows how the for-loop can be enclosed in a function. Then he modifies the function so it can take in generic actions instead of just printing - a function that takes another function as input. For practice with functions on functions, you create a few more: filter, map, reduce... BAM! it all hits me. With the stuff I learnt in Chapter 3, I now know the benefits of no-side effects, limiting scope, recursion, and leaving the original data alone. I see why stringing small functions together allows more flexibility than a long recipe of for-loops. I see why functions allow you to follow the data being manipulated more clearly. I finally get it.

The funny thing is, the book isn't even that "deep". After all, it's actually a programming book where he walks you through code examples, not a conceptual computer science book. It's odd how concepts just come to you - that's how eloquent the book actually is.

Yumiko on December 16, 2014

Examples are difficult to follow, yet it's a good book to overview the language.

First, thanks for Marijn provided the content for free on his website. Well, I guess this was the first JS book that I read. I thought it was interesting, because it provided related exercises at the end of each chapter, and it also walked you through great projects by the end of a section, which beginners are always feel excited about doing projects.
It is a great book to have an overview of Javascript; however, it is not a good book to master the language.

For example, I read Professional JavaScript for Web Developers, it's awesome, it is the best JS book I read so far. I am a newbie, but I understand exactly what Professional JS for Web Developers' definitions of OOP. But, I need practice, so I tried to use Eloquent Javascript's exercises to practice. It's difficult to follow the author's thought.

The Laying Out A Table in Chapter 6, it is a fun exercise, but I cannot understand why the author is writing those functions. Even though he tried to explain it what he was doing, I still have no idea what each variable is doing there. I guess one of the reasons that it's difficult to follow is because the data is scattered. You need to check the source codes, which included the project's sample data first.

Anyways, I tried to read it 5 times, I still cannot follow what he is doing.

[Mar 20, 2014] A Smarter Way to Learn JavaScript The new approach that uses technology to cut your effort in half by Mark Myers

This ebook amounts to a home-study course

Paperback: 254 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 1 edition (March 20, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1497408180
ISBN-13: 978-1497408180
Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.6 x 10 inches

Chandra K. Clarke on December 16, 2013

Really well put together

This isn't an ebook so much as it is a mini-course, and as such it is incredibly good value.

Myers teaches you how to program using JavaScript, and does so in a very easy-to-follow, well-thought-out way. Each concept is carefully broken down and clearly explained in a bite-sized lesson; it is then followed up by exercises you can do in a little "sandbox" environment he provides.

This learn and then do approach is very effective and helps the concepts stick. The sandboxes are handy because you can play with what you just learned immediately in a safe place.

I also appreciated his writing style in this book: he is very clear, but also quite lively, and the book is never dry. He is also politely firm in his instructions in a way that makes him sound confident of your eventual success. If you have ever wanted to learn how to program, or even if you just want to understand more of what your programmers are telling you, this is a great place to start.

Coder0585 on February 18, 2014

Wow, I can't believe you got me addicted to this. I have never experienced anything like this before when learning.

I have tried udemy courses as well as tuts premium courses but somehow the teachers go straight into complicated stuff I don't quite get. This ebook is the perfect book for anyone wanting to learn javascript. As a matter of fact, most of those tutorials online don't go into the simple details like this ebook does. I finally know how to splice, slice, push, pop, shift and unshift an Array. It's also hard to forget this stuff when you right away get coding on Mark's website.

As part of my learning, I'm also taking another class by Jeff Escalante, it's called "Making Kittens fly with JavaScript", I'm learning so much already because his course actually involves building a project from scratch. I tried learning javascript before from the "Eloquent Javascript" book and it was more intermediate than beginners so hopefully once I'm done with a smarter way to learn Javascript and the other class I'm taking, I'll be able to finally understand the content of that book.

And for those of you who want to take their Javascript knowledge to the next level, I recommend you start with THINKFUL school, it's an online school that focuses on front end and also involves doing projects from scratch in pure Javascript, jquery and ajax. I'm planning to enroll once I finish this ebook, my other class, and the eloquent Javascript book.

I recommend this ebook in the meantime to understand Javascript better as you start getting into more advanced stuff in other courses. This book will really push you to learn the javascript fundamentals at last.

L. Phillips on March 1, 2014

Genius!

Mark Myers is a genius and his simple method could literally change the way we learn to code in the future. As someone who has done it all...read numerous books, watched both paid and free video courses online, done the various free online tutorials and invested thousands at a programming bootcamp...I can say truthfully say that this is the most effective method I have ran across to date.

The short bite-sized snippets of information (known as chapters) are just enough where my brain can consume the info without becoming overwhelmed or shutting off. The interactive exercises that are presented at the end of each chapter then drive the principles of that chapter home but most importantly get your fingers used to typing and becoming familiar with the language and syntax. The timed exercises are also genius as it means that I now have to recall the information at a decent and comfortable speed.

Each lesson somewhat builds on principles (and cleverly integrates) what you have learned from past chapters so you never really get the chance to forget what you previously learned although there are 80-something chapters.

At about half-way through the book I now find myself being able to understand and read code much more comfortably and fluently and I can't wait to see what my level will be once I finish. If you're thinking of learning how to program in JavaScript, I promise, this is the ONLY way to go.

William on December 18, 2013

An Innovative Way to Learn Javascript

In creating his ebook “A Smarter Way to Learn JavaScript”, Mark Myers has done something I have never seen done before in an ebook. He has created the equivalent of an interactive tool that allows him to “reach” across the Internet and give you hands-on instruction to facilitate learning JavaScript.

He has accomplished this in three ways.

Closely coupled with this is the fact that this ebook amounts to a home-study course, allowing you to complete your indoctrination to JavaScript at your leisure and in an environment of your choosing. As someone whose software knowledge has been limited to use of packaged software like MS Office and the like, I was surprised to find myself learning and coding in JavaScript as I progressed through the lessons. Mark has created a truly innovative way to learn JavaScript, leading to my high recommendation of this ebook to anyone, of any age, interested in mastering this software language.

[Sep 20, 2005] Beginning JavaScript Second Edition Books Paul Wilton

Beginning JavaScript Second Edition (Paperback)

ISBN: 0764555871

[Sep 20, 2005] DOM Scripting: Web Design with JavaScript and the Document Object Model by Jeremy Keith


(Paperback - September 20, 2005)
ISBN: 1590595335


DOM Scripting: Web Design with JavaScript and the Document Object Model (Paperback)
1590595335

Mastering Microsoft VBA (Mastering) (Paperback)
Paperback: 707 pages
Publisher: Sybex; 2 edition (October 31, 2005)
Language: English
ISBN: 0782144365

[Jun 27, 2002] Beyond HTML Goodies

Joe Burns

Paperback: 300 pages ; Dimensions (in inches): 0.61 x 9.18 x 7.38
  • Publisher: Que; 1st edition (June 27, 2002)
  • ISBN: 0789727803
  • Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars Based on 3 reviews. Write a review.
  • Amazon.com Sales Rank: 123,193
  • Solutions to some of the nonstandard problems you may face, July 16, 2002
    Reviewer: Charles Ashbacher (see more about me) from Hiawatha, Iowa United States(cashbacher@yahoo.com)
    The title is a bit misleading, in that the book is nearly all about Javascript. Broken down into a collection of short tutorials, each of which solves a specific problem, they are all understandable. The problems solved are not general in nature, in that not everyone needs to know how to solve them. However, they can be considered members of the category of unusual problems with a non-obvious solution. You may never confront the specific problem, but if you do, then the solution is here for you.
    Some of the problems solved are:

    * How to create a pop under window.
    * How to use a table to create an image with rounded corners.
    * How to create printable pages where the banner ads are absent.
    * How to redirect the print of a page so that another is printed.
    * How to prevent a page from being cached on the client machine.
    * How to create an OnError error handling page.

    In general, the statement of the problem and the solution take up less than three pages. With very little code to explain, the solutions are easy to understand. I have been teaching and programming in Javascript for over six years and yet I learned several things from the book. To sweeten the deal even further, all of the source code, graphics and other data used in the book are freely available from the companion web site ...
    Depending on what you are creating, you may never have a use for the solutions in this book. However, if you are faced with one of these problems, then the solution is well in hand and you will be happy with the way it is constructed.

    Understanding WMI Scripting

    by Alain Lissoir

    Hierarchical Menus with the Underrated style.display Object--You can better manage your Web real estate using hierarchical menus. Learn how with these JavaScript examples by Bill Pena, coauthor of Designing with JavaScript, 2nd Edition.

    Managing Enterprise Systems with the Windows Script Host

    Mastering JavaScript Premium Edition

    Professional JavaScript 2nd Edition -- hopefully it will be better than the first edition
    JavaScript Programming for the Absolute Beginner
    by Andy Harris
    Our Price: $20.99
    Paperback - 368 pages Book & Cd edition (June 14, 2001)
    Prima Publishing; ISBN: 0761534105

    Book Description
    JavaScript is a scripting language developed by Netscape to enable Web authors to design interactive sites. JavaScript can interact with HTML source code, enabling Web authors to spice up their sites with dynamic content. JavaScript Programming for the Absolute Beginner not only teaches you JavaScript, a great programming "gateway" language, it will teach you the fundamental programming concepts you need to grasp in order to learn any computer language. It also uses game creation as a learning tool. You will learn how to program in JavaScript and produce something at the same time! Plus, the accompanying CD will contain games that you can cut and paste right into your own Web site! This book is perfect for anyone looking for an easy, non-intimidating introduction to JavaScript and general programming concepts.

    Windows 2000 Scripting Bible
    by William Robert Stanek
    Our Price: $14.99
    Paperback - 667 pages 1st edition (May 15, 2000)
    Hungry Minds, Inc; ISBN: 0764546775 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.62 x 9.18 x 7.60
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 9,605
    Avg. Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 3

    5 of 5 stars Excellent scripting book especially for Sys Admins, July 7, 2000
    Reviewer: Julian A J Topley (see more about me) from New York, New York USA
    If you are a Sys Admin and are new to scripting this is a great book. I have bought several computer books over the past few years this one is certainly one of the better ones.

    The first thing I noticed about this book was the fact that all the examples are illustrated in both VB Script and JScript - take your pick! If you know some C++ you will easily pick up JScript.

    The book was easy to follow and was well structured. Within a week or so from being a scripting novice I was able to write useful and productive scripts such as automating FTP jobs and working with the registry - the book also serves as an excellent reference as well as a tutorial.

    One thing to note about this book is that you don't need Windows 2000 to run all of the examples on but it does go into ADSI and LDAP in later chapters.

    There are not that many books out there that cover the Windows Script Host for both JScript and VB Script - this one does, and does it well.

    5 of 5 stars Excellent!, July 7, 2000
    Reviewer: John Edwards (see more about me)

    The best scripting book I've found anywhere! Extremely thorough and detailed.

    Part 1 features a fast-paced introduction to Windows scripting and core functionality of VBScript/JScript. All the essentials were covered well.

    Part 2 is very detailed on creating scripts and scripting files. The best coverage of creating script jobs that I've found anywhere. Good material on managing files, I/O, drives, printers, application startup, Windows registery and event logging. I wish there was a bit more on event logs but the coverage was good in all on this subject.

    Part 3 zeroes in on Active Directory & ADSI programming. Really good! Side-by-side scripting examples in both JScript and VBScript are phenomenal. I learned a lot. Covers task scheduling, managing computers, managing logon logoff startup shutdown, schema, services, shared directories, groups, users, more!

    Part IV has networking libraries that you can actually use to perform advanced tasks quickly. I have used these in my work now everday.

    Over all a really good book that deserves 5 stars for solid technical coverage.

    Microsoft Windows Script Host 2.0 Developer's Guide
    by Guenter Born, Gunter Born
    Our Price: $39.99
    Paperback - 501 pages Bk&Cd-Rom edition (September 2000)
    Microsoft Press; ISBN: 0735609314 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.41 x 9.09 x 7.39
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 12,755
    Avg. Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 2

    5 of 5 stars Comprehensive, excellent for beginners and intermediate, September 15, 2000
    Reviewer: Michel Gallant (see more about me) from Ottawa, ON CA
    If you are new to WSH and scripting, or want a book that pulls it all together in a very well organized and comprehensive manner, this is for you! Abundant well thought out examples, in both JScript and VBScript with ample in depth explanations. I particularly like the authors consistent use of Object Oriented jargon associated with WSH. The File System I/O is thoroughly treated. Registry access via script is very clearly treated. The "Programming Techniques and Tips" section makes one thurst for the Authors forthcoming title "Advanced Development with ....". Layout of the book is attractive and effective.

    4 of 5 stars Good but it is a Esposito's Book Look Alike & $20 More, September 9, 2000
    Reviewer: Steve Wan (see more about me) from Houston, Texas USA
    It is a well organized book with topics cover everything you want to know about WSH scripting. I also bought "Windows Script Host Programmer's Reference" by Dino Esposito - Wrox Press a while ago. Born covers a few more topics such as the issues with the windows security and the new Win2K platform. And if you have Esposito's book, you don't need this one. Though I think Dino's book is 3.5 stars and this book is 4, I would spend the 20 bucks for 6 cups of cafe latte.

    ??? JavaScript - Comprehensive
    by Don Gosselin
    Our Price: $50.95
    Perfect - 720 pages 1st edition (June 14, 2000)
    Course Technology; ISBN: 0619015551 ;
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 22,833
    Avg. Customer Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 3
    table of contents

    Overpriced. With only three reviews it's difficult to tell about the real quality of the book. I can believe that the book can be better than "the much acclaimed JavaScript Definitive guide as well as JavaScript Bible." The first is outdated and the second one too watery, but this still might be not enough ;-)
    2 of 5 stars Not bad...not good either!, September 23, 2000
    Reviewer: A reader from Plano, Texas
    Each chapter starts out well. But, the author begins to lose his reader due to either his unclear explainations (talking in circles) or just missing a step or two with his statements.

    Also, I have found a couple errors in this book. For example, page 63 regarding 'Variable Scope' and page 67 (Questions section) #20 is incorrect.

    It's a ok book if you have a idea of object-oriented programming, but I advise this is not a good book for the absolute novice in programming!

    5 of 5 stars Much Better than Oreilly series or Javascript Bible, August 9, 2000
    Reviewer: A reader from NJ USA
    I worked on databases and programming languages like C and PL/SQL. I bought the much acclaimed Javascript Definitive guide as well as Javascript Bible. If you try to learn Javascript from above books - "THE BURDEN IS ON YOU TO LEARN THE JAVASCRIPT " i.e., the authors don't really give good examples or decent explanations to explain the concepts clearly. But "Javascript comprehensive" book has very good examples and will walk you through every line and bottom line is " AUTHORS HAVE GONE TO GREAT LENGHTS AND DID TERRIFIC JOB IN MAKING OUR LEARNING PROCESS MUCH EASIER".

    I am really looking forward for books on XML from the same publishers. Keep it up !


    Open

    *** Using Jscript, with CD-ROM available from www.informit.com
    Mark Reynolds / Paperback / Published 1996
    Amazon price: $39.99 ~ You Save: $10.00 (20%)

    **+ Javascript The Definitive Guide (only on CD) Intermediate reference (actually only second edition is available on CD, the third edition is slightly better, but both are generally very disappointing -- examples are junk and the language coverage is too academic). Can be considered over hyped junk.

    *** Laura Lemay's Web Workshop--JavaScript
    by Michael G. Moncur (Contributor), Laura Lemay Editor
    Our Price: $39.99
    Paperback - 393 pages (September 1996)
    Sams; ISBN: 1575211416 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.17 x 9.11 x 7.40
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 85,049
    Avg. Customer Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 11
    Laura Lemay's Web Workshop--JavaScript - Full text online
    Old but still not bad...

    4 of 5 stars A very good introduction and useful reference, June 14, 1998
    Reviewer: A reader from Washington, DC
    This book was sufficient for me to get going with a language that is structured very differently from the traditional languages that I learned back in the dark ages. It's not designed as a comprehensive reference, although I've been using it as my sole Javascript reference for the past year. Rather, it teaches by having the reader learn to create building-blocks -- sections of code that will accomplish something useful -- and then goes on to show how to integrate those into larger projects. I didn't actually find the larger projects useful in and of themselves, but as examples of good Javascript code they were worth reading through.

    I read about half of the book straight through, and then started skipping around as I needed to learn specific techniques. It works adequately that way, but in fact it is so full of little tricks -- some of which aren't even presented as such, but are just built into the examples -- that it will really repay anyone with the discipline to read it straight through. (I looked at a script used by the Adobe site that I wanted to emulate, but thought it looked kludgy and there MUST be a better way to do it. I spent several hours experimenting with document objects and attributes before finding the answer. Then in browsing Lemay's book for something else, I stumbled across the exact same technique being used in one of her examples. If only I had sat down and read that chapter earlier!)

    The one shortcoming with the book, and the only reason I'm going to knock my rating down to four stars instead of five, is that the reference sections on document objects and properties should be more complete.

    Randy Steer


    Good or Popular Books

    **** Beginning Javascript
    by Paul Wilton
    Our Price: $31.99
    Paperback - 800 pages (December 2000)
    Wrox Press Inc; ISBN: 1861004060
    Amazon.com Table of Contents Beginning Javascript

    Paul Wilton participated in the writing Professional Javascript book from Wrox and a couple of VB/VBScript books. This book provides a beginner tutorial in the JavaScript language, hopefully teaching programming concepts along the way.

    From the Publisher
    This book is for anyone who's interested in web programming - from the amateur home user who wants to enhance his home page to the aspiring professional developer who wants to add another tool to his belt. Only some HTML knowledge is assumed - no prior programming experience is required for this book.
     

    **** Teach Yourself Javascript in 24 Hours -- good but very basic
     
    Just popular, but not so good:
     
    ***+ Javascript Bible, 4th Edition  Intermediate level
    ***+ Professional JavaScript Intermediate to Advanced level course.

    ???+ Javascript Unleashed Alternative Intermediate to Advanced level course.

    ***+ . Paperback - 776 pages 3rd edition (June 1998) O'Reilly

    Introductory (K12 level)

    ???? JavaScript Programming for the Absolute Beginner
    by Andy Harris
    Our Price: $20.99
    Paperback - 368 pages Book & Cd edition (June 14, 2001)
    Prima Publishing; ISBN: 0761534105
    Book Description
    JavaScript is a scripting language developed by Netscape to enable Web authors to design interactive sites. JavaScript can interact with HTML source code, enabling Web authors to spice up their sites with dynamic content. JavaScript Programming for the Absolute Beginner not only teaches you JavaScript, a great programming "gateway" language, it will teach you the fundamental programming concepts you need to grasp in order to learn any computer language. It also uses game creation as a learning tool. You will learn how to program in JavaScript and produce something at the same time! Plus, the accompanying CD will contain games that you can cut and paste right into your own Web site! This book is perfect for anyone looking for an easy, non-intimidating introduction to JavaScript and general programming concepts.
     
    **** Teach Yourself Javascript in 24 Hours
    by Michael G. Moncur
    Amazon price: $17.99
    Paperback - 400 pages 2nd edition (October 9, 2000)
    Sams; ISBN: 0672320258 ; Dimensions (in inches): 0.92 x 9.16 x 7.42
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 3,384
    Avg. Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars

    If you are looking for a book that will take you through JavaScript as a first programming language, step-by-step starting at ground-zero this might be the book for you.
     
    The author site: The JavaScript Workshop is  a very good supplement to the book. I would recommend visiting the book's website prior to reading and make corrections. As of November 25, 2000 there aren't many for previous version of the book (JavaScript 1.3) and none for current version of the book, but checking the current status may save you some time.
    I read only prev edition (February 1999 JavaScript 1.3 edition, 364 pages Sams; ISBN: 067231407X ) and it was very decent. Author claims that current edition was much improved ;-) :

    The second edition of Teach Yourself JavaScript is not only updated for the latest version of the language - it's also much improved from the previous version, with more examples and better organization.

    When JavaScript was first introduced, it made Web pages interactive - and got me excited about programming for the first time in years. It's a fun language to learn and use, whether you're an experienced programmer or a beginner. I wrote this book to try to pass on some of this excitement. This book starts with the basics, and ends with games and applications that take full advantage of JavaScript. If you create Web pages, this book will help you add fun and functionality with JavaScript.

    For absolute beginners I would start with Part II.  Hours 5-8 are short (60 pages) but readable introduction to programming basics.
     
    Book includes exercises and the answers are provided. Each chapter is manageable for one lesson and most contain decent explanation of the material and helpful Q&A, Workshop and Exercises. You start a point zero and progress up to some fairly complex concepts by the time you finish the book. Perfect for people with little or no prior experience in web programming. Probably not the book for you if you are a good programmer or are looking for a reference.

    For an introductory programming textbook the most significant drawback is that the author does not use flowcharts at all. Also there is no separate lesson on functions -- the author goes directly to objects. 
     
    Reviews below are about prev (Javascript 1.3) edition:

    (Number of Reviews:
    37)

    4 out of 5 stars A great JavaScript intro for experienced programmers., March 19, 2000
    Reviewer: Dr. Robert C.A. Goff, MCSD (see more about me) from Blacksburg, VA
    With many years of programming experience in VB, I needed a simple discussion of the basic syntax of JavaScript, and I needed it fast. This book hit the spot. There are errors in the sample code, as there are in every IT book I've ever read (including a few rare errors in the Wrox books!). This one is not too bad on that account. The text is tight and readable, and the examples clear and fairly well focused. It naturally lacks the depth required to build complex JavaScript applications, but that's not its goal.

    If you already understand programming structures, and just need to learn how JavaScript goes about it, this is the perfect book. If you're just starting out, this book will get you started on the right foot, but you'll need more than 24 hours to master the art of programming. I was actually pleased with the author's restraint in limiting the discussion and examples to essentials. By avoiding the temptation to include "cool tricks" in the examples, the focus on core concepts is strengthened. This is a well done book for its declared purpose.

    4 out of 5 stars Great for learning and novice programmers, January 7, 2000
    Reviewer: Ted Parton from Murfreesboro, TN
    This book is excellent for introducing the reader to JavaScript. It starts off by explaning some of the differences between Java and JavaScript, along with the origins. The first two parts (or sections) of the book are really spent introducing the user to JavaScript and definately should be read by beginners.

    The book is divided into 24 quick 1 hour segments, which is perfect for intermediate to advanced programmers as they can skip ahead to the sections that really talk about using JavaScript. But this book will be most appealing to those still new to developing web sites and are wanting to add in JavaScript functions. The examples are good and demonstrate how you can go about achieving want you want JavaScript to do.

    Ultimately you should get this book if you are new to JavaScript and need to learn it fairly quickly. However, you will probably want to pick up a more detailed book later on as a reference guide if you plan on doing much coding in JavaScript.

    ***+ Javascript Bible, 4th Edition
    Danny Goodman
    Our Price: $31.99
    Paperback - 900 pages 4th edition (January 2001)
    IDG Books Worldwide; ISBN: 0764533428

    I have a rather old version (JavaScript Handbook, 1996) and it's not bad. Decent level of attention to the language itself. For example language operators and control structures are explained well. That's what I expect of any decent introductory JavaScript book.

    5 of 5 stars It is not for beginners, but the best for the next step up, May 28, 2000
    Reviewer: Johnny Liu (see more about me) from Jersey City, NJ
    This book is not for someone who is an absolute beginner to scripting or programming. I would only recommend it for someone who has some experience with scripting and programming - you don't need much, but you do need some in order to fully enjoy this book.

    When I bought this book, I had already read a slimmer, truly beginner JavaScript book, "Teach Yourself JavaScript 1.3 in 24 Hours" by SAMS. The SAMS book taught me the basic concepts of JavaScript and gave me a good foundation in Document Object Model, syntax, scripting logic, etc. With that knowledge already, the Goodman, JavaScript Bible was fully appreciated.

    The JavaScript Bible is the best book around on the subject for an intermediate beginner - I mean someone who is still a beginner to JavaScript, but not an absolute beginner. When you are at this stage, buy this book. It is the best learning tutorial at that stage. After reading this I intend to buy the O'Reilly JavaScript book for reference and comparison. I would not recommend the O'Reilly book as the proper learning tutorial for the intermediate beginner, because unlike the JavaScript Bible, the O'Reilly book is written for those who are quite programming and scripting saavy. The O'Reilly book is worth purchasing for reference after reading the JavaScript Bible. The O'Reilly book is also worth buying later in order to find any points that The JavaScript Bible may have not included (and points that the O'Reilly book may have not included but are found in the JavaScript Bible). The JavaScript Bible is a good teacher and a very good reference book. The O'Reilly book is a OK teacher and an excellent reference book. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

    1 of 5 stars I don't know what book everyone else was reading but..., October 15, 2000
    Reviewer: A reader from Delray Beach, FL
    this book as someone else already stated 'sucks'. If you've got time to waste reading through this guy's twaddle more power to you. The examples are poorly presented. Mr. Goodman, the author, seems to enjoy burying useful information within his long explanations of extraneous data.

    This guy does an excellent job of blending together a lot of concepts (sometimes unrelated to the current discussion) and then burying the core concept he's discussing! Unbelievable.

    If you are still thinking about buying this book, do yourself a favor, when you're at the book store look in the index or table of contents of this book and then go to the page and read the authors discussion/explanation. Read it carefully, if you don't fully understand the concept then look for a reference to what you don't understand in the book keep doing this until you fully understand the concept you were originally interested in. Once you've done that if the time it took you to *fully* understand the concept was acceptable by all means buy the book, but if you're like me you'll find the time invested in finding useful information in this book is unacceptable.

    FYI- I've read a lot of computer books in my life this ranks right up there with the worst, a five star waste of time. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

    ***+ Dynamic Html in Action
    Eric M. Schurman, William J. Pardi

    Paperback - 497 pages 2nd Bk&Dk edition (March 1999)
    Microsoft Press; ISBN: 0735605637 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.41 x 9.46 x 7.47
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 4,586
    Avg. Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars

    Number of Reviews: 9

    Not bad coverage of both HTML and JavaScript for those who already know C or Java or other C-like language. Not recommended for beginners that has no programming experience. 

    4 out of 5 stars a readable, accessible primer-to-intermediate guide July 11, 1999
    Reviewer: t.d.s@mindspring.com from Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA

    True, this is not a great reference, though the CD contains great reference material and there are www links scattered liberally throughout the text. For more general DHTML references one would do better with either Goodman's "Dynamic HTML: The Definitive Guide" (O'Reilly & Assoc., 1998) for a cross-platform perspective or Francis et al. "IE5 DHTML Prog. Ref. 2nd Ed." (Wrox Press, 1999) for a very IE5-centric text.

    What this book excels at is showing you how to do stuff with DHTML, combining (Java)script-ing, CSS, and touching on XML. It doesn't go deeply into any particular subject, nor does it skim too lightly, and its "portal" approach almost guarantees there are links to more information.

    Netscape-centric developers will find this text off-putting to offensive. This book stresses - though is not exclusive to - IE4 and 5. As Microsoft and Netscape converge on the W3C DHTML specification we can hope browser-specific DHTML books will be replaced by more standardized texts.

    I would recommend this book to anyone who is at least slightly familiar with the technologies and wants to put them together quickly to create eye-catching sites. Its Javascript tutorial is weak - if you're not already familiar with Javascript or its siblings (JScript, ECMAScript) start elsewhere then return to this book for practical uses of Javascript.

    ***** Good training for beginners and information for advanced January 8, 2000

    Reviewer: jnz08 from Honolulu, Hawaii

    I disagree that this book covers only the very basic. It begins with a great overview of HTML (though I'm a pretty good web programmer, I read the HTML chapters and found some things that I did not know before)and then covers scripting quite well. It also has a good overview of css, including some screenshot differences between how IE and Netscape display styles. After this, it gets into more esoteric subjects like data binding, scriptlets, and font embedding. It also has a chapter or so for XML, talks about javascript error handling, and has a big section on cross browser coding.

    I liked this book-I thought it was very well written. It definitely wasn't a hard core reference-but it points you to specific places in all sorts of real references, most on the net, though it also recommends some real reference books.

    5 out of 5 stars The BEST tutorial/learning book on HTML/DHTMLAugust 7, 1999
    Reviewer: JoeCarls@yahoo.com from San Diego, California, USA

    This is the best book I've seen for learning DHTML. I taught for years and the author has a gift for explaining both simple and complex ideas in a very readable but information-rich format. Like a reviewer below, I also found the book to be full of tons of links to useful online references and the CD to have a lot of useful info/demos. As far as the book's coverage of different browsers, I thought that it covered the most important issues - what does not work in different browsers. There are even a few places where it deals with Opera and things like spiders and text only browsers, though of course most of the coverage is of Netscape and Internet Explorer.

     
    ????? The Book of Javascript A Practical Guide to Interactive Web Pages
    by Dave Thau, David Thau
    Our Price: $23.96
    Paperback - 350 pages Bk&Cd Rom edition (October 2000)
    No Starch Pr; ISBN: 1886411360 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.29 x 9.22 x 7.43
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 885
    Avg. Customer Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 4

    5 of 5 stars Haven't read the book yet, but I took Dave Thau's class, November 16, 2000
    Reviewer: mslaura (see more about me) from San Francisco, CA USA
    Dave Thau is amazing. I am dying to get this book. I took his JavaScript class in San Francisco and he managed to make the subject not only easy to learn, but fun! I had some previous programming classes and came away confused and frustrated at the inability of my instructors to convey the basic principles involved. In Dave's class I learned not only all the basic principles of programming, but how to execute them successfully using JavaScript. Invaluable. If this book is anything like his classes you can't pass it up.

    4 of 5 stars A good instructional and reference book, October 25, 2000
    Reviewer: water_monkey (see more about me) from La Crescenta, Ca USA
    Even though JavaScript is not a new technology (in term of the Internet world), it is often difficult to find well written books that are easy to understand about the subject. Those that are well written, good instructional books, tend to be poor reference books (with the ability to find answers without reading the whole chapter0.

    "The Book of JavaScript..." does a good job at both. If you need the instructional "how-to" type of book you will find this book is excellent. Once you feel comfortable with JavaScript you will be able to use this book as a reference.

    This book does a good job at combining both worlds. There are better books for instruction and better books for reference (JavaScript: The Definitive Guide O'Reilly Press), but as an all-in-one book this succeeds where others haven't.

    5 of 5 stars Thau is a wizard, November 1, 2000
    Reviewer: A reader from Brooklyn, NY USA
    The Book of Javascript makes the intimidating fun and approachable. I highly recommend this book.

    ***+ Mastering Javascript and Jscript (Mastering)
    James Jaworski / Paperback / Published 1999
    Amazon price:  $31.99
    Mass Market Paperback - 895 pages 1st edition (March 1999)
    Sybex, Inc.; ISBN: 0782124925 ; Dimensions (in inches): 2.37 x 9.02 x 7.53
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 5,644
    Avg. Customer Review: 3 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 8

    Expensive, but not that bad for the introductory book. The author has bad habit of including HTML tags in each example, but examples itself are not bad and some are actually pretty interesting.
     
    5 of 5 stars This book is excellent, February 26, 2000
    Reviewer: Sharon Bull (see more about me) from England
    Jaworski explains not only the syntax but basic principles behind the programming. Very handy for anyone, regardless of programming experience!

    The book will help you to get started very, very quickly. There are great examples, showing you exactly what you can do with JavaScript.

    I have no hesitation whatsoever in recommending this book - my copy has yet to see my shelf!


    4 out of 5 stars A handy day-to-day reference document, December 24, 1999
    Reviewer: Joel Howe from Massachusetts
    I found this book to be very useful. There are many examples that are helpful in developing your JavaScript skills, and there are several more advanced sections that include explaining how JavaScript can be used to link with Java and ActiveX. This book truly helped me develop from a beginner at JavaScript to an expert. My experience before this book was that I was an HTML expert, but didn't have a clue about JavaScript. I am currently doing some web page development work and I routinely reference this book to refresh my memory. I highly recommend this book, though it may be getting out of date a bit, but since there are still many people using Version 4 browsers, this book will ensure you are writing JavaScript code that can be used by most anyone, not just IE5.0 users.

     
    ??? Official Netscape Javascript 1.2 Book The Nonprogrammer's Guide to Creating Interactive Web Pages
    by Peter Kent, John Kent
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 115,263
    Avg. Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 11
    Table of contents
    Web site: Official Netscape Javascript 1.2 Book

    Never read it. But hope that it's better than those that I did read. Netscape oriented book
    5 out of 5 stars Toss the Rest -- This is the Best, October 2, 1999
    Reviewer: A reader from Miami, Florida
    Good to see this book is coming back onto the shelves. Had to scrounge around recently to find my copy. Recommended to me by a JS pro. Purchased two other books previously that will soon collect dust in the used book store.

    The Kent brothers REALLY explain JavaScript and and provide a good introduction to the nuances (= annoyances) of object based syntax. If you think you have to buy four or five bad references to find a good one, this is the ONE good one on JS. (Better than anything in the O'Reilly catalog.)

    This is THE book many developers turn to in lieu of sharp objects and alcohol when fumbling with JavaScript. Why? It's in English and is well organized. Plus, instead of clunky CDs, you can access/copy the book's scripts over the web as you read the book.


    5 out of 5 stars This book defines the top of its category., August 9, 1999
    Reviewer: A reader from Selinsgrove, PA, USA
    Out of a large library of JavaScript books, this one is the only one that never gets shelved. I've seen novices find out how to do all the things they were looking for, and I've personally used it to expand my own knowledge. If I were to own just one JS book, this'd be it.

    5 out of 5 stars THE book for beginners, May 23, 2000
    Reviewer: Tobias Schmidt (see more about me) from Cologne, Germany
    I bought three books about JavaScript to get me started and I have to say that this was by far the best. The other two books I bought were the Visual Quickstart Guide by Peachpit Press and O'Reilly's Definitive JavaScript Guide. I used the Quickstart Guide to get a basic understanding for the language but soon noticed that I didn't actually learn it, but was rather just copying the examples in the book. With the Definitive Guide the exact opposite was the case. It was simply to hard to understand as a complete novice.

    The official Netscape Guide is the ideal book for starters: It takes you through the learning process step by step, starting with the easy stuff and then becoming harder and more complex. It also shows you the annoying parts about JavaScript (browser incompatibilities) and how to deal with them.

    Overall an absolutely cool book to get you started!

     
    ???+ Javascript for the World Wide Web (Visual Quickstart Guide)
    by Tom Negrino, Dori Smith
    Amazon price: $16.19
    Paperback - 292 pages 3rd edition (July 15, 1999)
    Peachpit Press; ISBN: 0201354632 ;
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 986

    Avg. Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 137

    Never read it. But hope that it's better than those that I did read. Netscape oriented book

    4 out of 5 stars A great, hit-the-ground-running start for JavaScript, April 28, 2000
    Reviewer: Steven Jarvis from Fayetteville, Arkansas
    This book is an apple, not an orange, so don't call it an orange. It's not a comprehensive guide to the esoteric ins and outs of JavaScript. That's what O'Reilly's JavaScript: the Definitive Guide is for. This book --- like all the books in the excellent Visual QuickStart Guide series --- is aimed at getting you into the topic and doing stuff with it quickly. The other books like the O'Reilly book (which would leave a beginner pulling her hair out) are for later.

    The examples in this book show you the most common uses of JS and provide sample scripts (which are available for download on the companion web site). The newer, 3d. ed. of the book adds a significant amount of additional information, and is worth the price of admission (I also owned the 2d. ed.). It gets you doing cool stuff with Javascript quickly. That simplicity is its strength and also one of my complaints about it.

    The examples are not often very flexible. They do one thing well (which is described quickly and in a manner in which you can easily understand), but its not always easy to modify the script to similar uses. And, because it's how it is, it doesn't teach you enough to understand the theory of the JS you're using, so you rarely understand how to modify those scripts. BUT, as I said above, that's beyond the scope of this book.

    One example: in the doing things with windows chapter, there are scripts for opening and closing a second window from within the main window. Great scripts and they work well. But, if you want to open the new window from the main window, then close the new window from the new window (not the main window), too bad, because it doesn't show you how to do that.

    But, on that point, I'm starting to lean in the direction of calling this book an orange.

    For absolute beginners: it's a must, and is probably the best introduction to JavaScript. For Intermediate JavaScripters, its hit or miss, so check it out thoroughly (though it's still a great quick reference for when you forget something). For advanced JavaScript and JS applications, check out one of the O'reilly reference works.

    5 out of 5 stars Invaluable reference and great for the beginner., January 25, 1999
    Reviewer: A reader from Seattle, WA
    I've just started using this one myself, and so far, it's proven to be an invaluable reference. I used to think JavaScript was a difficult and laborious language to learn, especially since the only coding I know is HTML, a little BASIC and some MUSH code (I'm not a programmer, can you tell? *grin*) After paging through the first few chapters of this book, and even jumping around a bit, it's not so much of a mystery anymore, and I now have a correct perception of this popular scripting language, as well as a decent working knowledge. Following the excellent path forged by other titles in the series, this guide is written in a candid, easy to understand manner. Best of all, just like the VQS Guide to HTML4, another of my favorites recommended elsewhere on this site, it's got a companion web site with all of the samples as well as further exercises. Don't waste your time reading thick books full of information you'll never use. Try this one and get to work writing JavaScript immediately. Once you get started and become better versed in the language, you'll want to keep the book nearby as an easy to use reference source. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.


    Intermediate (University Level)

    **** Beginning Javascript
    by Paul Wilton
    Our Price: $31.99
    Paperback - 800 pages (December 2000)
    Wrox Press Inc; ISBN: 1861004060
     Table of Contents Beginning Javascript

    Paul Wilton participated in the writing (semibaked) Professional JavaScript book from Wrox and a couple of VB/VBScript books. This book provides a decent beginner tutorial in the JavaScript language, hopefully teaching programming concepts along the way.  What I really like is the chapter about debugging that includes both discussion of MS debugger and (now obsolete Netscape debugger). One reviewer complains that the author is too much OO fundamentalist and that's bad, but still it's one of the best intro books available on the market.

    From the Publisher
    This book is for anyone who's interested in web programming - from the amateur home user who wants to enhance his home page to the aspiring professional developer who wants to add another tool to his belt. Only some HTML knowledge is assumed - no prior programming experience is required for this book.

    3 out of 5 stars Javascript is just an Object-Based Language?, August 27, 2001
    Reviewer: Boris Strokopytov (see more about me) from Bronx, NY USA
    This is a good book. But I didn't like the author's statement that Javascript is (just) an Object-Based language. This maybe true - there are no full blown classes in JS. But I didn't like that he is obviously trying to overemphasize this fact. To support his view on not-OO nature of JS he only starts discussing keyword 'this' on page 473 and generally avoids discusion of OOP techniques for Javascript. And, yes, contrary to what the authors states it's possible to define your own objects (though without classes) in Javascript. I always thought that JS was very close to the definition of OOP language though it lacks inheritance, polymorphism etc. (It is not full blown OO language like C++ or Java of course). But on p.747 we read the following: "...Javascript does not really have the language features to achieve this(OOP), and is simply an object-based language. By this I mean that it can use objects, but we can't use it to define our own class of objects". This contradicts with "Javascript Objects" by Alexander Nakhimovsky and Tom Myers. On p.4 in the paragraph "Why do OOP in Javascript" we read - "...As we've just said, one CAN do OOP in Javascript" and "Javascript is well designed for Object-Oriented Programming". I can understand of course the wish of the author to make things simpler for the beginners but I wouldn't call this language Object-Based. Too offensive. JS was designed with OOP in mind but OO model is just very much simplified here.

    Whether Javascript is OO or not OO language is maybe not that important. That's not my point. It is what it is. Perhaps it somewhere in between OO and structured languages but what bothers me that Paul Wilton didn't show to the end what great language Javascript is. From my point of view at least 2 additional chapters are needed to be added which would clarify how you CAN do OOP in Javascript and how you can define your own reusable objects in JS. On the positive note, Paul Wilton is obviously a very talented writer and his writing style and explanations are excellent. Good book for the beginners. Though, I'm repeating, this book is not going to give you a full impression about Javascript. I certainly would recommend to read everybody Hour 11 from "Teach yourself Javascript in 24 hours" (not a bad book at all, by the way!) or if you are brave enough "Javascript Objects" mentioned above. The OOP part was at least partially missing from this book.

    5 out of 5 stars Outstanding book!!, July 9, 2001
    Reviewer: rcbto (see more about me) from North Huntingdon, Pa. USA
    Beginning JavaScript by Paul Wilton is a great book !!! I have 31 computer related howto/learning books on my bookshelf at the present time, on subjects such as C/C++ Programming, Windows Programming, Linux Programming, Perl, Emacs, etc. etc., so I have some experience with different writers and different styles and methods of presentation/teaching. This book may be the best of the lot. Programming Windows95 by Charles Petzold is the only one that is probably better -- but not by much.

    The book is laid out in a logical, orderly, consistent manner from beginning to end. First you are presented with a concept. Secondly, you are given an example of fully functional code. Thirdly that code is fully explained, line by line. The book starts out with simple concepts and builds on them almost effortlessly. First you learn the core language, then you learn how to attach the JavaScript code to the base HTML document. Later you learn how to dynamically change the HTML document "on the fly" using JavaScript. Next, you are presented with -- interaction with the user through forms, string manipulation using regular expressions, Date objects and methods, Time, and Timers, Cookies, Dynamic HTML, Databases and server side scripting. I appreciated the fact that the examples given in the first 9 chapters work in both major browsers, so you are not immediately presented with confusing browser incompatibilities that complicate the learning process, but you are made aware of the incompatibilites later in the book when you are more able to understand them.

    As an aside, if I am a "little shaky" on one of the properties' or methods' syntax, and want to go back and review the concept, the material is quite easily found. The index is good as are the appendices where the DOM's and BOM's are laid out in detail.

    The book is exceptionally "meaty". Don't skip over any text or explanation of code, because you will miss myriad little tidbits of information and programming techniques that will prove most valuable.

    Some of the reviewers have complained about mistakes and typos. I have found most of the mistakes to be typos and the typos to be trivial matters, easily recognized. Of the 70+ examples give that I have done and experimented with up to chapter 10, only one didn't work as laid out in the book. (ch7 GlobalFunctions.htm) And from the thorough instruction given up to that point, I was able to correct the mistake and get that example to work also.

    In short, using this book, you can go from knowing nothing about JavaScript to building almost any kind of website you've ever encountered, from storefronts, to "virtual amusement parks". My hat's off to Mr. Wilton.
     

    5 of 5 stars Better than a COLLEGE COURSE!!, May 17, 2001
    Reviewer: Rudy (see more about me) from Coralville, Iowa United States
    FINALLY a book that TEACHES JavaScript Programming and not just copycat code! I took an Internet Programming class in college...basically was a joke. This book along with Professional JavaScript by Wrox, will make one a PRO!! Bottom line, Wrox makes the best computer books in the industry! I'm a PC Programming major at a 2 year school, and I'm learning MORE on my OWN from the WROX books than in any class I have taken, and that also includes University courses.

    5 of 5 stars Very Well Done!, May 25, 2001
    Reviewer: Steve Aschoff from Lincoln, Nebraska
    I've read programming books on all different sorts of languages including JavaScript. This is one of the best books I have read about any language. Mr Wilton does an excellent job of explaining the intricacies of JavaScript while making good points about the "gotchas" of some of the cross-browser compatibility issues. I am not a very good student, and I've never been a very adept reader of books so learning from books like this is usually difficult for me. Not with this book! If you are new to JavaScript or even programming in general, this is a great book to start with!

    5 of 5 stars Dis be da bestest!, May 19, 2001
    Reviewer: Jeff Harder from Vilnius, Lithuania
    I was thrilled to finally get a JavaScript book that teaches basic (and not-so-basic) concepts in a clear, concise manner. I've been using JavaScript for around 2 years now, but I found the book really useful. Wilton did not write a cookbook, but instead takes the reader into areas that most authors don't. I've got 4 other JavaScript books (including Goodman's Bible), and none come close to the style delivered by Wilton. What I like personally is his coverage of string manipulation and Regular Expressions in a way that is understandable, without leaving you more confused as others seem to do. Don't buy the Definitive Guide or Bible if you don't know JavaScript. Get this book first, then move on to the big gun reference jobs.

    ***+ Professional JavaScript
    by  Nigel McFarlane, at all
    Amazon price: $49.99
    Mass Market Paperback - 1149 pages 1st edition (September 23, 1999)
    Wrox Press Inc; ISBN: 186100270X ; Dimensions (in inches): 2.01 x 9.10 x 7.22
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 11,186
    Avg. Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 18
    Table of contents
     
    I used this book in one semester course with mixed results. This book is semibaked and looks  more like a reference, and less like a university textbook or tutorial. But all-in-all was a better choice than Javascript The Definitive Guide ;-).
     
    If you do not already have formal programming training, and a good familiarity with JavaScript itself (or at least own a good introductory book), the other book might be a better choice.

    The main strength of the book is the wide spectrum of topics it covers. Actually it is one of very few books that discuss ASP and CGI programming with JavaScript as well as WSH (most other books about ASP use VBScript which is a weaker language and WSH usually in not covered in Javascript books at all). The book contains a substantial number of practical and working examples (but not all of the examples are practical and working :-).
     
    The book contains extremely valuable chapter about debugging JavaScript (Chapter 17 Debugging and Disappearing Data). Another plus is that there is a special chapter that discusses JavaScript security.  Excellent two projects are discussed (one for Dynamic HTML, the other about ASP usage in e-commerce application).
     
    As for weaknesses, the book was written by several authors that that's noticeable.  The quality of writing vary widely and generally not that great. In some parts of the book it's simply bad. JavaScript overview in Chapter 3-5 is  weak to say the least and useful only for those who already know JavaScript (actually this is an intended audience and that is probably the only excuse that can save the face of the author of those chapters ;-). I suspect that the message to the reader that the author of Chapter 3 intended to communicate is "Give me your money and go to hell" ;-(.  Reference chapters (appendixes A-L, pages 780-1080) that constitute approximately one third of the book are weak. For example description of methods does not contain the list of arguments.
     
    Examples are often not that great, but at least the authors do not put each and every code snippet into html with at least <html><head> </head> <body> </body> </html> tags :-). That definitely helps to save trees.

    3 of 5 stars Good but not great, September 20, 2000
    Reviewer: Glen Ford (see more about me) from Houston, Texas USA
    As a web developer, I've been using this book for the better part of a year now. That, coupled with the fact that it's getting a little worn, should be a testament to its overall usefulness. I haven't yet found a professional application for the advanced material presented -- I mainly work in DHTML -- but I like knowing that if I had to do server-side JavaScript, for instance, I could.

    However, the reference chapters -- always the most important part of a computer text -- are fairly useless. The IE DOM is hardly explained -- it could warrant a book of its own, but this book's sketchy outline is useless. The way the appendixes are laid out is inconsistent and not visual enough -- you have to dig for the information you need (for instance, which browser supports which core object).

    Finally, and worst of all, the methods reference doesn't give you any clue as to the parameters of the methods! I often find myself looking up the object description here, then going to MSDN to se what the parameters are. How silly.

    3 of 5, because it *could* have been truly the only JavaScript book any serious programmer needs. As is, I'm off to the store to finally get a decent reference book. (Problem there is that all of them pre-date IE5. Where's the update, O'Reilly?)

     

    3 of 5 stars Decent programmers reference, but not for beginners, October 11, 2000
    Reviewer: Levi Wallach (see more about me) from Vienna, VA USA
    Professional JavaScript is great as a reference and one can find some good nuggets in some of the non-reference chapters. However, if you do not already have formal programming training, and possibly some good familiarity with JavaScript itself, the book may do you better just as a reference tool. Also, because it was written by so many people (each one responsible for a different chapter) the text reads more like a disjointed collection of essays.

    The first 750 pages or so of the book comprises the main content of the book. It is divided into 20 chapters, covering just about every aspect of the language. Some of the more advanced chapters, which I did not get a chance to read, are integrating JavaScript with Java, Server-side JavaScript, and stand-alone JavaScript via Windows Script Host. There are also chapters on integrating JavaScript with ASP, and detailed looks at a couple of fairly complex JavaScript systems including a family tree and an ecommerce tool. The problem is that there's little ramp-up. There are lots of code examples throughout the text, but they are primarily small snippets. So it's like shock therapy when you are presented with such major applications of coding without anything in between! But this has to do more with the aforementioned nature of the book in that so many different authors with different styles and topics wrote it. Some of the chapters are great; they have some really good information that any level of programmer can use. The chapters on Forms and Data, Multimedia Plugins, Debugging and Disappearing Data, and Windows and Frames were all extremely helpful. Other chapters for me were completely useless to me - they droned on and on about theoretical issues without getting into practically any coding. I had great hopes for the chapter on Privacy, Security and Cookies, as well as the one on Rapid Application Development, but neither was helpful at all.

    The last 300 pages or so comprises the reference section. The reference section is great, it goes into every aspect of the language, including the core language attributes, objects and methods, and there are a ton of JavaScript/browser comparison charts that give you a great idea of what functions and features will be available to you in Netscape and IE from the earliest version to the latest.

    Ultimately what you get out Professional JavaScript really depends on your level of expertise when it comes to programming. I do not personally have any formal training - it's all been self-taught, so some of the more advanced stuff, though I'm sure I could learn it given the need, was not presented in a way that instructs people who do not have a familiarity with advanced programming techniques. There seems to be a lingo that some programmers use when talking about programming and for people who don't have formal programming training (or haven't been programming since they were nine) is just completely baffling. Most O'Reilly books seem to be full of this, but then they are written for the professional programmer. Professional JavaScript, as the name implies, probably is as well, however, there is enough great information here for any kind of programmer, and you just have to be selective as to which chapters you try to tackle.

     

    5 out of 5 stars Only for intelligent people, July 11, 2000
    Reviewer: Richard B Miller (see more about me) from Cincinnati, OH United States
    I found that wrox books are quite informative, and being a web professional, these are the kind of books that you want to buy. If you are a web monkey and don't have any education of the art of programming however, you really won't grasp the concepts that are presented in this book. It's not meant to be a code source book, that you can find in the javascript reference. This is to fully understand the concepts of JavaScript.(aka livescript for those of you in the know) Again, if you are a professional, this would be a great book for you. If you are a beginning programmer however, you might be better off getting a sams teach yourself book. start with the blah blah in 10 minutes. then get the 24 hours. 21 days is a waste. When you are at that point then come to wrox and get the real book on the language.

    5 out of 5 stars Very Good Book if you have some programming Experience, January 3, 2000
    Reviewer: Harry Yeh from Kirkland, WA
    This Book and the O'Reily Book Javascript : The Definitive Guide are the best books for Javascript in my mind. This Book teaches you all the useful techniques, and I use the O'Reily as a reference. They have a really good section on the OOP with Javascript.

    If you are a beginner, this book is pretty good as well. This is definately a book you will pick up time and time again! For the professional Web Developer, this book will teach you techniques that you would have had to scour the internet to figure out. There aren't that many Javascript books out there that were really good in my mind but this is definately one of the best! Like other Wrox books, You DEFINATELY CAN'T JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER!

    5 out of 5 stars Excellent Case Studies, January 15, 2000
    Reviewer: Mart Poom from Oslo
    Chapters 10 and 14 in this book are excellent case studies. The 'Family Tree Photo Album' is a great real-life example of how to use JavaScript practically and ties up what has been taught in the book.

    But then chapter 14 which is "Building an e-commerce shop front" goes beyond that to create a functioning online shop. It's brilliant! I have "borrowed" it for our company site.

    Thanks Wrox, this book surpasses even ASP2.0 in quality and depth. Keep up the good work.

    1 of 5 stars Should be half this size - very incoherent, February 21, 2000
    Reviewer: Zarko Berberski from Europe
    It really looks like production team was under orders to produce pre-set number of pages no matter what. Almost 300pg reference section would comfortably fit in 100pg and would be of some use then- after major rework, and reference is important part of a book calling itself professional. For example, no information on object method arguments is included, not even a list. Tables are at least twice as large then what would be reasonable for the content - almost like they went printing Web tables from and old browser. What was supposed to be Netscape and IE specific reference really looks like a verbatim copy of some web intro page.

    Proliferation of subtitles, many times just for one paragraph. Index with at least one level larger font size then what even Wrox itself used in ASP 3.0 book. Table of contents stretched out to 30 pages with big font sizes which rendered it almost useless.

    Way to many "buy this further Wrox book" nagging in the text up to a point where you have to start suspecting that not things are not present on purpose just to make you purchase one more.

    DHTML section is way too IE biased, even with no mention of some cross browser techniques you can see working on web. Client side JavaScript case study just goes presenting IE exclusive code, then some rambling how "Netscape can't do this" and then - a miracle - cross browser JavaScript library from the net :-) FI development of cross browser code was too much for authors they why not simply presenting several good libraries and explaining their inner workings?

    Authors of at least half chapters seem to be at loss about their intended audience. If this was written for web developer then one would expect to see things like events and document object model covered in one place and not scattered (as some tutorials have to do). I can't blame for this so much authors but project manager and editors (6 of them :-) Book with many authors scattered all over the planet lever or dies by good or bad project management to provide coherence.

    Chapters on server side, wsh and client configuration are fine but that is no more then several hundred pages. This book really needs major rework and split into two smaller volumes of which one would really be professional (with good reference section this time) and the other would be intro review volume. Then professional part would probably get 5 stars - and wouldn't break your wrist while you try to wade through to find something.

     
    ???+ Javascript Unleashed (with CD-ROM)
    by R. Allen Wyke, Richard Wagner
    Amazon Price: $44.99

    CD-ROM - 996 pages 3rd Bk&cdr edition (June 15, 2000)
    Sams; ISBN: 067231763X ; Dimensions (in inches): 2.05 x 9.01 x 7.33
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 3,801
    Popular in: Arizona State University (#12)

    Avg. Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 1

    Just browsed it in store. Looks interesting and I hope that in some aspects it might be slightly better than Professional JavaScript :-).
    3 of 5 stars Great for getting you started, but..., October 11, 2000
    Reviewer: Paul Hurt (see more about me) from London, United Kingdom United Kingdom
    As a practical introduction to the language, this book was pretty much what I was looking for. And it's pretty readable, much more so than a lot of other big fat JavaScript books I looked at. So I guess I'd recommend it. But a few major provisos:

    1) if you've done any programming in another language before, you will find the first couple of hundred pages heavy going, as it explains very basic concepts in excessive detail. But you still need to read these chapters as a few things come up which are peculiar to JavaScript.

    2) It's just plain wrong, or incomplete in places. For instance, the browser-detection example given doesn't actually work because of some basic errors in the code. And it neglects to mention a lot of the vital peculiarities where Netscape's JavaScript and IE's JScript diverge in their behaviour. If the book is to be believed you'd think all Javascript 1.2 code would work on the latest Netscape and Microsoft browsers. It won't. It's just not that easy unfortunately.

    3) Good for learning, but not much use as a "reference". Hard to find the info you want while you're coding, and when you do find it it's frequently too sketchy to give you any insight into your problem.

    So don't rely on this book as your only JavaScript reference. You will have to look elsewhere to find out the truth and get your scripts working properly. Particularly if you want your code to work in Explorer.

    5 out of 5 stars Just get it!, August 1, 2000
    Reviewer: Tomohiro Noda (see more about me) from Cupertino, CA USA
    It's exactly what I wanted! There are many points I recommend this book to you.

    • 1st, it covers the most appropriate issues. Basically, this book focuses on client-side development and covers almost all of it. Some books cover even server-side issues such as servlet, ASP, JSP while they are lacking in the main subject, client-side issues. If we want to learn server-side issues, we can just pick these kinds of books (Sun's JSP book is good).
    • 2nd, it's well organized. For people who don't have a time to read everything, this well-organized book is really helpful. There are 35 chapters and each chapter pick up precise one distinct topic. You can skim and scan whichever you want.
    • 3rd, a lot of useful sample codes and graphical outputs enable us to learn JavaScript easily. The definition of good programming books is how much they contain sample codes. This is it.
    • 4th, If you are beginner for JavaScript, just take this. I'm a Java programmer but I'm a beginner for JavaScript and even HTML. However, this book helped me without any extra beginner books.

     Anyway, it's worthy of $50.

    5 out of 5 stars Great book for heavy duty programmers!, October 15, 1999
    Reviewer: A reader from Maryland
    Unlike the first 3 reviewers, I am a software engineer who LIKES TO PROGRAM. My complaint with other Javascript books is that they are too lightweight and there is not enough information besides how to make cute web pages. I consulted this book frequently during the development of a large project, and it never let me down. There was information on every topic I needed, and examples with enough substance that I could take it from there. This book spans the simple to the complicated, so you get a lot of value out of this book - this book will remain useful as your skills grow.

    ***+ Javascript The Definitive Guide

    by David Flanagan
    Amazon Price: $31.96
    Paperback - 776 pages 3rd edition (June 1998)
    O'Reilly & Associates; ISBN: 1565923928 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.45 x 9.21 x 7.03
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 306
    Avg. Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 102

    Overpriced, slightly outdated (covers JavaScript 1.2 only) and Netscape-biased book. This is a pretty short (400 pages, everything else are appendices) tutorial combined with reference. Neither is best in its class. Beware that examples are mostly junk. Material is oriented on computer programmers, but is not that great.  It describes JavaScript as a programming language and has some useful information about interaction of JavaScript and DOM.  In a sense the first part of book represents a traditional approach to the programming language teaching as if it was copied from some old Pascal textbook :-). But the book does not describes everything well and many areas covered for example in Professional JavaScript. or JavaScript Unleashed (ASP, WSH, etc.) are not mentioned. Dynamic HTML coverage is very weak and superficial. It's nowhere near Inside Dynamic Html or  Dynamic Html in Action or any other decent book on the subject.
     
    Half of the book consists of a reference that lists objects, properties, even-handlers etc.
     
    The first of the book's three sections aver very weak and provide incoherent explaination JavaScript as a programming language independent of it's use as a browser scripting language or any other purpose.

    Flanagan tries to discuss the structure of the language, data types, expressions, control flow, and objects. But the level is either very basic or simply bad as he sometimes make mistakes. For example he definitely does not understand what components of the language are on lexical level and what are on the syntactical level.

    Again, this book is a (weak) reference and doesn't really cover programming fundamentals. It is useless for learning the language, even for programmers, who know C and/or C++, and want to add JavaScript as a second or later language.

     
    4 out of 5 stars Hard core Javascript theory.....at last., August 24, 2000
    Reviewer: Roger D. Thomas (see more about me) from Tustin, CA United States

    After trying to learn javascript from the visual series "javascript for the world wide web, 3rd ed" (and being thoroughly disappointed), I finally have found a book that describes the fundamentals of the javascript language in detail. This book explains from an academic perspective the rules, usage, and syntax of javascript. It leads the reader into the depths of how javascript implements an object-oriented paradigm without getting too esoteric. It can be difficult reading at times, but the true nature of javascript programming is not that of a simple little scripting language as some would have you believe. The coding examples could have been better, with more full-sized scripts showing the language in action instead of the numerous 1-4 line code snippets. The one big distraction I noticed was the seemingly constant references to netscape navigator, and all the bugs present in older versions of that browser. Unfortunately, this dated the book and tended to highlight a bias when the author would have been better off staying with the academic focus. Even still, the majority of the theory is unaffected by nav or ie, and the reference section is essential for any serious javascript developer. It is noted that this book was copyright 1998, so "cutting edge" javascript extensions will not be included, but the fundamental theory behind the language remains intact. With the combination of this book (theory and reference) and the visual series book (cutesy web page tricks), I can finally get on with the task of finishing my web site.
     
    5 out of 5 stars THE Javascript book for computer programmers!, August 10, 2000
    Reviewer: swain@panix.com (see more about me) from NEW YORK, NY United States

    All Javascript books I've seen are aimed at beginners. This is the only one that gets your hands dirty with true blue computer science. No other book on JS is going to tell you the language uses prototype-based inheritence instead of class-based inheritence; in fact Javascript has a lot of similarities to the LambdaMOO scripting language, and I suspect the latter influenced Netscape engineers.

    With this book I've learned how to visit all objects in the document tree and print out the source code for the event handlers. No "Dummies" or "21 Days" books are going to give you the theoretical grounding to do that! If you have an interest in computer languages in addition to having a need to script your browser, this book is for you. It has a great reference section for looking up language features and the various Window objects as well. If you want to build complex Web applications that use a lot of client side Javascript, this book will open new possibilities to you.

    If you still own the Second Edition you owe it to yourself to buy a replacement; this Third Edition is a far superior book.

    3 out of 5 stars Focus on IE Minimal & Not Enough Examples, June 14, 2000
    Reviewer: reb99z (see more about me) from New York, NY
    Navigator may have been THE browser back in 96 when the book was first written, but this third edition came out in 98 when IE was fast taking over. I think it's a bit deceptive that the title doesn't indicate the strong Netscape Navigator bias. The end result is that I have to go out and get another book for JavaScript under IE. Pity! Also there's a lot of prose and not enough complete examples that one can try.

    5 out of 5 stars Not for beginners, May 23, 2000
    Reviewer: Tobias Schmidt (see more about me) from Cologne, Gemany
    I am pretty new to JavaScript and so I decided to buy three book to get me started: this one, the Visual Quickstart Guide by Peachpit Press and The official Netscape JavaScript Guide.

    I started with the Visual Quickstart Guide to get a basic understanding of JavaScript but soon noticed that I was just copying the scripts in the book and didn't really learn any JavaScript. This is where the Netscape Guide came into play. It took me through everything step by step and I am now able to actually programm my own stuff. I use THIS book mainly to learn the stuff the previous two books didn't cover and also as a reference, one of the really big plusses of the book. Half of the book consists of a reference that lists all the objects, properties, even-handlers and whatnot. Just amazing, has helped me numerous times!

    I cannot recommend this book for absolute beginners though. It just doesn't take you through the process of learning step by step.

    3 out of 5 stars Excellent Reference section, but TERRIBLE examples, August 17, 2000
    Reviewer: A reader from Pacifica, CA United States
    In my opinion, an example should serve to illustrate a concept that's just been presented. This book, however, frequently uses examples to introduce new information while provide little supplemental help to make sense of this new info. This makes for a very frustrating learning experience!...
    ??? Instant Javascript
    by Nigel McFarlane
    Amazon Price: $19.96
    Paperback - 400 pages Reissue edition (1997)
    Wrox Press Inc; ISBN: 1861001274 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.00 x 9.04 x 6.03
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 69,807
    Avg. Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 24

    Slightly outdated. Professional Javascript is more up-to-date.  The book contains extremely valuable chapter about debugging JavaScript.  It also discusses JavaScript security.

    4 out of 5 stars Worked for me..., May 12, 2000
    Reviewer: A reader from The Wild West, USA
    This is one of those books which probably deserves the * to **** ratings various people give it - it just depends on where they're coming from, in terms of programming background, and what they're trying to accomplish.

    For me, this relatively cheap WROX book fit the bill: I had some specific JavaScript problems on a project I was handed at work and I found the solutions here very quickly... faster than I could have with one of those massive tomes of excrutiating detail! But my background is pretty strong in OO and procedural programing, even if I am a JavaScript newbie: I came in with a pretty good idea of what details I was looking for.

    Bottom line: I wouldn't recommend this book as a newbie tutorial or something to get started on programming with. But if you have the background and just need to find specific stuff or maybe come up to speed quickly in "another" language, this has an appropriate level of detail and is structured logically enough for you to zero in without excessive hunting.

    5 out of 5 stars My favorite JS book, misleading title, September 13, 2000
    Reviewer: Michael Krakovskiy (see more about me) from Brooklyn, NY USA
    Unless your are a complete beginner, do not let the bad reviews stop you from buying this book. Instant JavaScript can give you great insight into the language.

    Here is what it is not:

    a) A step by step cookbook for people who buy "Dummies" or "In 21-15-5 days" brand books.

    b) A complete reference (if you need that you can get O'reilly book or find a searchable online reference.

    Remember, Wrox(this book's publisher) motto is "Programmer to Programmer". And this book is truly in this spirit.

    My favorite chapter is #7, called "Disappearing Data". Reading it is like listening to an experienced JavaScripter explaining all the pitfalls of the language. Chapter 6 - "Privacy, Security and Cookies" was very useful to me too. Just these two chapters make this book worth buying.


    Advanced

    ***+ Professional JavaScript -- almost junk

    ??? JavaScript Objects

    by Tom Myers, Alexander D. Nakhimovsky
    Our Price: $31.99
    Paperback - 450 pages (December 1998)
    Wrox Press Inc; ISBN: 1861001894 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.07 x 9.14 x 7.29
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 53,066
    Avg. Customer Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 9
    table of contents
    4 of 5 stars JavaScript Objects, August 28, 2000
    Reviewer: Michael V. Wenczel (see more about me) from Lawrenceville, NJ United States
    Very good book. If your just looking for a JavaScript reference or a source for scripts, this is not the book. The authors take a serious approach to client-side applications using JavaScript and object-oriented code.

    Others have complained about the examples being too academic but I found them very appropriate for the kinds of things I'd do such as using regular expressions for form validation, binding of html elements to objects, etc., using tree and stack data structures for document parsing... Even if you already use these techniques I found it an effective way to teach the language.

    5 of 5 stars A great book with great depth, August 18, 2000
    Reviewer: Easdr ahuk (see more about me) from Mohr's Beach, SK Canada
    This is an important book, that takes the object-oriented aspects of JavaScript seriously and will take you there, if you are prepared to think long and hard. I found the reading is slow going because there is an incredible amount of material here. Buy this book and then find lots of time to work the code and think about OO and how JavaScript does OO. Wow


    2 of 5 stars Disappointing, July 18, 2000
    Reviewer: Robert A. Fontana (see more about me) from Boca Raton, FL United States
    The main point that the authors attempt to make is that JavaScript can be a powerful and flexible object-oriented programming language. This book is better suited for the classroom than for real-world web development. Out of its 450+ pages, a single 30-page chapter deals with JavaScript in the browser.

    Since I have several years of C/C++ experience, I bought this book primarily for the object reference table in the appendix. As I began writing real JavaScript applications, however, it became clear that this book was more of a hinderance than a help -- that even the object reference was a watered down version of the Netscape documentation. For instance, the book makes no distinction between read/write and read-only properties. The programmer is left guessing whether his program is failing or the property is not writable.

    I found that "JavaScript - The Definitive Guide" by O'Reilly & Associates (ISBN 1-56592-392-8) covers browser objects much more thoroughy.

    4 of 5 stars Thinking clearly in a scripting language, March 9, 2000
    Reviewer: Stavros Macrakis (see more about me) from Cambridge, Massachusetts
    Your code can benefit from object-oriented programming even if your language doesn't support it directly. Javascript provides more support for O-O programming than (say) C, although much less than Java.

    JSO shows you how to write client-side applications in object-oriented Javascript. It leads you through useful examples using the technique, demonstrating that you can do many sophisticated and useful things with this 'scripting' language.

    For very experienced programmers, this will at times be a slow, but most developers will benefit from the close attention to the code.

    JSO doubles as a concise introduction and reference to Javascript, covering it better in 80 pages than those bricks in the bookstore do in 1200.

    The strength of this book is also its weakness. Since it focusses on client-side functionality, its example of client/server Web programming is unrealistically tilted towards providing all functionality on the client. But, given the current state of the art, I can't think of a better way of doing this without spending too much time on server-side issues. Along the same lines, the current incompatibilities among implementations force it to be browser-specific (Internet Explorer).

    Overall, this is probably the best book on client-side Javascript programming -- as long as you don't care about cross-browser compatibility.


    Jscript

     
    ***+ Mastering Javascript and Jscript (Mastering) by James Jaworski (1999, Sybex, 895 pages  0782124925, $39.99)
     
    ??? How to Program Microsoft Jscript, Scripting Interface
    Mark Stone / Paperback / Published 1996
    Amazon price: $39.99 (Special Order)

    WSH

     
    **** Windows Script Host Programmer's Reference
    by Dino Esposito
    Our Price: $23.99
    Paperback - 373 pages 1 edition (July 1999)
    Wrox Press Inc; ISBN: 1861002653 ; Dimensions (in inches): 0.99 x 9.06 x 6.07
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 17,196
    Popular in: Unisys Corporation (#8)
    Avg. Customer Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 11
    See positive ERCB review at http://www.ercb.com/brief/brief.0146.html  by Lou Grinzo:
    The general approach of this type of book can make or break it, and Esposito strikes just the right tone. He assumes that readers are reasonably capable Windows programmers, but are rank beginners with the WSH. Thus he explains early on how scripts are executed by Windows, with the obligatory (but still useful) box diagram, but never burdens the main part of the book with the tedious, blow-by-blow description of either JScript's or VBScript's syntax. He also refrains from making numerous references to the language-specific appendices. This creates a somewhat unusual atmosphere, as compared to that of most books of this type, but it's a very comfortable and productive one, nonetheless.

    The author explains enough of the plumbing of the WSH and its object model, and how they interact with the facilities in the two supported languages, to give the reader a firm foundation. He routinely shows programming examples implemented in both VBScript and JScript, or shows one and describes the minimal changes to the other. While all such programming examples are inherently somewhat artificial, the examples in this book are well chosen, and in many cases will probably be "borrowed" directly into some reader's code.

    I was particularly pleased to see the three chapters that focus on the new features in WSH 2.0, file system programming, and code reuse...

    File system programming is another inescapable joy of programming, but sadly it's one that many authors don't like to address. Esposito talks at length about dealing with drives, folders, and individual files, as well as some of the nastier details, like how to go about replacing or moving an in-use file under Windows. He points out a bothersome NT versus Windows 9x issue, caused by the lack of access to the MoveFileEx() API.

    ...The file handling and reuse chapters are the best examples of a subtlety that pervades this book, namely the feeling that it was written by a working programmer. Esposito clearly knows where a lot of the "gotcha's" are, and he takes the time to help the reader plot a course around them. Of course, any book of this sort can be criticized (fairly or otherwise) for not having more examples, particularly in the file-handling or dialog box areas. You can always think of additional, specific examples of trickier code that would be helpful, particularly when under time pressure on a critical project. And Esposito does commit the obligatory (some would say canonical) Windows error in version checking in one of his code samples, on page 277.

    About my only other criticism of this book is the title -- it should serve quite well as a "programmer's reference," but I believe it will work just as well, if not better, as a tutorial that experienced programmers new to WSH should read cover to cover.
    ??? Microsoft Windows Script Host 2.0 Developer's Guide
    by Gunter Born
    Our Price: $39.99
    Paperback - 600 pages Bk&Cd-Rom edition (September 2000)
    Microsoft Press; ISBN: 0735609314 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.41 x 9.09 x 7.39
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 6,518
    Avg. Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars

    5 out of 5 stars Fundamentals of MS Programming Explained, January 10, 2000
    Reviewer: P VILEVAC (see more about me) from Silicon Valley, California, USA
    I am a very experienced Microsoft developer. Mr. Hill's previous book, NT Shell Scripting, was fantastic, and became part of my recommended reading for IS folks. Using concepts from that book I was able to automate a tremendously complex web site build process (including database builds and dumps, source safe retrievals, etc).

    This new book is great. In attempting to encourage others to become computer people, its difficult to provide them with a book that clearly and concisely explains the Microsoft development architecture. This book does that.

    I'm very technically oriented, but this book does not offend me by being patronizing. Unlike many WROX and similar books, its not full of author fluff that contributes little to the book.

    A good read and review, a great reference for the future. I highly recommend it, anyone who does anything with NT should have a copy.

    It will be a competitive advantage between NT administrators.


    4 out of 5 stars Excellent tutorial for WSH and VBScript, April 1, 2000
    Reviewer: John Avitt (see more about me) from Chattanooga, TN
    This book is an excellent reference and tutorial on WSH and VBScript. It seems to be somewhat geared toward system administrators, but any Windows user seeking to utilize WSH would benefit from this book. I was pleased with the thorough coverage of VBScript. Since I could find no other book on the subject, this was a gold mine to me. Only a couple of things I would like to see different: (1) The author explicitly recommends using Cscript.exe instead of Wscript.exe (I would like to see more examples geared towards Wscript.exe), and (2) I would like to see coverage of other scripting languages in addition to VBScript (e.g. JScript). For the topics this book does cover (WSH and VBScript) you won't find a more thorough book.

    ??? Sam's Teach Yourself Windows Scripting Host in 21 Days
    Thomas Fredell / Paperback / Published 1999
    Amazon price: $23.99
    Paperback - 607 pages (July 1999)
    MacMillan Publishing Company; ISBN: 067231374X ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.47 x 9.14 x 7.43
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 22,658
    Avg. Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 7

    5 out of 5 stars Best computer book ever!, January 22, 2000
    Reviewer: rob from Delray Beach, FL
    This is a great book. It provides a excellent foundation for learning the basics of: WSH, vbscript, jscript and provides useful real-world examples for scripting: IIS, MS Office, ADO, ADSI, etc. The author even devotes a chapter on how to deploy scripting solutions.

    After you finish reading this book get the MS help files on: WSH, vbscript, jscript, ADO, ADSI, other COM, and MS OLE/COM viewer and you'll be ready for scripting in the real world.


    5 out of 5 stars Well structured, with lots of valuable reusable examples, August 15, 1999
    Reviewer: A reader from Belgium
    Very high level approach to WSH. This book is a must have for the serious professional administrator or infrastructure architect that wants to get rid of the old 'batch' script timeperiod.

    3 out of 5 stars Missing Appendix A suggests other poor planning., November 15, 1999
    Reviewer: A reader from California
    I guess I'm angry, after spending more time looking for the missing, and oft-referred to Appendix A than the authors spent planning (or writing) the book. "A" suggests even more than one (missing) appendix. The screen reproductions are impossible to read. The authors only "present" features of the language, they do not explain or teach it. One good point: They do present an almost readable summary of data bases. Buy and read different one, then return to this one and use it as a reference.

    Windows Scripting Secrets
    by Tobias Weltner
    Our Price: $31.99
    Paperback - 751 pages Bk&Cd Rom edition (May 2000)
    IDG Books Worldwide; ISBN: 0764546848 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.93 x 9.21 x 7.40
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 12,389
    Avg. Customer Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Number of Reviews: 9

    5 of 5 stars Make Windows work for you (rather than the other way around), August 16, 2000
    Reviewer: William Marchbank (see more about me) from Gainesville, FL United States
    If you're interested in making Windows work for you then this is the book to help you do it. I bought the book because I wanted to connect to my ISP and start several programs (firewall, mail checker, clock adjuster, etc.) with the click of one icon. I also wanted to be able to disconnect, stop all those programs and start WinFax from one icon. I noticed from the index that this book would show me how to do that using the Windows Script Host ... that was all I wanted from the book and it served its purpose well.

    Surprisingly, however, once I got the book home I found 700 pages of other equally useful stuff. It's great! Controlling my scanner and printer so that they act together like a photocopier. Backing up my data files into regular Windows folders and files and not into some proprietary compressed format which would commit me to using a proprietary Restore procedure.

    The author's style is to jump into code early and often; the associated narrative is clear and concise. The reader learns by either running the code from the CD or by copying the code from the book. People who invest the time to go through the book and really understand the examples presented will be rewarded by being placed in control of the Windows environment. Those who regularly use programming books will be surprised to find that the code in both CD and book actually works and doesn't have to be debugged by the reader!

    Don't be put off by the fact that the author is German; if English isn't his first language then, well, it's better than many who write nothing but English.


    Reference

    ???? Pure JavaScript
    by R. Allen Wyke, Charlton Ting, Jason Gilliam
    Amazon price: $27.99
    Paperback - 1616 pages 2nd Bk&cdr edition (August 15, 2001)
    Sams; ISBN: 0672315475 ; Dimensions (in inches): 2.32 x 9.01 x 6.02
    Amazon.com Sales Rank: 1,688

    Good reference, 1616 pages !
     

    5 out of 5 stars The best reference available, but not for beginners, June 8, 2000
    Reviewer: fernandog (see more about me) from Buenos Aires, Argentina
    Simply, this book is the best reference you'll find on javascript, it covers every single aspect, including server-side, javascript 1.4 and jscript 5.

    But, this book isn't for beginners, it will not teach you how to write and script, it assumes you already know what "<script>", so if you don't please look for another book, or maybe you could read some web tutorial and use this book as a reference, which is excellent, every function is there, with an explanation, an example, and which browser support it (or language version).

    The only compliant I have about this book is the size of the pages, they are "small" in width, with no typos which makes somewhat difficult to read, the pages almost have no margins and the titles are only on bold (maybe if they where underlined...). If the pages were of the "normal size" the book will be less thick and easier to manipulate. But this isn't very important right?

    4 out of 5 stars Strictly a Reference, July 31, 2000
    Reviewer: too_many_hobbies (see more about me) from New Orleans, LA USA
    Caution, do not ignore the portion of the title that states "Premium Reference"; this book is strictly a REFERENCE manual. You cannot learn JavaScript from it regardless of your programming experience.

    It is a valuable tool if you want to check the syntax of a command or the semantics of the language, but get another book if you are trying to learn the language.

    5 out of 5 stars This is the way it should be, December 21, 2000
    Reviewer: A 1-year old reader from Australia
    This JavaScript reference is a truly good computer book. It covers client-side scripting very well. It is very well laid out with a short tutorial section at the front of the book and a very long and well written Reference section. This book is the answer to all simple cross-browser scripting problems since it has a thorough indication of which browsers any particular function will work in. (It may somewhat over-simplify some DHTML issues). In addition, it is also a good Jscript reference and very useful for doing server-side Asp programming in Jscript (which is a better choice than VBscript for ASP, really). This book also covers the powerful topic of regular expressions (which seem to be an under-rated aspect of Javascript). Every function has sample code with it. This is a joy to read. One small reservation I would make, is that the Examples often do not have any indication of what the results from that code would be in the browser etc- which detracts slightly from the learning experience.

    This book would also be an invaluable reference for doing Windows Scripting Host scripting using J(ava)Script.

    In summary, this is the sort of computer book that you only rarely find. Perhaps the only sad thing is that such a good book has been written about a topic that is perhaps not of the first interest to serious programmers. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

    ***+ Javascript The Definitive Guide
    by David Flanagan
    Amazon Price: $31.96
    Paperback - 776 pages 3rd edition (June 1998)
    O'Reilly & Associates; ISBN: 1565923928 ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.45 x 9.21 x 7.03
     
    This book is discussed elsewhere

    Random Findings



    ???? .
    by R. Allen Wyke, Charlton Ting, Jason Gilliam
    Amazon price: $27.99
    Paperback - 1448 pages 1 edition (June 18, 1999)

     
    ???? Windows 2000 Web Applications Developer's Guide

    Looks like great Microsoft-oriented textbook. Covers al important topics including databases, but not covers WSH.

    Discover how to make smarter up-front decisions-about architecture, browser compatibility, tools, and much more. Learn how to design Web development environments that maximize efficiency and slash time to market-and construct scalable Web applications that can be managed from anywhere.

    Yager covers every key Microsoft Web development technology, from ASP to Visual InterDev, COM to IE 5 to SQL Server 2000-plus every crucial industry standard you must know about, from the Document Object Model to JavaScript/ECMAScript. Succinct, objective, and thorough, Windows 2000 Web Applications Developer's Guide is the complete Web development solution for every IT professional working with Microsoft technologies.

    • Windows 2000, SQL Server 2000, IIS 5.0, Visual InterDev 6.0, ASP, COM, IE 5, and more
    • Defining architectures, matching hardware to requirements, and ensuring scalability
    • When to use Microsoft technologies-and when to use third-party solutions
    • Future-proofing yourself with standards-based applications
    • Making the most of XML, COM+, and JavaScript
    • Integrating enterprise databases: SQL Server 2000, ADO, and beyond


    1. Windows 2000 as a Web Applications Platform.

    Where Web-based Fits In. What's New in Windows 2000. Windows 2000 in a Heterogeneous Environment. The Browser's Role. The Deployment Dilemma. Summary.


    2. Internet Information Services 5.0.

    IIS 5's Default Setup. Virtual Directories, Sites and Applications. Virtual Directories. Sites. Applications. Using Web Folders. Summary.


    3. Early Planning and Design Considerations.

    Are We Ready for This? Server-based. Network-intensive. Software Licensing. Security and Privacy. Availability and Reliability. Charting Your Project's Course. Operating System Choices. Designing for Reuse. Concern for the Environment. Three-Tier and n-Tier Design. Three Tiers, Four Tiers and More Tiers. Summary.


    4. The Development Environment.

    The Web Developer's Workstation. Standardizing Development Software. Staging Development and Release. The Role of Servers in the Staging Process. Collaboration and Source Code Control. Summary.


    5. The Web-based Client.

    The Browser as Platform. Traditional Techniques in a Web World. File I/O. Windows and Dialogs. Menus and Accelerators. Custom and Owner-drawn Controls. Device and Process Control. Windows System Calls. The Dialog Editor. The Text/Debugging Console. Exception Handling. Help!I Can't Deal with All These Restrictions! On the Server Side of the Street. Where's the Line? Argument and Return Value Passing. Summary.


    6. The Database.

    SQL Server 7 and 2000. Database Alternatives. Database Design for the Impatient. Creating the Database. A Sample Database Layout. Defining a New ODBC Connection. Using Visual Studio to Design a New Database. Summary.


    7. Visual InterDev and Visual Studio.

    Design-Time Controls. Building a Script Library Project. Visual InterDev's Editing Modes. Using Design-Time Controls. Project Management in Visual InterDev. Project Organization and Synchronization. Activating and Using Visual SourceSafe. The Visual Studio Source Code Editor. Summary.


    8. Back to HTML.

    The Letter of the HTML Law. The Minimal HTML File. Comments. Simple Text Formatting. Hyperlinks. Images. Indented Text. Lists. Tables. Frames. Editing HTML in Visual InterDev. HTML Forms. Summary.

    9. Cascading Style Sheets.

    CSS Versions and Browser Compatibility. Introduction to CSS. Classes, Pseudo-classes and Pseudo-elements. CSS2 Selector Syntax. Applying Style Sheets and Individual Styles. Vertical and Horizontal Placement. Using DIV and SPAN Elements. Flow-altering Properties: Display, Visibility and Float. Colors, Borders and Backgrounds. Borders, Margins and Padding. About Transparency. Z-order. Fonts and Spacing. Text Placement. The @media Rule and Paged Media. Summary.

    10. JavaScript.

    Specifying JavaScript. Syntax Rules. Core Data Types. Arrays. Functions. Scope. User-defined Objects. Altering Objects Outside the Constructor. Exception Handling. Microsoft JScript Version 5.5. String Replacement Functions. Regular Expression (RegExp Object) Changes. Perl-style “Dollar Variables”. Numeric and Locale-sensitive Formatting. JScript Custom Object Enhancements. Uniform Resource Identifier Encoding and Decoding. Array Handling. Exception Handling. Date Formatting. Using JScript 5.5. Summary.


    11. The Document Object Model and Dynamic HTML.

    The DOM: A High-Altitude View. The DOM JavaScript Bindings. Help from Visual InterDev. Reading and Setting Properties. Attributes Versus Styles. DHTML Events. Sensible Use of Keyboard and Mouse Sensitivity. Defining Event Handlers. Event Bubbling and Return Values. Capturing Mouse Events. Drag and Drop. Communication Between Windows. Changing HTML in Script. Modifying Tables. DHTML Behaviors and Dynamic Properties. A Default Behavior: userData. User-defined Behaviors. Dynamic Properties. Summary.


    12. XML.

    Introduction to XML. XML Syntax. Using XML Documents. The XML DOM. Navigating with DOM Objects. Extracting Specific Nodes. Adding Nodes to an XML Document. XSL Patterns. XSL. XML Namespaces. Using XSL to Produce HTML. XML DTD. DTDs Without Fear. Do You Need a DTD? A DTD Design Strategy. DTD Layout Considerations. Defining XML Elements. Defining Attributes. Entities. The Complete Invoice Header DTD. Summary.


    13. COM and COM+.

    Introduction. COM and the Client. VB and Java. The Platform SDK and MSDN Library. How COM Works. Finding an Object. COM Identifiers and the “COM Contract”. In-process, Out-of-process and Remote Servers. Threading Models. Using Existing COM Objects. Making Sense of It. Destroying COM Objects. Script Components As COM Servers. Introducing Script Components. Component Registration Details. Generating Your Type Library Automatically. Registering Your Component. The Component's Public Interface. The Complete Script Component Example. Handling Errors the COM Way. Firing and Sinking Events. Using Callbacks. COM+. COM+ and ASP. COM+ Fundamentals. Transaction Services. Resource and Object Pooling. Security. Events. Queued Components. COM+ Load Balancing. In-Memory Database (IMDB). DCOM. Registering DCOM Components. COM Internet Services (HTTP Tunneling). SOAP. The Practicality of DCOM. Summary.


    14. Server Script Programming.

    Making Connections. Maintaining Session State. Application State. ASP Syntax. ASP Parameter Overrides. ASP Script Blocks. How ASP Handles Multiple Server Script Blocks. Server-side Includes. Exposing the ASP Object Model to Script Components. Conditional HTML. The ASP Object Model: Application and Session. The GLOBAL.ASA File. Coding for Application and Session Events. Creating Application and Session-scope Objects. The Server Object. Server.Execute(). Server.Transfer(). Server.MapPath(). Server.URLEncode() and Server.HTMLEncode(). The Request Object. Request.Form(). Request.QueryString(). Request.Cookies(). Request.ServerVariables(). The Response Object. Response.Clear(), Response.End() and Response.Flush(). Response.Redirect(). Response.IsClientConnected(). Response.PICS(). Summary.


    15. Database Access in SQL Server.

    A Transact-SQL Primer. Transact-SQL By Hand. Common SELECT Queries. Querying Multiple Tables. Inserting, Updating and Deleting Rows. What Now? Active Data Objects. ADO Objects. Establishing a Connection. Executing a Command. Recordsets and Cursors. Connection Pooling. An ADO Sample. The Fields Collection. Recordset Persistence. Stored Procedures, Views and Triggers. Stored Procedures. Views. Triggers. Section Summary. SQL Server 2000. User-defined Functions. Generating XML Documents from Queries. INSTEAD OF Triggers. Cascading Table Changes. Multiple Instances of SQL Server. Summary.


    16. Windows 2000 Middleware.

    Transactions in Action. Transactions in ASP. Transactions Across Multiple Pages. Transactions with Script Components. Transaction Components in C++. ObjectContext Versus ContextState. Abort/Complete Versus Enable/Disable. Building a C++ COM+ Transaction Component. Creating a New COM+ Application. Registering and Configuring a COM+ Component. Testing a C++ Transaction Component from ASP. Does It Have to Be This Difficult? Message Queuing. Disconnected Tiers. Message Queuing and MOM. Message Queuing Overview. Message Queuing Servers and Clients. Configuring Message Queuing. Queues in ASP. Advanced Queuing. Queued Components. Rules For Creating COM+ Queued Components. Calling a Queued Component. Section Summary. COM+ Publish and Subscribe (COM+ Events). Building a COM+ Events Event Class in Visual C++. Registering Your Event Class with COM+. Building a COM+ Events Subscriber Component. Registering a COM+ Events Subscriber Component. Testing COM+ Events with an ASP Publisher. Summary.


    APPENDIX A: JavaScript Language Reference.

    Conventions. Statements. Conditional Compilation. Objects. JavaScript Operators. Regular Expressions.


    APPENDIX B: HTML Rapid Reference.

    Conventions. Elements.


    APPENDIX C: Microsoft DOM Rapid Reference.

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