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Tech Tips, Tricks & Trivia

by 'Anil' Radhakrishna
An architect's notes, experiments, discoveries and annotated bookmarks.

Search from over a hundred HOW TO articles, Tips and Tricks


Book Review: Learning jQuery

I "discovered" jQuery a few months ago. jQuery is JavaScript on steroids. I've found it so useful, I've stayed hooked. The website Visual jQuery and the book Learning jQuery : Better Interaction Design and Web Development with Simple JavaScript Techniques by Karl Swedberg (a jQuery Evangelist) & Jonathan Chaffer have been extremely useful in helping me understand and appreciate the goodness of jQuery.

In my opinion, a good technical book has the following characteristics:
  • Is written in plain English with a conversational tone
  • Has practical reusable examples with scenarios I can relate to
  • Provides adequate background info on crucial concepts
This 380-paged book meets that definition. Chapters 1 to 7 cover the basics and key jQuery Library features like HTML document traversing, event handling, animating, and AJAX interactions. The remaining chapters cover the practical uses of jQuery including Plugins, a feature that has bowled me over. Among all the chapters, I found the ones on DOM Manipulation and AJAX valuable. There are numerous examples that can be applied at work. Reading through the book, it is apparent that it has been written by folks who have been in the trenches. I loved the little thoughtful tid-bits across the book, like this one -
Notice the use of a $ in the variable name, $speech. Since $ is a legal character in JavaScript variables, we can use it as a reminder that the variable is storing a jQuery object.

I wish the book came with a cheat-sheet or a map of all the important jQuery methods, properties and functions indexed to the detailed descriptions in the chapters.

I recommend this book to everyone getting started with jQuery.

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