Friday, December 27, 2013

Learning Vaadin 7 review

Some time ago I was proposed to review the second edition of the "Learning Vaadin 7" (On Amazon) book. Shame on me for holding it for so long. Previously I have used Vaadin 6 and was really impressed by its features and simplicity of doing real desktop-like web-applications. But at the same time every now and then I was frustrated by some of the methods and mostly by the methods returning plain Objects. Fortunately now these type-safety problems are solved with the Vaadin 7.
But what about the book? It seems as really good introduction to Vaadin for junior developers:

  • It has a really extensive and balanced introduction that defines Vaadin place in the Java and Web ecosystems. Actually, I think that it is worth reading on its own.
  • It proceeds with detailed instructions on the development environment setup with a dive into production setup.
  • It is really detailed with all the basic and not so basic concepts of building Vaadin applications clearly explained.
The drawbacks of the book, that I can name are:
  • Examples use ant+ivy as a build system that seems less widespread to me, but it may have its benefits since it leaves much less area for "build magic" and gives more control and understanding of the build. Also information about Maven is given in a separate chapter.
  • Book seems like a one time reading for me. It can not be used as reference - but again, it is clearly stated that this is not a goal. Also it will motivate readers to search for information as it should be done after the book is read.
As an overall conclusion, I would not buy such book for myself, but I will probably recommend it to newbie developers.

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