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Re: A Newbie's Must-Have Library

P: n/a
On 15 May, 04:55, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
Well, in case anyone should need to know in the near future, here are
my recommendations for best beginner's books:
Or in another universe, where things are understood and site code is
stable and reliable, beginners don't even think about reading
JavaScript books until they've written some HTML and CSS.

You need it _VERY_ rarely. Using it without a foundation of good HTML
understanding leads to trouble. Few people can learn both from scratch
simultaneously, so it's useful to really grok the first first, which
means getting some hands-on and actually building content that way.

I write sites that use JavaScript for a vanishingly small proportion
of pages. They just don't need it. I work (for money) on complex web
apps that are built up almost entirely of JavaScript. We don't write
this by hand, because it's impossible to write large amounts of
JavaScript in an efficient manner. This stuff is all generated server-
side by frameworks like JSF & Facelets.
Jun 27 '08 #1
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P: n/a
On 2008-05-15, Andy Dingley <di*****@codesmiths.comwrote:
[...]
We don't write this by hand, because it's impossible to write large
amounts of JavaScript in an efficient manner.
Why? What's wrong with it?
Jun 27 '08 #2

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On May 15, 10:44 am, Andy Dingley wrote:
On 15 May, 04:55, Prisoner at War wrote:
>Well, in case anyone should need to know in the near future,
here are my recommendations for best beginner's books:

Or in another universe, where things are understood and site
code is stable and reliable, beginners don't even think about
reading JavaScript books until they've written some HTML and
CSS.
<snip>

Would that also be the universe where novices appreciate that the only
things that they are in a position to sensibly say about a book they
read is how easy it was for them to read and understand, and nothing
about the quality of any advice/examples given or the technical
accuracy of the content? Given that the technical accuracy of
javascript books tends to be low, and the advice they give ranges from
the poor to the actively dangerous, an individual's ability to judge
those types of things seems a reasonable pre-request for taking their
book recommendations seriously.
Jun 27 '08 #3

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On 15 May, 11:06, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
On 2008-05-15, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
We don't write this by hand, because it's impossible to write large
amounts of JavaScript in an efficient manner.

Why? What's wrong with it?
Crappy architectural model that's about 20 years old, leading to a
piss-poor version of O-O

Floppy syntax, meaning that sloppy coding is hidden, and there's room
for too many semantic errors under that sloppy code.

No clear definition of the language standard, leading to widespread
proprietary extension. When you code "JS" should you be coding to the
ECMAScript standard, JScript, or a JavaScript? If you inherit a body
of code, what is it, and is it conformant to your project standards?
Jun 27 '08 #4

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On May 15, 10:44*am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
On 15 May, 04:55, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
Well, in case anyone should need to know in the near future, here are
my recommendations for best beginner's books:
I think that we have already read enough to learn what your opinion is
worth.
Or in another universe, where things are understood and site code is
stable and reliable, beginners don't even think about reading
JavaScript books until they've written some HTML and CSS.

You need it _VERY_ rarely. Using it without a foundation of good HTML
understanding leads to trouble. Few people can learn both from scratch
simultaneously, so it's useful to really grok the first first, which
means getting some hands-on and actually building content that way.

I write sites that use JavaScript for a vanishingly small proportion
of pages. They just don't need it. I work (for money) on complex web
apps that are built up almost entirely of JavaScript. We don't write
this by hand, because it's impossible to write large amounts of
JavaScript in an efficient manner. This stuff is all generated server-
side by frameworks like JSF & Facelets.
You are considering only a minority of the possible types of use of
Javascript in web pages - just, in fact, the commercially-dominant
case.

Observe, for example, the scripting on many of the web pages of NASA
and associates.

--
(c) John Stockton, near London, UK. Posting with Google.
Mail: J.R.""""""""@physics.org or (better) via Home Page at
Web: <URL:http://www.merlyn.demon.co.uk/>
FAQish topics, acronyms, links, etc.; Date, Delphi, JavaScript, ...
Jun 27 '08 #5

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On 15 May, 12:49, Dr J R Stockton <J.R.Stock...@physics.orgwrote:
Observe, for example, the scripting on many of the web pages of NASA
and associates.
So do you advocate that newbies should start out with an attitude of,
"Match NASA's complexity from the start" ?
Jun 27 '08 #6

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You sound like a scorned woman, but I don't know what I've ever done
to you.

On May 15, 7:49 am, Dr J R Stockton <J.R.Stock...@physics.orgwrote:
>

I think that we have already read enough to learn what your opinion is
worth.

--
(c) John Stockton, near London, UK. Posting with Google.
Mail: J.R.""""""""@physics.org or (better) via Home Page at
Web: <URL:http://www.merlyn.demon.co.uk/>
FAQish topics, acronyms, links, etc.; Date, Delphi, JavaScript, ...
Jun 27 '08 #7

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On May 15, 7:11 am, Henry <rcornf...@raindrop.co.ukwrote:
>

Would that also be the universe where novices appreciate that the only
things that they are in a position to sensibly say about a book they
read is how easy it was for them to read and understand, and nothing
about the quality of any advice/examples given or the technical
accuracy of the content?
Did I say these books were technically accurate? In fact, I even
noted that "The Book of JavaScript" contains outdated practices.
Given that the technical accuracy of
javascript books tends to be low, and the advice they give ranges from
the poor to the actively dangerous, an individual's ability to judge
those types of things seems a reasonable pre-request for taking their
book recommendations seriously.
These books are for newbies. That means "accessibility," first and
foremost. As a newbie, I know what works for newbies who aren't
programmers.

However, it's an unfortunate consequence of "internet culture" that
books, particularly technical books though increasingly all books, are
released with all kinds of errors, from orthographical to just plain
wrong information.

So, a caveat to my review: LOOK UP THE BOOKS' ERRATA PAGES ON THE WEB
-- AND KNOW THAT NOT ALL ERRATA HAVE EVEN BEEN DOCUMENTED.

Jun 27 '08 #8

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On May 15, 5:44 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
>

Or in another universe, where things are understood and site code is
stable and reliable, beginners don't even think about reading
JavaScript books until they've written some HTML and CSS.
Actually, I'm still awaiting the book that teaches all three right
from the get-go: they are but three aspects of a greater whole, and
thus a holistic approach right from the beginning would be great. I
mean, it wasn't until perusing my third book that I really began to
appreciate the DOM, and what it means for web development....
You need it _VERY_ rarely.
I would tend to agree, but as per my "Contradiction of Advice?" thread
at
http://groups.google.com/group/comp....0e87cba80582fd,
I have to wonder whether it's *ever* necessary, then -- I mean, is the
only legitimate use of JavaScript for bra-size calculators?? 8->
Using it without a foundation of good HTML
understanding leads to trouble. Few people can learn both from scratch
simultaneously, so it's useful to really grok the first first, which
means getting some hands-on and actually building content that way.
(X)HTML can be learned in one day, and mastered in about two or
three. CSS, maybe a week to learn, and months to master. Depending
on just how precisely "simultaneously" is defined, I think it's very
possible to grok them all at once.
I write sites that use JavaScript for a vanishingly small proportion
of pages. They just don't need it. I work (for money) on complex web
apps that are built up almost entirely of JavaScript. We don't write
this by hand, because it's impossible to write large amounts of
JavaScript in an efficient manner. This stuff is all generated server-
side by frameworks like JSF & Facelets.
Wow, that's interesting...I had no idea JavaScript was so
"inefficient"...I thought it was supposed to be "more efficient" (if
less powerful) than CGI???
Jun 27 '08 #9

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On 16 May, 21:52, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
(X)HTML can be learned in one day, and mastered in about two or
three.
I've known HTML (to an industry top-percentile level) for abut 5 years
now. I might get round to mastering it one day. There are half-a-dozen
people just in this newsgroup (c.i.w.a.h) who can easily show me up in
it.

Wow, that's interesting...I had no idea JavaScript was so
"inefficient"...I thought it was supposed to be "more efficient" (if
less powerful) than CGI???
If you can even write that, you don't have the glimmerings of a Clue.
Jun 27 '08 #10

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On 16 May, 21:16, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
So, a caveat to my review: LOOK UP THE BOOKS' ERRATA PAGES ON THE WEB
-- AND KNOW THAT NOT ALL ERRATA HAVE EVEN BEEN DOCUMENTED.
Errata list _known_ errors.

The trouble with web design books is that the authors sincerely
believe they know what they're doing.
Jun 27 '08 #11

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On May 15, 2:44 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
... We don't write
this by hand, because it's impossible to write large amounts of
JavaScript in an efficient manner. This stuff is all generated server-
side by frameworks like JSF & Facelets.
I suppose that on the one hand you can say that JavaScript is
overused; but on the other hand, there are some of us who believe
(correctly so) that it is a powerful and severely underutilized
programming environment. A general purpose programming language with
little need for boilerplate and with convenient access to the de facto
user interface standard? Sign me up. Oh, wait, I'm already signed up.
Jun 27 '08 #12

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On May 16, 9:21 pm, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
>

I suppose that on the one hand you can say that JavaScript is
overused; but on the other hand, there are some of us who believe
(correctly so) that it is a powerful and severely underutilized
programming environment. A general purpose programming language with
little need for boilerplate and with convenient access to the de facto
user interface standard? Sign me up. Oh, wait, I'm already signed up.

Yeah, that's the spirit!

Though I'm a newbie...so in what ways are JavaScript severely
underutilized?? Just curious.

But yeah, JavaScript has actually revived my long-dormant interest in
computer programming! I've already pre-ordered O'Reilly's "Head First
Programming" (with Python)...I only like computer programming when
it's directly relevant to something I'm looking to do -- learning how
to do math stuff is boring to me, sad to say...but insofar as
JavaScript may be used to create "special effects" for a webpage, I'm
hooked! Yeah, I know that seems to cheapen JavaScript in many a
purist's eye but hey it's how I learn....
Jun 27 '08 #13

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On 2008-05-17, joebloe <re********@gmail.comwrote:
On May 15, 2:44 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
>... We don't write
this by hand, because it's impossible to write large amounts of
JavaScript in an efficient manner. This stuff is all generated server-
side by frameworks like JSF & Facelets.

I suppose that on the one hand you can say that JavaScript is
overused; but on the other hand, there are some of us who believe
(correctly so) that it is a powerful and severely underutilized
programming environment. A general purpose programming language with
little need for boilerplate and with convenient access to the de facto
user interface standard? Sign me up. Oh, wait, I'm already signed up.
I don't want to get into a programming language war here, but I like
JavaScript, in fact better than Java (which I think is what JSF &
Facelets are).

AD knows his stuff and JSF and Facelets may be a good way to do what
he's doing but there's nothing intrinsically better about the Java
_language_.

The value of static typing and object-oriented straitjackets as silver
bullets is widely discredited these days.
Jun 27 '08 #14

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On 17 May, 02:21, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
I suppose that on the one hand you can say that JavaScript is
overused; but on the other hand, there are some of us who believe
(correctly so) that it is a powerful and severely underutilized
programming environment.
JavaScript isn't the environment, it's just the one credible choice we
have to use in that environment. If you want to write client-side
stuff, you're stuck with it.

As a language, it's still ugly.
Jun 27 '08 #15

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On 17 May, 03:24, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
I don't understand something...why don't all you purists on these
newsgroups write the perfect book, then?
Because it's a load of work to write a book and the money for doing so
is awful, unless it's the one book that's a runaway success, and it's
not your first book (contracts tend to be tighter for unproven
authors).

As a HTML book, I recommend Head First HTML for learning it and the
W3C spec for reference. That's all the HTML books anyone needs. CSS
needs a few more, as does JavaScript. There _are_ good books out there
already (so why write another one?), it's just that people persist in
buying, reading and believing the crappy ones.
Jun 27 '08 #16

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On 17 May, 10:48, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
JSF and Facelets may be a good way to do
Pretty much the best current way for high-end server-side work with
lots of UI.
there's nothing intrinsically better about the Java _language_.
Certainly not. Where Java wins is in the _huge_ volume of stuff around
it that isn't "language" as such. Show me Struts or Hibernate for .NET
or, &deity; forbid, PHP.

Also the level of discourse in Java shops is simply higher - Design
Patterns are a topic of standard usage, not something regarded as
esoteric theory. Maybe Lisp / Scheme or Python have something similar.
How many .NET coders are going to routinely discuss the relative
merits of lambda or closures? To quote Dan Brickley, "...because all
the smart kids are using Java". Good people are using Java, this
encourages the rest of the Java world to keep up.
Jun 27 '08 #17

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On May 17, 3:11 pm, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
On 17 May, 10:48, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
Also the level of discourse in Java shops is simply higher - Design
Patterns are a topic of standard usage, not something regarded as
esoteric theory.
From web conferences I've attended in the last couple of years, this
is certainly the opinion of java programmers. It's not true though.
What I've seen in Java shops and among Java programmers is a fear of
typeless and dynamic behavior in languages. The belief that as much
programming as possible should be done on the server is one that is
strong in the Java community, almost religious dogma but it is also
held in the .NET community, ROR community and any server side shop.
The most ridiculous conference I went to (Ajaxworld in NYC two years
ago) consisted of 90% java programmers trying to figure out which
framework addon they could use to avoid having anything to do with
javascript. They were on another planet.
>To quote Dan Brickley, "...because all
the smart kids are using Java". Good people are using Java, this
encourages the rest of the Java world to keep up.
This might have been true 15 years ago when C++ programmers were
making the jump to Java. Now, though, Java is all that is taught in
CS programs. It's the new Pascal, a teaching language. It's more
like "all the kids are learning Java". In short, Java smugness and
especially the antipathy to javascript comea solely from the deep but
buried knowledge in the Java community that Java has been proven to be
almost useless web client language, IMHO. Kind of language Napoleonic
complex.

I do agree with you that there's a lot of Java stuff out there. How's
that bone taste?

Bob

Jun 27 '08 #18

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On 18 May, 00:39, beegee <bgul...@gmail.comwrote:
On May 17, 3:11 pm, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
Also the level of discourse in Java shops is simply higher -
this is certainly the opinion of java programmers.
It's not true though.
What I've seen in Java shops and among Java programmers is a fear of
typeless and dynamic behavior in languages.
I'd agree with that. The regular debate is, "Dynamic typing, just how
Evil is this?" As the one Python coder in a big Java shop, I'm right
in the middle of it.

As someone who has to support a multi-customer mega-app with instant-
response "Fix it Right Now!" SLAs, I'm also pretty glad that some of
it _isn't_ using dynamic typing.

>The belief that as much
programming as possible should be done on the server is one that is
strong in the Java community,
Less so with Facelets etc. The belief now is that you shouldn't
_write_ client-side code, but that if it's going to be there, it
should be generated automatically on the server.
90% java programmers trying to figure out which
framework addon they could use to avoid having anything to do with
javascript. They were on another planet.
So what's the problem with this? If it's a _good_ framework (and
they're only starting to emerge now) this gets your code written with
a fraction of the effort and _far_ less debug hassle.

We're an app that began in 2001, with a massively excessive use of
badly-done IE-only client-side JS. This does tend to make us shy of JS
for the simple reason that last time we used any, it sucked badly. As
little has moved forward amongst the people who wrote it then, writing
any more of it in the same way (i.e. by hand) would go the same way.

Now, though, Java is all that is taught in
CS programs. It's the new Pascal, a teaching language.
Sadly true - just read Spolsky's infamous "Java schools" tirade.
However this doesn't mean that the smart people aren't using it too.

In short, Java smugness and
especially the antipathy to javascript comea solely from the deep but
buried knowledge in the Java community that Java has been proven to be
almost useless web client language,
I'd disagree with that though. Today's Java generation don't even know
that there were Applets in the past.

Jun 27 '08 #19

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VK
On May 18, 3:39 am, beegee <bgul...@gmail.comwrote:
The most ridiculous conference I went to (Ajaxworld in NYC two years
ago) consisted of 90% java programmers trying to figure out which
framework addon they could use to avoid having anything to do with
javascript. They were on another planet.
They are not on another planet: they are in another camp and they are
fighting for their orders aka job positions aka the current way of
life. This fight is not bloody but very intensive with all available
tools being used. Can you really blame them for that? I cannot though
I am in the different camp. And reach web applications are getting
really mature during the last couple of years - and it means the death
to distributed Java applications which is by far the only segment of
the market left where Java retains some noticeable stock of shares -
plus some amount of corporate solutions from 90's being still on
amortization.
So I would expect the amount of users with Javascript disabled and
Flash player not installed "growing" worldwide every month in biased
stats as currently it is the only viable propaganda tool left.
Jun 27 '08 #20

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On May 18, 6:20 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
We're an app that began in 2001, with a massively excessive use of
badly-done IE-only client-side JS. This does tend to make us shy of JS
for the simple reason that last time we used any, it sucked badly. As
little has moved forward amongst the people who wrote it then, writing
any more of it in the same way (i.e. by hand) would go the same way.
There were very few javascript programmers in 2001, the preponderance
of javascript users were webbies who had no knowledge of design
patterns, best practices, data structures, OOP design etc. The folks
on this user group should have convinced you that things are different
now. My company has a legacy of badly written server side code, ASP
Visual Basic. We became convinced that a better user experience was
possible with an SOA architecture where .NET is used to write web
services and javascript in a MVC framework is used to write the client
side.
I'd disagree with that though. Today's Java generation don't even know
that there were Applets in the past.
I agree that the newer java generation doesn't have the unfortunate
knowledge of applets but the older generation does and I believe
that's where most of the 'smugness' comes from. Remember, the raison
d'etre for for Java at one time was "write once, compile many".

Jun 27 '08 #21

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VK
On May 18, 10:07 pm, beegee <bgul...@gmail.comwrote:
Remember, the raison
d'etre for for Java at one time was "write once, compile many".
Correction: the motto was WORA ("Write Once Run Anywhere"). And then
signed applet with extended privileges NN4/IE4 compatible. Rghhh...
Still hate to recall...

Jun 27 '08 #22

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On 17 May, 10:48, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
AD knows his stuff
Thanks! On CSS, you're one of the people I'd defer to - especially on
good aesthetic design with it.
Jun 27 '08 #23

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On May 17, 5:40 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
>

Right, and that's how it should be.

I don't know what mastery involves beyond understanding the
(straightforward) syntax, knowing roughly what the DTD is and how to
validate, and some idea of when to use what tag.
Indeed, "mastery" is perhaps an inappropriate word to use with
something like HTML -- almost like applying the word to such
activities as house-cleaning or doing laundry...it was meant to be
accessible by one and all.
You could go into what different broken browsers do with deprecated
presentational attributes or how they repair invalid HTML but it's
easier for the author starting out today just to stay out of that swamp
altogether.
Yeah, I don't bother at all 'cause sooner than not just about everyone
will be using updated browsers that are standards-compliant.
A lot of the bad HTML on the web is because people selling authoring
tools told people HTML-by-hand was too hard (and then their tools output
even more clueless and broken HTML anyway).
Yes, I actually did Hunter College's German Department's homepage back
in 1998, all ten or so pages of it, in HTML 3.2 with some publicly-
available JavaScript 1.1 code. No big deal, and I was surprised that
software was being sold to do something so easy.

Returning to this stuff after a ten-year hiatus has been very amusing,
seeing what's changed and what's remained the same. HTML is so easy
that after ten years of not having done any, I was able to scan
through my copy of one of Laura's Lemay's old titles and start doing
markup in about ten minutes, only occasionally referring to the web
for information on a few deprecated tags and attributes.
Jun 27 '08 #24

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On May 17, 5:48 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
>

I don't want to get into a programming language war here, but I like
JavaScript, in fact better than Java (which I think is what JSF &
Facelets are).

AD knows his stuff and JSF and Facelets may be a good way to do what
he's doing but there's nothing intrinsically better about the Java
_language_.

The value of static typing and object-oriented straitjackets as silver
bullets is widely discredited these days.
I really like JavaScript, too, though at first I was confused by the
lack of "straitjackets" because that's what I had had experience with
ever since a course in Commodore Pet-32 BASIC as a kid and then
another programming course in college in Turbo Pascal. (Yep, that's
all the "programming" experience I'd ever had; I did good in those
courses but it was clear even to me that I'm no programmer as things
take a very long time to sink in and the only reason I got good grades
[and not great grades -- "B" as opposed to "A"] was because I studied
a lot.)

But even though I'm only like half-way to a merely intermediate level
of competency in JavaScript I'm already looking forward to PHP,
Python, and even Java. I'm not sure how "serious" I'd get about them
but I'm interested in how they may help me do things with my upcoming
website. For example, PHP because I want to host a PHP forum...Python
and Java to see if I can add some kind of interactive gaming to the
site (though I plan on using JavaScript for an interactive game, too
-- only, a very simple and simplistic one)....
Jun 27 '08 #25

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On May 18, 7:37 am, VK <schools_r...@yahoo.comwrote:
>
<SNIP>

So I would expect the amount of users with Javascript disabled and
Flash player not installed "growing" worldwide every month in biased
stats as currently it is the only viable propaganda tool left.

Huh??

What do you mean "propaganda tool"??

And why would the amount of people disabling JavaScript and not having
Flash player installed be growing every month??
Jun 27 '08 #26

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On May 16, 7:24 pm, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
On May 16, 9:15 pm, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
I don't understand something...why don't all you purists on these
newsgroups write the perfect book, then?
I wondered the same thing when I first started reading c.l.js.

Browser scripting is such a complex topic to treat fully. Just writing
a cross-browser, gracefully degrading JavaScript menu widget would
take an entire book on it's own if the book was written for a novice.
I doubt anyone will buy that book because the don't learn enough
widgets and the depth of the content would be too deep for a novice.
There is still a perception that browser scripting is supposed to be
easy and if the author doesn't make it seem that way then the book
must be the "wrong" one to buy.

John Resig posted a payment statement for his first book. If I
remember correctly, he had made something like a couple thousand
dollars for the months he spent writing the book. It just isn't worth
it when you consider an experienced JavaScript contractor may be
making up to $150/hr.

Peter
Jun 27 '08 #27

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On May 17, 12:21 pm, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
On 17 May, 03:24, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
I don't understand something...why don't all you purists on these
newsgroups write the perfect book, then?

Because it's a load of work to write a book and the money for doing so
is awful, unless it's the one book that's a runaway success, and it's
not your first book (contracts tend to be tighter for unproven
authors).

As a HTML book, I recommend Head First HTML for learning it
But I'd mentioned just that!
and the
W3C spec for reference. That's all the HTML books anyone needs. CSS
needs a few more, as does JavaScript. There _are_ good books out there
already (so why write another one?), it's just that people persist in
buying, reading and believing the crappy ones.
I'm not sure how people can "believe" in a "crappy" one...I think
people "persist in buying" because they're still looking for a good
one that will enlighten them, which hardly suggests "belief"....

But I *believe* in the titles I'm recommending, even David Thau's
work, "The Book of JavaScript, Second Edition" which is problematic in
purist terms but which is the most helpful "semi-traditional-approach"
sort of text I know (and I've been heavily browsing a lot of 'em at
the bookstore and the library).

But the two Head First titles and "DOM Scripting," definitely. In
fact, it would be absolutely wonderful to see an "Head First"
treatment of the "DOM Scripting" book....
Jun 27 '08 #28

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On 2008-05-19, Prisoner at War <pr*************@yahoo.comwrote:
On May 17, 5:48 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
[...]
(though I plan on using JavaScript for an interactive game, too --
only, a very simple and simplistic one)....
Just to give you an idea of what's possible:

http://www.janis.or.jp/users/segabit...riptMaryo.html
Jun 27 '08 #29

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On May 18, 9:01 pm, Peter Michaux <petermich...@gmail.comwrote:
John Resig posted a payment statement for his first book. If I
remember correctly, he had made something like a couple thousand
dollars for the months he spent writing the book. It just isn't worth
it when you consider an experienced JavaScript contractor may be
making up to $150/hr.
The reason you write a book is for recognition, or just because you
feel like it. As a matter of personal experience, Effective Perl
Programming got me years of onsite training gigs paying gross in
multiple hundreds of dollars per hour.
Jun 27 '08 #30

P: n/a
On May 19, 12:40 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
On 2008-05-19, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
On May 17, 5:48 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
[...]
(though I plan on using JavaScript for an interactive game, too --
only, a very simple and simplistic one)....

Just to give you an idea of what's possible:

http://www.janis.or.jp/users/segabit...riptMaryo.html
This is cool, but Javascript is capable of supporting *much* more
complex games than that. In particular, code that doesn't manipulate
the DOM now runs quite quickly (I mean, with a multiple GHz CPU, how
would it not? There's only so much overhead you can layer onto
arithmetic, strings, and loops), and you can put a whole lot of logic
in 100k+ bytes of minified code. Also, how you make your DOM updates
makes a big difference. And finally, the next generation of browsers
are going to have much more efficient JS interpreters.

Jun 27 '08 #31

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joebloe wrote:
On May 18, 9:01 pm, Peter Michaux <petermich...@gmail.comwrote:
>John Resig posted a payment statement for his first book. If I
remember correctly, he had made something like a couple thousand
dollars for the months he spent writing the book. It just isn't worth
it when you consider an experienced JavaScript contractor may be
making up to $150/hr.

The reason you write a book is for recognition, or just because you
feel like it.
Yes, competence seldom enters into it.
F'up2 cljs

PointedEars
--
Use any version of Microsoft Frontpage to create your site.
(This won't prevent people from viewing your source, but no one
will want to steal it.)
-- from <http://www.vortex-webdesign.com/help/hidesource.htm>
Jun 27 '08 #32

P: n/a
On 19 May, 18:47, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
The reason you write a book is for recognition, or just because you
feel like it.
You've still got to pay the rent in the meantime.
Jun 27 '08 #33

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On May 19, 11:42 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
On 19 May, 18:47, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
The reason you write a book is for recognition, or just because you
feel like it.

You've still got to pay the rent in the meantime.
If you can't write your first book or three in your spare time, you're
probably not going to write a book.
Jun 27 '08 #34

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On 19 May, 20:36, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
On May 19, 11:42 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
On 19 May, 18:47, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
The reason you write a book is for recognition, or just because you
feel like it.
You've still got to pay the rent in the meantime.

If you can't write your first book or three in your spare time, you're
probably not going to write a book.
You can't write (most) IT books in your spare time, publishing
timescales don't permit it. They need that ms _now_, before the
competition gets their book out on the hot new topic.

Maybe for HTML, CSS or JavaScript this timescale is more relaxed.
They've been around 10 years and most of the decent books have only
emerged fairly recently.
Jun 27 '08 #35

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On 19 May, 04:45, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.comwrote:
Sadly true - just read Spolsky's infamous "Java schools" tirade.
However this doesn't mean that the smart people aren't using it too.

Something is definitely in the air...I mean, we had G.W. for President
twice....
You blame Bush being an idiot on him having learned _Java_?! That's
pretty extreme.
Jun 27 '08 #36

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On May 20, 3:29 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
You can't write (most) IT books in your spare time, publishing
timescales don't permit it. They need that ms _now_, before the
competition gets their book out on the hot new topic.

Maybe for HTML, CSS or JavaScript this timescale is more relaxed.
They've been around 10 years and most of the decent books have only
emerged fairly recently.
This is entirely untrue in the case of reputable publishers like A-W
and PH. I've dealt with editors there for 10 years and they do *not*
work like that. You are simply wrong. I can't overemphasize how wrong
you are. You can't even do tech reviews, copy editing, proofreading,
cover (which the author will approve), and layout (which the author
also will approve) in that amount of time. Quality publishers do
produce books on emerging technologies on a timely basis, but that's
because the experts who are creating that technology are the ones
writing books for them.

If you're talking about books with thick fluorescent green spines,
yes, those publishers do work that way and they want books written in
about 3 months. But on the other hand they don't care if the book is
accurate or even if it makes sense. They really don't do technical
review, and the copy editing and proofreading are cursory. I used to
informally measure the quality of that kind of book by counting the
number of pages per major error, as in, something the author got wrong
in a way that would mislead a reader and/or demonstrated the author's
lack of understanding. Somewhere between 4 and 10 pages was typical.
Usually 4.
Jun 27 '08 #37

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On 20 May, 21:04, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
I've dealt with editors there for 10 years and they do *not*
work like that. You are simply wrong. I can't overemphasize how wrong
you are.
Can I give you my editor's email address? 8-)

All I know is that _I'm_ under pressure with a deadline. As my Mother
died recently and my elderly Dad has now decided he's a teapot, this
isn't making life any easier.
Jun 27 '08 #38

P: n/a
On May 19, 1:47 pm, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
>

The reason you write a book is for recognition, or just because you
feel like it. As a matter of personal experience, Effective Perl
Programming got me years of onsite training gigs paying gross in
multiple hundreds of dollars per hour.

Hey, congrats! I've always thought that the reason people write
technical how-to books was the same reason people put up technical how-
to websites: as a kind of calling card, or "interactive resume"....
Jun 27 '08 #39

P: n/a
On May 20, 6:30 am, Andy Dingley <ding...@codesmiths.comwrote:
>

You blame Bush being an idiot on him having learned _Java_?! That's
pretty extreme.


Whot??

I'm just saying that it's probably the Zeitgeist that folks are no
longer required to do the "hard stuff" -- even one of the most
powerful people on the planet! The American voter doesn't do anything
intellectually rigorous him or herself, so naturally s/he doesn't
think to inquire whether a candidate has done it either...that was
Spolsky's point, only as related to CS grads, whereas I'm saying "it's
something in the air" 'cause almost everyone's like that....
Jun 27 '08 #40

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On May 19, 3:40 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
>

Just to give you an idea of what's possible:

http://www.janis.or.jp/users/segabit...riptMaryo.html

OMG!!! That's **JavaScript**?????

Hey, what the hell, how come none of 'em JavaScript books cover this
stuff???

I might not need Python for anything after all! ^_^

BTW...how am I supposed to play this thing?? Any keyboard controls??
Everything's in Japanese....
Jun 27 '08 #41

P: n/a
On May 19, 1:52 pm, joebloe <remid0d...@gmail.comwrote:
>
http://www.janis.or.jp/users/segabit...riptMaryo.html

This is cool, but Javascript is capable of supporting *much* more
complex games than that.

Hey, any JavaScript game-programming books you know??? How cow, and I
thought Ben's little help balloon was cool.... ;-)
>In particular, code that doesn't manipulate
the DOM now runs quite quickly (I mean, with a multiple GHz CPU, how
would it not? There's only so much overhead you can layer onto
arithmetic, strings, and loops), and you can put a whole lot of logic
in 100k+ bytes of minified code.
I never did understand all that stuff about "overhead" (not that I'm a
programmer at all)...**multi-billions** of calculations a second and
we're worried about "overhead"???
Also, how you make your DOM updates
makes a big difference. And finally, the next generation of browsers
are going to have much more efficient JS interpreters.
Damn, wish I could follow the conversation....

Any books on programming JavaScript to do games??

So is JavaScript a "full-fledged" programming language now?? I always
thought it was just a glorified macro for web-browsers, like macros in
word-processors.
Jun 27 '08 #42

P: n/a
On May 22, 10:48 am, Prisoner at War <prisoner_at_...@yahoo.com>
wrote:
So is JavaScript a "full-fledged" programming language now?? I always
thought it was just a glorified macro for web-browsers, like macros in
word-processors.
JavaScript has been a real programming language for years, but for a
variety of reasons (the most obvious of which being the hobbled,
incompatible IE implementations) it has rarely been used for anything
exotic. Gmail was the first app that caught the mainstream attention.
But at the same time the rich text editors like Writely (http://
http://www.techcrunch.com/2005/08/31...-your-browser/
now part of Google apps - but they still call it "Writely" inside
Google) were being written.
Jun 27 '08 #43

P: n/a
On 2008-05-22, Prisoner at War <pr*************@yahoo.comwrote:
On May 19, 3:40 am, Ben C <spams...@spam.eggswrote:
>>

Just to give you an idea of what's possible:

http://www.janis.or.jp/users/segabit...riptMaryo.html


OMG!!! That's **JavaScript**?????

Hey, what the hell, how come none of 'em JavaScript books cover this
stuff???

I might not need Python for anything after all! ^_^

BTW...how am I supposed to play this thing?? Any keyboard controls??
Everything's in Japanese....
First click on the green writing on the centre left (it says "shortest
clear DEMO"). DEMO is in English.

Then you get taken to another screen full of instructions in Japanese.
Press the big button in the middle with blue writing on it. It says
"Watch the shortest course replay (7317 frames)!".

Now it appears to go back to the main screen, but "Maryo" (which I take
it is the cat's name) runs off to the right and starts dashing through
the level. You're watching a replay of someone who's had far too much
practice.

But now if you click the button in the top left with red writing on it
that stops the replay, and you can actually play the game yourself.
There may some other way in but I haven't found it.

Use the arrow keys or S,F,E,D for left right up and down (up to climb
things, down to go down pipes or to duck).

SHIFT or SPACE is jump. Ctrl is the button for running fast and throwing
fireballs (if you manage to get your hands on a flower).
Jun 27 '08 #44

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