I picked up the book yesterday and it will be a few days before I’m done, but first impressions are important and here are mine:
- Love the cookbook style. It tells me what I’ll need, gives me the recipe, and tells me what the results should look like. This is a very good model for people new to the technology. It also makes a good springboard for people familiar with the technology but looking to round out skills with 2nd and 3rd level features.
- The structure (what I’ve seen of it so far which is just 2 chapters!) is easily digestible and useful as a reference.
- Packt also has a downloadable content module where you can get all the code and samples used in the book.
- Like any portal, getting the initial setup and configuration right can be challenging. Yannick doesn’t deal with this and rather assumes it. While this is a completely reasonable approach, it can mean that there are frustrating barriers to people who wish to follow along with the book. A soup-to-nuts configuration guide (even a link to one from Oracle) would be extremely helpful.
Yannick Ongena is part of a crew of new portal, content and collaboration developer-experts. He has come of age – code wise – in the mashup world rather than coming directly out of the portal or content worlds. This means he doesn’t carry the baggage that people from one camp or the other so often have. His expertise does not suffer, though. His insight, code and ability to develop sophisticated solutions and present them simply is exemplary.
I’ll have more to say about this book when I’m done but the early signs look promising!