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ppk on JavaScript by Peter-Paul Koch

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<pre>Author/s : Peter-Paul Koch
Publisher : New Riders Press
Category : Web design, HTML and JavaScript
Review by : Jeanne Boyarsky
Rating : 9 horseshoes
</pre>
"ppk on JavaScript" fills an interesting void with the focus of today's JavaScript books. Most books either focus on "JavaScript in 21 Days", "JavaScript -- Complete Reference" or "AJAX". This book covers techniques for creating clean and accessible JavaScript functionality.

The book's stated audience is someone who knows at least some JavaScript -- a beginning level or up. Basically, you should feel comfortable reading and understanding code. I think the book might be a little overwhelming for a beginner to understand. A beginner could read it twice; once right away and once after reading another JavaScript book.

The author views JavaScript as a technique to add usability. He shows how to create "unobtrusive" JavaScript. In other words, the JavaScript stays out of the HTML page and the page works without JavaScript, albeit with less functionality.

Eight case studies (real life examples) are used throughout the book. The author points out why he selected certain techniques. He also notes bugs and where he would have done things differently. I particularly liked the emphasis on separation of concerns.

Keyboard users are also discussed from an accessibility point of view in several chapters. In other chapters, only users without JavaScript enabled were discussed. I would have liked a little more consistency with how accessibility was treated.

Overall, the book was very good. The tips were useful and I enjoyed the emphasis on design. And AJAX is discussed from the point of view of how it was used before it was called AJAX.


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