Our book covers a little bit of each: we introduce some of the core concepts of both frameworks, but a recurrent theme throughout the book is how to leverage Spring 3 and Hibernate to build a production quality application. There is a strong focus on using best practices and design patterns, and how Spring can help decouple your dependencies, bootstrap your persistence tier, provide declarative transaction capability, etc.
We also introduce some of the newer development frameworks that build upon the foundation of Spring and Hibernate, such as Grails and Roo. We believe that covering these frameworks is important as it helps to provide a comparison of different development strategies, illustrating that there is more than one "best practice" for building a solid application. For instance, the classic Spring/Hibernate approach for developing a persistence tier leverages the DAO and service facade patterns, abstracting your persistence technology and providing clearly defined, transactional business rules/behavior. Grails and Roo, on the other hand, offer an approach that relies more on convention over configuration, reducing persistence tier code by minimizing the need for a DAO, instead leveraging the Active-Record pattern for lower-level persistence operations.
So, I think you will find that we tried to present a range of different strategies for developing a persistence tier using Spring 3 and Hibernate.
It wasn't easy! But we tried to focus on topics that aren't covered in other books, without reiterating the documentation of the Spring and Hibernate frameworks (although we do include a good amount of introductory/getting started material, of course).
Thanks again for your comments and feedback on the book. It's been really encouraging to hear your contributions on this forum.
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