HTML5 Web App Dev. by J.M. Gustafson

HTML5 Web Application Development by example - Beginner's guideThe book has the title HTML5 Web Application Development By Example - Beginner's Guide and it is exactly what it states. The book covers the main HTML5 elements and the new APIs in HTML5 by developing (along with the reader) simple and interesting applications.

jQuery is the only helper library which the author uses to develop these apps. First a Task Management application is developed with simple jQuery commands, afterwards the model for a task is developed afterwards the adding/deleting functionality is added. The book presents a lot of JavaScript and HTML code and the author briefly explains these parts of code. After building the first application the author focuses on UX (User Experience), presents some nice CSS features, it shows how to develop our app to support skins - I really liked this part. After skinning the application, the HTML5 Web Storage API is presented and used to store/load the tasks from our application. 

Before moving on, the author introduces the concept of binding data between the model and the UI, it implements the basics of a Binding framework. I think this is really helpful for people who are new to programming because it's possible they did not hear about the concept of binding and did not use any of the MVW (W-whatever) frameworks available out there.

The drawing basics are presented afterwards using HTML5's canvas object, and a nice painting application is being developed. Afterwards this application is extended to support some basic photo editing features (grey-scale, sepia); reading and writing image files is done through HTML5's new file API.

Maybe the most fun app developed in the book is the Piano app, for which the author uses the audio tag from HTML5 to get some sound out of the speakers (and of course some CSS, jQuery is also used). 

At the end of the book the author covers the basics of AJAX and data manipulation (XML, JSON). The data communication between the client and the server is presented as a Weather app which loads the temperature of a city dynamically from the server. The Geolocation API is mentioned, but not presented extensively.

At the end of the book the author covers web workers (which were also introduced in HTML5), he uses web workers to generate data for fractals and these can be displayed afterwards.

Overall the book is really good with a lot of detailed explanation, but it is really helpful for beginners. The people who have used jQuery before or have some web developer experience will find these explanations too detailed. I think it is a good book to start with if you are new to web development and you would like to see where does the SPA (Single Page Application) concept start, because most of the apps developed in the book are SPAs.

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    Greg Bogdán is Software Developer passionate about .NET technologies. He worked mainly on front-end development. He likes new technologies and always willing to improve. He likes pastry cooking and also cooking in general.