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Thursday, May 08, 2008

GWT Book Released, Time For Reviews

Well, she's out there. Web 2.0 Application Development with GWT from Apress has finally hit the shelves. I'm can't tell you how happy this makes me.

I've really tried to write the book that I would've wanted to read when I started with GWT, so I hope you like it. For me, GWT itself was fantastic and easy to use, but the biggest stumbling blocks towards getting GWT to work within a complex Java ecosystem. To that end, I've tried to save some trees and leave API specs where they belong (in your IDE's autocomplete).

Continuing with this line of reasoning, instead of giving you a bunch of trivial sample applications, ninety percent of the book is devoted to one big, real world example: a full tour of a real Web 2.0 startup’s codebase. The example is ToCollege.net, a real world startup with an open source codebase. That means that along with the book you get 15,000 lines of source code that includes everything from Google Gears integration to Acegi OpenID, Compass full–text search, and Google Maps, all of it integrated with GWT 1.5.

My idea is that you should be able to leveraging this book’s available source code, to see the nitty–gritty details of how to merge a modern Web 2.0 application stack including Hibernate, Spring, Spring MVC 2.5, SiteMesh, and Freemarker.

Packaging GWT into a WAR file can be a bit of a headache out of the box, so you'll also see how I've wired GWT into an industry standard Maven build environment, which will help you get up to speed quickly and avoid configuration headaches.

One of the The great pitfall of many Ajax applications is they’re mostly opaque to search engines. I spend a lot of time in the book going over ToCollege.net solution to this thorny problem.

Finally, I spend a good bit of time showing how ToCollege.net protects itself from XSS and XSRF attacks. Security is often left as an 'exercise for the reader', but this is a real concern for a site like ToCollege.net. The book will cover the ToCollege.net security architecture in detail.

Thanks for reading and please feel free to get in touch with any questions. There is a Google Group setup here: http://groups.google.com/group/tocollege-net

Cheers!

-Jeff Dwyer
Author of Web 2.0 Application Development with GWT

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