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AKKA Concurrency [Paperback]

Derek Wyatt
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
Price: 31.49 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

24 May 2013
Writing truly concurrent software on the Java Virtual Machine just got a whole lot easier. The Akka Toolkit takes the sting out of coding for multiple cores, multiple processors, and even multiple machines. Akka Concurrency will show you what it means to design and write software in the paradigm of Akka. You'll learn how to think about your software in new and exciting ways that will allow you to express your designs naturally, allowing you to focus on the business of your software more than on the concurrency of it. This book picks up where the Akka documentation leaves off, exploring the how and the why of Akka, in a way that will empower you to grow your applications to new levels of scalability, responsiveness, and performance.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 521 pages
  • Publisher: Artima Inc (24 May 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0981531660
  • ISBN-13: 978-0981531663
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 17.5 x 3.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 89,097 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book 5 Sep 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I don't often bother to write a review on anything, but I found this book explained quite complex ideas making them simple and did so in a way that held my attention. I actually read the book cover to cover at one sitting and have since dived back in quite often for reference. I knew some Scala and had used Erlang in the past as well as RabbitMQ so I had a good deal of background knowledge, but the author write from a deep understanding of his subject and I was grateful to have a few misconceptions cleared up. This is book is worth many times its price if you need to build a system using actors, and if you build systems at all,ayou should.
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By Brett
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Highly recommended to novice and intermediate users of the AKKA framework.

The chapter on Akka FSM alone makes this book worth the money.
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Amazon.com: 3.3 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A missed opportunity 26 Nov 2013
By G. Botta - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book is a missed opportunity.

Akka is a wonderful framework that allows designing asynchronous non blocking distributed applications. The literature covering Akka and reactive programming is scarce and fragmented. The examples online are limited and often uninteresting. The "best practices" or "patterns" of Akka programming are only very briefly documented in the Akka online documentation.

This book could have filled all of those gaps by being both an introductory guide to actor programming and a reference guide for advanced patterns and concepts like actor supervision and self-healing, routing, remoting, clustering (actually not covered because not finalized at the time the book was published).

Instead, the author gets lost in his own sense of humor and horribly unpractical and contrived example (as others have noticed) that not only doesn't help understanding any pattern or best practice, but it also makes the first steps in actor programming much harder because it's too abstract and meaningless to give the reader some simple "real life" examples to work from.

Instead, the reader has to do the extra work of abstracting the concepts out of the (annoyingly "funny") text and the non-sense monolithic example (for which no complete source code is given, which makes it even harder to follow) and try to figure out how those concepts actually apply to a real system design, e.g., how to interact with a (blocking) database driver or other service, how and where to implement fault tolerance for the most critical parts of the system, how to distribute actors or actor systems across many machines for high availability, etc. None of this is covered with clarity in the book.

Moreover, the book isn't able to make a solid case for reactive programming and Akka by focusing on the unpractical code examples but also by lacking a clear and concise explanation of the advantages of non-blocking paradigms vs more traditional approaches.

I was expecting much more out of this. A much better book is Effective Akka by Jamie Allen (Effective Akka Jamie Allen which gives concise coding examples, spells out the advantages of reactive programming and its typical use cases, provides usable patterns and best practices in the form of real life code bits and simple and focused design recommendations. I was able to start designing my system after reading just a few pages of that book, while I got nowhere reading Akka Concurrency.
9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Decent Introduction to Actors 15 Aug 2013
By A.H. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The first part of the book is on Actors. The author decided to use one giant example of a plane system to demonstrate the ins and outs of Akka's Actor implementation. This approach makes things hard to follow and concepts hard to learn. I'd have preferred detailed explanation with lots of small examples.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars This is a solid book 9 Feb 2014
By Alvin Alexander - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I was really surprised to see so many negative comments out here. This is a solid book on Akka, certainly the best one out there today. The chapters on Actors, Contexts, Supervision, Routing, Dispatchers, Futures, Patterns, and Antipatterns are all good. (I haven't spent much time in the other chapters.) The author also spent a lot of time on the diagrams, which are also good.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good book, but with limitations 7 July 2013
By Greg - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The author is knowledgeable and fairly thorough on covering Akka coding using Scala.I do wish the book talked more about synchronization on a larger scale. In my experience processing large amounts of data the common question is, "when are we done?", but this is not trivial to answer in Akka for larger software systems.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A tome of useful knowledge 25 July 2013
By Charles Feduke - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
If you're just getting started with Akka this is a great place to begin as it covers having no knowledge of actor systems up to advanced internals and patterns of usage for the library.

The tone of the book is conversational, and while occasionally wordy the text maintains readability throughout.

There are some minor inconsistencies in the examples as presented in the text - if you follow along by keying them in yourself you'll find them - but nothing that is a show stopper. The example problem domain - building an airplane in Akka - illustrates concepts that help solidify how to use actor systems in solving real world problems.
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