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Openlayers 2.10 Beginner's Guide Paperback – 18 Mar 2011

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Product details

  • Paperback: 372 pages
  • Publisher: Packt Publishing (18 Mar. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849514127
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849514125
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 2.1 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 660,901 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Erik Hazzard is a web developer - designer, Open Source advocate, and VI user. He loves to learn, teach, and occasionally blogs on his website at As a professional web developer of five years, Erik specializes in Python and Javascript, using open source software whenever possible. When he's not developing web applications, he's often developing or designing video games.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. M. Marsden on 18 May 2011
Format: Paperback
This review is of the electronic edition viewed using the iBook reader on an Apple iPad device. The electronic edition can be downloaded in PDF and ePub formats, and can be purchased directly from Packt. It can also be purchased as a traditional softback book from Amazon and the proverbial "all good booksellers".

OpenLayers 2.10 Beginner's Guide by Erik Hazzard is a good overview and reference of the OpenLayers open source library. The book provides a much-needed complement to the reference material and sample code available on the the OpenLayers website, although it has a number of typos and at least one of the electronic formats has numerous formatting errors.

OpenLayers is a popular Javascript library that is used to produce "slippy" AJAX maps. It is used as a client front end to arious heterogenous data sources which can be easily mixed together. The Openlayers website includes an API reference and many samples. The samples can be easily copies, but they only go so far. There has been a need for a book that explains how and why certain methods and properties work, to fill in the gaps, and to go beyond the coverage of the samples (eg. with coverage of Strategies and Rules). This is that book.

The book is written as a tutorial but also includes API reference material. The author does a good job of blending these two approaches. Each section of discussion and reference text is followed by "Time for action" (implementation example), "What just happened?" (explanation), and "Have a go hero" (exercise suggestions for modifying the code). Although I'm not sure about the "Have a go hero" moniker, the full package generally works well.

Introductory chapters include an overview of what OpenLayers is (and is not), Object Oriented Programming (OOP), and Firebug.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this books as a programmer needing to learn OpenLayers. It did the job, but at a painfully slow pace. The bulk of it seems to focus on teaching the basics of programming and explaining the obvious in relation to what is going on, which caused me to end up skim-reading and possibly missing out on some important points.

Code examples in the book can get a bit repetitive at times as each time you create a new map, you're seeing the same boilerplate code and instructions re-pasted into the book. In my opinion it also does not promote very good style. Use of global variables seem to be encouraged and there is even an exercise about how to move variables into the global scope - for those who don't know what globals are. There also was at least one example of an object literal with a comma trailing the final key:value pair. This works in Firefox, the browser of choice for this book, but can fail in others.

On a positive note I found the book easy to follow and it covers quite a wide range of features. It is certainly accessible. Use of firebug to demonstrate what's going on is nice too. I would have preferred a little more information about projections, but other than that not bad.
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I needed to get up to speed on Open Layers quickly and this is the book that did it. Nice and easy to read with plenty of examples.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Good book for beginners and a good reference for advanced users 17 Jun. 2013
By Courtney McNealy - Published on
Format: Paperback
This book was a great way to get started using OpenLayers. It has chapters that cover how to set up a basic map using Google, Yahoo, Bing, or OpenStreetMap, how to add controls and use layers, and would be useful even for someone who does not know javascript, html, or css.

EDIT: My initial review criticized this book's lack of useful information for making markers, etc, but really this was a misunderstanding of OpenLayers on my part. This book has in-depth information about how to build "features" on vector layers, which are many times more powerful than "markers". There is also lots of information and reference material in this book about events and event listeners, which is sometimes hard to find in the online documentation.

I have increased my rating of this book to 5 stars because of how useful it has been to me. I started building a map using this book when I knew nothing about OpenLayers, and have advanced to making custom controls, complex events, and advanced styling based on the information in this book!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
For very begginers. 4 Oct. 2013
By Alexander - Published on
Format: Paperback
80% of a book is continuously repeatings of very simple things like "{key:value} - this is a param object of a class that contains a key and a value".
The book can be compressed to 10-15 pages tutorial.
Also there is lot of copy&pasted text from OpenLayers API.
If you known JS, then just google for a good tutorial.
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Good introduction for non-javascript person 7 Jan. 2013
By John - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I wanted to jump start my knowledge of OpenLayers so I could begin spec'ing out new products using OpenLayers. I feel this book has given me some good insights to what I can do with OpenLayers.
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