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Pro Drupal Development, Second Edition Paperback – 1 Aug 2008

7 customer reviews

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Product Description

About the Author

John K. VanDyk has been a Drupal developer since 2004. In 2005, he organized the first Drupal conference in Antwerp, Belgium, with Drupal founder Dries Buytaert. John has contributed several modules to Drupal including the actions, workflow, publish, subscribe, and pubcookie modules and has been instrumental in the design of Drupal's Content Construction Kit. John's day job is as an entomology professor and systems analyst at Iowa State University, where he teaches undergraduate courses about insects. In his spare time, when not hacking on Drupal, John enjoys squash hunting and raising children.

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Customer Reviews

3.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By M. Bull on 9 Jan. 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you want to get at all serious about taking Drupal beyond a simple installation, this book is going to be a massive help to you. If you're anything like me you'll come back to it again and again for reference and to try out some new ideas.

It covers all kinds of development areas such as building your own modules, the form API, themes, and even best practices. All this kind of stuff can be found online, but it's a big help to have it all clearly explained in one place. Sometimes you just need someone to guide you through the maze of options that Drupal offers.

Much of the book isn't for the faint-hearted. You need a good working knowledge of PHP and some MySQL. Most books start you off nice and easy, but here the early chapters are very much a leap into the deep-end. There's a certain amount of reliance on just accepting fairly esoteric Drupal stuff until it's explained more clearly later in the book.

The book also comes with plenty of examples, which you can download for free from Apress. These really help you get your head around some of the trickier ideas (I found one or two of the examples didn't work as described - but to be fair there are some errata by the author on the Apress site).

In summary - this book is an excellent buy if you want to take Drupal to the next level but don't know where to start.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Dave Nyss on 13 May 2009
Format: Paperback
there is much information on the web about Drupal, lots of good bits of specific information; as a experienced developer, but no experience of Drupal, I found it like being a "detective" trying to piece together a puzzle, i knew the sort of thing I wanted to do but couldn't quite find all the information in one place to tell me how to do it. I was just about getting there when I decided to bite the bullet and buy a reference manual. What a difference it has made, I can highly recommend this book. its well laid out and talks you through all the powerful features of drupal in a thoughtful sequence. It has helped fill in lots of gaps. Drupal is a powerful, flexible product with lots of ways of dong things, that makes it very confusing when you first come across it. its easier to learn something when there is only one way to do it or you are led through the options, this is what this book does very well.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Adam Boyse on 24 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback
Unlike other content management systems, Drupal can appear daunting to new users. It is full of concepts like nodes, hooks, themes and the form api which can take weeks to learn.

Pro Drupal Development should be a mandatory read for anyone wanting to use Drupal for their website. It guides you through the technology with clear, well written sections on every aspect of Drupal including module development.

You will need a reasonably good grasp of PHP to follow the book and I found myself having to re-read some chapters before the concepts sank in; particularly the theme() function and form api.

I also found this book useful once after I became more proficient in Drupal. I was able to return to topics to check my approach was correct and I now find the book sits beside me while developing new Drupal sites.

In summary, a worthwhile read for anyone wanting to use Drupal professionally.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Firstly, I find it very frustrating when people rate products low, and when you read the reasons behind it, they are not actually rating the product itself, but often the supplier, packaging, delivery etc.

So I will review this product twice in one entry, but my overall rating is for the Kindle version. Pro Drupal Development, Second Edition

Context.
I am a Drupal Newbie, with no PHP knowledge (although I do have programming background, albeit not OO). I have been playing with Drual 7 for about a month now developing a corporate help portal. My goal was to do so without resorting to code, and that may well end up being the case, but I wanted this book to explain the fundamentals of Drupal, and help explain why things are the way they are.

Content. 4/5
I like the style of the writing, the examples given, and the step by step approach. I feel the author does a good job explaining the structure of Drupal. I did feel that he sometimes launched into subjects without setting the context, and it wasn't obvious why he wanted to focus on an area, and where it would be of use. I would have appreciated more scenarios, to help set the context of why you would want to do xyz.

KINDLE. 1/5
The Kindle version of this book is not formatted properly for Kindle. You can't skip through chapters, you cant hyperlink from table of contents to relevant chapter. The code exmaples vary in font size from unreadable to large. All in all, this makes it useless as a reference book on Kindle. I know that the Kindle is not the best device for technical ref books, but I have to say that this is the worst rendering of an ebook I have come across, and I have many on my kindle.
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