Top critical review
2 people found this helpful
WordPress is shoddy from top to bottom, this book fits in well.
on 10 April 2015
Not great at all. I am a professional software developer with 20 years experience. I have had to learn so many technologies and languages across the duration of my career, most recently a defunct language from 1972 that has no documentation and no forums, and no tools or communities active. I even managed that easier than learning Wordpress and I have struggled with the haphazard nature of the wordpress eco system and community since I got involved in it mainly because there is no consistency in anything. It is clear the whole WP world has been put together by amateurs and people that decided they didn't like their day job and could do better for themselves with a job doing Web dev. They have even renamed and reinvented (poorly) almost every single concept and terminology that the professional SW development world has used for decades. This book is just the same, haphazard, unprofessional, incohesive (three authors with different native languages) the editorial job is appalling, errors everywhere, and even the erratum online which could easily have been maintained has been completely ignored. The working examples are poorly thought out and poorly explained, often there is information missing from explanations which require me to go online and research elsewhere. More often than not the information is available online and is more complete on the web, but not always. Almost every page has an example of a poorly thought out explanation, and I did think of making a full list of all the omissions and oversights, but it would have taken a long time. Alng with the lack of any real erratum and it does need it, there is an online p2p forum for the book, that has about a dozen post and my own question about a rather ridiculously unclear and unhelpful code example has been ignored for over a month. Perhaps I have been spoilt by being involved in the professional software business where QA, and engineering practices stand for something. In this world rarely are things what they should be, my advice would be to find a different platform to work on if you are looking to learn true web customisation and programming. However, if you need to learn WP to this level, then unfortunately this is one of the few books available and might be the best of a bad bunch. The question I posted on their p2p forum is about an example piece of code that registers a customer action, but instead of registering ones own function that you have just written the example actually registers the "alias" for the core WP function that is used to register a function. Is it me, or is this just an insanely recursive error? Either way it makes little sense and trying to figure out the meaning of what the code is doing is made harder because of this unclear example. I have to assume that you substitute the core WP function name for your own function name, otherwise it just seems wrong. However, there has been no response on the forum from author or contributor and this example is representative of the book and the void it exists in.
I have a colleague who has much more WP experience and this book as well. He feels the same way about it. A good effort from those that wrote it, but an effort it is to wade through it and to figure out what it all means. Unfortunately it reeks of a book written by those that are amateurs but have made a career out of this WP industry with little or no formal/professional software development experience or training. This might seem harsh, but frankly the entire Wordpress stack and associated tools are shoddy, whether prepros, SSASS, brackets, php, myphpadmin and so on - the entire stack is second rate, flaky and full of documentation errors and holes. Stay away, instead spend your time and effort on learning a professionally created SDK for the web.