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Programmer's Guide to Drupal Paperback – 22 Dec 2012

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 114 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (22 Dec. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449343317
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449343316
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 0.6 x 23.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,049,851 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Book Description

Principles, Practices, and Pitfalls

About the Author

Jennifer Hodgdon wrote her first computer program in 1982, and has been a professional software developer since 1994, using a wide variety of programming languages (FORTRAN, C, Java, PHP, JavaScript, ...). She started doing PHP/MySQL web programming professionally around 2002, and set up her first Drupal web site in 2007. Soon after that, she started contributing volunteer time to the Drupal open-source project and the Seattle Drupal User Group: organizing meet-ups and conferences, serving as the co-leader and then the leader of the Drupal Documentation Team in 2011-2012, leading workshops, and making conference presentations. She is currently a freelance Drupal site builder and module programmer, the volunteer maintainer of several Drupal modules, the co-organizer of the Spokane (WA) Drupal User Group, and the Drupal Core maintainer/committer for API documentation and coding standards. She can be contacted through her business web site,, or through her user account (jhodgdon).

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am experienced LAMP web developer about to build two Drupal 7 sites. I knew that it is possible to make some horrible mistakes if you hack away at Drupal and so decided to take some time to learn about it in a structured way before I got myself into a mess.

Before picking any book up, I read the "Understanding Drupal" section of's online documentation. Then, I read the first 3 chapters of Using Drupal, 2nd Edition (2012), by Byron et al and practiced the hands-on exercises on described within. Only then did I read this book, Programmer's Guide to Drupal (2012). I am glad that I learnt things in that order. Had I dived into this book too early, I may have felt a little out of depth.

I was very impressed with this book. Jennifer Hodgdon, its author, has answered most of my questions about programming writing custom themes, modules and plugins for a Drupal website in a beautifully succinct manner.

The author has spent a lot of time carefully pruning the content down to just 97 pages whilst conveying a huge amount of information.

I would have given this book 5 stars, but gave it 4 because the book lacked an Index. I can imagine refering to this book many times in the future and therefore would have found an index to be really handy.

Also, I would have liked to have seen a little bit of information about how Drupal fits into development workflow that uses Version Control and Continuous Integration. But, that would have a been a bonus and the book provides enough knowledge to let me work that kind of stuff out for myself. (A great page on such a topic is at: )
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program) 3.3 out of 5 stars 8 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pretty cool Drupal book 8 Sept. 2013
By Jerome Covington - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It's good, because the examples are abstract enough to give you and idea of how things fit together without getting bogged down in a specific implementation. And there is a healthy measure of "best practices" and "style", which always wins points with me.

I got the Kindle edition and it has been at my fingertips for the past couple of weeks.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A very brief reading 3 Mar. 2013
By Theseas Maroulis - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It tells you some things you need to know in order to program in drupal but it don't going too deep in any subject.
9 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely useless 28 Jan. 2013
By Paul Delbar - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
When a book's cover says 'get a complete overview of Drupal, including Drupal core and add-on modules and themes' and 'learn Drupal's basic programming principles', you would expect something more than 99 (yes, ninety-nine) pages. If you're a Programmer and you're looking for a Guide, look elsewhere. This booklet is far too general (featuring a chapter on common programming mistakes including 'Programming too much' and 'Misusing the API') to be of any practical assistance.

I'm sure there's an audience for this book, but I consider it some of the worst spent 15 USD.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gauge Your Expectations 21 Mar. 2013
By Billz - Published on
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have a friend who does Drupal, and his key admonition was, "It's got a big learning curve." I just wanted to know about Drupal. I've programmed in PHP for years, and I wasn't ready for any more "big learning curves," at this time. I wanted something that told me enough but not some kind of "novice-to-expert" tome. For me, this book hit the Goldie Locks sweet spot--just right.

It should have been named, "An Orientation to Drupal for PHP Programmers," or a "Quick and Dirty Introduction to Drupal for PHP Programmers." It is what I wanted, and what I will use. Later when I have time to tackle a big learning curve, I'll get one of the soup-to-nuts books, but for getting started without having to 'review' the eternity of PHP, this one is dandy. It gets me through the messy beginning of Drupal with a focus on what I need. If you're looking for a general orientation to Drupal and you program in PHP, this ought to do the trick. It's got some examples and is enough to get started, but if you're not familiar with PHP, or you want to learn all about Drupal, you might want to look elsewhere.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything you need to know. 8 April 2013
By Cary Gordon - Published on
Format: Paperback
I do Drupal for a living, I am involved with the Drupal project, and I have read most -- almost all -- of the available Drupal books.

There are many pedagogical approaches to teaching a skill, and the comprehensive, well organized and concise approach that Jennifer Hodgdon employs is a good fit with my approach to learning. By emphasizing Drupal's ontological underpinnings, and tying practical execution to that structure, she gives the reader an insight into how, by adhering to best practices and using Drupal the way it is designed to be used, it is possible to build almost anything.

This is a particularly valuable book for experienced and formally trained PHP developers who have found the Drupal way difficult to comprehend. Perhaps for the first time, this book presents Drupal's organization and systems in a way that ties them to actual practice.

I know the author, but I have not spoken to her about this book or my review.
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