Review: CakePHP Application Development

I have done a few projects using CakePHP the past couple of years. CakePHP has grown to become one of the more popular PHP web frameworks, think of CakePHP as Rails-inspired PHP framework.

CakePHP Application Development

If you’re interested in CakePHP, you may like to check out CakePHP Application Development by Packt Publishing. This book covers lots of beginner topics such as installation and configuration. It is a good book to get started on CakePHP, it has a step-by-step guide that can be useful for starters. The book targets CakePHP 1.2 however, the book is written before CakePHP 1.2 is released so it does not have updated screenshots in it.

Generally the book’s concept is correct. The explanations are written as if someone is talking to you. If you do not like that style of learning, best you avoid this title. CakePHP Application Development covers a creation of a sample app — Quickwall — at the end of the book. Unlike typical tutorials that teaches you how to create a blog with XX framework, this goes into more depth on how best to use the inbuilt features of CakePHP.

My major grip on this book is its numerous errors in code, and a couple of quite unforgiving ones too. The books could have been better edited. Some of the codes did not appear to run and you have to look around to check for syntax errors. It isn’t often, still it’s a bad impression. The codes in the book are badly indented too. This makes the codes hard to read. It’s a good book to learn, but can be better.

Find out more about CakePHP Application Development here, you can also have a look at the book’s Table of Contents here.

Review: Django 1.0 Template Development

Django 1.0 Template Development, published by Packt, is a book that focuses on the templates portions of Django. Django is a popular Python web framework. Django models are easy to build but I always found the templates rather hard to understand.

Django 1.0 template development

Chapter 1, 2 and 3 gives an overview of how Django views work together. If you’re a developer, you shouldn’t skip that. I found myself understanding the Django MVC architecture better. (I come from a CakePHP background.) The author (Scott Newman) also did a good job introducing custom filters in Chapter 7. It’s something I haven’t explored till I read the book. There is also a chapter dedicated to pagination, also a must read.

The book is 272 pages, not too long. If you’re looking to improve your understanding on templates, this could be a good companion. I should also stress that the book is well organized. You can skip through the chapters and go straight to what you need without missing out much.

You can download a sample chapter here [PDF], and if you like it, you can find out how to get the book here.