Learning jQuery 1.3 By Jonathan Chaffer, Karl Swedberg, And PACKT Publishing
Posted March 31, 2009 at 3:24 PM by Ben Nadel
As a follow up to Learning jQuery, Learning jQuery 1.3 by Jonathan Chaffer and Karl Swedberg (of PACKT Publishing) combines all the goodness of the original book with all the latest jQuery functionality. And, as always, they present jQuery in an easy to understand way. The whole teaching style of the book is fantastic; it's not dry like a textbook - the authors present you with real world scenarios and then handhold you step by step through each progressive enhancement upgrade to the existing code. Not only does this technique allow you to feel more comfortable with the new technology, it allows the authors to cover the wide breadth of jQuery functionality without overwhelming the reader with theory and philosophy.
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And, as much as they break things down into simple steps, they don't stick to simple topics. One thing that I really like about Learning jQuery 1.3 is that they delve into all the advanced features of jQuery and its extended plugin library. For example, the chapter on jQuery Events is right up front. Event management including event capturing, event bubbling, event binding, event data passing, and event cancellation is somewhat of a dark area in the mind of many web developers. But, rather than play into this perceived disinterest, the book presents event management as one of the earliest topics. And, using the same explanatory techniques as used throughout the book, the authors present event management in an extremely easy to understand way; they take a topic that is actually quite complex and break down in a way that everyone can understand.
Once you've really started to use jQuery for a while, you'll inevitably want to extend its functionality for your applications. Not only do they anticipate this, the authors of the book recommend it. As such, they really took the time to clearly explain the ins and outs and best practices of plugin development. By the time you're done reading the chapter on plugin development, you'll see jQuery not just as a utility library, but as a powerful platform on which to architect rich, complex client-side applications.
For more information on Learning jQuery 1.3, please see the book detail page.
If you are interested in seeing how the jQuery UI library can be used for pain-free, rich user interface experiences, I highly recommend that you check out jQuery UI 1.6.
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I also liked the book and reviewed it as well.