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Java Open Source Programming: with XDoclet, JUnit, WebWork, Hibernate
by Joseph Walnes, Ara Abrahamian, Mike Cannon-Brookes, Patrick A. Lightbody

1 edition
November 2003
480 pages

Reviewed by Thomas Paul, March 2004
  (6 of 10)

What a good book this might have been. It isn't awful but it could have been so much better. The premise of the book is to take the "Pet Store" and improve it by using several open source tools. The first part of the book discusses each of the tools with brief explanations and sample code. The second part takes us through the development process showing how to use the tools that were discussed earlier.

The good parts of the book are mostly in the second half. The authors apply each of the tools, explain test-driven development, demonstrate how and when to refactor code, etc. The integration of the different tools is made naturally so that it doesn't seem that the authors are trying to squeeze a tool in just to demonstrate it. The bad parts: this book desperately needs editing, both technical and for grammar. It is very distracting to see so much improper English usage including run on sentences, sentence fragments, and noun-verb disagreement. On the technical side, there are so many errors in the code that I doubt very much will actually compile, let alone run. Typical errors include methods declaring to return a value and not returning anything, closing files before they are used, and using variables that are not declared.

If you are interested in the technologies discussed and can debug the code in the book, there is a good amount of value. But it could have been so much better.

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