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No Starch Press
Reviewed by Michael Ernest, September 2006
(7 of 10)
Object-Oriented PHP is a technical brief that falls short of its own ambitions. It covers PHP 5, most notably the radical switch to a full OOP model. Lavin summarizes the reasons for the change and reviews basic OOP concepts. He then develops some classes for an application to draws images from a database and display them as thumbnails. Some PHP 4 equivalent code is provided too.
It is a terse and sometimes bumpy ride. The book's conversational tone, while appropriate for fellow geeks, is more distracting than reassuring. There are some summary apologies, for example, that make the chapters seem like chewed far less than they bit off.
The book is short, so the author glosses concepts, and refers to web sites for details and tutorials often. Once or twice he refers to a well-known author (e.g., Bruce Eckel) to support a point. This is also appropriate for a peer audience, but it unnecessarily puts the book out of reach for some readers.
The book apparently once had a too-ambitious outline. The back cover states you'll learn to "Incorporate AJAX into your OO PHP code." This coverage is trivial: one paragraph that names a website to retrieve some code, and some code to show where the AJAX reference goes.
This book is appropriate to the author's PHP peers, but should understand OOP already. A demanding reader will not like this book. Beginners will get lost.
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