Book Review: Oracle ADF Enterpprise Application Development - Made Simple

I recently picked up the book Oracle ADF Enterprise Application Development - Made Simple (Packt Publishing). As a long time integration developer, creating user interfaces, especially web user interfaces, has always been a challenge for me. I have done a fair bit of work using JSP and PHP over the years and I've long felt that web development really needed a tool to magnify the productivity of web development in general. As an Oracle employee, I was happy to see this book come along and provide me with an ideal excuse to get up to speed on Oracle's premier web development technology - ADF (Application Development Framework).

The book (written by Sten E. Vesterli) doesn't take the standard "Hello World" approach to introducing ADF. Instead it walks you through the full development life cycle, starting with a proof of concept and then graduating through project structure, team development, best practices, testing (including load testing), modifying the look and feel, securing the web app and ultimately delivering the application into a production environment. There is also an appendix in the book that covers the internationalization (aka localization) of an ADF application.

I found the author's style to be easy to read and casual in nature, not at all professorial. He walks you through the chapters in a fluid manner. I suppose you could skip around and simply read the chapters that were of specific interest. However, since this is an introductory book and the topic was relatively new to me, I think I got more out of it by reading it from cover to cover.

There are several aspects of the book that I really enjoyed. The first is that the author includes a variety of
best practices for ADF development throughout the book. Next is the fact that he covers the use of both Oracle and 3rd party tool setting us a development environment, and also for testing ADF applications. This kind of information is often omitted from introductory books, but in my experience, it can be a short time from learning the basics of a technology to being asked to implement it at work. By covering all of these topics, the author has paved the way for that transition.

Being relatively new to ADF myself I found the book to be excellent. Naturally, there are topics that should not be included in the book due to its introductory scope. I think the largest omission that I've found is the lack of even a mention of bounded and unbounded task flows. However, that is also the only topic I've found missing and I can see howbounded vs. unbounded task flows could be considered an intermediate to advanced topic.

Overall I highly recommend this book if you are new to ADF. It doesn't sit in my bookshelf, it sits on my desk! In retrospect, I think labeling this book as "introductory" doesn't really do it justice. The concepts it contains will be useful for a long period of time and the topics on testing, team development and project organization bring tremendous value by providing guidance that would be expensive if you were to learn it by trial and error. 
Comments:

thanks for the review Jeff. Have you also looked at Oracle Fusion Developer Guide http://www.amazon.com/Oracle-Fusion-Developer-Guide-Applications/dp/0071622543/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1312391936&sr=8-4

thanks

Posted by John Archer on August 03, 2011 at 03:19 AM PDT #

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