jwjb (7) [Avatar] Offline
#1
I am not sure if these comments would be considered simple or not and be cleaned up during production of the book, but thought it best to err on the side of caution just to be safe where all comments pertain to the Kindle version unless otherwise stated.

1. Web links are not functional and copy-and-pasting links includes book metadata for the Kindle version necessitating manually editing the link in the browser.

2. Text can be increased in size making it easy to read on a PC, Mac and Kindle, but the size of the figures seem to remain the same size making it difficult to see even on a 27" iMac to say nothing of a 7" Kindle for the Kindle version. For the PDF version the figures do seem to scale a little bit with the text, but in some cases it is still hard to see unless zoomed in quite a bit.

3. For the Kindle version text within the terminal figures are pixelated and sometimes hard to read which does not seem to be a problem in the PDF version.

4. From 'Get started now!' on the Meteor website '$ curl https://install.meteor.com/ | sh' is the installation command which is different than '$ curl https://install.meteor.com | /bin/sh' in '2.2.1 Installing Meteor' i.e. is there a difference to having ' | sh' vs. ' | /bin/sh'?

5. In '2.2.2 Setting up a new project' is based upon an earlier Meteor version example as noted by the newer version having a {{counter}} vs. {{greeting}} for the older version among other changes which could make it difficult for someone just getting started with Meteor to follow. Also, the code available from the publishers website is the completed code and not snapshots as the example unfolds which might not be as advantageous to learning. Along these lines, it might be helpful to work through any examples and commit them to GitHub at certain points in the process so it would be possible for a reader to be able to easily navigate the example to increase learning and understanding.

6. It would be great if the examples in 'Chapter 3 Working with Templates' were more user friendly in the sense of the reader being able to work through them in more of a complete example to be able to get more of a hands-on feeling of working through the code, i.e. the code feels like a snippet here and there where a reader could be missing the complete picture of what is going on and how the examples are all tied together.

These comments are all based upon reviewing the book on a variety of screen sizes and platforms from a 27" Late 2013 iMac to a 7" Late 2013 Kindle Fire including PC's running Windows 7-8.1 and a Chromebook with screen sizes from 11" to 18" where the PDF version seemed quite a bit more polished and easier to read than the Kindle version which seemed to have a variety of formatting issues which are sure to be cleaned up prior to production release.

Again, I really enjoyed the first three chapters and am really impressed with the material and presentation, but how could it be anything but awesome with Stephan Hochhaus and Manuel Schoebel as authors, but did want to give some initial comments on what looks likely to be an awesome Meteor.js book.
stephan.hochhaus (92) [Avatar] Offline
#2
Re: Cooments
Hi Jwjb,

first off, thanks a lot for your kind words and your feedback. Indeed I think most of the book production issues you mention will be resolved once we get closer to the actual release (links working, etc).

Re 4.: using /bin/sh vs sh is that one expects the sh command in a very specific location ( in the /bin folder) whereas the other expects sh to be available from the command line with automatic resolving which is the right sh by using the contents of the PATH env variable. Functionally, there should be no difference.

5. We will need to rework several paragraphs when 1.0 materializes. Until then we can only play catch-up and we'd like to only do the updates once, so 1.0 will be the baseline and expect every part of the book to be updated to reflect the actual behavior of Meteor then.

6. Great suggestion, I'll see how we can include it in one of the next drafts.

Now I gotta get back to work on the reactive data chapter smilie
AxDev (1) [Avatar] Offline
#3
Re: Cooments
Hi Stephan,

Thanks for writing the book. I came across it from the Best Meteor Learning sites blog but heard you on the Meteor Podcast which pushed me to buy it : ) FYI I have bought all the other books out there to try them and see what clicks.

I like your book a lot but have a few initial comments that struck me as a new user, some perhaps as comparison to others I have bought:

1. Maybe I missed it but I wasn't immediately aware there was sample code - I think it would be helpful to state up front that code for the tutorial project can be "downloaded at site...."

2. Once I found the code by accident from reading comments on this site, some of the code in the book is different than what's in the downloaded code.

Example: First is from the downloaded code, 2nd is from the book. Should it be "product: function (){" or "products: function(){" for example:

Downloaded Code:

Template.fridge.helpers({
product: function(){
return Product.find({
place: 'fridge'
});
}
})

As written in the book:

Template.fridge.helpers({
products: function(){
return Product.find({
place: 'fridge'
});
}
});

3. I enjoyed getting started going through the example app, however I thought it was going to be a step by step building of the app. However there are descriptions of how things work - such as injecting a product into the database through the browser - that doesn't work at that point in building the app because we didn't do any helpers yet! So the example assumed we were just using the fully complete download code.

I think it's really useful to build the app step by step. There is another book that does this and has github versions at each stage of the build which is very useful.

That said I clicked with the way you write and I find I could relate to the example, just a few comments that I think are constructive.

Again I am enjoying this book where some are too technical off the bat and don't give a simple (for me anyway) to understand background on what/why we are doing something.

Hope this helps!
Thanks,
Ken
stephan.hochhaus (92) [Avatar] Offline
#4
Re: Cooments
Hi Ken,

thanks for listening to the podcast and for purchasing the book smilie

Eventually you will find all code as a download from the manning page but also on github for better usability (tags for various stages) https://github.com/meteorinaction/
We should make this a bit more visible I guess.

We'll also streamline and adjust code and writing as we refine chapters. The first drafts are a bit rough and may differ slightly from the actual code sometimes, but we try to stay on top of it and fix everything with the next release of the MEAP.

I'm gonna check the fridge chapter, the intent is that you actually have the collection defined so browser inserts should work already. We aim for step-by-step instructions.

Thanks again, Ill head back to the next drafts smilie
stephan.hochhaus (92) [Avatar] Offline
#5
Re: Cooments
Made lots of improvements to chapter 3 (and 2) this weekend. Also I made sure all code examples in the book and the repo align properly. You can find the code today on github and the updated PDF with the next MEAP update on or before Meteor Day (6th of November 2014).
https://github.com/meteorinaction