Excellent new book on CodeIgniter

Packt have just sent me a review copy of CodeIgniter 1.7 Professional Development by Adam Griffiths. An excellent book, at a more advanced level than mine, and I am learning a lot from it.

Thiis book is aimed at advanced PHP developers with a good knowledge of OO and assumes some knowledge of CodeIgniter. Its not really a book from which to to learn CI, though it does have a clear basic analysis of the frameworks structure. (And you can go to my book if you want the basics…)

It has well-chosen sections which address some important issues-
– form validation has always been quite complex in CI, and this section makes CIs new form validation class much clearer. (My book covered the old one.)
– CI lacks a native user authentication class; this book has a good section on how to do this, with links to a class written by the author.
– a good section on security
– a section on hooks, and a practical example of how to use them
– an account of how to build a RESTful application. (CI has a native class for XMLRPC, but REST looks a lot easier. The one thing the book does not cover is how to make a REST app more secure, but its not too difficult to work this out for yourself.)
– extending CI, going through how to add your own classes to link in to the CI super-object and take advantage of inheritance.
– some good tips on how to develop your own code and release it to the CI community, like planning your code before you start ot write it.

I think reviewers are supposed to add some critical remarks just to show they have read the book thoroughly. OK, theres a few typos (eg the book has fun with memcache on p 184, and personally Id have preferred to call the new class do_memcache instead of memcached, which just has a one letter difference from the variable name it uses and would lead to even more typos and confusion.) But Ive found nothing seriously to worry about. Also there are a few places where the treatment is a bit sketchy – for example the section on running multiple application instances hints at the advantages, then just lists the diffculties, and leaves you to ponder how to get round them. But these are only minor blemishes: At this level, Id rather have an ambitious book that starts me thinking, than a dull one that just states the basics.

Oh, yes, and why on earth is the cover picture eight snails in a huddle on a sandy beach? CI is much faster than many frameworks. (I suspect Packt bought a CD of copyright-free images a year or two ago, and are steadily working their way through it…… )

The link to the Packt website, to download example code, as quoted on page 4 of the book, was not working when I tried it this morning – the link is this instead.

The book is clear and well-written, with sensible examples.

In short, go out and buy this if you are interested in serious work with CI. And when CI 2.0 comes out, I hope Packt ask Adam to write the book about that…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *