Review: Head First JavaScript

January 31, 2008 by

Virginia DeBolt

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Head First JavaScript

★★★★★ Head First JavaScript by Michael Morrison (O’Reilly, 2008) may not ring up five stars for everyone, but I like the Head First books. They appeal to the educator in me, the person who understands multiple intelligences and learning theory. The educator in me knows why these books work for a lot of people who can’t make sense out of a “normal” programming language manual.

The Head First books are not your average technical manual. They are full of redundancy, humor, images, practice exercises, goofy conversations between things like global and local variables and dumb questions.

I have to give this book credit for my first ever spontaneous JavaScript insight. After reading about one of the simpler JavaScript functions, I actually thought, “Oh, that’s how the Dreamweaver CSS dialog works.” Now, I’m not the sort of person who thinks in terms of JavaScript. I think in HTML. JavaScript has been something I do carefully and by slavishly copying someone else’s direction. So I must attribute my spontaneous JavaScript insight to the fact that the type of learning experience you get from a Head First book works in my brain.

Here’s what the chapters in the book discuss:

  1. the interactive web
  2. storing data
  3. exploring the client
  4. decision making
  5. looping
  6. functions
  7. forms and validation
  8. wrangling the page
  9. bringing data to life
  10. creating custom objects
  11. kill bugs dead
  12. dynamic data

If you’ve tried other JavaScript books and couldn’t get much out of them, try this Head First book. Recommended.

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2 thoughts on “Review: Head First JavaScript”

  1. Bought a copy from it tomorrow 😉

    I LOVE all the Head first Labs Books,they are very easy and fun to follow and understand.

    Excellent books !

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