[mvc2inaction-discuss] Glad that pre-existing code isn't being used in this version.

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Nathan Brown

Apr 24, 2010, 10:01:16 AM4/24/10
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I just bought the ASP.NET MVC 2 MEAP and had a couple thoughts.

I had previously read most of the first edition, and one of the things
that bugged me was the use of the CodeCampServer. I realize it was a
way for the authors to learn and then share their experiences, but as
a reader, I needed to be able to build my own site and was going
through the steps to do that from the ground up. I had tried to
follow along with the first book, but it jumped into pre-done code too
much so I gave up on that.

In perusing the new book, it seems that it is still using pre-done
code some.

If progression through the book could continuously build on the same
code base (starting from the wizard output), then I think a reader
would get much more out of the experience. I'm not advocating putting
all the code in the book text. More along the lines of here's your
next project and here's what the browser screen will look like when
you are done.

An idea could be to only supply the unit tests (and skeleton code) for
a given section. They would fail, but it's up to the reader to
implement the code. I'd still prefer that they would copy into the
user's ongoing project instead of starting over with a new project
every chapter or section.

Keep up the good work.

Nathan Brown

Please feel free to comment on the progress of the book, the content, and the code samples. All code and text is available on the book's GitHub site at http://github.com/jeffreypalermo/mvc2inaction. We hope developing this book out in the open and with your feedback makes it a great book for the community.

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Apr 26, 2010, 6:48:52 AM4/26/10
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I echo the sentiment as I'm also ideally looking for a guided project
that I can build up myself as Nathan outlines.

A bit late for inclusion in the book though; and in any case I'd worry
that it could distract from the structure and philosophy of the book
which I like as it is.

The book seems to be aimed at Journeyman or Expert developers who have
already started to get an awareness of patterns and practices and want
to see how those can be implemented in an MVC project, and how MVC can
help to guide or entice us into using better practices and approaches.
I would be concerned that a very guided tutorial would distract from
or limit the scope of being able to discuss the very broad range of
practices that are covered in this book.

This is certainly something that could perhaps be acheived purely
online as a sister project to the MVC2 In Action book?
> Please feel free to comment on the progress of the book, the content, and the code samples.  All code and text is available on the book's GitHub site athttp://github.com/jeffreypalermo/mvc2inaction.  We hope developing this book out in the open and with your feedback makes it a great book for the community.

Jeffrey Palermo

Apr 26, 2010, 5:02:01 PM4/26/10
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Thanks for the feedback.  The manuscript is already complete and is being typeset as I write this.  Let me take a little time to explain the philosophy of the book.

In the 1st edition, we aimed to completely ignore the person who was new to .Net or C# as well as ASP.NET.  We wanted to write a book that we would be happy to read ourselves.  As seasoned programmers, we often find it hard to find books that are written at a high-end level.  Most books are written for folks absolutely new to the technology or early in their careers.

In the 2nd edition, we have the same goal of a book that we would want to read, but we added on to the front of the book a few chapters to reach out to the folks who wanted a little more introductory content.  Even so, we do move quickly through the introductory content and ramp up the reader very quickly so we can get on to the more advanced and interesting topics.  Because this author team already has over 2 years developing real applications using ASP.NET MVC, we want to share the lessons we have already learned in the trenches.  Many of the techniques provided by the quickstarts and online tutorials break down as the number of functions of the application increases.  We have already encountered these problems in real life, and we share our recommended way of structuring the application in order to keep the application maintainable as it grows.

The MEAP is available now (Manning Early Access Program) online, and the ebook is just about complete.  Shortly after the ebook ships, the print book will go out to book stores.  http://bit.ly/aspnetmvc2inaction.

Best regards,
Jeffrey Palermo

Nathan Brown

Apr 27, 2010, 6:59:28 PM4/27/10
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Hi Jeffrey,

Thanks for the explanation. I had thought a story based structure
would help learning and remembering what goes where.

I'm sure it's a hard balance to keep it accessible to those who aren't
experts, and enjoyable to read for those who are. While I'm probably
fairly advanced level in C#, I've just now starting on ASP.NET MVC.

Have a good day,

Nathan Brown

Jeffrey Palermo

Apr 28, 2010, 2:47:32 AM4/28/10
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You might be right with the story-based approach.  I have seen books in that format, and it is certainly easy to follow.  I'll have to keep that advice in mind when starting my next book (whenever that is).  

Best regards,
Jeffrey Palermo
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