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Jul 09

Review: Apache Wicket Cookbook

By kinabalu | Comments


Here at Mystic, it would come as no surprise to anyone who has read our blogs or worked with our team that we love Apache Wicket. I was pleasantly surprised when the team at Packt Publishing emailed me about reviewing the new Apache Wicket Cookbook. In equal measure I was happy to see that they had snagged Igor Vaynberg to author this tome.

In the spirit of transparency, Packt and I originally came close to doing this book together. We had a difference of opinion that led me to decline, however I still stand by my argument that a pink pony and sharks with frickin laser beams would have been an adequate payment for my time. Oh well.

Who the book is for

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It is jam packed full of useful information for those folks familiar with Apache Wicket. Yes, that’s correct, this book should not be the first one you buy about Apache Wicket, but it definitely should be the next. The cookbook is aimed specifically at individuals with a working knowledge of the framework, from the beginner to the advanced seasoned user.

Wicket Crash Course

If you need a crash course in Apache Wicket, you’ve got several options.

  1. Read the 5 Days of Wicket which takes you from initial setup through building a simple Pastebin web application.
  2. Go pick up a copy of Wicket in Action. Also written by two wonderful core developers of Apache Wicket, it provides a wellspring of introduction and knowledge to make the cookbook worth the read.
  3. Read through the Apache Wicket Wiki, use the wicket-quickstart to build an app, and ask your questions on the very helpful and active Wicket mailing list. They are ranked from easiest to most difficult for the average person. If you prefer diving in head first and building a project without reading much background, the last option will certainly get you there (albeit not quickly).

    The Content

    Those of us who have been using Wicket for years, know Igor very well. He has always seemed to have more hours in the day then most as he deftly answered newbie questions up to seasoned difficult questions on the mailing list. All of this was done while working like the rest of us, helping develop and design upcoming versions, and being a family man as well. Wow. It should come as no surprise then, that each one of the recipes in this book is chock full of detail, the proper amount of explanation, and real world useful when building out a Wicket solution for a client. I have had the luxury of reading, and re-reading sections of the book while building out an Apache Wicket solution for one of our clients at Mystic, and it's been wonderful. Each of the recipes are worth reviewing in-depth not just for the solution, but how the author has chosen to code it. Because we've given training courses and spoken about Wicket at several conferences worldwide, it comes as no surprise that each page seems to be smashed together full of text. There is a lot to explain when it comes to Wicket, and giving 1 or 2 page recipes without doing this would have been impossible. Had Packt allowed the author, I'm sure we could have seen even more breadth and at least hundreds of recipes which would cover the wellspring of 3rd party lib integrations, and other tricks to make working and reusing code with Apache Wicket an absolute blast. This book is definitely for the Wicket developer who wants to learn from one of the masters. Go buy your copy today. Was the book worth it? YES Review the table of contents here: Chapter 1: Validating and Converting User Input Chapter 2: Getting Down and Dirty with Forms and Form Components Chapter 3: Making Forms Presentable Chapter 4: Taking your Application Abroad Chapter 5: Displaying Data Using DataTable Download for free Chapter 6: Enhancing your UI with Tabs and Borders Chapter 7: Deeper into Ajax Chapter 8: Visualizing Data with Charts Chapter 9: Building Dynamic and Rich UI Chapter 10: Securing your Application Chapter 11: Integrating Wicket with Middleware Chapter 12: General Wicket Patterns (available only online due to size constraints What are you waiting for? Get It Now