Yesterday, I received an invitation to review a new book about Dreamweaver. Nothing terribly remarkable about that. After all, I’m well known in the Dreamweaver community and I recently published a review of Peter Gasston’s excellent The Book of CSS3. What took me back was the title of the book I was being asked to review: Dreamweaver CS5.5 Mobile and Web Development with HTML5, CSS3, and jQuery. It’s almost word-for-word the same as the title of the book I published in June: Adobe Dreamweaver CS5.5 Studio Techniques: Designing and Developing for Mobile with jQuery, HTML5, and CSS3.
The invitation to review the rival book came from the marketing department of Packt, the company that published it. I sent a polite reply saying that I didn’t think it would be appropriate for me to review a book that had an almost identical title to mine. I thought that would be the end of it. However, I received an email from Packt saying they knew I had written a book with an identical title, and that’s why I would be the perfect person to write an honest review.
At first I wasn’t sure whether to be flattered or horrified. It’s nice to think that I have such a great reputation for fairness that I would write a glowing review of a book that’s in direct competition with mine. Of course, there’s always the temptation to savage the book in public, but I would never want to do that to a fellow author. I know how much a bad review hurts. Since my book was published three months earlier (and was available even before that as Rough Cuts in the Safari Online Library), Packt can have no excuse for not knowing the title of its rival book was almost identical. I’ve no idea if the title was chosen as a deliberate spoiler, but asking me to review Packt’s book is rather like asking Coca Cola to endorse Pepsi’s latest offering.
I firmly believe that to build a website, you need to have at least a basic understanding of the underlying technologies. Website development is becoming increasingly complex. Dreamweaver helps speed up development through dialog boxes, prepackaged widgets, and code hints; but if you rely solely on point-and-click or copy-and-paste techniques, you’ll remain severely limited in what you can achieve. My book is aimed at readers who aren’t afraid to dig into a bit of code. In fact, you’ll need to do so if you want to access features such as geolocation and web storage on mobile devices. I guide you through the code, explaining what it does so that you can adapt it to your own needs.
So, if you’re looking for a book on developing for mobile with Dreawmeaver CS5.5 with jQuery, HTML5, and CSS, make sure you choose the one that’s right for you. Don’t be confused by the titles. Oh, and as small bonus, my book is in full colour, even though it’s the same length and the same cover price ($39.99) as the one published by Packt.