Book review: Agile Java Development with Spring, Hibernate and Eclipse by <i>Anil Hemrajani</i>

Book review: Agile Java Development with Spring, Hibernate and Eclipse by Anil Hemrajani


The book Agile Java Development with Spring, Hibernate and Eclipse by Anil Hemrajani is a book for developers which effectively weaves an understandable lesson based on a realistic, but imaginary timesheet project. This book describes the combination of agile project mentality and Java programming and is a welcome addition to my personal library and the Java biased development audience as a whole.

Java and powerful free software pattern-driven frameworks such as Hibernate and Spring offer an opportunity for application builders to create excellence. Eclipse is an IDE and plug-able platform, which, in combination with an agile development methodology with iteration cycles of around two weeks, ensures that mistakes are quickly spotted. The Java programming language, the Eclipse IDE and the right mentality help in the process of building fantastic products more efficiently than traditional approaches.

The book’s coverThe book’s cover

As an active developer whose primary language of creation is currently Java, I found Anil Hemrajani’s book thought provoking, practical and applicable. Working within a university environment, our projects tend to be well documented and require a lot of up front effort with a lot of prior planning. In contrast, agile projects spread the design phase through short iterations and force stakeholders to become more active in defining the requirements (and thus functionality), and work harder in the defense of quality and creation of favored features. Agile Java Development the book follows an example project with realistically chosen design goals from start to finish.

The book follows an example project with realistically chosen design goals from start to finish

The contents

Anil Hemrajani’s 12 chapter, 360 page book splits into four sections which follow an example Agile project from its primordial beginnings. Sprinting off the start line with a brief but necessary introduction, the basic timesheet application is built over the course of section II and the contained 6 chapters. Don’t let the size of the book in pages fool you, all the expected information is covered. In these few chapters, the Hibernate and Spring frameworks are introduced and the Model View Control pattern is explained. Further, agility is emphasised in every pore of the printed paper.

Agility is emphasised in every pore of the printed paper

At the beginning of each chapter there’s art work that sets the context and in each chapter well drawn diagrams explain purpose. Knowledge transfer efficiency is noticeable and each section gets immediately to the point and does what it supposed to without waste or pause. As mentioned previously, the book is split into four sections: overview, building the sample application, advanced features (such as logging and monitoring), and appendices. The corpus is permeated with the agile mentality.

Personally, I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this concise book. It is difficult to choose a favorite part, but for example purposes only, the author has effortlessly detailed the test-driven design to application creation via, in this case, Junit testing with a simplistic but worthy example (see pages 70-77). Further, the author detailed quickly in chapter five the potentially complex explanation of Object-Relational Mappings with a high degree of finesse.

Who’s this book for?

This book is for Java developers at all levels that wish to understand the basics of one or more of the following: Spring, Hibernate or an example agile project stance. The combination of the technologies and methodology plus the correct use of the Eclipse IDE is a very attractive development vector that this book explores rapidly and to a great deal of precision.

Relevance to free software

Java, Eclipse, Hibernate and the frameworks Spring and Hibernate are all free software. Having an agile mentality one would presume is also free.

Pros

Short and to the point, this book is for Java programmers that are hitting their first serious projects. Further, because this book carries an informational punch that is effective in knocking away the cobwebs of preconception, the book is also for those of us that wish to know what a real agile Java project looks like.

Cons

If you are looking for a deep reference for the mentioned frameworks then this is not the book to buy.

Title Agile Java Development with Spring, Hibernate and Eclipse
Author Anil Hemrajani
Publisher Sams Publishing
ISBN 0672328968
Year 2006
Pages 360
CD included No
FS Oriented 10
Over all score 9

In short

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Biography

Alan Berg Bsc. MSc. PGCE, has been a lead developer at the Central Computer Services at the University of Amsterdam since 1998. In his spare time, he writes articles, book reviews and has authored three books. He has a degree, two masters and a teaching qualification. In previous incarnations, he was a technical writer, an Internet/Linux course writer, and a science teacher. He likes to get his hands dirty with the building and gluing of systems. He remains agile by playing computer games with his sons who (sadly) consistently beat him physically, mentally and morally at least twice in any given day.

You may contact him at reply.to.berg At chello.nl