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« Book Review - VSTO for Mere Mortals by Kathleen McGrath and Paul Stubbs | Main| I finally have my name on the cover of a book... »

Book Review - Groovy In Action

Category Book Reviews
Scripting languages, although initially derided as "toy languages", have continued to evolve and mature over time.  Now, no serious programmer (in my opinion) would deny that a scripting language can save a ton of time and effort for many programming problems. Groovy In Action by Dierk Konig with Andrew Glover, Paul King, Guillaume Laforge, and Jon Skeet covers the Java scripting language known as Groovy, and does an excellent job in doing so.

Contents:
Your Way to Groovy
Part 1 - The Groovy Language: Overture - The Groovy Basics; The Simple Groovy Datatypes; The Collective Groovy Datatypes; Working With Closures; Groovy Control Structures; Dynamic Object Orientation - Groovy Style
Part 2 - Around The Groovy Library: Working With Builders; Working With The GDK; Database Programming With Groovy; Integrating Groovy; Working With XML
Part 3 - Everyday Groovy: Tips And Tricks; Unit Testing With Groovy; Groovy On Windows; Seeing The Grails Light
Appendix A - Installation And Documentation; Appendix B - Groovy Language Info; Appendix C - GDK API Quick Reference; Appendix D - Cheat Sheets; Index

If you're familiar with the Java language and syntax, then you've already conquered a great deal of what you need to know about Groovy.  The authors show how simple a Groovy script can be, and how much can be accomplished in many fewer lines than an equivalent Java program.  In part 1, you get the mental framework for how Groovy works, the model for scripts, and many examples of code that cover a broad spectrum of what's possible.  Part 2 goes a bit more into the guts of the language, giving you a reference guide to the different language features.  This is where you'll spend a lot of time as you start to work with the language and explore the various methods and properties that are available.  And finally, the last part shows real-life solutions and scenarios that you can use to either learn how to solve your particular problem or get ideas on solutions you may not have thought about before.  When you look at this as a combination tutorial/reference/cookbook title all in a single volume, you start to grasp what a great job they did...

I was especially intrigued with the integration material.  Compiled Groovy scripts are actually turned into Java bytecode the same as a compiled Java program would be.  With the addition of the Groovy jar files into your project, you can use the scripts in your own programs with no additional effort.  I'm really wondering if adding the Groovy jar files to a Domino application would allow you to use Groovy scripts for agents.  If so, that gives me a powerful new addition to the Domino development toolbox.  Now if I can only find some time to give it a try...

It goes without saying that if you're interested in Groovy, you'll want this book.  And if you're interested in leveraging your Java knowledge into a whole new area, I'd completely recommend checking this out.  It's very good...

Comments

Gravatar Image1 - Is this book still up to date? Groovy is evolving quickly.

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