Microsoft ASP.NET Coding Strategies with the Microsoft ASP.NET Team
By Matthew Gibbs & Rob Howard
Published by Microsoft Press
With ASP.NET 2.0 right around the corner, there’s a new book out that will give a needed edge to your arsenal of tools with which to draw from for ASP.NET 1.x. While many in the ASP.NET community will be sticking with the first version of Microsoft’s web development platform for some time to come, “Microsoft ASP.NET Coding Strategies with the Microsoft ASP.NET Team” provides a deep, insightful view of architecting, configuring, managing and extending next-gen web applications with ASP.NET.
Still, there are several code examples, albeit in the guise of snippets and clips. Many of those used are cited as being taken straight from the many free ASP.NET projects, like the ASP.NET Forums application, the ASP.NET application blocks and many of the utilities currently used on www.asp.net.
My biggest – and only – criticism of this title is, ironically, its title. Despite what the heading implies, it’s not one of those books with hundreds of free scripts that you can plug into your site. It’s not a gallery of free code you can rip-and-insert into your site like was available in so many ASP 3.0 books. Rather, it provides a fresh, welcome discussion on the inner-workings and processes of ASP.NET behind-the-scenes. And for that, it’s very valuable.
I find it to be a great resource for experienced ASP.NET developers as an architectural guide, more than a code reference, which the title would lead one to believe (at least that’s the first impression I got when I bought the book).
The book’s high points are Rob Howard’s outstanding comprehensive discussion of caching (which is one of the better dialogues available in print), as well as talks about working in the HTTP pipeline, developing custom HTTP handlers, and developing custom server controls.
It also seems that most of the chapters are taken straight from, or based upon, content that already exists on MSDN. While this seems to be a point of contention for many developers, I find that it’s nice to have these helpful articles aggregated in a single bound collection.
At any rate, it’s a good read, and will augment your knowledge of ASP.NET, what it does, how it does it, and how you can get it to work in your web apps.
Jason Salas, MBA, MCP
Web Development Manager / News Anchor
Pacific Telestations, Inc. (dba, "KUAM")
President, .NET User Group of Guam