:: thoughts on team system and more RSS 2.0
# Tuesday, 02 August 2005

I've finally finished reading the Indigo book by David Pallmann. In summary a good introduction piece and the book really helps to fill some of the gaps I got from just reading the SDK and playing with the samples. The book could have more in-depth details instead of the sometimes lengthy listings of properties.

I liked the way the author mixed text with examples. The walk-through exercise in each chapter felt effective as well, but may not be that useful to someone that has more than a basic understanding of Indigo (and has worked with the SDK samples). Perhaps it is possible to make the samples a bit less verbose (refactoring, please).

Chapters 1-2 are good intros. Not much more than the SDK docs but a good start.

Chapters 3-7 and 9 are really good and in themselves worth buying the book for. Goes through the programming model, contract, client and server programming etc.

Chapter 8 on security: I was expecting more of this chapter. It goes trough the basics well enough but I had hoped for more examples on how to implement security solutions (certificate management, role based security etc).

Chapter 10 on hosting was a bit thin, but I realize that there isn’t that much more to say about hosting. Since you’ve dealt with configuration earlier what is left is only the different hosting mechanisms. With IIS7 I guess there will be more options. Maybe a couple of more lines on how “RunOnUIThread=true” affects Windows clients could be useful so that the reader understands why this is important.

The final chapters on management, deployment and troubleshooting are also good but definatly on the short side. Could perhaps be joined to one chapter? 

In the end there are a couple of case-studies, which is nice as a complement to the shorter samples in the SDK.

Why were the appendices not included in the book? They must are short enough to be in the book, aren’t they?

For IIS hosting, the .svc files doesn’t have to include the Language tag. It may seem a bit confusing since the services are implemented in separate assemblies.

The proxy close/dispose recommendations in the book are a bit vague and sometimes the examples are a bit misleading. I think the book could benefit from a clear discussion (in a sidebar or so) about the using/close/dispose principle for the Indigo proxies. But I also understand that this is a feature that is being reviewed for beta 2 so maybe the outcome of that will be totally different.

The samples and exercises works well as a complement to the chapter text. They could perhaps be re-factored to be a bit more concise (some examples are very verbose which almost makes it difficult to keep the thread) and the structure is very similar between chapters. For good and bad...

The book unfortunately has a number of annoying errors. Most of them are small but it kept me having to switch between the book, the SDK and the infamous Reflector to be sure I understood each concept correctly. I need to be sure that the content in a book is accurate and usually MS Press books have very few errors in them. But of course this is a beta book that needed to come out early.

To sum up - a good first book on Indigo and definately worth reading. Go get it! http://www.microsoft.com/MSPress/books/7703.asp

Tuesday, 02 August 2005 21:03:26 (W. Europe Standard Time, UTC+01:00)  #    -
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Mathias Olausson
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