In December 2015, Branko released his book Magento 2 Developer's Guide and somewhere in January, I purchased a copy and had the pleasure of reading it. However, we never wrote up what we liked about it: So here it is, a book review on Branko Ajzeles Magento 2 book. Because we love it!
About Branko Ajzele
I had the pleasure of meeting Branko at the Magento Developers Paradise of April 2016. This #DevParadise was held in Opatija, Croatia, and organized by our friends at Inchoo - and it was an awesome event by the way.
Knowing that Branko was once part of the Inchoo team, I was hoping for him to be there so I could meet him - so he was and so I did.
Branko is known for his past blogs and spreading the word and love of Magento. He has written various books and his Magento 2 Developer's Guide is definitely the best Magento 2 book out there.
Also note worthy, he is currently busy writing a book on modular programming with PHP 7, so make sure to keep track on that!
Setting up Magento 2 for techies
The Magento 2 book covers all of the aspects of Magento 2 development, and obviously it starts with getting a proper development environment running. We have heard many PHP developers already spending too much time on getting their outdated environments up-to-date to meet the M2 requirements. So Branko mentioning Vagrant setups and running Magento 2 on Amazon (EC2, AWS, S3) is definitely worth it.
From there on, the book continues with bits on
composer (to my opinion he could/should have spent a whole chapter on that) and understanding the Magento 2 architecture.
When I explain things on code generation I take it slowly. But Branko dives right into it with chapter 3 to make sure you grasp the flexibility of Magento 2.
The book is really focused on getting developers ready for building Magento 2 modules, so chapter 4 (Models and Collections) jumps right in to explain the setup of a basic module, complete with either a plain table or EAV tables attached to it. Thank god, setting up DB support in a Magento 2 module is simple and to the point, not to be compared with Magento 1 modules.
But still, Branko covers the most important aspects of a module right away.
All aspects covered
What I really like about the book is that it covers basic module development, but does not stop there: Session handling, Dependency Injection, plugin sort ordering, frontend tricks, SOAP calls - it's all there.
Some aspects do need more time to dive into: For instance, unit testing is quickly explained but there are many things to cover when you want to implement PHPUnit or the Magento Testing Framework properly for your code. Still, the book is complete and thorough. It gives you a kickstart when you are just starting with Magento 2, or it confirms what you know already when you have played with Magento 2 for a while already.
Outdated? No, not at all!
While reading through the book, we have found only small things that might be a bit outdated: Some classes that changed location, a lone reference to the outdated
But all in all, the book is up-to-date and a great reference for Magento 2 developers.
Magento 2 is moving fast and so should you.
Learn about Magento 2 now!
After reading the book, you will definitely love and/or appreciate Magento 2 even more. While M2 is only half a year old (at least, when you only follow stable versions), we believe the time is now to focus on Magento 2. Yireo is already focussing heavily on Magento 2 trainings. With Branko's Magento 2 Developer's Guide there really is nothing stopping you from diving into things.
Nothing? Well, of course, you need time.
But investing that time now will make sure you keep ahead of the crowd. And the Branko's book is a vital tool to help you do that!