Review: Developing Facebook Platform Applications with Rails by Michael J. Mangino

I spent most of this past weekend working through Michael J. Mangino’s book “Developing Facebook Platform Applications with Rails“(DFPAWR) from the Pragmatic Programmers. I’ve been interested in the facebook platform for awhile but the resources have mostly fallen into two categories: 1) Overly simple Hello World programs in PHP or 2) Exhaustive api references.

DFPAWR, which is still in Beta, walks the reader through creating a full application from start to finish using Chad Fowler’s excellent Facebooker library for Rails. While this is definietly a Rails-centric book, the author provides the underlying FBML code first and then explains how to achieve the same effect using the simplified syntax of the Facebooker library.

It should be noted that the book assumes a strong understanding of the Rails framework. However, this assumption is one of the book’s biggest strengths. DFPAWR is a perfect example of how fast author and reader can hit the ground running when they already speak the same language. Michael Mangino clearly knows his subject matter and readily points out many of the common pitfalls, security concerns, and Facebook terms of use issues (i.e. you can’t store a username in a local database) that those new to the platform would have to stumble through themselves.

It’s a great resource for Rails developers looking to get started on Facebook apps, and with mod_rails on the way it’s never been easier.

Comments

    Mike Mangino |

    Thanks for the great review. I hope the final version worked well for you. Would you be willing to post this review on Amazon as well?

    Do you have any Facebook apps built on Facebooker? I’m trying to start a list of the top Facebooker apps.

    Mike