Why so quiet, Glen? “Grails In Action” is why…

This blog has been appallingly quiet over the last few weeks, and there’s a simple reason for that: I’m hard at work on “Grails In Action” for Manning. This is my first book project, and I’m working with Peter Ledbrook from G2One (Grails Core committer, GWT Plugin, JSecurity plugin, Profiling plugin) on producing a real “in the trenches” guide to developing Grails applications from scratch.

So What’s in?

Quite a lot. Section One gives you the standard tour: a quickstart primer on Grails, a brushup on Groovy, and we throw together a quick and dirty sample so that Java programmers new to Grails can get a taste of some of the joys that await them.

Section Two we develop some rock solid basics on all the core sections of the technology (but even seasoned guys will probably want to dip into this section from time to time – for example to get up to speed on content negotiation practicalities, the legacy mapping DSL stuff, controller scoping and some other corner cases that you need to know when you need to know). Of course there is complete covering of testing and mocking and all that other agile-y stuff you’ll want to know about.

Section Three we roll into Web2.0 goodness. All the standards are in there: full text search, feeds, charting, reporting, and javascript hocus pocus. We also get into a good coverage of plugin development from the trenches with all the common scenarios you’re likely to run into. You’ll also learn the ins and outs of the Security plugins (Peter wrote the JSecurity plugin!), and get ideas on doing a Web2.0 makeover on your current apps. And you want your app to be a platform, right? So we’ll be giving first class coverage to REST architectures, and you’ll learn enough JSON to get yourself into trouble.

Section Four we get down and dirty with enterprise concerns. In here we fine a complete practitioners guide to deployment lifecycle issues (including per-environment strategies, monitoring and profiling), and probably the most complete coverage of enterprise stuff with Grails that you’re likely to come across (JMX, EJB3, JMS, JNDI and probably a little portlets by then). First class treatment of re-using Spring and Hibernate legacy mappings (along with re-using your current Java code) also should get a Guernsey.

And the demo app?

During the course of the book we’ll work through developing a basic Twitter clone with tons of bells and whistles. We’ll be handling all the basics you’d expect – from the Ajax gear, to the image handling, workflows, feeds, email integration and all that jazz. And then in the enterprise section, we’ll get our hands dirty with MoM (Messaging Oriented Middleware) via JMS, learn a little JMX, a pinch of EJB3, a taste of clustering, have some remoting discussions and have a whole lot of fun doing it.

And when?

Trickier to say, but schedule says sometime just after Christmas. We’re only just getting toward our first milestones (1/3 milestone), so it’s a long way home – and a lot is going to happen in the Grails world between now and then. Stay tuned for updates.

Geez. No wonder I’m tired. I’m really excited about the plan, but now it’s all about executing on it! But it’s going to be a fun book to work on, if nothing else! Gotta go… deadlines are creeping up…

Will keep you all posted…

23 thoughts on “Why so quiet, Glen? “Grails In Action” is why…

  1. Nice! Grails is maturing and it needs to move away from the ‘geting started’ mode. I was wondering recently why Manning didn’t published anything on Grails.

    You’ll sleep when you’re dead, friend! :)

  2. That’s awesome news Glen, keep up posted in the progress. Can’t wait to get it!

  3. Congratulations on the book deal Glen! I’m looking forward to getting a copy hot off the presses.

    Does manning do a soft copy “beta” book so that people can get a sneak preview (and help you QA the book)?

  4. waiting for book from Groovy RockStar!

    In section 4, it would be great to include best practices, example apps & scalability issues (can we build sites of Yahoo! scale with Grails?)

  5. Hi Glen!

    I have been closely watching your blog, but no updates…
    And now really good news! I’m really looking forward to your book!

    Good luck and happy writing!

  6. Exciting stuff! Definitely looking forward to it…

    re: portlets. Has anyone coined ‘Gortlets’ yet? It’s not exactly melodious, but there isn’t much of the Java vocab left that hasn’t been appropriated.

  7. That’s great news — getting impatient to read the book. I already love your podcast and also loved your session (whole 9 yards thingie) at Grails Exchange.

    Good luck with your first book.

  8. I have two things I’d love to see; 1) a treatment of how one can contribute to groovy/grails. For example, I’d love to see or get involved in writing a grails plugin for the Sun Wonderland project but knowing how to get started is a challenge. 2) An overview of IDE and tools support.

    Best of luck with the book,


  9. HI Glenn,

    That is very cool for you – and very cool for the Grails community!

    I just bought one of the other Grails books, and while the content is good, the writing style is typically poor and long winded.

    So, Glenn, please, please don’t let us Aussies (and ‘Canberraeans’) down, please write it properly and please don’t waffle like some American writers.

    May I also suggest that some discussion of design methodology and specifically the capability to support Domain Driven Design would be good.

    .. and best of luck.

  10. Hi Glen!

    I have been closely watching your blog, but no updates…
    And now really good news! I‘m really looking forward to your book!

    Good luck and happy writing!

  11. A twitter clone? really? Darn, and I’m working on one now using grails! Hopefully I’ll have mine done first and deployed and we can compare the different approaches.

    I look forward the book.

  12. This sounds like an excellent book with exactly the sort of material that is missing from most other publications. Our app will be enterprise-scale and will have to integrate with stuff on many levels. It is unfortunate that we will have (hopefully!) finished our Grails app by then, but I will definitely be getting a copy for our development team at work!

  13. If you need help with testing / reviewing work, let me know. I’ve been working with groovy, grails and have done alot of writing / hands-on labs on other Java topics

  14. Awesome!

    I just started with Groovy and Grails and really excited about them both. I’ve been looking for a good Grails book that is up-to-date – but guess it may be worth the wait. I really enjoy most of the In Action books so hoping that the Grails In Action will hold serve.

  15. I like to hear that “Grails in Action” is written. The “action-series” of books is excellent and Grails is one of the most exciting software products I know.

  16. By the time this comes out, I’ll probably be skipping the first bit of the book and getting into the meat of it. I can’t wait to read an expert’s “under the covers” view of a technology that is very sparse on documentation right now. I think without GINA groovy would be a funny little footnote at this point and I am so happy that Manning is giving Grails the same treatment.

  17. amazing. the topics your dropping really make me nervous about your book.
    And how good it is for grail as a platform! Can we pre-order the book already? I’d order 3 right away!
    Take care and have fun!

    Greets from Cologne/Germany,

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