This book is a great book for someone who is attempting to learn Web development technologies. There is so much to learn, and the flow of this book provides a great way to get started. I bought a Microsoft book because I am very much interested in learning to develop Web applications using Microsoft tools as my company is moving away from PHP and is using Visual Studio 2012. I have no plans to take the 70-480 exam but I feel that I could pass this exam after reading this book.
To help you understand the contents of this book, the following is a list of the chapters, each having a brief comment.
Chapter 1 Getting Started with Visual Studio 2012 and Blend This chapter is presented as an attempt to help the user create a working environment. Funny thing, although Blend is introduced, it isn't used. I can only guess that the author was trying to be complete about the setup of the environment because Blend installs with Visual Studio Express 2012 for Windows 8.
Chapter 2 Getting Started with HTML5
This chapter covers very basic HTML for the beginner. If you already have some HTML experience, you may choose to skip this chapter.
Chapter 4 Getting Started with CSS3
I found that this chapter was enlightening. I simply didn't understand CSS until I read this chapter. I would like to have seen more media query information, but now that I understand the basics, this shouldn't be too hard to find more information if I need it.
Chapter 5 More HTML5
This is where semantic markup is covered in detail. In addition, many of the new HTML5 tags are covered.
Chapter 7 Working with Forms
This chapter covers the client-side of working with forms and form elements.
Chapter 8 Websites and Services
Chapter 9: Asynchronous Operations
A very nice introduction to asynchronous operations using AJAX, jQuery's promise object, and Web Workers.
Chapter 10 WebSocket Communications
This is another chapter that uses Node.js although Microsoft's SignalR is mentioned. Although it would require the introduction to a .NET language, I would like to have seen some SignalR examples.
Chapter 11: HTML5 Supports Multimedia
This chapter discusses the whole video and audio problem and shows how to use the new video and audio tags to provide the most compatible browser experience.
Chapter 12: Drawing with HTML5
I learned how to use the new canvas tag, this is an intense chapter and I realized that I'm not cut out to write the amount of code that is required to draw hi resolution graphics. For me, this provides a great reference in case I need to draw graphs for work. The second part of this chapter provides an introduction to SVG graphics.
Chapter 13: Drag and Drop
Provides great examples of drag and drop. The practice exercise creates a number scramble game.
Chapter 14: Making your HTML location aware I'm not sure if I'll actually use the information in this chapter. But if you are going to create mobile applications that use your current location to locate nearby locations, or provide map navigation, this chapter will get you started.
Chapter 15: Local Data with Web Storage
This chapter provides an in-depth look at web storage, which can be very useful when you need to store data on the browser's computer.
Chapter 16: Offline Web Applications
An intense examination of the SQL-based database API, and the offline application HTTP cache.
This book contains a lot of very useful information that you can use for developing Web applications. I strongly recommend this book for entry level developers. If you are like me and have some Web development experience, you might skip over some of the basic chapters or use the book as a reference as needed.