Book Review: PHP 5 Social Networking
Honestly, I think they should rename this book. Yes, it allows you to learn how to create a “social network” (ie. users, profilers, events, status stream). But it also gives you a lot more programming information than what you might expect. I hope that the people who are trying to learn PHP aren’t too mislead by the title to end up missing out on this book.
For example, in the first chapter, you are getting familiar with MVC and 3 other design patterns.
The biggest surprise in the book is in Chapter 13 – Marketing, SEO, User Retention, and Monetization Strategies. A lot of people may already be familiar with the marketing and seo sections, but the user retention part in this chapter really caught my attention. It discusses how to keep users coming back. What is especially great about this chapter is that the strategies offered fit most websites/web applications.
The closing chapter is Chapter 14 – Planning for Growth. I agree that one shouldn’t worry about scaling while building the product (you can also find this tip in other books). It’s more important to keep in mind the potential to be faced with decisions that can affect you in the long-run and are expensive to change.
In this chapter, the author also writes about code and server performance, scaling, caching, NoSQL and more.
There is no in-depth information about those subjects, but there is still more than enough information to get you thinking and allow you to know what to look for when the subject arises. The chapter gives you information about tools you should be familiar with, even if you don’t deal with any issues at the moment.
In conclusion, the chapters are really clear and well-structured. It provides a step-by-step guide on how to create a social network.
After each chapter, you will get closer and closer to a decent social networking site.