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The ACCU passes on review copies of computer books to its members for them to review. The result is a large, high quality collection of book reviews by programmers, for programmers. Currently there are 1918 reviews in the database and more every month.
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Title:
Swing Hacks
Author:
Joshua Marinacci and Chris Adamson
ISBN:
0-596-00907-0
Publisher:
O'Reilly
Pages:
519
Price:
Reviewer:
Paul Thomas
Subject:
java;swing;hacks
Appeared in:
18-6

Despite myself, I really like this book. The name might not inspire confidence in project managers, but it's deceptive. Like the cookbook format, it consists of 100 sections devoted to recipes or "hacks". Many are simply explanations of how to use the Swing framework in the way it was intended but some are truly evil hacks that use reflection techniques to delve into internal object structure. All of them help the reader gain a deep understanding of the Swing framework and advanced Java techniques.

This isn't the kind of book you can simply read end-to-end (I did try). The titles are just clear enough that you might be able to find information when you are stuck with a problem. Really though, this is one to keep nearby for whenever you have the spare time. I freely confess that I haven't read it all, but I'm dipping into it every now and then and it still has masses to offer.

If there's one problem with the book, it's that I am now tempted to waste project time adding translucent drag-and-drop where it isn't needed. But if you have enough self control, you'll find something that will make life easier on just about every project. If you work with Swing, you NEED this book.