I know you've heard of my dotProject Manual – currently approaching its third edition – but did you know there's an actual dotProject Book? Yes, it's an honest real paper book by Lee Jordan. I heard about it at the MySQL Conference in April and had seen the table of contents but as of this past Friday, I happen to own a copy through the generousity of the publishers. Ironic that… Regardless, i plan to offer a full review in the next week or two – lots of disclaimers in that one – but after the storm of attention this weekend, I thought I would address some quick first impressions.
First, it's about $4 less than the dotProject Manual. Not a huge deal, but noted regardless because it's an actual printed book. I've worked and talked with numerous technical publishers and authors in the past few months and margins are already razor thin for many titles, I can't image what they look like for this one.
Second, despite that the book was released last month – about two weeks ago – it's already out of date. It mentions 2.1rc1 (released in February) in a number of places but it makes no reference to 2.1rc2 which was also two weeks ago. I don't see this as a huge drawback depending on their printing run. If they printed 500 copies and they don't sell them by the time we release 2.9, some buyers will get a grossly out of date version. Alternatively, if they have a Print-on-Demand setup, then this shouldn't be an issue.
Third and finally, eek! She recommends the Backup Module as something useful. Unfortunately, it's not. It's bad and tends to not work. Even worse, if you try to backup and restore, the damage it will do to your dotProejct installation is massive and can only be repaired by restoring the database from the ground up. Under no circumstances should you use the Backup Module for anything other than inflicting mental torture on your project team. And I believe that's illegal under the Geneva Convention. Please, just do a mysqldump. Backing up your dotProject installation is a System Administrator task, not a Project Manager task.
Stay tuned for further discussion…