Effective Visual Basic: How to Improve Your VB/COM+ Applications

Book Review

Effective Visual Basic: How to Improve Your VB/COM+ Applications
by Joe Hummel and others
Copyright 2001
Addison Wesley

Effective Visual Basic Find out more about this book,
or purchase it, from Amazon.com

If you are a developer who writes Visual Basic code, especially if you use SQL Server as your back-end database, you will want to give this new book a look. The name of the book, Effective Visual Basic: How to Improve Your VB/COM+ Applications, doesn’t really do the book justice. A more appropriate title might be, “Real-World Advice on how to Design and and Write Better VB Programs.” In other words, this book is chock full of real-world, practical advice on how to write VB code. This is not just another how-to book teaching the basics, it covers many advanced, real-world topics that most developers face on a daily basis.

Each chapter is divided into numerous “rules”, such as “Maximize the Potential of VB’s Compile-Time Type Checking,” or “Efficiency Basics: Round-Trips, SQL Statements, and Providers.” Each “rule” is self-contained, and you only need to read those “rules” that are of direct interest to you. Most likely, you will want to read them all.

All the “rules” include plenty of examples are easy to read and follow. Any VB developer should easily find dozens of “rules” that they will find useful and will want to add to their repertoire of VB skills.

Here’s some of what is covered in this book:

  • Shifting from Liberal Arts to Software Engineering

  • Designing, Building, and Working with COM-Based Components

  • MTS, COM+, and VB–The Middle Tier

  • The Web and VB

  • Effective Data Access from VB

I particularly liked the fact that this book included an entire section on data access using VB, emphasizing ways to optimize traffic between VB code and databases, such as SQL Server. This chapter in and of itself makes this book a valuable addition to your VB reference library. (Now if I can only get the VB developers in our company to read the book, a lot of my headaches would go away.)

I highly recommend this book to all VB developers who get their hands dirty with VB on a daily basis. If you are new to VB, you may find some parts of the book hard to follow. But if you have used VB for six months or so, you will find the book easy to understand and follow.




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