Sign Up! Salesforce Handbook Notification List

8 Nov

We’ve had a lot of people ask when the handbook will be available for purchase, so instead of requiring you to check back frequently, we’ve made a handy-dandy mailing list to keep track of interested people.

Just add your info here and we’ll notify you when the handbook is available.

New Facebook Fan Page

5 Nov

Our Handbook will be released in the next few weeks so we are ramping up our social networking efforts. We just created a new Facebook Fan Page to support the book so hop on over and Like it. More good stuff should be coming out shortly. We plan on releasing some of the community reviews to whet your appetite.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Salesforce-Handbook/166718750019717

Going to the Printer!

29 Oct

Wes and I are finishing up the Handbook this weekend and then it’s off to the printer on Monday morning! It’s been a long and rewarding process fitting the writing of the book in between work and family life. We’ve received some really great quotes and will be publishing them soon as teasers. The Handbook has been received by salesforce.com better than we ever expected!

We may have a special surprise to release on the next couple of days. So stayed tuned.

Out for Review!

1 Oct

We just sent out the (rough) chapters to the first 5 people that signed up earlier on in the week to help in the review process. Sorry if we couldn’t send a copy to you but we had to limit it to 5 since we are short on time. Thanks again for all the help, interest and support.

Provide Content Review & Receive a Free Copy

27 Sep

Wes Nolte and I have been hard at work on the book, really burning the midnight oil. We have a rough-cut of all chapters and Wes has even designed a nifty-looking cover. Our goal is to have the book wrapped up within the next 4-6 weeks, just in time for Dreamforce 10.

We are looking to send out a rough draft of the book to 3-5 people to review to see if we missed anything or should elaborate on certain topics. This is not a line by line, “you missed a comma here” type of review. Just a high level content review. In return we’ll provide you with a free electronic copy of the book complete with both pictures and actual words <g>. We’d like to send the book out later this week and have it returned by next Thursday (Oct 7th) with your comments.

If you can have your comments returned to us by then please a comment with your info below and we’ll add the first 5 people that signup.

Thanks!

Salesforce Handbook v0.1

3 Aug

We’ve been writing up a storm between Jeff and I and are targeting the end of this month for the end of our first draft. Don’t get too excited just yet (a little excitement is certainly allowed though) as after all this furious writing will (undoubtebly) come a lot of furious editing. Timelines put us at the publishers mid-Octoberish and then you’ll be able to get the Salesforce Handbook hot off the presses.

To whet your appetite here’s an excerpt from one of the draft chapters:

The Right Tool for the Right Job

Now that you’re equipped with an overview of how your cloud-based development network might be organized it is important that you learn:

  • Which Force.com developer tools exist
  • When it is appropriate to use specific tools
  • How to use these tools

In this section I will discuss everything you need to create, test and deploy your Force.com code whilst being mindful of the above points. I will also touch on desktop applications or areas of Force.com that you’ll need when analyzing and monitoring your code, as well as the various support options available to you.

Certain tools overlap several development tasks, and some development tasks overlap each other. It’s for this reason that the first two points are so important when discussing development toolsets.

Developing Applications on the Force.com Platform

Creating code in any modern language is usually done through an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) that offers a number of advantages over coding through a text-editor or something equally archaic. By the end of this section you’ll know which IDEs Force.com offers and when to use each of them.

Force.com App Builder Tools

Salesforce has created one of the best browser-based IDEs in the world and it delivers most, if not all, of the core functionality you’d expect from a desktop-based equivalent. There are two ways to access the IDE, each of which presents a slightly different experience.

The first way involves clicking Setup > Develop as a logged in user. From there you have access to each Force.com area of development, namely:

  • Apex Classes
  • Apex Triggers
  • Components
  • Pages
  • S-Controls

Don’t forget to submit your favourite AppExchange Apps for a chance for them to appear the book. Ciao for now!

Community Blogs about Salesforce.com and the Force.com platform

15 Jun

A number of Salesforce and Force.com community members find it fulfilling to share their experiences and neat tricks with us via the blogosphere. Some of you may not be aware of all the excellent blogs out there so I’d like to post a list of the few that I frequent. In no particular order:

I’d suggest bookmarking them all as each has it’s own pearls of wisdom no matter what area of Salesforce and the Force.com platform you work with. If you have any other contributions please post them in the comments.

Communication is Key

13 May

More than a few people have asked “How will I know when the book is published?” and since the internet is all about communication, we thought we’d broadcast announcements through some of our favourite channels:

  • Google Buzz (salesforcehandbook@gmail.com)

If there are any other channels that you frequent and would like us to include, let us know and we’ll try to accommodate you.

Crowdsourcing the AppExchange

12 May

One of the many topics we are going to cover in the Saleforce Handbook is the AppExchange. There are thousands of app currently on the AppExchange so we want to hear from you which ones are the best.

If you have a favorite app or one you cannot live without, tell us about it. We’ll include it in the Handbook and give you credit for it. Depending on the number of submissions we may not be able to publish all of them in the book but we will certainly include them in the handbook links on delicious.

Submit your reviews here.

Announcing the Salesforce Handbook

10 May

Wes Nolte and I have been blogging for quite sometime and we see a need in the Force.com community. We’ve been blogging lately about advanced topics (jQuery, Twitter, Adobe Air, etc.) but the majority of our traffic is for what you might call our “beginning” topics. Also, if you browse the Salesforce message boards you’ll see that a majority of the questions center around “getting started” (e.g., how do I write this trigger, what is a unit test, how do I make a Visualforce page redirect…).

Salesforce has some great articles at developer.force.com and the Force.com community has chipped in with some excellent content but there is still something missing.  There’s a beginning book for Salesforce users (Salesforce.com for Dummies) and an advanced Force.com development book (Development with the Force.com Platform) but there is no comprehensive guide for analysts and developers just coming on to the platform. This is the niche that Wes and I want to fill with our new book:

The Salesforce Handbook
A newcomer’s guide to building applications on Salesforce.com and the Force.com Platform

We are targeting this book for business owners, analysts and developers  just getting started. Just think of all the new Vmforce Java developers that will be investigating the Force.com platform in the coming months! So if your boss walks into your office and says, “Let’s look at this Salesforce.com thing and see if we can build something”. We want this to be a reference that you can pick up and essentially find out everything you need to know about Salesforce from a high level with links to other articles, sample code, blogs, Salesforce docs, etc. that interest you.

We plan on writing on a wide array of topics and not delving too deeply into any one aspect. We’ll be publishing the table of contents shortly but we’ll be covering as much as possible including tools, declarative development, security, reporting, Apex, workflow, integration with external applications, data loading and much, much more.

We have been working on the book for a while now and hope to release it in the next 2-3 months. We are self-publishing it with Lulu and it will be available in paperback and digital versions. No idea about a price yet.

Drop us a line if you have any questions or comments.