High Performance Web Sites Essential Knowledge for Front-End Engineers By Steve Souders

This is a short book with a long title, but don’t let the number of pages fool you. This title packs a ton of useful information for font end web developers.

Steve Souders lays out his rules for high-performance websites and not a character is wasted. Inside these 14 rules are the street-smarts from which any front end developer can seriously benefit.  Some of these rules may be less newsworthy than others. For example, using CSS Sprites and making fewer HTTP GET requests may not be a complete revelation to some. But there are more high-performance techniques that you may not be aware of. There is particularly detailed coverage of Expires Headers and ETags, the surprising subtleties of which can greatly affect performance. Other notable areas of interest are reducing DNS lookups, minifying javascript and the advantages of CDNs.

An impressive aspect of this book is the use of graphic performance reports, with detailed explanations. Steve Souders does not just spew theory. In most cases, he uses the top 10 websites and performs speed tests using recent tools of the trade. In each case, there is an easy-to-understand graphic that makes it very simple to see how a particular website performs, with respect to component downloads and page rendering. With every graphic report there is a full play-by-play that leaves nothing to the imagination.

Summary: For even the most casual web developer, this knowledge truly is essential.

  • Title: High Performance Web Sites: Essential Knowledge for Front-End Engineers
  • Author: Steve Souders
  • Number of pages: 176
  • Publisher: O’Reilly Media
  • Published Date: September 18, 2007 (1st edition)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780596529307
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596529307