PSA on Rock & Roll with Ember Octane

06 January 2020

tl;dr: I'm going to release an Octane version of the Rock and Roll with Ember book, rewriting a significant part of it. If you've bought the current book in 2020, you'll be upgraded for free. If you bought it earlier, you'll only have to pay an upgrade fee, around 50% of the full price. I'll try to do it by the end of the spring.

Ember Octane shipped in 3.15 towards the end of last year so it feels natural that I should tell you about my plans for Rock & Roll with Ember with regards to Octane. Once it came out, people started asking me –with very good reason– whether the book will be updated to Octane. I had a few ideas but I realized I need to make them public.

What's Octane?

Octane is the first edition of Ember, a set of features that together changes what it means to develop an Ember app.

Due to Ember's 6-week release cycle and its commitment to semantic versioning (and keeping backwards compatibility), there's no need to publish a new major version of the framework even if the "programming idioms" –and syntax– have substantially shifted. Ember Octane is a great case in point: it shipped in 3.15, a minor version. Even saying Ember Octane shipped in a specific version is inaccurate: the set of features comprising what we simply call "Octane" have been gradually added to stable versions of the framework since 3.10 (possibly even sooner). 3.15 was the milestone when the last of these features was deemed stable enough.

So why am I telling you all this?

The Rock & Roll guarantee

The promise of the Rock & Roll with Ember book is that if you buy the book once you get all of the updates until the next major version comes out. The last major version was version 3 and editions (the first of which is Octane) weren't conceived. If one uses the full set of Octane features, it's quite a different experience from the pre-Octane times. Developer ergonomics have gotten better and changes in the tenets of the programming model also changes how you approach or implement typical problems.

It's not completely different but it's different enough to affect the most idiomatic way to build the Rock & Roll app – if I were to do it on Octane. Consequently, I'd also change how I write the book, both at a high– and a low level – I'd put emphasis on different things, possibly changing chapter orders, and use different primitives to implement features.

Rock & Roll on Ember Octane

So I plan to do exactly that. I'll overhaul the current app and build it on Octane which also means that I'll rewrite a large part of the book. Just as there was a paid upgrade between version 2 and 3, this will be a paid upgrade. There'll be a large discount for those who own a copy of the current book, RaRwE 3 (just as there was when upgrading from RaRwE 2 to 3).

For all customers, I intend to keep both the new and upgrade pricing of the Octane edition the same ($39 new, 50% discount for existing customer). So the upgrade pricing for existing customers will remain at around $20 (as before) for the fully revised “Octane” edition.

However, starting 2020/01/01, the Octane upgrade is free to new buyers. So, if you need to get started on Ember now, you can start with the current edition of Rock and Roll with Ember. Then, when the Octane edition releases, you’ll get the new edition for free automatically with your purchase.

If you have any questions about the update, please let me know.

I'm wary to commit to a publication date, but I think I should be able to publish it by the late spring. I know it's still quite some way off but that's the date I'm comfortable with.

What about the free minor updates?

I'll publish the minor updates for free until version 4, just as before. Octane features will appear in the minor updates, too. Actually, a good deal of Octane idioms have already made their way to the current version. The main difference is that the current book will not receive the overhaul that Rock and Roll on Octane will.

This also reminds me, I'm long overdue on the 3.15 update... I should publish it pretty soon, probably this week.

Stay in the loop

Last, but not least, if you're interested to learn when the book launches (and further details about how the book progresses, plus my usual Ember posts and opinions), please sign up below.

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