We have some big news for you today: to celebrate the release of Meteor 1.0, we’re making the first eight chapters of Discover Meteor available for free!

Just connect with your Meteor Developer Account to access them, or read on to learn more about why we’re doing this.

Looking Back

When the Meteor founding team applied to join YCombinator in the summer of 2011, they did so with a travel guide app. They kept working on this initial concept until a few weeks before demo day, before realizing two things: first, their travel app prototype wasn’t as impressive as they had hoped. And second, building that prototype had been far too hard.

Looking around at their fellow batch-mates, they could see team after team struggling with the technical challenges of building modern, multi-platform apps instead of focusing on solving the problem they applied to YC for.

What the world needed wasn’t another travel app, but instead what would become Meteor’s defining tagline: “a better way to build apps”.

The YCombinator class of summer ‘11 with Paul Graham.

A New Phase

It’s now three years later, and as you’ve probably heard Meteor finally just hit 1.0, marking a new phase in its short existence: the “1.0” denomination means that Meteor is officially not just for simple prototypes and quick hacks anymore, but appropriate for real-world, production-ready apps.

Now of course we’ve known this for a while. As part of the Percolate Studio team, my co-author Tom Coleman has built numerous Meteor apps for clients. And I’ve been working hard to make Telescope the best way to quickly launch Hacker News-style communities.

But now the rest of the world knows it too, and we want to welcome it into the growing Meteor community.

Verso, a mobile app built by Percolate Studio

Introducing the Starter Edition

Last year we made our book free for one week-end and got over 10,000 new readers in a few days. So we decided to do it again: for one week, we’re giving away a special version of the book that we call the Starter Edition, containing the first eight chapters (as well as six “sidebar” chapters).

These chapters will take you all the way from installing Meteor and creating the basic structure of your app, to implementing user accounts, permissions, and database interactions.

At the end of these eight chapters, you’ll have a functional Hacker News-type app, with posts and comments:

Microscope, the application you’ll build in Discover Meteor

Once you log in with your Meteor Developer Account, you’ll have access to both an online version of the book, and a PDF download. So get your Starter Edition and start discovering Meteor!

Meteor Day Discount

But wait, there’s more!

To celebrate the upcoming Meteor Day, we’ve also set up a special, site-wide 20% off discount! It’ll be automatically applied if you buy the book (or upgrade) from now until November 6th.

Iron Router 1.0 Update

But wait, there’s more! (oh, did I already say that?)

Hot on the heels of last week’s pre-1.0 update, we’ve also updated the book for the just-released Iron Router 1.0.

Don’t worry though, there aren’t any big changes beyond a slightly new syntax for specifying routes.

Betting On Meteor

We made a bet two years ago that Meteor was worth investing our time and effort into, and more than ever it looks like this bet is going to pay off.

So by making the Starter Edition free, we want to make it as easy as possible for you to make the same bet, too!