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Using Headfirst

Christopher Arthur
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 09, 2004
Posts: 149
To those of you who have been using Headfirst EJB,
Have you noticed that the mock exam questions at the end of each chapter sometimes can't be answered from information provided in the chapter or the previous ones, but that additional reading of the EJB 2.0 spec is necessary?
This worries me. Although I don't mind consulting the spec here and there when the questions point to them, my overall plan is not to rely on it heavily. If I study Headfirst and only use the spec when Headfirst gives me a page number to check, am I going to be able to pass the exam? Or do I need to be reading the whole darn spec as well?
Christopher Arthur
Anthony Watson
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 25, 2003
Posts: 327
I also noticed that some of the questions at the end of chapters could not be answered using only the information in the corresponding chapter. It's annoying, but just be patient. By the time you finish the book, you should be able to understand and answer all the end of chapter questions. Then, you can go back and look them over before the real exam. You don't need to read the spec as long as you know what's in HF EJB really well. I read about 5 pages of the spec total, and I got a 95% on the real exam.


Anthony W.<br />MCP, SCJP 1.4, SCJD, SCWCD 1.3, SCWCD 1.4, SCBCD
Andles Jurgen
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 18, 2002
Posts: 67
I am not sure why you even bother with the HeadFirst book - it's not very good on a number of levels. How can you stand all that 'not funny at all' funny stuff scattered all over the place. Let alone the fact that the connection to the actual exam is weak.
It does not do what it claims to do and you will most definitely need more material than this to pass the actual exam. You should never, or rarely, have to consult the specs directly if you have made a good book purchase.
Sorry, I have a passionate dislike for this book!
Andles.
Sekhar Kadiyala
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 17, 2004
Posts: 170
Then what is your suggestion, Andles?
Which book makes a good purchase?


PMP CSQA SCJP SCWCD SCBCD INS 21 INS 23
Vishwa Kumba
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 27, 2003
Posts: 1064
I also noticed that some of the questions at the end of chapters could not be answered using only the information in the corresponding chapter.
- I also agree, there are a few such questions. It would be better if they are moved out to their appropriate chapters.
I am not sure why you even bother with the HeadFirst book - it's not very good on a number of levels.
- Please elaborate the number of levels.
I am sure the authors would be interested to know your views/cons of the book. I know a couple of them already mentioned in the reviews.
For those interested in the reviews......
The amazon rating is 4.5 out of 5.0
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0596005717/qid=1079522191/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/002-1595088-1342446?v=glance&s=books
Rancher's rating is 8 out of 10
http://www.javaranch.com/bunkhouse/JavaBeans.jsp
(scroll down a bit).
How can you stand all that 'not funny at all' funny stuff scattered all over the place.
- Well.....It depends.....EJB is supposed to be a complex subject and this book is meant to be fun to learn EJBs and pass SCBCD exam.In fact the entire Head First Series from OReilly publications follows this pattern. If you a serious type and do not have much inclination towards fun/humour/wit, then I suggest Richard Monsoon Haefel's book or Ed Roman's book and of course, the evergreen EJB Specs! Both are excellent books about EJB, but do not cover the exam objectives though.
What I found most appealing in the HF book is the strong EJB fundamentals which are difficult to grasp by the beginners in the other ejb books.
I love fun and humour so it was a natural inclination for me to like this book
Let alone the fact that the connection to the actual exam is weak.
- I strongly disagree and so would many others in this forum. A lot of people taken the exam and found it very useful for the exam.It closely follows the exam objectives and also provides a mock exam very similar to
the actual exam(except for the number of answers' clues).
It does not do what it claims to do and you will most definitely need more material than this to pass the actual exam.
- May be. I am not so sure. A lot of people here have passed the exam just reading this book and using EJB2.0 spec as a reference.
You should never, or rarely, have to consult the specs directly if you have made a good book purchase.
- I agree. In most technical books, we find ambiguities in the features explained. Most of the times, the authors know the concept but it is their writing skills that lets them down.
Relatively the EJB specs is much easier to read/understand than the other J2EE tech specs.
Sorry, I have a passionate dislike for this book!
- You are the first person, that I have come across disliking this book!
- No worries, there have been people here who have passed the exam reading other books(as above) and the Spec.
MaxPwr Pow
Greenhorn

Joined: Mar 18, 2004
Posts: 14
Actually, I think you want to read the book first time around. then reread it again and do the questions. I agree, some of the questions require knowledge beyond that chapter, but if you look at it from a positive side, it forces you to 'apply' the knowledge from different facets of EJB.
In conjuction with Head First, I also read the EJB spec. I think this is one of the best reading material that you can get knowledge from, in addition to sharing information with people from this group.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: Using Headfirst
 
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