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Reporting errors in the K&B book, and where/whom to address them.

Eduardo Mendes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 30, 2008
Posts: 30
Hi everyone,

this post comes in sequence of other three posts I have submitted in this forum, about potential errors/inconsistencies found in the K&B book.

First of all, I would like to leave here my compliments and thanks to Kathy and Bert, for having made one of the best Java books I have read, covering in a very interesting and motivating way the scope of the SCJP5 exam. Now that I am getting to the last few pages of it, I can already say - regardless of whether I pass the exam or not - it was a joy to read it, and I have learned a lot.

And this brings me to the next topic. Being this indeed a great book, and so widely and fairly accepted as, if not the best, certainly one of the best to follow for the SCJP5 exam, I take all its content (even the comments in the provided answers) very seriously. Like me, many others, and therefore Bert is so right in saying that this book is subject to a much higher scrutinity than most other books. In some cases, it is indeed very difficult to just ignore an apparent inconsistency/error in the book, jumping to the next page, because the SCJP5 exam is all about (very) small details. One can program Java its whole life, and still fail in the exam because of those details. "What if I get two/three questions like this in the exam, and I fail because I did not quite digest this part very well? Is the book wrong? Is it me that hasn't understood it right?" You get the picture.

Therefore, all I would like to know is, whom should I send a message when I think I found an error in the book, and is it fair to assume that that message will be carefully looked at, and will I get an answer in reasonable time (24hour)?

I understand there is a danger that suddenly lots of people, even not so well prepared (including me, potentially, who knows), will start littering that mailbox making it difficult to manage. But could we not find a way of filtering this out somehow, from the more "generic" "Programmer Certification (SCJP)" forum? What I have experienced so far, was that, despite me having submitted my topics as advised, in the Errata page, by Bert, they did not get the attention of any of the authors, and therefore there was no conclusion for them, despite the much appreciated participation of other forum members one or two times.

Also, I do appreciate that this site is managed all by volunteers. But, given the importance it has earned in the Java world, and particularly within the group of professionals studying hard for the exam, should there not be a group of persons that would commit themselves and take over responsibility for making sure that e.g. issues related with the Errata of the SCJP5 book are not dropped from the top of the table untill they have been resolved, either by being incorporated in the "official" errata, or by telling the candidate raising the topic to study harder?

One other thing, we are all living in a "virtual" sub-world here, where no one knows each other (at least very few do) and therefore it is so easy not only to misinterpret other people's postings, but also to respond in a way that one usually wouldn't do, were we all sitting in the same office. Sometimes we do come across with some harsh comments here and there. I will do my best not to make that mistake, and would be nice to count on the same attitude from everyone else.

A very long posting, but I do hope there will be some positive conclusions drawn out of it. I will keep on coming here to learn, and hopefully to help other members when I feel I can as well.

Best wishes to all,
Eduardo
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
Bartender

Joined: Oct 02, 2003
Posts: 11314
    
  16

I would look in the book itself for a contact address, or the publishers web site. i think 24 hour is a little unreasonable.

You are, of course, welcome to post questions here. Bert often checks this forum, and chimes in when he can, but he DOES have other things going on in his life.

Have you also checked the publishers web site for an official 'errata' list? This site is under no obligation to maintain such a list. I'm not trying to be mean or sound angry... I just think you have a misunderstand of what we are about here. Sure Bert (and Kathy sometimes) will drop in. Sure, we'll answers questions when we can. But everyone here devotes what time they have.

should there not be a group of persons that would commit themselves and take over responsibility for making sure that e.g. issues related with the Errata of the SCJP5 book are not dropped from the top of the table untill they have been resolved


I'd be happy to do that - when I start getting paid a salary to do so that is appropriate for the amount of work you are suggesting. Again, that's why i'm suggesting you go to the publisher's site. They DO have people who's job it is to maintain the errata for their books.


There are only two hard things in computer science: cache invalidation, naming things, and off-by-one errors
Eduardo Mendes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 30, 2008
Posts: 30
Thanks Fred, I think I did misunderstand what we are about here. No other comments to the remaining content in your last post...
Eduardo Mendes
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 30, 2008
Posts: 30
Just in case Bert happens to open this topic:

"What I'd like to request is that if you have a doubt about this errata list or if you think you've found another error, please start another thread and include "Doubt in K&B SCJP 5: topic _____" in the Subject of the thread. That way we can all discuss it and decide whether it's a real errata or not."

Bert, am having trouble getting at least two of the topics I have raised this way, to be looked at by someone with authority to judge what to do about them. So far, it seems they indeed legitimately raise two errors in the book.

In case you have the chance to look at that, I would very much appreciate your feedback.

http://www.coderanch.com/t/268825/java-programmer-SCJP/certification/SCJP-Chapter-Threads

http://www.coderanch.com/t/268826/java-programmer-SCJP/certification/SCJP-Chapter-Threads

Many thanks,
Eduardo
 
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