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Want to learn Java - need advice!

Jeff McIlvain

Joined: Jan 24, 2001
Posts: 17
Hi everyone,
This is my first time to visit the Java Ranch. I'm extremely anxious to learn Java, but I don't really now where to start. I have a very, very limited background in C++. Most of my programming experience has been with VB. My goal is to pass the SCJP so that I can move on to better opportunities.
So far I've started to read Bruce Eckel's Thinking in Java. I'm frustrated right now because I'm really getting bogged down with the first chapter which deals with an introduction to objects. I just can seem to grasp the concept. I've also ordered Just Java 2, and I'm hoping that I'm able to get more out of it.
Anyway, I'm looking for advice and suggestions in regards to the best approach for a beginner to learn Java, and also how I might grasp the concepts of OOD.
Thanks in advance for the help.
[This message has been edited by Jeff McIlvain (edited January 24, 2001).]
Rakesh Sharma
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 29, 2000
Posts: 37
Dear Jeff
You are right that if you start with TIJ, you will not be comfortable. So you can keep is as a second reference book.
Matthew Jones
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 21, 2000
Posts: 68
Objects really are a fundemental concept in OOP, and if you can't get past that, you aren't going to be able to make very efficient use of Java.
Is there anything in particular we can help you with?
Any part you really just don't get?
Cindy Glass
"The Hood"

Joined: Sep 29, 2000
Posts: 8521
To some extent VB has an object approach. There are things called applications, files, worksheets etc. (objects) and they each have certain things that they can do like minimize, open, close etc (methods).
C++ is also object oriented. Perhaps you need a book just on OO before you tackle Java. Check out the book reviews at

"JavaRanch, where the deer and the Certified play" - David O'Meara
Janna Lockhart

Joined: Dec 21, 2000
Posts: 24
I think you may find Just Java 2 a lot like TIJ in that it may not be the best book to begin with. It is a wonderful java book, but not necessarily for absolute beginners (just regular beginners ). My intro to Java class used Java Software Solutions (Lewis & Loftus) but it's pretty dry. Maybe you could ask those in an intro class what book they're using and start there.
[This message has been edited by Janna Lockhart (edited January 24, 2001).]

- Janna
issu sri

Joined: Jan 25, 2001
Posts: 2
I'm also a beginner.we need to be strong enough in C++ to start with java,'cos it is the basis for java.Also 'cos u have exposure to VB u will find Applets & swing & Html to be easy to learn.But start with good books on C++.
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 22, 2008
Posts: 18944
Actually, java was based on oak, not on C++.
kavya krushi
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 25, 2000
Posts: 48
you dont have to know c++ to learn java ... BUt ofcourse you need to understand OOPs Jeff did you get a chance to look at
Java 2 The Complete Reference Third Edition by Patrick Naughton and Herbert Schildt
Its a very good book ... try it out

[This message has been edited by kavya krushi (edited January 25, 2001).]
Randall Twede
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 21, 2000
Posts: 4347

Try some online tutorial before reading Thinking in java. sun has a good one at their site
My first thought on reading Thinking in java was "Im glad I read the tutorial first or I wouldnt know what hes talking about"
java is also based on C++
One could even argue that it is easier to learn java without knowing C++. I had no problem.

Visit my download page
Chuck Lalli

Joined: Jan 06, 2001
Posts: 12
I would recommend "Beginning Java Objects". I found it the best explanation linking Java to OO for a beginner
ryan burgdorfer
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 24, 2001
Posts: 219
The best beginner tutorial I have come across is definitely at

<UL TYPE=SQUARE><I><LI>Ryan Burgdorfer<BR><LI>Java Acolyte</I></UL>
Cindy Glass
"The Hood"

Joined: Sep 29, 2000
Posts: 8521
The Sun tutorial is
I agree. Here's the link:
subject: Want to learn Java - need advice!