This week's book giveaway is in the General Computing forum. We're giving away four copies of Arduino in Action and have Martin Evans, Joshua Noble, and Jordan Hochenbaum on-line! See this thread for details.
Yeah, I do. When I wrote this text, I didn't want to have to explain what an "If" statement is because it would double the size of it. So I qualified the readers by stipulating that they had to be familiar with some other programming language -- any programming language -- and not be complete novices new to programming.
So, your class of IT professionals re-tooling from mainframes to web systems are RIGHT in the vanguard of the target audience I had in mind.
Other things, I do explain from first principles. Your IT folks have probably not met Object Oriented Programming before. So I take the time to spell it out completely (it sounds scary to people new to OOP, but it is based on a few straightforward principles). Likewise the concept of "types" is important, so I go through that at a gentle pace.
I tried hard to include things that are popular with teachers, too. Things like including a range of assignments at the end of many of the chapters. Keen students can work through them, or teachers can explicitly set the homework.
A few people seem to write books to demonstrate how clever they are (I got heartily sick of those kind of books in college). My approach is different - I want to spell things out in simple terms and relate it to other material people are already familiar with. Just Java is an example of that.
By the way, my own background includes a long spell in IT - it's the bread-and-butter of the computer industry, so I have something important in common with your class members.
Author of <a href="http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0131482114/ref=jranch-20" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Just Java(TM) 2 (6th Edition)</a>
Joined: Feb 11, 2004
Thanks for your quick response. I'll buy a copy of the book (if I don't win a copy) and review it with an eye to using it in my next class.