aspose file tools*
The moose likes Beginning Java and the fly likes Just Java: Best Practices Big Moose Saloon
  Search | Java FAQ | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies
Register / Login
JavaRanch » Java Forums » Java » Beginning Java
Bookmark "Just Java: Best Practices" Watch "Just Java: Best Practices" New topic
Author

Just Java: Best Practices

Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

Peter,

Beginner level books are imfamous for showing you how to do things but because it might be too complex not showing the best way to do things. Therefor, newbies learn a quick almost hack way of throwing together a small application. Every single Swing book I know of comes to mind.

How would you say your book deals with this? Or does it?


GenRocket - Experts at Building Test Data
Peter van der Linden
author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 28, 2004
Posts: 46

How would you say your book deals with this? [trading off simplicity for comprehensiveness]


You raise an excellent point here Gregg, and it touches on the answer I mentioned yesterday
when a forum member asked "How did you choose which 'static' things to put in this chapter,
and which 'static' things to defer?"

I answered that there are several tradeoffs, (just as you are pointing out) and you have to
pay attention to all of them, and not let one specific goal drag you away too far from the
others.

My perspective differs a little from yours - I wouldn't say most of the Swing books suffer
from giving you the basics but not the best practices. Most of the Swing books I have seen
go too far in the other direction - in an effort to write down every nugget of information
that has been hard won, they bloom up into one thousand plus page gigantic volumes.

Tip: When I have a book like that that I want to carry about and read, I take a box cutter
knife, and cut it into several more manageable sections of 250-300 pages. I then
reinforce the binding with duct tape, and viola - a big violin! No, I mean, voila - a series of
much smaller texts that are individually easy to carry around. They look a bit funny on your
bookshelf, but having unworn books on your bookshelf is a sign you didn't need to buy it
in the first place.

So yeah, I acknowledge the issue and say there is no perfect answer. One thing I sometimes
do is explicitly say when there is more to a topic than we touch on. That way the reader
knows that another more specialized book will give additional information. Realistically,
the most we can do with some large libraries (such as the servlet library) is to say "this is
how the mechanics of it work. This is a working example that you can put on your system
and play around with. This is a set of steps and things you need to know." I think most
people will understand that book level treatments, rather than chapter level treatments,
will be able to delve into best practices to greater depth.

I am currently working on a book to bring Windows users to Linux, and I am explicitly
including "sidebars" in there that outline Best Practices. But it is simpler to do in a Linux
book, because many of the practices in the Windows world are so poor. I am thinking of
things like security precautions, and regular backups.

Hope this helps, cheers!

Peter


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>
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

That's great Peter! Thanks for being here this week. Feel free to stick around after the promotion.
Ko Ko Naing
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 08, 2002
Posts: 3178
Originally posted by Peter van der Linden:
You raise an excellent point here Gregg, and it touches on the answer I mentioned yesterday when a forum member asked "How did you choose which 'static' things to put in this chapter, and which 'static' things to defer?"

I answered that there are several tradeoffs, (just as you are pointing out) and you have to pay attention to all of them, and not let one specific goal drag you away too far from the others.

That forum member was me... Gregg, you might want to have a look at this thread Peter provided me with a great explanation about that...
Tip: When I have a book like that that I want to carry about and read, I take a box cutter knife, and cut it into several more manageable sections of 250-300 pages. I then reinforce the binding with duct tape, and viola - a big violin! No, I mean, voila - a series of much smaller texts that are individually easy to carry around. They look a bit funny on your bookshelf, but having unworn books on your bookshelf is a sign you didn't need to buy it in the first place.

Peter, your tip is interesting too... but it's kinda difficult decision for me to tear the book into pieces and make several small parts...


Co-author of SCMAD Exam Guide, Author of JMADPlus
SCJP1.2, CCNA, SCWCD1.4, SCBCD1.3, SCMAD1.0, SCJA1.0, SCJP6.0
Peter van der Linden
author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 28, 2004
Posts: 46
Peter, your tip is interesting too... but it's kinda difficult decision for me to tear the book into pieces and make several small parts..


I appreciate your point of view Ko Ko.

What works best for me is to section the book vertically through the spine,
rather than laterally or vertically across the front... Badda Bing! Thank you! I'll be here all week!
Oh wait - looks like it is the end of the week already!

Cheers,

Peter
Ko Ko Naing
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 08, 2002
Posts: 3178
Originally posted by Peter van der Linden:
Badda Bing! Thank you! I'll be here all week!
Oh wait - looks like it is the end of the week already!

Peter, don't be strange to the Ranch. Even though it's the end of the week, feel free to wander around the Ranch... The Ranch is secure and friendly under the guardianship of sheriffs and bartenders...

We all are happy to have you here...
Jim Yingst
Wanderer
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 30, 2000
Posts: 18671
Yeah, Peter - don't be strange!

Thanks for hanging out here; you're welcome anytime.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: Just Java: Best Practices