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New to java and need help getting started

Jim Strickland
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 19, 2005
Posts: 15
Hello, subject says it all.

I need very best book to learn from. If possible it should come with a CD-Rom with an environment to code, debug, and compile with.

What free, or almost free, environment can I download to develop my java applications?

Thanks for the help.

I find all the information on the web daunting. I can't really find a single place for a beginner to start learning about Java, and how to set up my computer to do the programming.
Michael Dunn
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 09, 2003
Posts: 4632
http://mindprod.com/jgloss/gettingstarted.html
Tony Morris
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 24, 2003
Posts: 1608
Most beginners find Thinking in Java, by Bruce Eckel to be a good point to start.

http://www.mindview.net/Books/TIJ/


Tony Morris
Java Q&A (FAQ, Trivia)
Jim Strickland
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 19, 2005
Posts: 15
My thanks for your help. After reading and trying things out a litte more, I believe what I'm looking for is a good IDE. I believe an IDE is an independent development environment, which can help you compile, edit, debug, etc. So I don't have to use notepad to edit, the cmd prompt to compile, etc.

Does an IDE come with my 1.4 SDK download and install I've put on my computer and I'm just to ignorant to find it? Is there an widely used and accepted IDE that most people use? Will I need a book on any IDE I finally settle on to use?

Thanks again.
jayram joshi
Greenhorn

Joined: Aug 05, 2000
Posts: 23
Couple of good open source IDEs :

Eclipse
Netbeans
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 40052
    
  28
I prefer Eclipse to NetBeans. You have to install NetBeans, which is usually available with your JDK download. To run Eclipse, just unzip the files, put them in a safe place, find the eclpise.exe file, which has a blue globe as its icon, and double-click that. You can drag-and-drop the globe onto your desktop and use it as a shortcut.
There are Eclipse and NetBeans books available, but I haven't tried any. There are brief introductions to NetBeans and Eclipse on http://users.drew.edu/bburd/BeginProg2/index.html
You may find it easier to use an editor rather than an IDE; my favourite editor is JCreatorLE.
Fortunately all these resources appear to be available free of charge.
CR
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8883
    
    5
Hey beginner jim jim,

First off, I have to put on my moderator's hat and ask you to update your display name. We work really hard to keep JavaRanch friendly, and we've found that if people use their real names things tend to stay a lot friendlier.

Second, we really recommend that you do in fact start with a text editior and compiling from the command line. If you start with an IDE you will almost certainly skip learning some very important foundational stuff that will come back to bite you later on. Our experience is that starting out with an IDE too soon is really counter productive in the long run.

That said, if you simply MUST start with an IDE you might look at "BlueJ" - it'll help you with both Java, and with object oriented principles - which you also don't want to put off learning!

hth,

Bert


Spot false dilemmas now, ask me how!
(If you're not on the edge, you're taking up too much room.)
marc weber
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 31, 2004
Posts: 11343

Originally posted by Bert Bates:
...we really recommend that you do in fact start with a text editior and compiling from the command line. If you start with an IDE you will almost certainly skip learning some very important foundational stuff that will come back to bite you later on. Our experience is that starting out with an IDE too soon is really counter productive in the long run...

Absolutely! Another thing to consider is that IDEs have their own learning curve. And if you're new to Java, configuring the IDE to do what you (think you) want it to do can be a frustrating experience.


"We're kind of on the level of crossword puzzle writers... And no one ever goes to them and gives them an award." ~Joe Strummer
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Jim Strickland
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 19, 2005
Posts: 15
Test to see if my displayed name is changed per the moderator request.
Jim Strickland
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 19, 2005
Posts: 15
Well, I can get behind not using an IDE from the start, but I can't get behind using just a text editor. I almost cry whenever I start up Notepad it does so little for me.

Is there some sort of Java editor out there that will help me with Java syntax and formatting of the code I'm putting together, and will give me hints about what went wrong on a compile, but won't do all the project/file/path management for me?
Jeff Albertson
Ranch Hand

Joined: Sep 16, 2005
Posts: 1780
TextPad is an editor that will do syntax coloring and capture compiler error messages
in a window so that you can double-click on then to jump to that line in
your source code. There can be menu items for compiling (Ctrl 1) and running (Ctrl 2) Java.
It doesn't have code completion, however. I think that is what you meant by hints.


There is no emoticon for what I am feeling!
Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9053
    
  12
I used UltraEdit and TextPad very successfully for quite a while. VisualSlickEdit is also very good, but much more expensive.

I not quite sure what you mean by "will give me hints about what went wrong on a compile". The compiler will give you hints as well as line numbers where it thinks the problems are.


JavaBeginnersFaq
"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; that's why they call it the present." Eleanor Roosevelt
Jim Strickland
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 19, 2005
Posts: 15
Originally posted by Jeff Albrechtsen:
TextPad is an editor that will do syntax coloring and capture compiler error messages
in a window so that you can double-click on then to jump to that line in
your source code. There can be menu items for compiling (Ctrl 1) and running (Ctrl 2) Java.
It doesn't have code completion, however. I think that is what you meant by hints.


I downloaded TextPad and it does seem pretty nice. I noticed though that it doesn't indent the same as the ranches Chickin Coop programming style. Does anyone have any idea how to get TextPad to 'conform'?
Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9053
    
  12
Check out "Configure", "Preferences". You may have to change the settings in "Document Classes", "Java" as well as the more general settings in "General", "File", and/or "Editor".
Jamal Wallace
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 21, 2005
Posts: 1
Hi.

There is a multi-language editor named EditPlus. I found it very good and now all my friends are using it. Its really nice to be able to do all, java, jsp, html and even c and c++ on the same editor...
Lynn DePriest
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 21, 2005
Posts: 7
I just wanted to throw my 2 cents in here and say that as far as books go, Head First Java seems to be a real winner! I'm not very far into it yet, but I already feel as though I've gotten a lot out of the book. The best and most important thing that I like about the book is that it is not boring! Most tech books are like pounding your head against a brick wall (at least for me anyway). This one is as entertaining as it is informative. I really like that.


Lynn DePriest<br /> <br />Imagination bridges the gap between ignorance and understanding!
Ben Wood
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 14, 2001
Posts: 342
Jim,

Just thought I would add a note about object orientation when learning Java. Make sure you spend as much time getting your head round those concepts as you do figuring out code/syntax. When I was learning I spent the first few months worrying about syntax and writing procedural code and can see now that I didn't put enough effort into learning the OO concepts at that time.

Also, when reading about things OO (encapsulation, interfaces, polymorphism, inheritance) be wary as a lot of resources plug the inheritance side of things when encapsulation and polymorphism are arguably more key concepts.


SCJP 1.4, www.gsi3d.org.uk
Allion Salvador
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 15, 2005
Posts: 49
Jim, there's also a special text editor called JEdit. It highlights all the keywords and automatically indents your code. Also, Sun has an IDE called Java Studio Creator thats free.


Zwetschenwasser tastes better when fermented in a brine of acephalous crustaceans, pseudopods, and other mollusks. It goes quite well with gnocchi and mole.
Allion Salvador
Ranch Hand

Joined: Nov 15, 2005
Posts: 49
here's the link for JEdit!
Nilton Andrade
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 24, 2005
Posts: 1
Why dont u try using Ready To Program ... it's much more efficente than those others TextEditor and plus it Compiles the algorithm
i relly dont got the link here but you could search for it.
look for Ready To Program
Isa Bllaca
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 26, 2005
Posts: 1
Jim, this is the best book ever!
"Programming Principles in Java" by David Schmidt
take a look
http://www.cis.ksu.edu/~schmidt/CIS200/
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
 
subject: New to java and need help getting started