File APIs for Java Developers
Manipulate DOC, XLS, PPT, PDF and many others from your application.
The moose likes Beginning Java and the fly likes Best Java Source Big Moose Saloon
  Search | Java FAQ | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies
Register / Login
JavaRanch » Java Forums » Java » Beginning Java
Bookmark "Best Java Source" Watch "Best Java Source" New topic

Best Java Source

Aum Tao
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 14, 2006
Posts: 210
I would like to know your comments regarding the following for learning java, and which one should be preferred according to your experience.

VTC ( video tutorials)
Java in a Nutshell
Head First Java
Thinking in Java
Keystones ( video tutorials)
The Complete Reference for Java

I have already searched the forum for some reccomendations. However, I wanted to have some feedback about the above ones.
Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
[ February 16, 2006: Message edited by: Aum Tao ]

SCJP 1.4 85%
Svend Rost
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 23, 2002
Posts: 904
Hi Aum,

I havn't read any of the books, so I cant really give you an input on
that, but did you look in the JavaRanch's Bunk House ?
marc weber

Joined: Aug 31, 2004
Posts: 11343

From the above list, I am familiar with Head First Java and Thinking in Java, both of which are excellent books. If you are a true beginner, then you will probably find Head First to be more accessible.

Also note that the current edition of Head First is already updated for Java 5.0. An updated edition of Thinking in Java is expected this month, but I don't think it's out yet.

"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
Chengwei Lee
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 02, 2004
Posts: 884
I would read as widely as possible. For a start, the free online tutorial at Sun, then probably move on to Head First Java (2nd Ed), and with that foundation, read whatever online articles (Javaworld, Java Tech Tips newsletters) that are available. Would be good if you could read Effective Java & Robust Java.

SCJP 1.4 * SCWCD 1.4 * SCBCD 1.3 * SCJA 1.0 * TOGAF 8
Aum Tao
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 14, 2006
Posts: 210
Thanks for your feedback.
Zip Ped
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 26, 2005
Posts: 336
I would recommend the book rogrammer's guide to java certification by Mughal A Khalid and Rolf W Rasmussen. Its a complete core java book and you can prepare yourself for the SCJP exam too.
Tim McGuire
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 30, 2003
Posts: 820

Java in a Nutshell won't be very helpful for learning. it is more of a reference. Get a java book that has exercises in the back of each chapter. ( as Thinking in Java and Java Examples in a Nutshell )
The Head First books are great, but I haven't looked at Head First Java yet.

Try the cattle drive here on javaranch.
I didn't really learn until I got started on my own projects and HAD to find out how to do something. So,just dive in by saying, " I want to write a program that does x " and starting out.
Steve Stanicki

Joined: Sep 24, 2005
Posts: 23
If you would like to look at Thinking In Java, the author has put it online for free at:

Good Luck,
Bob Beerbower
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jun 06, 2001
Posts: 32
Originally posted by Steve Stanicki:
If you would like to look at Thinking In Java, the author has put it online for free at:

Good Luck,

Headfirst and TIJ are both great books, with TIJ being a little harder to read, but going into more detail. Rather then choose between the two, I find that they complement each other pretty well. If I don't quite understand a concept in one, reading the other usually clears it up. The link that Steve has given you will lead you to a free version of TIJ3 which covers JDK 1.4. JDK 1.5 will be covered in TIJ4 which is due out in a week or so. Unfortunately the author has decided not to release TIJ4 in online form, meaning you'll have to buy the book or use TIJ3. Given the amount of effort that Bruce has put into all of the Thinking series, $30.00 or so is a bargin. Amazon has a preorder going on TIJ4 at a pretty reasonable price. I highly recommend both books.

Regards Bob Beerbower
I agree. Here's the link:
subject: Best Java Source
It's not a secret anymore!