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Good Java Book??

Jeremy Parsons
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 74
Hi all,

I've been having a problem learning Java, I started out with the "Java for Dummies", and I learned some basics, then the book trailed off near the end.

I then got the "head first" book. After about a few chapters, they lost me in the way they presented it, as well as the fact you should be familiar with Java before reading it.

Next I just got this past week "Java 5 A Beginner's Tutorial". Needless to say even though they said beginners tutorial, they went from basic to advanced in less than 77 pages, then I got lost again..

My problem is that whether a book has just told me how to do something, or just showed me, but the Dummies book did both which I loved, but only goes but so far into Java..

I've been studying between these books mentioned for a few months and feel lost.. Does anyone have a reccomendation on a good book that starts off to a beginner but advances well??
Barry Gaunt
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 03, 2002
Posts: 7729
My son (then 16) learned how to program with Java from Objects First. I only know the first edition but it looks as if the third edition is going to be at least as good. Because the book is rather expensive, take a look at the contents, you can then see if you can "take it"
[ May 03, 2006: Message edited by: Barry Gaunt ]

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Paras Jain
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 26, 2005
Posts: 137
Hi,
You can start with
The Complete Reference by Patrick Naughton and Herbert Shield.

After that you can refer to Thinking in Java by Bruce Eckel. It is a nice book. It's pdf version is also available on net.


Paras Jain
SCJP 5.0
Justin Fox
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 24, 2006
Posts: 802
the book titled "JAVA SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS, foundations of program design, 4th edition " By: Lewis and Loftus

is a really good book plenty of example and easy explanations

-Justin-


You down with OOP? Yeah you know me!
Jeroen T Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 1847
HF Java doesn't assume you know Java, but it does assume you know what they're teaching in one chapter before moving on to the next.

If you don't look for a book that teaches you something you might want a reference rather than a tutorial.

Dummies books are useless. They make people think they know something when in fact they don't. Just giving examples doesn't teach you anything, you learn things by doing them yourself, which is how the books you dismissed do it.


42
Jeremy Parsons
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 74
I never stated I "just" wanted examples. I also want to know how to do something, but would like to see an example of code "in addition" to the tutorial.

I mean I love hands on, but if I'm just reading and then typing what I see in the book without understanding, I'm really not getting anywhere. I may pick-up a few things here and there, but not much.

Head First Java does assume some experience in the prequsites part.

It states "In this book, we assume you are familiar with some type of programming language".

Knowing a few things in Java didn't really help when I read the head First book.. Perhaps if you've learned all the basics, or want to prepare for a Java test,etc,then the book would be great.

But for an absolute beginner like myself, I didn't find it very helpful..

I need something that shows you Java and really gets in extreme detail in the basics before moving on.

I have never done any type of programming except HTML, which I really don't count as programming.
[ May 04, 2006: Message edited by: Jeremy Bernard ]
M. Bunyard
Greenhorn

Joined: Mar 28, 2006
Posts: 3
I started learning Java from Walter Savitch's, "Java - An introduction to Computer Science and Programming", which takes a detailed approach to the fundamentals of the language and programming logic. The book has good examples that are often written one way and then rewritten to show a more efficient/improved approach. Each chapter has good projects for the reader to write and understand before moving on.

As Paras Jain mentioned, Bruce Eckel's, "Thinking In Java", is a good book, but as others it assumes some previous knowledge. It reviews the basics, but it not nearly as detailed as the Savitch book. It is a great book to get an understanding before researching, plus the previous (3rd edition) is free in PDF format, so taking a look can't hurt.
Justin Fox
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 24, 2006
Posts: 802
the book i referred is pretty good, I've used it the past two semesters in

my college classes.

like i said, it talks about a particular subject in great detail,

For Example: How to print something to the monitor.

it goes over the different ways, and then has examples using those methods.

and it explains what "System.out" means, and what it is..

it a really good book, but i guess its my opinion.

-Justin-
Shaan Shar
Ranch Hand

Joined: Dec 27, 2005
Posts: 1249

Justin
the book i referred is pretty good, I've used it the past two semesters in

my college classes.

like i said, it talks about a particular subject in great detail,

For Example: How to print something to the monitor.

it goes over the different ways, and then has examples using those methods.

and it explains what "System.out" means, and what it is..

it a really good book, but i guess its my opinion.

-Justin-


About which one you are talking could you pls tell the name with author.....

Amir Alagic
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 21, 2006
Posts: 65
I liked Murach�s beginning Java 2 JDK5 (authors: Doug Lowe, Joel Murach, Andrea Steelman), and another good book is Beginning Java Objects from concepts to code (author: Jacqiue Barker - Apress).
[ May 04, 2006: Message edited by: Amir Alagic ]
marc weber
Sheriff

Joined: Aug 31, 2004
Posts: 11343

No matter which book you use, you are going to find some speed bumps. These are different for every reader -- one person might need more detail about what static means, while another might need more detail about protected access or polymorphism. In any case, it's doubtful that any one book will be able to present everything at the level of detail required by any particular reader.

So maybe you can get the additional help you need through these boards. Can you tell us where exactly you're getting stuck? What exactly doesn't make sense?

You could post something like: "The book says _______, so I thought that _______. But when I try _______, then _______ happens instead. What am I missing?"


"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
sscce.org
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
Bartender

Joined: Oct 02, 2003
Posts: 11444
    
  16

You may also want to consider the JavaRanch's own cattledrive. even if you don't sign up for the course, the problems are posted, and you can work through them yourself.

You can post questions here about how to do stuff, what you've tried, etc.


There are only two hard things in computer science: cache invalidation, naming things, and off-by-one errors
Justin Fox
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jan 24, 2006
Posts: 802
i posted it further up, but i'll tell you it again,


its called:

"JAVA SOFTWARE SOLUTIONS, foundations of program design, 4th edition
"

by: Lewis and Loftus
Tom Fulton
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 30, 2006
Posts: 95
Head First Java is, in my opinion, the best overall Java tutorial there is. It's engaging and entertaining, but still covers the topics in enough depth to be worthwhile.

My suggestion is that you go to your local Borders or Barnes and Noble bookstore, and get some examples of the books recommended here. Then drink a couple cups of coffee and read the first chapter of each one. Buy the one that appeals to you most based on that reading.
Charles Lyons
Author
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 27, 2003
Posts: 836
I always recommend one book which gives a very solid introduction in OO principles before launching into too much Java syntax:

http://www.apress.com/book/bookDisplay.html?bID=406
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1590594576

You'll find a table of contents on the first link as well.

It is my belief that you cannot possibly understand Java without knowing about objects first. This book (which has been revised since the original edition I purchased many years ago) first introduces object concepts, then how to design good applications, looks at Java syntax (including the new J2SE 5.0 features like generics) and ends up with some GUI construction using AWT/Swing.

It isn't an extensive Java API reference - the free JavaDoc is in my opinion much better than any printed manual anyway - but it's an excellent introduction and will teach you good habits from the outset.


Charles Lyons (SCJP 1.4, April 2003; SCJP 5, Dec 2006; SCWCD 1.4b, April 2004)
Author of OCEJWCD Study Companion for Oracle Exam 1Z0-899 (ISBN 0955160340 / Amazon Amazon UK )
Jeremy Parsons
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 74
Thanks to you all.. I have been looking at the information I have found about the books recommended.

I figure I will have to buy a few books so I can try to cover as much as possible, that way if I get stuck in one book, I can read another to see if I can gather what I need to continue in the other, etc..
Amit Batra
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 04, 2006
Posts: 361
head first object-oreinted and Design should be out soon, I think.
marcus daimler
Greenhorn

Joined: Feb 22, 2006
Posts: 1
i really don't know how to react. this forum is very helpful. that's all i can say. i'm a java newbie. shifting little by little to java.

to the one who posted, i got a lot of eBooks about java. i collected a lot from the web before i finally decided to learn the language. in fact, i already have some of the books mentioned in this topic. just in case you need one, i'd be glad to send you.
Jeremy Parsons
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 74
Sure, I need all the help I can get in Java..lol
Daniel Lucas
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 24, 2006
Posts: 48
I just wanted to thank everyone who put their thoughts and recommendations into this thread. After reading all of your responses and reading all the reviews on amazon for the different books, I decided to purchase Head First Java, 2nd Edition. I'm confident this will be the resource that will finally help me to learn Java. My AP Computer Science A textbook is horrible; it gives one long program per chapter and explains different concepts and ideas that are used in it. I need more than that. Again thanks for your contribution, and I hope others can benefit as well.

What we really need is a sticky thread somewhere with different Java books and a short summary of each one, their strengths and weaknesses, etc.
nchandrasekhar_mca
Greenhorn

Joined: Dec 24, 2005
Posts: 2
follow this site

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chandra_sekhar_mca@yahoo.com


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