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Recommend a Book!

David Sharpe
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Joined: Jun 15, 2009
Posts: 32


I'm about to order some books, but I thought I might get some valuable feedback here, so I'm holding off for a couple days.

  • Effective Java: It's supposed to be very good.
  • Core Java, Volume I: I've used this a few times, but I'm losing my copy. It seems very thorough.
  • The Java Tutorial: I know most or all of the material is available online, but I like the presentation.
  • Design Patterns Explained: Available at my school library, so I don't have to buy GoF's (which, heretically, isn't available at my library).
  • Applying UML and Patterns: OOA/D & ID: Available at my school library.


  • I could also use a book on JUnit, or unit testing in general. My next job might want me to write some unit tests.

    Apologies for the terse request, but circumstances urge brevity.
    Sebastian Janisch
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Feb 23, 2009
    Posts: 1183
    What exactly is your current skill ?


    JDBCSupport - An easy to use, light-weight JDBC framework -
    Campbell Ritchie
    Sheriff

    Joined: Oct 13, 2005
    Posts: 39834
        
      28
    Go through our book review pages.
    Sebastian Janisch
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Feb 23, 2009
    Posts: 1183
    Effective Java is an excellent book. Note that this is not a beginners book, that's why I asked about your skill.
    David Sharpe
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jun 15, 2009
    Posts: 32
    Thanks for replying, Sebastian. I'm a junior programmer. I just obtained a BSc. in Computer Science (we mostly used C++, but I've been using Java for the past 8 months).

    All right, Campbell, I'll start skimming some reviews.

    ~1.5 hour time lapse~

    Excerpt: It's not my cup of tea, but if you do a lot of texting, or have a Twitter account, I'm betting you'll love this book.

    Another excerpt: Should I expect the ladies to saunter over at parties and say, "I couldn't help noticing that you're agile, how about coming back to my place"?

    I skimmed the 38 reviews in the "Beginning Java" section, stopping only to peruse the 9s and 10s. "Head First Java" certainly stands out (29/30).

    I also skimmed the 55 reviews in the "Advanced Java" section. Even if "Effective Java" is too much Java for me, I think I'm bound to pick it up sooner or later (40/40). "Java Puzzlers" looks like a fun read (18/20).

    Finally, I skimmed "Marginalia", "Project management, Process and Best Practices", and "Miscellaneous Java".

    The revised proposed list:
  • Core Java, Volume I (CDN$ 45.35)
  • Effective Java (CDN$ 41.57)
  • The Java Tutorial (CDN$ 41.57)
  • Head First Java (CDN$ 39.66)
  • Java Puzzlers (CDN$ 34.01)
  • The Best Software Writing I (CDN$ 18.87)
  • The Design of Everyday Things (CDN$ 13.51)

  • Total: CDN$ 234.54

    (I think I won't buy a unit test book until I assess the material available free online [potentials are "JUnit in Action", "JUnit Recipes", and/or "Test Driven: TDD and Acceptance TDD for Java Developers"].)

    Of course, on account of expense and realistic reading time, I'm going to prune that list. There's a problem though: "The Design..." and "The Best..." are so inexpensive I don't really care to prune them, and it's hard to choose between "Core...", "Effective...", "Tutorial...", and "Head...".

    How 'bout:
  • Core Java, Volume I (CDN$ 45.35)
  • Effective Java (CDN$ 41.57)
  • Head First Java (CDN$ 39.66)
  • The Best Software Writing I (CDN$ 18.87)
  • The Design of Everyday Things (CDN$ 13.51)

  • Total: CDN$ 158.96

    "Core Java" will be my reference book, "Head First" will be my beginner's book, and "Effective Java" is required reading.
    Campbell Ritchie
    Sheriff

    Joined: Oct 13, 2005
    Posts: 39834
        
      28
    If you are experienced enough to use Horstmann and Cornell you may prefer to omit the Head First book. You are right that Java Puzzlers (Bloch and Gafter) is worth reading; you will learn a lot from it. I have a copy and got about 25% of the puzzles right.
    David Sharpe
    Ranch Hand

    Joined: Jun 15, 2009
    Posts: 32
    Thanks for the advice, Campbell. I took it and opted to omit the "Head First" book. I also found "The Design of Everyday Things" in my library, and "The Best Software Writing I" too (albeit as an online resource--ugh).

    In the end, I ordered only "Core Java" and "Effective Java". I shopped around for better prices, including considering previous editions. In the case of "Effective Java" the first edition was written in 2001, and 20 new tips have been added, so I figured it was worth it (although you can find the previous edition for about $5). In the case of "Core Java", the previous edition isn't that old (2004), but they've made some obvious improvements: like putting multithreading in volume 1 (fundamentals) instead of 2 (advanced) (once again though, you can find the previous edition for around $5).

    Thanks for the recommendations, they were a big help.


    p.s. If you are looking for bargains (or rare books), these online bookstore aggregators are great:
    http://www.vialibri.net/
    http://www.bookfinder.com/
    http://www.bookfinder4u.com/
    Campbell Ritchie
    Sheriff

    Joined: Oct 13, 2005
    Posts: 39834
        
      28
    You're welcome
     
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    subject: Recommend a Book!