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Wanted: Java Tutorial (Book) that uses Eclipse

Siegfried Heintze
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 11, 2000
Posts: 381
Can anyone recommend a book on Java for beginners that uses eclipse for the sample code? I have a friend asking for a recommendation for a beginning java book and I wanted to encourage him to use some nice tools like eclipse.

Years ago I downloaded loaded Ivor Horton's code for his Java 1.5 book and was dismayed that it was not more eclipse friendly. I am further dismayed to have done a google search and cannot find a java 1.6 version of the code for Ivor's book.

Anyone got any recommondations?
Thanks,
Siegfried
David Newton
Author
Rancher

Joined: Sep 29, 2008
Posts: 12617

I'm not sure what "Eclipse un-friendly" code would look like. IMO programming texts should be IDE-neutral.
Siegfried Heintze
Ranch Hand

Joined: Aug 11, 2000
Posts: 381
Someone can write an IDE neutral book and still include the project files in the source code for eclipse so the reader does not have to manually figure out all the dependencies and manually add the source code files to projects in an eclipse workspace.

If someone is not interested in Eclipse, or prefers NetBeans, they just ignore the extra eclipse files (which can be discreetly tucked away in an entirely seperate directory).

It would be really nice for a beginner to fire up eclipse and just type "SHIFT+ALT X J" and confirm that the programs run in addition to the exercise of manually setting up the class path (which I never get right on the first try) and then running javac (where you specify the java source code files with the extension) and java (where you don't specify any file extensions).

Ivor has a graphics editor called sketcher for one of his example programs that he builds upon chapter after chapter. This has java source code in multiple directories. Needless to say, this is a little tedious (especially for a beginner) to run with or without Eclipse since there is no ant files, no maven files, no eclipse or netbean files or even bash scripts to setup the class path, compile and run the beast. I think this is a silly omission on Ivor's part.

And, after you finally get it all java source imported into eclipse yourself, then eclipse points out a bunch of errors in Ivor's code. Its been a couple of years since I tried this but as I recal, I had to fix the syntax errors before I could see the program run. That was bad style on Ivor's part. I did discover that it would run without modification if I used java and javac, however.

I was hoping that my friend learning java would have a nicer experience than I had.

Siegfried
David Newton
Author
Rancher

Joined: Sep 29, 2008
Posts: 12617

If there were *syntax* errors it wouldn't matter how you were compiling and/or running the code. (Or naming errors, etc.)
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 13, 2005
Posts: 38064
    
  22
I would recommend you give your friend a book which keeps quiet about IDEs. Most people when beginning have enough, no more than enough, to learn in Java, without having to learn an IDE at the same time. Also, some of the automatic code generation in IDEs can obscure learning. It is better to learn to write
javac Foo.java
java Foo

than alt-shft-XJ
And it is good to learn to identify syntax errors for oneself.

Have a look at our book review pages. I looked here, and there does not appear to be an Ivor Horton book covering JDK6.
 
It is sorta covered in the JavaRanch Style Guide.
 
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