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Old 05-12-2003, 05:31 PM   #1
darin3200
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Question Is old programming book still useful?


I am trying to get into programming. I went to the library and among 20 books on how to use windows 95 and the internet I found one on Java. It is a 450 pager from O'Reilly entitled Java in a Nutshell. It looks like a comprehensive book but it was published in May, 1996. Is this a good book to start learning from despite its age or should I find something newer?
 
Old 05-12-2003, 05:42 PM   #2
Tinkster
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Hmm ... you can get the basics of Java
from it, however, Java underwent MAJOR
changes in the class libraries from 1.1 to 1.3,
so you'll probably want to get a newer book
if you want to do real-world programming :)

Cheers,
Tink
 
Old 05-12-2003, 06:33 PM   #3
darin3200
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So I read it and later went to a newer book would a lot change on what I have to understand because of the library chagnes? If I learned the 1.3 libraries would there be a lot to learn a bit?
 
Old 05-12-2003, 06:41 PM   #4
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Well, my suggestion would be to try and find
an on-line resource for the current version.

Trying to learn java (and you can't really do
that without also learning the libraries) on the
old standard will certainly make you fall over
a number of changes ... AWT vs. Swing, to
name just the most obvious things, and there's
been changes to internal classes and such,
too ... I'm not following Java's progress too
closely, so you might want to wait for some
Java-Pro's opinion :)

Cheers,
Tink
 
Old 05-13-2003, 02:32 AM   #5
rch
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tinkster
Well, my suggestion would be to try and find
an on-line resource for the current version.

Trying to learn java (and you can't really do
that without also learning the libraries) on the
old standard will certainly make you fall over
a number of changes ... AWT vs. Swing, to
name just the most obvious things, and there's
been changes to internal classes and such,
too ... I'm not following Java's progress too
closely, so you might want to wait for some
Java-Pro's opinion

Cheers,
Tink
For me the old books are handful.I have old books on system programming for IBM 360 and it is a good read.Also I have been reading on system calls on old unix systems(many of which are same as in linux) which also gives me concepts on the system.
 
Old 05-13-2003, 07:25 AM   #6
Ian Fleeton
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When I'm trying to learn something with computers, newer is better because I can't tell what's obsolete and I don't know why things aren't working without experience. If you don't mind reading online (or doing lots of print-outs) safari.oreilly.com is a good resource for modern IT books, starting from about $6 USD a month. Maybe your library can get newer books for you from other nearby libraries?
 
Old 05-13-2003, 10:52 AM   #7
Hko
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Another screen-reading/print-out option is downloading the free book "Thinking in Java".

See http://mindview.net/Books/DownloadSites/
 
Old 05-13-2003, 01:32 PM   #8
rmartine
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You can learn something from any old programming book.

If you're new to programming you can learn a lot of the concepts behind program structure and organization. There's more to programming than just knowing a language syntax.
 
Old 05-13-2003, 04:04 PM   #9
darin3200
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Quote:
Originally posted by Ian Fleeton
Maybe your library can get newer books for you from other nearby libraries?
I should try this also.
I am going to go check out the o'reilly site. 6 bucks a months isn't bad if it has a lot of data on a lot of topics, particurally this summer when I am going to be soo bored I like your link Hko, no only does he have books on Java from nov. 2002, but also books on C++. Better start reading up
Also I might just throw this in, does anyone know of any newsletters on linux or programming?

Last edited by darin3200; 05-13-2003 at 04:10 PM.
 
Old 05-14-2003, 03:21 AM   #10
Ian Fleeton
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Quote:
does anyone know of any newsletters on linux or programming?
informit.com is one place, the newsletters contain links to web articles
 
  


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