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Learning Java, Second Edition

1 rating: 3.0
A book by Patrick Niemeyer

Java is the language du jour, and plenty of books have been written about it. But with so many books available, new offerings should be something special. This one isn't. Learning Java starts at the beginning with a "hello world"-style program that demonstrates … see full wiki

Tags: Books
Author: Patrick Niemeyer
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
1 review about Learning Java, Second Edition

A very good tutorial...

  • Jan 8, 2004
Rating:
+3
Review
It's usually a good sign of a book's popularity and usefulness when it goes into a second (or higher) edition. This is actually the fourth edition (title notwithstanding) of the book that started out as Exploring Java. The authors have done a good job in keeping the content current and relevant to how Java is being used in the real world.

The progression of information presented here is logical and laid out very well. You start with a quick tutorial that covers the obligatory Hello World application. From there, you get into the core Java language syntax followed by information on threads and strings. Chapter 10 and 11 wrap up the basic info by covering the core utilities (like collections) along with I/O features.

Chapters 12 through 14 move into more web-based application development using network programming, servlet, and web services concepts. Chapters 15 through 20 will cover what you need to know for designing graphical interfaces using AWT and Swing, while the rest of the book picks up a variety of other topics not covered earlier, like JavaBeans and XML.

A few things I really like about this book... They do not try to cover absolutely everything, thereby swamping the new developer with concepts they are not ready for. The idea is to cover the basics in such a way that you can competently start to use those features. From there, you can move on to other Java titles that explore specific areas in a more comprehensive manner. I like this approach in that you may not be looking to develop graphical interfaces. You may be more interested in servlet-style programming.

Another positive feature of this book is the de-emphasis on applet programming. For a long time, it seemed that Java and applets were synonymous with each other. All Java programming books had that as a main theme. Over time, the use of applets has diminished, and the authors have appropriately altered their text to place that in the right context.

For the typical Lotus Notes/Domino developer, this is a good source of information on learning Java. While you won't see information on how to manipulate the Domino Object Model, you will learn the core aspects of the language, which will enable you to start writing Domino agents in Java as well as LotusScript.

Conclusion
I think that everyone learning Java should have at least two basic "how to" books on their desk. You can compare information if one doesn't make sense. While this book doesn't have the off-beat approach of "Head First Java", it does a great job in covering all the information you need to know to become competent in Java. I would recommend you get a copy of this book if you are starting down the Java path.

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