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Thread: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

  1. #1
    pannix is offline Member
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    Default Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    Hi,
    I am studying Java, but I am not too happy with the book we are using "Objects First with Java: a practical introduction using BlueJ".
    What I don't like:
    • it introduces new commands, new techniques in very complex examples
    • it introduces new commands, new techniques in examples with commands and techniques that will only appear later in the book
    • one time we need to use ArrayLists, next time TreeMap, HashMap or other type of collection, without giving an overview of the differences and when to use what
    • ...

    An example (we are newbie Java students): abstract classes and interfaces are introduced in a program that simulates an ecosystem (foxes and rabbits) with a graphical user interface. An introduction to graphical interfaces is in the next chapter in the book. This is not how you teach a subject, you start with a small demo program that demonstrates the differences between abstract classes, interfaces and concrete classes.

    My question: Can you recommend a website, a downloadable book or a deadtree book for the beginner to intermediate Java programmer where I can find above mentioned concepts and more explained with lots of examples and exercises?

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    jim829 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    The Java Tutorials are pretty good. See the link in my signature. And feel free to ask the most basic question (but try and research it yourself first). Also check this forum for previously answered questions.

    Regards,
    Jim
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    The JavaTM Tutorials | SSCCE | Java Naming Conventions
    Poor planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part

  3. #3
    pannix is offline Member
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    Default Re: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    Thanks. It is my intention try and do the research myself first. I just need an alternative (one or more) to the Java book we're using for the course.

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    gimbal2 is offline Just a guy
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    Default Re: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    Can I assume from the question that the resource must be free of charge?
    "Syntactic sugar causes cancer of the semicolon." -- Alan Perlis

  5. #5
    pannix is offline Member
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    Default Re: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    That depends. I cannot afford, time or money, to do an extra course or private tutoring. I would prefer a website or free ebook, but if you can recommend a good, reasonably priced book, I will consider it. Preferably something that can also serve as a reference. I am contemplating several books for the moment:
    - Ivor Horton's Beginning Java 7
    - Java All in One for Dummies (apparently one of the 9 books is dedicated to collections)
    - ???

    I don't need help with programming basics like loops, basic OOP and control structures. I need something with an overview and examples and small exercises of Collections, abstract classes vs interfaces, exception handling, ...

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    gimbal2 is offline Just a guy
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    Default Re: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    Quote Originally Posted by pannix View Post
    I don't need help with programming basics like loops, basic OOP and control structures. I need something with an overview and examples and small exercises of Collections, abstract classes vs interfaces, exception handling, ...
    Well then the tutorials linked to by Jim should be enough, combined with google. Examples are generally only a "Java XXX example" search away, where XXX is the thing you want to know about. Say: "java Map example".
    pannix likes this.
    "Syntactic sugar causes cancer of the semicolon." -- Alan Perlis

  7. #7
    jim829 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Student Java: how to compensate for a bad Java course?

    Quote Originally Posted by pannix View Post
    I cannot afford, time or money, to do an extra course or private tutoring.
    I understand the money issue and I am not advocating a tutor. But it is not the time spent in any formal instructional environment that is a drain. The real time consumption is and will be outside reading and applying what you have learned to solidify the concepts. This can only be achieved by practice.

    Regards,
    Jim
    The JavaTM Tutorials | SSCCE | Java Naming Conventions
    Poor planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part

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