The Virtual Bookcase Reviews of 'Just Java 2':
Reviewer amazon.com wrote:
So, you're starting from zero in an effort to learn the Java programming language. What book will help you most? Just Java 2 should be on your desktop. It's one of a select group of introductory Java books that honestly earns its cover price. Shying away from complicated aspects of the language that are seldom used in most practical situations, Peter van der Linden focuses his considerable teaching skills upon the parts of the language you really need to understand in order to be a good Java programmer. He covers basic structure and syntax very well, and gives similarly excellent attention to object orientation and the means by which Java implements it. Applets, Beans, input/output streams, basic graphics, Swing, and security all get superb coverage. In short, this book explains everything you really need to know in order to write useful Java programs. With sharp text and very good example programs, the author shows you how to get things done. In the process, van der Linden--a funny guy--pauses often to show you how to make an origami water-bomber or comment upon software error messages like "runt packet." The CD-ROM that comes with this book deserves much praise, as well. Packed with honestly useful tools and all of the author's examples, it employs a fine HTML-based interface that other books ought to imitate.
Reviewer Rob Slade wrote:
Huh. Back to the original, and somewhat inaccurate, title. This book
is a fairly clear introduction to Java. The material is accessible to
the non-programmer, albeit with some dedication. The content is fast
paced, so you may need to go over some sections several times. But it
isn't *just* Java. Oh, no. The jokes start on the *dedication* page.
I am saddened by the loss of the "World's Best" Rolls-Royce, the
waterbomb-carrying paper airplane, and the amusing but painfully
realistic look at getting connected to the Internet, but the table of
easily misunderstood error messages and things learned on the Internet
are still there. I guess as the book grows, something has to give.
Chapter one looks at the what and why of Java. Chapter two goes a
long way, although perhaps not all the way, to explaining object-
oriented programming. (Chapter six adds to it.) This section is
perhaps best appreciated by C programmers, although it does a fair
amount of demystifying of object terminology. The structure of the
book has been reorganized, making it less sectional. The chapters
form a more standard, sequential tutorial on Java, covering the
basics, keywords, types, names, arrays, operators. classes,
statements, interfaces, packages, threads, applets, security,
libraries, GUI, containers, the AWT (Abstract Window Toolkit),
graphics, file I/O, and networking.
But I must also talk about the CD-ROM. Generally I don't, since many
authors simply throw on a few megs of shareware or RFCs, which may or
may not have a bearing on the topic of the book. Not our Peter.
First off, there is over 500 megabytes on the CD, filling it almost
completely. The Java 1.2 JDK (Java Development Kit) wasn't ready in
time for the book, but it has the older versions for WinNT/9x, Mac,
Solaris, Linux, and so forth. (Don't have Linux? It's got that too.)
Or, if you'd rather program in Perl, ada, Fortran, C, or Eiffel, it
can help you too. Plus FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions lists),
sample code, games, the paper airplane (animated), Sherlock Holmes
stories, the Magna Carta, the Jargon File, and a new and different
Rolls story. The directory structure may not be immediately obvious
to all, but then, that's what grep is for. Also, the link to the book
(the CD is navigable via browser) off the main page doesn't seem to
work, but that's what the "Go" box is for.
So, while it may or may not be the world's best tutorial on Java, it
is definitely the most enjoyable.
copyright Robert M. Slade, 1996
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