1. #1
    Will Watts's Avatar
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    Accelerated C++ + Others?

    I've been vaguely floating the idea of learning programming properly in my head for a while - a few false starts with online tutorials, but I never really keep up the pace. I find it easiest to learn out of books, with online tutorials I have little commitment to the whole thing and it's easy to postpone it.

    So, has anyone read Accelerated C++? I'm thinking of getting it.
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    Re: Accelerated C++ + Others?

    Hello!

    I was kind of hoping that someone else would answer this first. Maybe someone will give a second opinion.

    I have never actually read this book, and so I cannot give that sort of feedback, but after looking at the Table of Contents, it does seem like one of the best books around.

    The only thing which I am concerned about (and definitely get a second opinion on this) if your choice of language. You see, I started off with C++, and it went badly, and I had to change language, and come back to C++ later (I am biased by my own experiences, which I why I don't like answering this question).

    Learning C++ for me started off very well, and I managed to quickly pick up most of the language, and console programming (the book you have chosen only covers console programming). I did all that, got good at it, and wanted to progress. Unfortunately, I got well and truly stuck. There is an extraordinarily huge jump between simple C++ (useless console applications), and making proper, useful programs with C++. I couldn't make that jump. I just could not do it. I could not find books, and it was all too difficult (I am talking about what happens immediately after you finish reading that book - you will know the language, but will not be able to do anything useful with it)

    I stagnated for many months, until I asked my IT Teacher what to do. He didn't know, but passed me over to the Network Manager (an awesome programmer, who headed up the coding for a HL2 re-write) and he pointed me towards C# (there is something called Managed C++.net, which could also fill this gap, but I didn't know about it at the time, and still wouldn't recommend it). This allowed me to start creating useful programs, and my programming progressed from there (practice and experience, rather than book based).

    Fortunately, both C# and C++ are beautiful and professional languages (C# is truly beautiful when you learn the advanced parts of it - the parts which truly differentiate it from other languages) (whereas Java is very much the "University" language), and because they are both C-based, the syntax and style is very similar, and so you can easily switch back to C++ when you are ready. Because of this, it also allowed me to jump from the C++ into C# at the deep end, although if I were to start again, I wouldn't have wasted a year learning C++, only to forget it all, but would have started with C#, and moved to C++ when ready.

    However, I am so biased by my own bad experiences of C++ as a starting language (it can be done) that I want you to take this with a pinch of salt.

    Good luck!
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    Re: Accelerated C++ + Others?

    Thanks niemiro, I think that was partially some of the problems I've experienced trying to start before - I would go through the syntax of C++ and Java, and learn various commands and principles - and then still have no idea how to make something more complicated then basic example programs. One thing that looked promising about this book is that it's supposedly focused on writing programs and general programming techniques, rather than learning syntax.

    Anyone else have any thoughts? Would trying to learn C++ first be a mistake?
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    Re: Accelerated C++ + Others?

    Quote Originally Posted by someguy201 View Post
    Thanks niemiro, I think that was partially some of the problems I've experienced trying to start before - I would go through the syntax of C++ and Java, and learn various commands and principles - and then still have no idea how to make something more complicated then basic example programs. One thing that looked promising about this book is that it's supposedly focused on writing programs and general programming techniques, rather than learning syntax.

    Anyone else have any thoughts? Would trying to learn C++ first be a mistake?
    From what I can see from the few free pages I can access from various different e-book websites, it focus slightly more on practical things (I saw a section on chopping up URLs). This is all well and good, and actually very useful and practical, but it still does not go beyond Console Applications.

    You do need to learn language syntax before you can learn to make real programs, but I also believe that it is important to select a language which allows for easy Windows Forms programming. I did not need a book to teach me this, only Google for when I got stuck, but I just found it too hard in C++.

    I shall let someone else put their opinion forward now :)
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  5. #5
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    Re: Accelerated C++ + Others?

    Thanks for the advice. Personally, I like learning out of books but I'm aware it's not needed.

    I have however decided to spend the next few weeks starting to learn Python - I'm using thenewboston youtube tutorials. I might post up some basic programs I've made soon.
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    Re: Accelerated C++ + Others?

    Quote Originally Posted by someguy201 View Post
    Thanks for the advice. Personally, I like learning out of books but I'm aware it's not needed.

    I have however decided to spend the next few weeks starting to learn Python - I'm using thenewboston youtube tutorials. I might post up some basic programs I've made soon.
    I also find it extremely hard to read off a screen, and much prefer to learn out of books (I have stacks!), and I needed books to learn the main language, but when it came to Windows Forms programming, all it is is simple drag and drop, and when it came down to, e.g., how to change the backcolour of a text box, a quick Google sorted me out, and so I didn't need any books for that part, but for everything else I did.

    The very best of luck, and I would love to see your programs :)

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