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Agile Java™: Crafting Code with Test-Driven Development Paperback – February 24, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-0131482395 ISBN-10: 0131482394
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From the Back Cover

Master Java 5.0 and TDD Together: Build More Robust, Professional Software

Master Java 5.0, object-oriented design, and Test-Driven Development (TDD) by learning them together. Agile Java weaves all three into a single coherent approach to building professional, robust software systems. Jeff Langr shows exactly how Java and TDD integrate throughout the entire development lifecycle, helping you leverage today's fastest, most efficient development techniques from the very outset.

Langr writes for every programmer, even those with little or no experience with Java, object-oriented development, or agile methods. He shows how to translate oral requirements into practical tests, and then how to use those tests to create reliable, high-performance Java code that solves real problems. Agile Java doesn't just teach the core features of the Java language: it presents coded test examples for each of them. This TDD-centered approach doesn't just lead to better code: it provides powerful feedback that will help you learn Java far more rapidly. The use of TDD as a learning mechanism is a landmark departure from conventional teaching techniques.

  • Presents an expert overview of TDD and agile programming techniques from the Java developer's perspective

  • Brings together practical best practices for Java, TDD, and OO design

  • Walks through setting up Java 5.0 and writing your first program

  • Covers all the basics, including strings, packages, and more

  • Simplifies object-oriented concepts, including classes, interfaces, polymorphism, and inheritance

  • Contains detailed chapters on exceptions and logging, math, I/O, reflection, multithreading, and Swing

  • Offers seamlessly-integrated explanations of Java 5.0's key innovations, from generics to annotations

  • Shows how TDD impacts system design, and vice versa

  • Complements any agile or traditional methodology, including Extreme Programming (XP)

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Jeff Langr has more than twenty years of development experience. He currently consults on software development, design, and agile processes through his company, Langr Software Solutions ( Langr worked for Uncle Bob Martin for two years at Object Mentor. He is the author of Essential Java Style (Prentice Hall PTR, 1999), and has published widely on Java and TDD in Software Development, C/C++ Users Journal, and diverse online magazine sites and portals.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 792 pages
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall (February 24, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0131482394
  • ISBN-13: 978-0131482395
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.5 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #501,548 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

I run Langr Software Solutions, Inc. a provider of software development consulting and training services. I love programming and have been doing it since high school (including 30 years of getting paid to do it!). I've recently rewritten the PragProg classic from 2003, Andy Hunt and Dave Thomas's Pragmatic Unit Testing in Java With JUnit. And in addition to the several other books under my name at Amazon, you'll find a couple chapters from me in Uncle Bob's book Clean Code. I've also written over 100 articles on software development.

I currently develop software for Outpace Systems, Inc. I'm having fun working in a distributed, paired environment building software with Clojure and a myriad of other cool technologies.

When not doing software stuff, you might find me playing disc golf, taking ballroom/Latin dance lessons with my wife, at the gym trying to lose weight, listening to music, playing guitar and singing, tasting craft beers, or hiking and biking around Colorado.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Michael C. Feathers on March 1, 2005
Format: Paperback
Pity those of us who try to teach people how to program. Thirty years ago, everyone was a beginner. Ten years ago, everyone wanted to program because it was the hottest way to make money (remember? Learn Java, move to Silicon Valley and make millions). Each year, the background and experience of the set of people who want to learn more about programming gets wider and more diverse. There are people who've tinkered with computers since they were kids, people who learned by the seat of their pants in industry; and people who've learned in school.

Jeff Langr's book, Agile Java, is significantly different and significantly better than most programming/language tutorials that have been written. One major difference is its sheer ambition. When you read this book, you'll learn the elements of Java (not just basic syntax but deep guru advice on why and why not to do things in particular ways), you'll learn the Java 1.5 extensions, and you'll also learn Test Driven Development (it is woven into the style of the book and explained throughout). A book this ambitious could've easily failed on any of these fronts, but Langr pulls it off because of his in-depth knowledge in all three areas and clear, lucid writing style.

I recommend this book for anyone who has a bit of programming experience who wants to get a leg up by learning Java and TDD simultaneously. The book is also a very informative read for much more experienced programmers. Agile Java contains a lot of good programming and testing advice, and experienced programmers will find that Langr's take on the fundamentals of programming may help them see things in more productive ways. It is a very good snapshot of the state of best programming practices today.

Agile Java is a great way to learn and relearn Java programming. And, given the rate of change in the industry, we all need to relearn programming periodically to be as effective as we can be.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Duff HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 15, 2005
Format: Paperback
It's getting more and more difficult to do Java books that offer anything that's unique. But Jeff Langr has succeeded in finding a niche with Agile Java (Prentice Hall). It's a book I could definitely recommend...

Chapter List: Introduction; An Agile Overview; Setting Up; Getting Started; Java Basics; Strings and Packages; Class Methods and Fields; Interfaces and Polymorphism; Inheritance; Legacy Elements; Exceptions and Logging; Maps and Equality; Mathematics; I/O; Reflection and Other Advanced Topics; Multithreading; Generics; Assertions and Annotations; Swing, Part 1; Swing, Part 2; Java Miscellany; An Agile Java Glossary; Java Operator Precedence Rules; Getting Started with IDEA; Agile Java References; Index

The basics of the book are pretty good. You have fifteen "lessons" that cover the material in the book, as well as three bonus lessons on Swing and other miscellaneous subjects. I really like the way he takes a single example (a student information system) and uses that throughout the entire lesson material. It gives good continuity and you don't have to readjust your focus for each lesson. The exercises at the end of each lesson follow a different example all the way through (a chess program), so you have a couple of different ways to learn, but it remains consistent throughout. He also doesn't try and cover absolutely everything in the Java universe. He picks the important stuff you need to know and realizes that you'll have to get the rest of the stuff on your own. This means that the book is approachable and doesn't become another 1500 page doorstop.

The uniqueness in the book comes in with the "Agile" part of the title.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By B. Blazer on August 24, 2005
Format: Paperback
This book is a fantastic primer to not only the java language, but to agile methods and junit as well. The author does a great job of introducing many concepts in a way that is easy to digest without being slow. However, seasoned java programmers may get frustrated with the early chapters that speak to basic java while introducing the bread and butter of junit. This is only for the first 150 pages or so. The information and lessons on refactoring, best practices, and junit are well worth it though. The best part of the book is the author's style. He does not speak down to the reader with overly high vocabulary, or with an "I am all knowing" attitude, but rather he uses a conversational tone with an emphasis on making the topic clear concise and to the point.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By 80/81 on February 25, 2005
Format: Paperback
Don't just learn Java, learn how to write solid Java code.

I teach Java in a continuing education program that is part of the University of Massachusetts. I will be using this book in my future classes.

Here's why:

It is pretty easy to learn the basics of Java. Sun provides a free tutorial that's good. ([...] and there are a literally tons of Java books out there too. While one of the strengths of Java is that is pretty easy to get started with, it is much harder to do right.

What makes this book stand out is that that it tries (and succeeds) at doing more than just teach Java. It teaches an important methodology too - how to test your code as you are writing it. This is an important aspect of writing good Java code, and one that I can't over emphasize when teaching it. It is just as important as learning the language itself. The particular methodology used in this book is called Test Driven Development, but I don't think that's so important to someone just starting out. What's important is to learn the value of unit testing from the start, and this book does that well. The book uses the JUnit framework and ANT from the start. Both of these tools belong in any Java programmer's tool kit. They go hand and in hand with the Java language. It is great that they are presented in a context targeted for novice programmers who want to learn Java. These are real world skills that are often over looked in more academic approaches to teaching Java. Yet, they not only make you more productive with Java, but they can make using it more fun too. See (Unit Test Infected: Programmers Love Writing Tests [...])

Other things that make this book strong include the author's writing style. It is clear, concise and refreshingly informal.
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