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Learning Java starts at the beginning with a "hello world"-style program that demonstrates using Sun's Java tools. Throughout, the book introduces features using examples--all thoroughly discussed and explained in as straightforward and jargon-free a manner as practicable.
A tricky aspect of Java is the way classes are related, so it's neat to see a whole chapter devoted to the subject early on. Even more opaque is the explicit use of threads. Again, this topic is made accessible in this text, especially with its discussion of thread synchronization. Basic graphics, video handling, and other media in Java are discussed, followed by Beans and the builder environment--but stopping short of JavaBeans. The book finishes with a section on applets, the Java plug-in, and digital signatures.
Overall, however, the reader gets no feeling of working toward a goal, and perhaps this would have been a better book if a project had been its theme. Another odd decision in the mix here was to ignore the several--some free--Java IDEs generally used to program Java. (The book makes a point of saying it hasn't discussed them but doesn't explain. Even beginners find Java more accessible in a programming environment.)
Still, Learning Java, which uses Java 2 v1.3, does a competent job of introducing the language to beginners. As with most O'Reilly books, it's authoritative, lucid, and well edited. Though this book may fail to inspire in the reader the presumed enthusiasm for Java felt by the authors, you won't go wrong with this one, and its coverage of object-oriented programming issues is particularly good. --Steve Patient, Amazon.co.uk
I ordered this book thinking it was one of the most recent versions, touching on Java 5 and above. What I got was a version from mid 90's teaching Java 1.3. I'm very displeased.Published 11 months ago by Victor Alejandro
The book has excellent content regarding all facets of the Java language. However, the writing and overall order of the book leaves much to be desired. Read morePublished on August 13, 2002
First off, I've had 6 years of C/C++, Perl, and a Little Oracle experience. After picking up O'Reilly's Learning Perl book, I was more than Dissappointed with this one. Read morePublished on June 11, 2002
A very good book for learning the basics of the Java language. The biggest problem I had was with the suggested audience; the target audience should more appropriately be for... Read morePublished on May 31, 2002 by David Vick
First off, I have experience with programming in C/C++ and a few other languages and I'm familiar with the basic ideas of object-oriented programming. Read morePublished on May 25, 2002
I really don't understand the mediocre reviews this book has received. Niemeyer writes well, - he's more or less unique in this respect, - and he's very talented at explaining... Read morePublished on November 20, 2001 by Nicholas Cole
This book, as noted by one of the reviewrs, certainly does not deserve the title "Learning Java". Read morePublished on September 4, 2001 by Oleksandr V. Buzko
The editorial above pretty much sums up this book, "Learning Java ...does a competent job of introducing the language to beginners. Read morePublished on September 4, 2001 by fuzz_ball