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How to Think Like a Computer Scientist: JAVA Programming Paperback – March 1, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Author

This version is a draft I wrote several years ago.  The current version is available for download from Green Tea Press.

About the Author

Allen B. Downey is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at the Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering. He has written several books, including Computational Modeling and Complexity Science, How to Think Like a Computer Scientist, The Little Book of Semaphores, Physical Modeling in MATLAB, and Learning Perl the Hard Way.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 308 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (March 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1441419209
  • ISBN-13: 978-1441419200
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.7 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,179,152 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have found this to be the most helpful book in trying to fully understand Java Programming Language, notably from a teacher perspective. I am in my 2nd year teaching A.P. Computer Science and this book has proven to be the most beneficial in helping me explain the topics to my students.
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Format: Paperback
It teaches the importance of modular structure: Methods before control structures.

The importance of named constants: Final variables have been introduced before control structures and modules. But there are occasional violations as you go ahead, for example, 10 is hard coded in a multiplication table program.

Teaches documentation early. Unfortunately, the subsequent code is not documented as part of the text, perhaps because it is discussed in the text. But this does not convey well to students.

Data validation has been introduced early in the text.

Teaches recursion before iteration. We find recursion so hard to teach, only because we give so much practice in the iteration that it is so hard to think recursive. I myself suffered because of this, but now know, why I suffered.

Unfortunately, counting has been introduced using a while loop, which is done better using a for loops.

Classes and objects (including objects of objects) have been introduced with simple examples.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have not really started to study of this book yet so I can't give it 5 stars, but from skimming it and reviewing the table of contents it seems clear that it covers the basics of JAVA. Having worked through some other Downey books I can say that he is an excellent expositor who is well aware of the confusions of some one learning a particular programming language for the first time. He is not the least bit interested in showing off and impressing you with how much he knows. That's a great relief.
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