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Java Cookbook, Second Edition Paperback – June 21, 2004

4.2 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"If you like cookbooks and program in Java then this is one of the best available." - Mike James, VSJ, November 2004

About the Author

Ian F. Darwin has worked in the computer industry for three decades: with Unix since 1980, Java since 1995, and OpenBSD since 1998. He wrote the freeware file(1) command used on Linux and BSD and is the author of Checking C Programs with Lint, Java Cookbook, and over seventy articles and several courses (both university and commercial) on C and Unix. In addition to programming and consulting, Ian teaches Unix, C, and Java for Learning Tree International, one of the world's largest technical training companies. He runs OpenBSD on most of his computers, and he runs a mirror of The Unix History Society archive.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 864 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 2nd edition (June 21, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596007019
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596007010
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 1.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,092,066 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
OK, you've learned the basics. You know 'public static void main string args' from a hole in th ground. What now? I teach Java at a college. Only a small percentage of my students are CS majors. Most introductory java books lack good practical problems to solve. The Java Cookbook is a list of common problems and code examples on how to solve them. I learned more in two days with this book than I did with several very good java books because I need to see examples and how things work in context. If you're like that too, you'll love this book. I pack it with my laptop so I'm never without it when I need it -- it's that useful to me!
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By A Customer on August 2, 2001
Format: Paperback
The idea of a Java Cookbook is a good one. This book is very similar to the popular and widely acclaimed Perl Cookbook. Even though Perl is more useful for short stand-alone programs and Java is most effective in large-scale systems, a lot of Java code can follow a standard "recipe". For example, writing an equals method is a very common and surprisingly difficult task, so having a standard template available along with a discussion of important points is necessary for all but the most advanced Java programmers.
To judge the quality of the recipes, I checked out some very basic and common Java problems, such as writing equals and clone methods, synchronizing threads, and comparing floating point numbers. In most cases, I found flaws in the code or accompanying explanations. The discussion of equals doesn't mention that the hashCode method needs to be compatible with it. The recipe for clone has the method unnecessarily throw a CloneNotSupportedException. The explanation of synchronizing threads says that locks are held on methods, instead of correctly pointing out that locks are held on objects. The code for floating point comparison requires that the user keep track of the magnitude of the numbers being compared.
By using the term "Cookbook" in the title, I expected to find a collection of the best standard code templates. Instead, I found code samples that merely demonstrated a basic concept, and that they serve as only a starting point for understanding Java. Together with the misleading explanations, this book has the potential for confusing beginning Java programmers as much as it guides them. This book is best used as merely a guide to get the beginning Java programmer started. The "recipes" should be viewed as started points to be improved upon -- using them as is will result in less than optimal Java code.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I'm blown away by how much better the second version has improved from the first. I was so disappointed by the first edition that I swore off O'Reilly for a little while. One of my major gripes, the rampant use of classes provided by the author in libraries has all but vanished. In addition the anti-patterns of bad SQL use that are so rampant in other Java books are nowhere to be found, and in their place are recipes that show sane and proper use of JDBC.

I heartily recommend this practical work for Java engineers. For those not familiar with the first edition this is a solid practical work that covers a wide range of Java programming challenges. For those turned off by the first edition, you should take a look at the second, the improvement is profound.
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Format: Paperback
If I'd had this book two years ago, I would have saved myself weeks of work. As a software developer of some twenty years, I find that the ever-present problem of `looking things up' is the major factor that impedes progress. I've spent hours trying to track down `how-to' solutions only to find in the end all that's required is a few elusive lines of code. Well, the Java Cookbook is filled with such code along with insightful explanations.
I'm impressed by how comprehensive the coverage is: 26 chapters covering such things as file i/o, Swing, RMI, applets, Java Servlets, JSP, e-mail, JDBC, XML, multi-threading... At 48 pages, the index is HUGE, just what you need to look things up!
The author assumes you know Java but not as well as you ought to! He explains all those things that I really should know but I never get around to figuring out properly: the correct handling of dates/times, internationalization, floating point numbers, etc. Thankfully, the book is concise and easy to read so you can quickly plug a bunch of gaps in your knowledge by browsing over chapters.
This book will quickly pay for itself. Enjoy.
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Format: Paperback
I make no apologies about being an "R&D" developer... "Rob & Duplicate". I learn best by seeing something that works, and then adapting it to my own needs. Therefore, a book like Java Cookbook by Ian Darwin (O'Reilly) is the exact type of book I look for and use on a regular basis.

The chapter breakdown: Getting Started; Interacting With The Environment; Strings and Things; Pattern Matching with Regular Expressions; Numbers; Dates and Times; Structuring Data with Java; Data Structuring with Generics, foreach, and Enumerations; Object-Oriented Techniques; Input and Output; Directory and Filesystem Operations; Programming External Devices: Serial and Parallel Ports; Graphics and Sound; Graphical User Interfaces; Internationalization and Localization; Network Clients; Server-Side Java: Sockets; Network Clients II: Applets and Web Clients; Java and Electronic Mail; Database Access; XML; Distributed Java: RMI; Packages and Packaging; Threaded Java; Introspection, or "A Class Named Class"; Using Java with Other Languages

For those unfamiliar with the "Cookbook" style, the chapters have a series of real-life problems, such as playing a sound file, playing a video clip, and printing in Java. The problem is followed by a short one or two line solution and an expanded discussion of the issue complete with code. This approach makes it really easy to find something that is similar to the issue you're facing and to see how someone else would solve it.

For me, the quality of this book is really high. It's a second edition covering the Java 1.5 package, so it's fully up on the current technology. In fact, the Generics chapter deals exclusively with new features in 1.5.
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