Programming Question

cussetacusseta Member Posts: 47 ■■□□□□□□□□
How would someone who knows NOTHING about programming find out what it's all about. Basically, are there any good books on how to begin? I've looked online and all I find are books on C++, Java, etc. which all make the assumption that you've got basic knowledge of programming to begin with. Do I need to take a college course? Is there a book out there on the absolute basics? Please help me, I've been doing some research, but am coming up with nothing. icon_cry.gif
Sometimes you've got to prove to your friends that you're still worth a damn!


  • evanderburgevanderburg Member Posts: 229 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Here are the books I used when I taught a programming couse last semester.

    Simple Program Design, Third Edition: A Step By Step Approach
    by Lesley Anne Robertson.
    This book goes over programming principles but does not include actual code. You learn how to do conditional programming (if statements), repetition (looping), and other concepts. It is a fairly easy read.

    Along with this, I would get a book on the particular language you would like to learn. I taught Visual Basic.NET. This language uses pieces developed by Microsoft. The easiest way to create programs is to use their Visual Studio.NET program. If you are a student you will be able to purchase this at a very reasonable price. Other .NET languages include C#, ASP.NET and others.

    It is possible to write a program in a text editor such as notepad but programs can get complex and color coding and inline syntax checking can help a lot in writing and debugging a program. I would suggest that you do your programming inside a developer suite. Compiling a program (converting the code to an executable that can run on the computer) is also easier in a developer suite such as .NET. There are various free utilities but I do not have much experience using them aside from a few scripting editors. Someone else here might have some suggestions for you if the cost of the program is too much for you.

    Microsoft Visual Basic .NET Step by Step--Version 2003 is a good book by Microsoft press for Visual Basic.NET.

    Microsoft Visual C# .NET Step by Step--Version 2003 is another step by step book for C#. I did not teach using this book because I was teaching .NET but the layout is similar to the VB book.
    "You can never know everything and part of what you know is always wrong. Perhaps even the most important part. A portion of wisdom lies in knowing that. A portion of courage lies in going on anyway. " - Lan, Winter's Heart by Robert Jordan
  • cussetacusseta Member Posts: 47 ■■□□□□□□□□
    Thanks for the info! That will definitely get me started!
    Sometimes you've got to prove to your friends that you're still worth a damn!
  • janmikejanmike Member Posts: 3,076
    Here is a CD that I got in order to learn a little about programming. You can read about it here,

    The reason I got it was so I could learn a little about assembly language.
    "It doesn't matter, it's in the past!"--Rafiki
  • StarterStarter Member Posts: 169
    Visual Basic is a good first program to learn. Just buy the program and a self study book and you'll be all set.
  • 2lazybutsmart2lazybutsmart Member Posts: 1,119
    Some times I wish I had taken the harder way when I first bumped into the programming field. But like many others, I got lured by the clickity clicks and getting things up and running without really having a good grasp of what the internal issues where. But know I think I could've done a lot better if I had spared some effort learning things the hard way first because it's so hard to learn the real issues once you've learned the easy way.

    Most people that are new to the progamming field have this urge of making things that work and are impressive instead of writing out endless lines of code that only give you a small button on the screen. It's like someone who learns math using a calculator. He can't stand adding five 6-figure numbers because he's so eager to get the result on the calc screen.

    Now to make a long story short, I suggest you learn the building blocks of programming by starting off with the building blocks of programming (I know that sounds like some advice from a shrink icon_lol.gif ) --that is languages other than Visual bla bla. I good place to spend a few months is C++ and Java. Once you really get OOP programming dialed it, go for the Visual stuff --and believe me, you'll have had such an eye opener that you will really see things that way they are.

    So C++/Java --> Visual C++/ be a nice way to go about it.

    And books are all over the place. A few users have already suggested some, if you do a search on, you'll definetly get a book that you'll love.

    Good luck with your endeavor
    Exquisite as a lily, illustrious as a full moon,
    Magnanimous as the ocean, persistent as time.
  • jaeusmjaeusm Member Posts: 42 ■■■□□□□□□□
    I agree with 2lazybutsmart. However, I would suggest learning Java before C++ because it's a little easier to learn. Once you know Java, picking up C++ will be much easier. Plus, Java will force you to learn object oriented programming.
    I've looked online and all I find are books on C++, Java, etc. which all make the assumption that you've got basic knowledge of programming to begin with.

    Some books are bit more advanced and make that assumption, but you don't need to have any programming experience to learn either C++ or Java.
  • cussetacusseta Member Posts: 47 ■■□□□□□□□□ rocks!! Thanks again to every one who's responding. If it weren't for this sight, I'd be lost bowing.gif
    Sometimes you've got to prove to your friends that you're still worth a damn!
  • TeKniquesTeKniques OSCE, OSCP, CISSP, CISA, SSCP, MCSE (03), Security+, Network+, A+, Project+ Member Posts: 1,262 ■■■■□□□□□□
    Java is the first language I learned. It's full blown OOP and it is very useful in the workplace. Where I work we create most of our web applications using PHP, but knowing Java made PHP A LOT easier to learn, plus like others said it is a great foundation to C++.

    When I was in school we used the Lewis/Loftus series books, which were okay, but not great. You'll find more help from other people while at the same time studying on your own out of a book.

    Good luck.
  • ITGuy88ITGuy88 Member Posts: 12 ■□□□□□□□□□
    I cant really recommend any books, but i do recommend you try learn HTML before jumping to an actual language.

    HTML well give you a sense lof organization and initialization. It is a fairly easy language to learn. However, it isnt considered a programming language. It is actually an application.

    If you learn HTML you can inch your way into JAVAscript. It is integrated into the HTML language as a way to handle web applications and functions. JAVAscript will give you an idea of the syntax of actual JAVA. Once you can understand JAVA you will be able to program in most of the more common languages out there
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