Core Java, Volume II Advanced Features

Author: Cay S. Horstmann & Gary Cornell 
Publisher: Prentice Hall; 8 ed., 2008
Pages: 1056
ISBN: 978-0132354790
Aimed at: Java programmers wanting to master associated technologies
Rating: 4.5
Pros: Well written, intelligent discussion of Java technologies
Cons: Not for the beginner
Reviewed by: Alex Armstrong

This second volume in the Core Java series  deals with advanced topics. What do you think qualifies as "advanced"?

Some programmers would say topics like generics and perhaps even exceptions are advanced in general terms. In Java, however, we have a whole collection of associated technologies that aren't really core to the language but could just about qualify on the grounds that they are commonly used. 

So what's in the book?

 

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The book starts with streams and files. Next we have XML and how to load, validate and parse it - both SAX and Path are covered. Networking from sockets to email comes next, then the JDBC approach to database access. 

A big section is devoted to "Advanced Swing" which roughtly speaking means tables, trees, progress bars, component organisers etc. Following on we have advanced AWT - mostly how to get around its limitations. 

Chapter 8 brings us to JavaBeans, then security and distributed objects (RMI)  Chapter 11 deals with scripting - getting a scripting engine and using annotations. Finally the book rounds off with a look at implementing native methods an interfacing with C in particular. 

This second volume is as good as the first and as well written. However how useful it is to you depends on which of the technologies and techniques it covers that you want to know about. Each of the chapters provides a good introduction to the basics of the subject. It takes you far enough for you to continue on to a book dedicated to the topic. 

Highly recommended and the only reservation is that it's not for the complete beginner. 

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Fitness for Geeks

Author: Bruce W. Perry
Publisher: O'Reilly
Pages: 336
ISBN: 978-1449399894
Aimed at: Geeks
Rating: 3
Pros: Well written and a good read
Cons: Not geeky or scientific enough
Reviewed by: Mike James

This is another really good idea from O'Reilly in its series to get geeks to look at other topics from a geeky [ ... ]



Meet the Kinect

Author: Sean Kean, Jonathan Hall & Phoenix Perry
Publisher: Apress
Pages: 205
ISBN: 978-1430238881
Aimed at: Would-be Kinect developers
Rating: 2
Pros: First book available on a hot topic
Cons: Already outdated, lacks code
Reviewed by: Harry Fairhead

This is the first book I've found on the subject of t [ ... ]


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