Herb schildt books

This is a discussion on Herb schildt books within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; I thought this worth a mention. A few board members seem to think his books are awful. I own one ...

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    Its hard... But im here swgh's Avatar
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    Herb schildt books

    I thought this worth a mention.
    A few board members seem to think his books are awful. I own one of them, called C++ a beginners guide, and found it quite usful. The chapters are large filled with lots of examples too.

    I have never met the man, but he apparenlty is quite tallented in programming. I am pondering what people think of his books and the man in general from a programmers prospective

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    l'Anziano DavidP's Avatar
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    I don't really own any of his C++ books, but I do own a Java book by him. Java 2 Fourth Edition: The Complete Reference. I quite like it. It was a big help a couple years ago when I was learning Java.
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    Registered User jlou's Avatar
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    http://accu.org/index.php/book_revie...t&field=author

    Notice all the "Not Recommended" items? Those are book reviews by C++ professionals, including some on the standard committee and active in the C++ community. The reason Schildt is so highly NOT recommended is because of the mistakes many of his books make (especially earlier versions) and the bad practices he has taught.

    I'm guessing the fact that Schildt has sold so many books also leads to a greater degree of backlash against him. Many in the C++ community are no doubt frustrated that what they consider to be bad practices are taught to so many beginning programmers. So basically, Schildt's books are evil.

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    Code Goddess Prelude's Avatar
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    >A few board members seem to think his books are awful.
    His early books are awful. His more recent books are better. However, one who still needs to learn a language shouldn't be teaching it. Worse, despite being a beginner himself, he claims to be a "master". That's why we don't like little Herbie. He simply cannot be trusted, regardless of the quality of his books.

    >I own one of them, called C++ a beginners guide, and found it quite usful.
    That's the problem. He writes books that beginners find easy to understand. The technical content is amateurish or just plain wrong, but the prose is very lucid. Feel free to compare Herbie to a sleazy used car salesman if you want to get a good perspective on how the C community as a whole sees the man.

    >I have never met the man, but he apparenlty is quite tallented in programming.
    No, at best he's an intermediate programmer with a talent for being able to dumb down concepts for the average beginner.

    >I am pondering what people think of his books and the man in general from a programmers prospective
    He might be a nice guy, I've never had the chance to meet him. I don't trust his books, so they're worthless to me because I would spend more time cross-referencing with books I do trust to verify everything he writes.
    My best code is written with the delete key.

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    and the hat of wrongness Salem's Avatar
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    For me, it basically boils down to mathematics, and that it's impossible to have any decent level of quality given the work involved in making even one decent book.

    Dozens of different titles in the past 10 years or so gives an average time of say 4 to 6 months to:
    - fully understand a subject
    - gain lots of practical experience in using the material
    - write several hundred pages of text and many examples.
    - cycle to and from the publishers a couple of times for review etc.

    Meh, my guess is that they're all written by armies of ghost writers schooled in the HS style. They don't care so long as they get their paycheck and HS just rubber-stamps his name because it sells with the "x million" tag.
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    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    However, one who still needs to learn a language shouldn't be teaching it. Worse, despite being a beginner himself, he claims to be a "master".
    Do you know a person, who isn't learning a language? You can't know everything, there's always something to learn about it.
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    Code Goddess Prelude's Avatar
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    >Do you know a person, who isn't learning a language?
    There are times when I just wanna smack you.

    >You can't know everything, there's always something to learn about it.
    You missed my point. If you don't know that getchar returns an int, or why gets is dangerous, you have no business writing a book on C. When I talk about still needing to learn the language, I mean the basic foundation that you need to answer the majority of language questions that pop up on the C forum. I'd be willing to bet that if Herbie tried to answer posts here, he'd be about as successful as Mister C was.
    My best code is written with the delete key.

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    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    There are times when I just wanna smack you.
    Ever since I born I've been annoying everybody
    I'd be willing to bet that if Herbie tried to answer posts here, he'd be about as successful as Mister C was.
    Who's Mister C?
    Last edited by maxorator; 10-30-2006 at 02:38 PM.
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    Code Goddess Prelude's Avatar
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    >Ever since I born I've been annoying everyone
    You annoy me more than most people with some of your comments, because they're exactly what I would say.

    >Who's Mister C?
    Do a member search. He was pretty entertaining, especially when he got into a debate against just about every clueful C programmer here about something infinitely obvious. The sad thing is that he was a college professor and he's written at least one book that I know of.
    My best code is written with the delete key.

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    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister C
    let's see from one of my C++ reference books:

    "The internal state of file stream objects change with most every operation. They should be...
    Who in the world would quote his own book? And the "one of" means it's plural? You said it was 1 book
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

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    Code Goddess Prelude's Avatar
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    >Who in the world would quote his own book?
    A lot of authors do. But he was talking about a reference book he owned, not one he wrote.
    My best code is written with the delete key.

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    Reverse Engineer maxorator's Avatar
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    Instead of quoting they can just say it out, I mean if you came up with it you don't need to quote it as they would be someone else's words.
    "The Internet treats censorship as damage and routes around it." - John Gilmore

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    I think the reason why peeps like Schildt make such an easy go of the beginning programming books market is because peeps like Prelude haven't.

    Think about it. Assuming she ever found time to write a tome, think of the reviews! The Amazon sales rank! The fame!

    (Imagines a signing session with a queue of stereotypical geeks a mile long)

  14. #14
    Code Goddess Prelude's Avatar
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    >I think the reason why peeps like Schildt make such an easy go of the
    >beginning programming books market is because peeps like Prelude haven't.
    That's because peeps like Prelude actually write code most of the time rather than write about it. If the good programmers start writing books, do you really want the other end of the spectrum writing your software?
    My best code is written with the delete key.

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    CSharpener vart's Avatar
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    the other end of the spectrum writing your software?
    Sometimes I wonder who wrote the code I have to support?..
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    the last 10% takes the other 90% of the time.

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