A good C++ Reference book

This is a discussion on A good C++ Reference book within the C++ Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; I'm just starting to learn programming in C++. Currently, I'm using the book Accelerated C++, and although I have only ...

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    A good C++ Reference book

    I'm just starting to learn programming in C++. Currently, I'm using the book Accelerated C++, and although I have only finished chapter 2, I feel bloated with information. I was thinking of doing it cheaply and learning C++ by checking out books from the library, but now I think I need to buy a good C++ reference book. So, I'm in need of recommendation for a C++ reference book with concise explanation, and preferably cheap (although I doubt there are any like that). I also want to ask if the only thing I need is a C++ reference book after I'm done with the Accelerated C++ because, while I want to buy the latter as well, I feel that these books are too expensive, hence why I'm only getting a reference book.

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    This board has a book suggestions page stickied at the top, might as well start there, get some possible ideas.
    "Owners of dogs will have noticed that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they will think you are god. Whereas owners of cats are compelled to realize that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they draw the conclusion that they are gods."
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    I wouldn't feel bad about re-reading the first couple chapters again before moving on. You are also right that there is too much information to memorize, so a good reference is very helpful.

    I use Stroustrup's TC++PL as my reference (and online resources). The latest edition of C++ Primer (not C++ Primer Plus) is also a good companion to Accelerated C++ because Barbara Moo (who co-authored Accelerated C++) helped update that latest version. I'd check those out from the library if you can and see which feels more comfortable to you to use.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hk_mp5kpdw View Post
    This board has a book suggestions page stickied at the top, might as well start there, get some possible ideas.
    I have already checked it out before making this thread, but it seems there are several good reference books, so I want to know which suits the best for my purpose and situation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daved View Post
    I wouldn't feel bad about re-reading the first couple chapters again before moving on. You are also right that there is too much information to memorize, so a good reference is very helpful.

    I use Stroustrup's TC++PL as my reference (and online resources). The latest edition of C++ Primer (not C++ Primer Plus) is also a good companion to Accelerated C++ because Barbara Moo (who co-authored Accelerated C++) helped update that latest version. I'd check those out from the library if you can and see which feels more comfortable to you to use.
    Thanks for the suggestion, I'm going to check out the C++ Primer book.

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    tiachopvutru,

    I'm not sure that a "reference book" is really what you are looking for, because you wouldn't find much explanation in a reference book. For example, a chemical reference book might give you the technical properties of chemicals, compounds, and elements, but it's not going to teach you chemistry...

    If you run into something you don't understand, it's probably better to do some online research or ask a question here. Some of what you are learning may not make any sense until you learn enough to put it into context, especially if C++ is your first programming language. Programming tends to be extremely difficult in the beginning... You are learning 3 things at once... You are learning about what programming is, how to program, and a programming language. After you learn about looping and branching it gets more fun and interesting (and hopefully easier), and you can start to write more useful programs. Then at some point, it starts to get harder again simply because there is a lot to it.

    I don't own Accelerated C++, but it has a good reputation and I doubt you need another "beginning" C++ book. However, one of my mottos is, "You can never have too many programming books!" (I'm only a amateur/hobbyist programmer, but I have a bookshelf-full of programming books.)

    IMHO, a good reference book would include ALL of the functions in the C++ standard libraries, and a example (or two) for each function. I've looked for such a book, and it does not exist! There are a couple of complete online references (i.e. cppreference.com and Dinkumware.com), but there is little or no explanation or sample code. And of course, the C++ language standard itself (available in PDF form from ANSI) is a complete reference, but it's a highly "technical" document with no example-code... I suppose if I could have only one reference, I'd choose the ANSI C++ language standard... It's complete, and it is THE standard.

    I also want to ask if the only thing I need is a C++ reference book after I'm done with the Accelerated C++ because, while I want to buy the latter as well, I feel that these books are too expensive...
    Like I said, you can never have too many programing books. After you've worked your way through Accelerated C++, you can download a FREE PDF copy of Thinking In C++. It covers several topics in great depth (two volumes, ~1600 pages total), and it does make a good reference... just not a complete reference. And, at that point you can decide if you want to learn more standard C++, or if you want to start learning some specialized topic like GUI programming, general graphics, network programming, etc.
    Last edited by DougDbug; 05-13-2008 at 03:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DougDbug View Post
    tiachopvutru,

    I'm not sure that a "reference book" is really what you are looking for, because you wouldn't find much explanation in a reference book. For example, a chemical reference book might give you the technical properties of chemicals, compounds, and elements, but it's not going to teach you chemistry...

    If you run into something you don't understand, it's probably better to do some online research or ask a question here. Some of what you are learning may not make any sense until you learn enough to put it into context, especially if C++ is your first programming language. Programming tends to be extremely difficult in the beginning... You are learning 3 things at once... You are learning about what programming is, how to program, and a programming language. After you learn about looping and branching it gets more fun and interesting (and hopefully easier), and you can start to write more useful programs. Then at some point, it starts to get harder again simply because there is a lot to it.

    I don't own Accelerated C++, but it has a good reputation and I doubt you need another "beginning" C++ book. However, one of my mottos is, "You can never have too many programming books!" (I'm only a amateur/hobbyist programmer, but I have a bookshelf-full of programming books.)

    IMHO, a good reference book would include ALL of the functions in the C++ standard libraries, and a example (or two) for each function. I've looked for such a book, and it does not exist! There are a couple of complete online references (i.e. cppreference.com and Dinkumware.com), but there is little or no explanation or sample code. And of course, the C++ language standard itself (available in PDF form from ANSI) is a complete reference, but it's a highly "technical" document with no example-code... I suppose if I could have only one reference, I'd choose the ANSI C++ language standard... It's complete, and it is THE standard.

    Like I said, you can never have too many programing books. After you've worked your way through Accelerated C++, you can download a FREE PDF copy of Thinking In C++. It covers several topics in great depth (two volumes, ~1600 pages total), and it does make a good reference... just not a complete reference. And, at that point you can decide if you want to learn more standard C++, or if you want to start learning some specialized topic like GUI programming, general graphics, network programming, etc.
    I'm actually learning JAVA in my high school class that teaches basic programming, so currently it's easier for me to grasp some of the programming concepts in Accelerated C++. However, aside from the few paragraphs that I don't understand, the main thing I'm having problems with are the technical terms that the book throws around. I feel that I can only remember a few of those terms, so I'm looking for something that I can relate to when I get stuck in the future. In this way, the book I'm looking for doesn't necessarily have to be a reference book, and in fact, it can also be Accelerated C++ itself, which I feel is a good choice. Originally, I had the impression that I might be missing a lot of stuff by only keeping Accelerated C++, but the author did mention that the stuffs he mentions, although incomplete, contain all that programmers would need most of the times. So until you mentioned that there were no complete reference, I was having trouble with deciding between a "complete" reference and a beginning book that could have include all that I might need. Of course, I would like to get many programming books, but the price for those books is too much for me, especially since I do not know how far I'm going to go despite my long-time interest.

    The introduction to loop is actually on chapter 2, which I have already went through.

    I'm also having problem with how I'm going to tie everything I learn together. I already went through nearly a school year of JAVA in my high school class and do not know how to create a useful program by myself (something like media player, text editor, games, etc.).

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