Well, Programming is difficult! Take your time...
It's been a long time since I took my first programming class (Fortran). But, although I don't remember any Fortran, I do remember being totally confused for the first few weeks... I didn't know what the professor was talking about!
Hmm... a few pages into the book and my brain seems to have stopped functioning!
Everything is weird! Do you really need to memorize all these things? Why cant they give me something a lil bit simpler? Something easier to memorize?
Once you get a feel for the syntax and the basic idea of giving the computer a sequence of instructions, and learn about loops and if-statements, it should become a bit easier. Of course, some topics will be easier to understand than others. Some things will be difficult if you have to learn the concepts and the programming language at the same time (Pointers, bitwise operations, etc).
Technical books are not like novels. You usually have to read every page more than once. I usually read through a chapter (or a section) quickly, then go back and re-read each section slowly 'till I think I understand it. If your book has exercises, then you will know when you're ready to move-on to the next chapter.
You don't have to memorize everything. Nobody memorizes all of the standard functions. The more you practice, the more you will learn, and the less you'll have to look-up.
Yes! I hand-typed in all of the examples, enen though I also downloaded them. It helps to get the "feel" of the syntax. You get used to putting semicolons at the end of almost every line, matching-up the brackets, etc. (When I buy reference books I don't type-in all the examples.)
? Did you guys go thru all the examples/exercises in whatever book you were using?