f all you've got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail
September 6, 2010 8:33 AM   Subscribe

Are there any C# or Java tutorials anywhere as good as Larry Wall's Programming Perl?

Nearly every tutorial book I've read (or tried to read) falls far short of being engaging. Either I encounter useless snippets of code that do nothing that builds understanding or context; intersperses turgid prose with printing, referring to or somehow including foo, or successively iterates through evermore complex iterations of 'Hello world'.
Among other things, I've got 10+ years using TSQL and Perl, separately and together.
I understand XML and HTML but avoid them. I can dope out C# code, but Java is an enduring mystery - to me, at least.
Now I'm sure these impressions are biases, and I feel I must get past them. Are there tutorials that do more than just lay on a page? Is that asking too much?
FWIW, I'm ahem 'between engagements', so I have time to devote.
posted by nj_subgenius to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Maybe you should check out some books? I've enjoyed some Apress books on C#, but the Oreilly books are as good as any for learning a language. As for Java Oreilly also has a section on that too.

You can also fish around for developer blogs for either language, many have written tutorials and best practices etc which help.

posted by jbw at 9:03 AM on September 6, 2010

There is something wrong with the website right now, but if you really want to learn Java the language, then you can't go wrong with Bruce Eckel's Thinking in Java. It is a full length book available as a free download. Both Java and C# are relatively small languages with a lot of complexity at the edges. The real power and breath of these platforms are the standard libraries. They are enormous and can take tons of dedicated time to learn their capabilities and semantics.
posted by mmascolino at 9:19 AM on September 6, 2010

I was just about to recommend Eckel when mmascolino beat me to it.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 1:01 PM on September 6, 2010

Rats, the Eckel site is still down...thanks for your responses though, I'll keep checking.
posted by nj_subgenius at 1:33 PM on September 6, 2010

Eclipse and Java for Total Beginners definitely doesn't just lay on the page. It takes you through the absolute basics of Java itself, and how to work with Eclipse, which if you haven't used it before, is pretty awesome. There's also banjo tunes in the intro/outro bits of each video. No-one says 'foo', and I'm pretty sure 'Hello World' is only mentioned once in passing. If you've got an afternoon free, get the whole series and check them out...there's a little over three hours, all told.

The testing bits use JUnit 3, which is a little out of date, but you can easily pause the video the first few times testing comes up and find out how JUnit 4 works (tl;dr - better).
posted by Kreiger at 2:51 PM on September 6, 2010

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