Re: book for C beginners

Discussion in 'C Programming' started by sandeep, Jun 26, 2010.

  1. sandeep

    sandeep Guest

    Antonio Macchi writes:
    > Hi
    > I'm searching for a book for absolute beginners possibly with a lot of
    > suggested exercises (I have no much fantasy to invent on my own)
    >
    > tanks a lot


    K&R is the definitive text book of course, but VERY tough for absolute
    beginners (pretty tough for experts!).

    I would recommend "Teach yourself C" by H. Schildt - sadly out of print
    but you can find 2nd hand copies easily. It is very clear and easy to
    understand for beginners. There are lots of exercises and they all have
    source code at the back - very helpful.
     
    sandeep, Jun 26, 2010
    #1
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  2. On Sat, 26 Jun 2010 20:56:41 UTC, sandeep <> wrote:

    > Antonio Macchi writes:
    > > Hi
    > > I'm searching for a book for absolute beginners possibly with a lot of
    > > suggested exercises (I have no much fantasy to invent on my own)
    > >
    > > tanks a lot

    >
    > K&R is the definitive text book of course, but VERY tough for absolute
    > beginners (pretty tough for experts!).
    >
    > I would recommend "Teach yourself C" by H. Schildt - sadly out of print
    > but you can find 2nd hand copies easily. It is very clear and easy to
    > understand for beginners. There are lots of exercises and they all have
    > source code at the back - very helpful.


    I would strictly avoid anything that comes from Herbert Schildt
    because that guy is known as NOT to understund C in any case.

    --
    Tschau/Bye
    Herbert

    Visit http://www.ecomstation.de the home of german eComStation
    eComStation 2.0 ist da!
     
    Herbert Rosenau, Jun 27, 2010
    #2
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  3. sandeep

    sandeep Guest

    Richard Heathfield writes:
    > sandeep wrote:
    >> Antonio Macchi writes:
    >>> Hi
    >>> I'm searching for a book for absolute beginners possibly with a lot of
    >>> suggested exercises (I have no much fantasy to invent on my own)
    >>>
    >>> tanks a lot

    >>
    >> K&R is the definitive text book of course, but VERY tough for absolute
    >> beginners (pretty tough for experts!).
    >>
    >> I would recommend "Teach yourself C" by H. Schildt

    >
    > That is perhaps the worst suggestion you could possibly have made.
    >
    > Schildt's writings are riddled with errors and misconceptions, and much
    > of what one "learns" from him must be unlearned if one wishes to gain a
    > proper understanding of C.
    >
    >> - sadly out of print

    >
    > There's nothing sad about it.
    >
    >> but you can find 2nd hand copies easily.

    >
    > And with good reason.


    That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    writing crystal clear, in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    who is easier to understand. I've also used his Java book, I found that
    first rate too.

    I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.
     
    sandeep, Jun 27, 2010
    #3
  4. sandeep

    Willem Guest

    sandeep wrote:
    ) That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    ) writing crystal clear, in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    ) who is easier to understand. I've also used his Java book, I found that
    ) first rate too.
    )
    ) I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.

    Did you learn C from that book ?


    SaSW, Willem
    --
    Disclaimer: I am in no way responsible for any of the statements
    made in the above text. For all I know I might be
    drugged or something..
    No I'm not paranoid. You all think I'm paranoid, don't you !
    #EOT
     
    Willem, Jun 27, 2010
    #4
  5. sandeep <> writes:
    [...]
    > That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    > writing crystal clear, in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    > who is easier to understand. I've also used his Java book, I found that
    > first rate too.
    >
    > I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.


    Search for references to "Schildt" in this newsgroup. (I suggest
    ignoring anything posted by "spinoza1111".)

    --
    Keith Thompson (The_Other_Keith) <http://www.ghoti.net/~kst>
    Nokia
    "We must do something. This is something. Therefore, we must do this."
    -- Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, "Yes Minister"
     
    Keith Thompson, Jun 27, 2010
    #5
  6. sandeep

    Seebs Guest

    On 2010-06-27, Keith Thompson <> wrote:
    > sandeep <> writes:
    > [...]
    >> That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    >> writing crystal clear, in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    >> who is easier to understand. I've also used his Java book, I found that
    >> first rate too.


    >> I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.


    > Search for references to "Schildt" in this newsgroup. (I suggest
    > ignoring anything posted by "spinoza1111".)


    I can't figure out how to interpret this:

    1. This just proves that sandeep is 100% trolling.
    2. That sandeep thinks Schildt's books are "clear" and don't have errors
    explains his posts.

    I think Hanlon's Razor wins here. While sandeep's posts have been quite
    often much worse than anything I would think possible from someone merely
    ignorant of C, they could be explained as typical for someone who learned
    about C by reading Schildt.

    Consider his confusion about free(NULL) -- if you had read Schildt's
    material on pointers, you could actually have been confused enough to think
    that the library could not actually implement the specification.

    -s
    --
    Copyright 2010, all wrongs reversed. Peter Seebach /
    http://www.seebs.net/log/ <-- lawsuits, religion, and funny pictures
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_Game_(Scientology) <-- get educated!
     
    Seebs, Jun 28, 2010
    #6
  7. On Jun 27, 7:33 pm, sandeep <> wrote:
    >
    > That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    > writing crystal clear, in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    > who is easier to understand. I've also used his Java book, I found that
    > first rate too.
    >
    > I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.- Hide quoted text -
    >

    "THe book contains many technical errors" and "the book is not a good
    C primer" are not quite the same. It's somewhat surprising that
    Schildt has been successful as an author despite the number of
    technical errors in the books, but it is the case. The idea that a
    book which doesn't teach C successfully has consistently come top in a
    very competitive field is also difficult to swallow. That the errors
    exist has been demonstrated beyond any doubt. So whichever way you
    slice it, something odd is goling on.
     
    Malcolm McLean, Jul 6, 2010
    #7
  8. On 6 July, 16:33, Malcolm McLean <>
    wrote:
    > On Jun 27, 7:33 pm, sandeep <> wrote:


    > > That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    > > writing crystal clear,


    the two things aren't mutually incompatible

    > < in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    > > who is easier to understand.


    Plauger? Kernighan? Tannenbaum? Stroustrup?

    <snip>

    > > I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.

    >
    > "THe book contains many technical errors" and "the book is not a good
    > C primer" are not quite the same.


    not quite, but one implies the other. It cannot be good to teach
    beginners crap.


    > It's somewhat surprising that
    > Schildt has been successful as an author despite the number of
    > technical errors in the books, but it is the case.


    you must be young or something... to be so trusting...


    > The idea that a
    > book which doesn't teach C successfully has consistently come top in a
    > very competitive field is also difficult to swallow.


    people like it when things appear to be easy. K&R is a tough slog,
    Schildt is the primrose path.

    > That the errors
    > exist has been demonstrated beyond any doubt. So whichever way you
    > slice it, something odd is going on.


    Schildt doesn't care, his bank balance is full. The publishers don't
    care. We're left trying to re-educate people like sandeep.


    --

    The use of COBOL cripples the mind; its teaching should, therefore,
    be regarded as a criminal offense. -E. W. Dijkstra

    s/COBOL/Schildt/
     
    Nick Keighley, Jul 7, 2010
    #8
  9. sandeep

    Richard Bos Guest

    Malcolm McLean <> wrote:

    > On Jun 27, 7:33=A0pm, sandeep <> wrote:
    > >
    > > That's interesting - I don't remember finding any errors. I find Schildt's
    > > writing crystal clear, in fact I can't think of another technical writer
    > > who is easier to understand. I've also used his Java book, I found that
    > > first rate too.
    > >
    > > I'm not saying you're wrong, just I've had a different experience.- Hide =

    > quoted text -


    No, he didn't. Goggle Gropes is broken, but please remove that
    brokenness when you must use it.

    > "THe book contains many technical errors" and "the book is not a good
    > C primer" are not quite the same.


    True. The former is a strict superset of the latter.

    > It's somewhat surprising that Schildt has been successful as an author
    > despite the number of technical errors in the books, but it is the case.
    > The idea that a book which doesn't teach C successfully has consistently
    > come top in a very competitive field is also difficult to swallow.


    Much as the idea that a hamburger chain which doesn't nourish its
    customers properly is very successful, or the idea that a software
    company which sells OSes with more holes than your average strainer
    could make its owner the richest man in the world.
    Face it, to be popular you need to be _popular_, not good. Usually,
    quality is even a drawback to popularity. Most people who buy
    programming tutorials don't want to be successful at programming, they
    want to be successful at getting a programming job. For _that_, Schildt
    is undoubtedly very good.

    Richard
     
    Richard Bos, Jul 7, 2010
    #9
  10. On Jul 7, 4:50 pm, (Richard Bos) wrote:
    >
    > Much as the idea that a hamburger chain which doesn't nourish its
    > customers properly is very successful, or the idea that a software
    > company which sells OSes with more holes than your average strainer
    > could make its owner the richest man in the world.
    > Face it, to be popular you need to be _popular_, not good. Usually,
    > quality is even a drawback to popularity.
    >

    We get another interesting psychology here. Bill Gates is the richest
    man in the world. Inevitably people feel a bit of envy, and make jokes
    at his expense. Because software is technology, many of those jokes
    are technical and not accessible to people without experience. The
    whole world uses Windows. A few people also use Unix-like systems,
    quite often for very specialised jobs which can't be carried out on
    Windows. These people then start to believe that their use of Unix
    makes them superior. So the jokes about Windows intensify. Eventually
    some people manage to persuade themselves that Windows is a bad
    operating system.

    Is a similar thing going on with Schildt?
     
    Malcolm McLean, Jul 7, 2010
    #10
  11. sandeep

    Tim Streater Guest

    In article
    <>,
    Malcolm McLean <> wrote:

    > On Jul 7, 4:50 pm, (Richard Bos) wrote:
    > >
    > > Much as the idea that a hamburger chain which doesn't nourish its
    > > customers properly is very successful, or the idea that a software
    > > company which sells OSes with more holes than your average strainer
    > > could make its owner the richest man in the world.
    > > Face it, to be popular you need to be _popular_, not good. Usually,
    > > quality is even a drawback to popularity.
    > >

    > We get another interesting psychology here. Bill Gates is the richest
    > man in the world. Inevitably people feel a bit of envy, and make jokes
    > at his expense. Because software is technology, many of those jokes
    > are technical and not accessible to people without experience. The
    > whole world uses Windows.


    No it doesn't.

    > A few people also use Unix-like systems, quite often for very
    > specialised jobs which can't be carried out on Windows.


    Ah, you mean such as web browsing, email, writing docs or doing
    spreadsheets. I certainly can't do those on Windows without being
    exposed to 114,000 (and counting) viruses, so I'll give it a miss, ta
    very much.

    > These people then start to believe that their use of Unix
    > makes them superior. So the jokes about Windows intensify. Eventually
    > some people manage to persuade themselves that Windows is a bad
    > operating system.


    That's because it *is* a bad system. Not as bad as it used to be, I'll
    grant you.

    > Is a similar thing going on with Schildt?


    No, all this was apparent long before I'd heard of Schildt.

    --
    Tim

    "That excessive bail ought not to be required, nor excessive fines imposed,
    nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted" -- Bill of Rights 1689
     
    Tim Streater, Jul 7, 2010
    #11
  12. sandeep

    osmium Guest

    Malcolm McLean wrote:

    > We get another interesting psychology here. Bill Gates is the richest
    > man in the world. Inevitably people feel a bit of envy, and make jokes
    > at his expense. Because software is technology, many of those jokes
    > are technical and not accessible to people without experience. The
    > whole world uses Windows. A few people also use Unix-like systems,
    > quite often for very specialised jobs which can't be carried out on
    > Windows. These people then start to believe that their use of Unix
    > makes them superior. So the jokes about Windows intensify. Eventually
    > some people manage to persuade themselves that Windows is a bad
    > operating system.
    >
    > Is a similar thing going on with Schildt?


    Is a similar thing going on with Schildt?

    That's an interesting take on the situation; but I think it's wrong, there
    actually are substantial errors in Schildt's books. Commonly his errors
    have to do with his code working on a particular compiler, exploiting some
    lack of rigor in that particular compiler. His code has the quality of "top
    of the head" code that looks like it should probably work. Something like
    one might post late at night on Usenet.

    BTW, I think Windows IS a lousy operating system. I've been using it since
    Windows 3.1, The main advantage is that Best Buy sells such systems at very
    reasonable prices.
     
    osmium, Jul 7, 2010
    #12
  13. On Jul 7, 5:47 pm, "osmium" <> wrote:
    >
    > BTW, I think Windows IS a lousy operating system.  I've been using it since
    > Windows 3.1,  The main advantage is that Best Buy sells such systems at very
    > reasonable prices.
    >

    Software is new. For instance some idiot on the Windows team decided
    it was good idea to hide the file extensions by default. The thinking
    was that this was part of the mechanics of the filing system, not the
    content, so the computer could sort that out and keep it from the
    user. Of course computers aren't clever enough to do this, not by a
    long way. Sometimes you want to load a C file into a wordprocessor
    rather than an IDE. But it was a trivial little thing, with big
    implications for usability.
    I've had linux systems, big unix systems, and PCs with Windows (who
    hasn't). They are all full of annoyances, all occasionally make simple
    jobs difficult in the quest to make difficult jobs simple. However I
    also have an insight, as a programmer, into the difficulties of
    constructing such systems.
     
    Malcolm McLean, Jul 7, 2010
    #13
  14. Malcolm McLean <> writes:
    > On Jul 7, 4:50 pm, (Richard Bos) wrote:

    [...]
    > We get another interesting psychology here. Bill Gates is the richest
    > man in the world. Inevitably people feel a bit of envy, and make jokes
    > at his expense. Because software is technology, many of those jokes
    > are technical and not accessible to people without experience. The
    > whole world uses Windows. A few people also use Unix-like systems,
    > quite often for very specialised jobs which can't be carried out on
    > Windows. These people then start to believe that their use of Unix
    > makes them superior. So the jokes about Windows intensify. Eventually
    > some people manage to persuade themselves that Windows is a bad
    > operating system.
    >
    > Is a similar thing going on with Schildt?


    No. Schildt just writes bad books.

    --
    Keith Thompson (The_Other_Keith) <http://www.ghoti.net/~kst>
    Nokia
    "We must do something. This is something. Therefore, we must do this."
    -- Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, "Yes Minister"
     
    Keith Thompson, Jul 7, 2010
    #14
  15. sandeep

    Seebs Guest

    On 2010-07-06, Malcolm McLean <> wrote:
    > "THe book contains many technical errors" and "the book is not a good
    > C primer" are not quite the same. It's somewhat surprising that
    > Schildt has been successful as an author despite the number of
    > technical errors in the books, but it is the case. The idea that a
    > book which doesn't teach C successfully has consistently come top in a
    > very competitive field is also difficult to swallow. That the errors
    > exist has been demonstrated beyond any doubt. So whichever way you
    > slice it, something odd is goling on.


    Not really. It's very possible to write something which leaves people
    pretty sure they understand something.

    Again, consider the effect of his elaborate feof() trickery used
    in conjunction with 'char ch;'. He's created a problem, and is then
    "solving" it, so people who learn from his books think they've learned
    a useful trick, and if they take the clever trick out, it stops
    working... So they think they've learned stuff, but they're wrong.

    You get a lot of newbies who think they learned a lot from their
    first tutorial, even if it really just screwed them up.

    -s
    --
    Copyright 2010, all wrongs reversed. Peter Seebach /
    http://www.seebs.net/log/ <-- lawsuits, religion, and funny pictures
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_Game_(Scientology) <-- get educated!
     
    Seebs, Jul 9, 2010
    #15
  16. On Wed, 07 Jul 2010 13:50:29 GMT, (Richard Bos)
    wrote:
    <snip Schildt>
    > > "THe book contains many technical errors" and "the book is not a good
    > > C primer" are not quite the same.

    >
    > True. The former is a strict superset of the latter.
    >

    IHYM subset. Any book with many errors is not a good primer, but even
    a book with no technical errors may still fail to be a good primer --
    if it even tries: among technical books I'd estimate well over half
    aren't primers at all, good or bad; and among nontechnical books I'd
    guess (with less confidence) even more.
     
    David Thompson, Jul 22, 2010
    #16
  17. sandeep

    Richard Bos Guest

    David Thompson <> wrote:

    > On Wed, 07 Jul 2010 13:50:29 GMT, (Richard Bos)
    > <snip Schildt>
    > > > "THe book contains many technical errors" and "the book is not a good
    > > > C primer" are not quite the same.

    > >
    > > True. The former is a strict superset of the latter.
    > >

    > IHYM subset.


    You are not wrong.

    (Also, sideways, yes, that _is_ the same case as Microshite. And yes,
    the reasons _are_ the same. And no, Invidia does not come into it,
    though Ira does.)

    Richard
     
    Richard Bos, Aug 14, 2010
    #17
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