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Sun Certified Web Component Developer Study Companion VS Head First Servlets & JSP

 
George Goubak
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Hello Charles and all,

i recently bought the "Head First Servlets & JSP: Passing the Sun Certified Web Component Developer Exam" book. I haven't started reading it yet, but a lot of people's oppinion is that it is a great book and a good preparation of the exam. What are your book's advantages over the Head First one? Maybe both of them are needed?

Thanks
 
Sebastian Janisch
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Head first is amazing if you are a complete starter and like easy and unconventional learning approaches. Their style however pretty much bloats the book but that's okay (at least for me).
 
Charles Lyons
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We hear a lot of feedback from readers who have bought both books who say HFSJ provides a great introduction to SCWCD topics and gets them enthused about the platform's possibilities, and that my book then solidifies the details and enhances their knowledge. It's certainly true that you go "beyond the basics" in my book and the no-nonsense approach means we get all the details of how things work clear from the start. It also provides over 300 more (and challenging) test questions, plus another mock exam - so even if you never read all the book, it has lots of extra exam practise for you. We also regularly hear that my book makes a great reference book due to it's no-nonsense approach.

You can find more links about the content of the book (sample chapter, table of contents, other reviews) in my post in the stick thread.
 
Rebecca Hopper
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Is your book going to be made available on O'Reilly Safari, as Head First Servlets and JSP is?
 
Bert Bates
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Hi Charles,

And a sincere welcome!

And... I'm trying not to infer anything from the repeated use of the phrase "no-nonsense"

Bert
 
Charles Lyons
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Hi Bert! Gosh, have I used "no-nonsense" that many times (ooops, just did it again!)... I think I've subconsciously made it my "phrase of the day"

Tomorrow I'll choose a different one
 
George Goubak
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Charles Lyons wrote:We hear a lot of feedback from readers who have bought both books who say HFSJ provides a great introduction to SCWCD topics and gets them enthused about the platform's possibilities, and that my book then solidifies the details and enhances their knowledge. It's certainly true that you go "beyond the basics" in my book and the no-nonsense approach means we get all the details of how things work clear from the start. It also provides over 300 more (and challenging) test questions, plus another mock exam - so even if you never read all the book, it has lots of extra exam practise for you. We also regularly hear that my book makes a great reference book due to it's no-nonsense approach.

You can find more links about the content of the book (sample chapter, table of contents, other reviews) in my post in the stick thread.


So the answer is that i could use both of them. I'll start reading HFS&J that i already own and if i decide that i'll have the exams i'll give yours a try too.

PS: If by "no-nonsense" approach you imply an approach opposite of the way the Head First books are written, i don't know about HFS&J (i already said that i haven't started reading it yet) but i've read half of the Head First Design Patterns book (which is written the same way as far as i know) six months ago and every single example of the design patterns discussed there is still stuck in my head! My oppinion is that at last someone found a way to write computing books in a very interesting way!
 
Nishan Patel
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Hi,

When you are completed your HFJS book you get your questions answer. It is wonderful book, the style they explain .... ohh... I am really impressed with book.

And you are also ...
 
George Goubak
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Nishan Patel wrote:And you are also ...


 
Charles Lyons
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George Goubak wrote:So the answer is that i could use both of them. I'll start reading HFS&J that i already own and if i decide that i'll have the exams i'll give yours a try too.

Absolutely - if you want to solidify your knowledge and have more test questions at your disposal, two books will give you a broader perspective than one alone. Sometimes explaining a topic in a different way sheds different light on the topic, which you may find helpful.

George Goubak wrote:PS: If by "no-nonsense" approach you imply an approach opposite of the way the Head First books are written...

I stated in another thread that I haven't seen a copy of HFSJ myself, so I don't draw a comparison between the two books myself. However, feedback we've had from some readers (and you can find a few similar reviews on this forum too if you search), is that HFSJ is a good "first read" but my book contains more gritty detail and is more concise (e.g. fewer pages). Also some readers don't like full-page jokes and cartoons, but prefer a old-fashioned textbook approach also including pertinent diagrams. Others prefer the entertaining style. So it's personal preference, and you will probably find my book complements (rather than being "opposite" to) the other.
 
Vyas Sanzgiri
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good answer - I like no-nonsense "to the point" books!!
 
Joshua Smith
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I was skeptical of the Head First style with the little cartoons and then I sat down and read one chapter out of the Head First Design Patterns in the bookstore one day and was finally able to understand a pattern that had been particularly difficult for me to understand from reading other patterns books. Then I saw that Kathy Sierra and Bert Bates wrote the SCWCD one and so I decided to give it a try. (I had used their study guide for SCJP). I found that the "odd", "nonsense" approach is all about making it stick in your head. It seems as if there's a problem solving that they lead you through to the answer and so you not only know the answer, but you've taken a sort of journey to get to it so it sticks.

Also, I find that I learn well from flashcards. The flashcards that I'm remembering best are the lists (e.g. the 9 implicit objects available to a JSP that you should know for the exam) and flashcards that I draw pictures on (e.g. overlapping boxes for application, session, request and page scope). So some of it is a no-nonsense approach (lists) and some of it is a nonsense approach (silly pictures). In any case, it's about making it stick. That's why I'm particularly interested in having a second book to use for study. I think the combination of approaches will do well for me.

The first Sierra/Bates book that I used was the SCJP Study Guide. It's of the no-nonsense variety and was good as well.

So anyway, that's my nonsense/no-nonsense take on it.

Josh
 
Vyas Sanzgiri
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Of course you need to combine at least a couple of books. If one book claims to cover everything - they are just joking!!
 
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