Win a copy of Functional Reactive Programming this week in the Other Languages forum!
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Is Java best option for first learning languaje?

 
lisa broker
Greenhorn
Posts: 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi, I'd like to learn programming, I don't know how to start, Is Java a good choice?
 
David Newton
Author
Rancher
Posts: 12617
IntelliJ IDE Ruby
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Not in my opinion. I think the syntactic/ceremonial overhead make it particularly unsuitable as a first language.
 
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff
Pie
Posts: 50225
79
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
There probably isn't a "best" first language. Some are easier to learn than others; Java is probably one of the easier ones. But programming is in itself a difficult activity.
 
Rob Spoor
Sheriff
Pie
Posts: 20667
65
Chrome Eclipse IDE Java Windows
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
At my old university we started out with Pascal, and I did find that a nice starter language. Try to avoid Visual Basic though, as it is a horrible piece of dog poo.
 
Maneesh Godbole
Saloon Keeper
Posts: 11178
15
Android Eclipse IDE Google Web Toolkit Java Mac Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I started off with C and found it quite easy to grasp the fundamentals.
But whatever language you choose, do yourself a favor and do not go for the drag and drop style IDEs, or IDEs which auto generate code for you. Thats a big no no at the beginner stage. A simple text editor/compiler combination helps best.
 
Henry Wong
author
Marshal
Pie
Posts: 21504
84
C++ Chrome Eclipse IDE Firefox Browser Java jQuery Linux VI Editor Windows
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I think everyone is different... with the right mindset, any language can be a good first language.

My first language was BASIC (on the Commodore PET). I quite enjoyed it. It was a very easy language to learn. I got bored of it after a few months though.

My second language was 6502 assembly language. Those were the days.... ... one 8 bit register (for math), two 8 bit index registers. Only memory based operations were load and store (no in-memory math).

Henry


 
fred rosenberger
lowercase baba
Bartender
Posts: 12196
35
Chrome Java Linux
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
just about any language will have some overhead you need to slog through. the trick is to figure out what you can safely ignore for now, and what the lesson is really trying to teach. For example, don't worry about why you need

"public static void main (String [] args)"

and what all the little pieces mean at first. Just know that you need it for now. then, as you learn more and more, you might start seeing the word 'void' used with other methods. Then come back and see why it makes sense here. Same for the other parts.

an early example might talk about if/else if/ else statements. focus on that part and get good understanding of that syntax, what it can (and can't) do, etc. The rest will come with time.
 
Michael Keisu
Ranch Hand
Posts: 30
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
in my experience - as a beginner of C++ and Java - I find Java easier, once I got over the "public static void main(String[] args)" anyway.. There is the Java API which you can lean on, also you don't have to bother with pointers various other things the creators of Java didn't find neccessary to bring to the language.

I don't think either are easy to learn however.. Or very fast to learn (I wish). In fact I find it hard to motivate myself in learning Java until I took a course recently, I have applied to another one, and it is a real motivation boost, having a clear goal ;) I personally haven't bothered with any other languages because I keep hearing about limitations when languages such as Visual Basic, etc etc are brought up

 
Max Rahder
Ranch Hand
Posts: 177
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
lisa broker wrote:Hi, I'd like to learn programming, I don't know how to start, Is Java a good choice?

If you Google this you'll see there's a lot of opinion. Personally, I'd look into Python as a first language.
 
Dominic Carr
Greenhorn
Posts: 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I think java is a good first language but i would recommend python.
 
M K Rayapudi
Ranch Hand
Posts: 160
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
@lisa broker,
I think now you are in dilemma .
All the Ranchers' suggestions are worthful.
In my opinion, you can start learning programming with any language. (Myself started with Pascal, and then COBOL, FORTRAN, C, C++, Java, etc.,).
If you want to learn Java from a training center, tell the trainer as you don't know any other Programming language, because,
What I have observed is most of the Java Teachers are teaching Java to the students by assuming the students already know some non-OOP language (for e.g. C-language).
All the best!




 
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff
Pie
Posts: 50225
79
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I previously wrote:There probably isn't a "best" first language.
And everybody seems to agree with me

Welcome to the Ranch, Dominic Carr
 
Fabio Falci Rodrigues
Ranch Hand
Posts: 36
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What do you guys think about Javascript?

You don't need to install anything to execute, just use your favorite web browser!
 
Paul Clapham
Sheriff
Posts: 21416
33
Eclipse IDE Firefox Browser MySQL Database
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
That (Javascript) leads to another question: why would you want to learn a computer language?

Sure, you could learn Javascript. But all it can do is mess around inside a browser. So if your goal was to write a program which could -- say -- keep track of all the species of moth you had ever seen, you couldn't use Javascript. Likewise Java isn't good for writing spyware. So you have to ask yourself what's your reason for learning this computer language.
 
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff
Posts: 8900
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A lot of people I respect say that Python is a great choice. I'd say Java is a pretty good choice, but when you learn Java, try to find instruction that really focuses on the object oriented perspective.
 
Campbell Ritchie
Sheriff
Pie
Posts: 50225
79
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Good point, Bert. You can find some books, eg Head First, Barnes and Kölling, Deitel "early objects edition" which introduce object-orientation (OO) early in the process. There are others, eg Barry Burd, SAMS "Teach Yourself" where it is intoduced later and much of the code is written in a procedural style. Agree with Bert that learning OO is a large part of the process.
 
  • Post Reply
  • Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic