Title:Java SE 8 for the Really Impatient
Author/s : Cay S. Horstmann
Publisher : Addison-Wesley Professional
Category : Miscellaneous Java Review by : Jeanne Boyarsky
Rating : 10 horseshoes
"Java SE 8 for the Really Impatient" is a fairly thin book (200 pages) that covers what's new in Java 8. And some of the features that were new in Java 7.
The book doesn't skimp on detail. The first 60 pages teach you about lambdas, stream and functional programming. I like how Cay covers so many different scenarios. The book is fast moving and doesn't have a lot of fluff. This meant I had to read some sections a few times to grasp the material.
The book also covers smaller changes in Java 8 such as the new way to create a Locale. I particularly liked the examples for the Instant class to deal with dates. And it was cool learning what UTC (doesn't exactly) stand for.
Even in the Java 7 section, I learned things. For example, I didn't know about Objects.equals() and the new supertype for reflection based Exceptions.
Each chapter ends with hands on exercises. I haven't tried them yet, but doing so is on my to do list.
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for writing this review on behalf of CodeRanch.
James Pittendreigh wrote:Any reason why the answers to the exercises aren't in the book? Some aren't code based and would be good to see what Cay's answers were.
Agreed. I'd give this good book 8 out of 10. As an alternative to buying the Tenth Edition of "Core Java," this is a great appendix to the Ninth Edition. It does just what Jeanne says, regarding lambdas and streams. There are a few copy errors, but they are easy to detect and correct on your own (ex: "South" instead of "Bottom" on p.81).
Organizationally, it's a bit scattershot (there is actually an entire chapter entitled, "Miscellaneous Goodies" that might have been better named something like, "Additions to the Standard Library"), but it's short enough that this isn't an impediment to finding what you need to read.
When I practiced law in New York, I (like a lot of lawyers) subscribed to publications that were distributed in small ring-binders, with loose-leaf pages. When the law changed, the publishers would send me the pages that needed to be changed, with a list of pages to add and remove (what a Linux user would call, "the diffs"). This was great, because it meant my practice library was always up to date, I never paid for the same page twice, and most of my marginal notes did not need to be transcribed from one whole copy to another whole copy, just because a few pages had changed. I wish someone would publish "Core Java" in that format. This book reminds me a lot of those packages of "diff" pages that kept me up to date with my legal references, and makes a strong case for selling Java references by subscription.
"Il y a peu de choses qui me soient impossibles..."
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