I have enjoyed several of the Head First series and I like the way the books presents the material. I wonder, how has your delivery changed since you did HF Java all those years ago? What have you learnt that makes this book more engaging than HF Java?
I see on forum comments and such that even though I like the HF style there are many that find it distracting. Have you explicitly decided to write to a special kind of reader? Do you think that there are different modes of learning that fits to different people or is there a "best" way?
Another one; personally I find that I learn best through doing and one of the good things about the HF books is that they break up the material with frequent excercises. Do you think that the content of this book could be even better delivered through some kind of interactive experience? I'm in two minds myself. Sites like Khan Academy and Codecademy etc. are already very good and has very good potential. On the other hand, books are standalone packages and probably live longer.
Thanks for your time (and your books)
Kathy Sierra wrote:
I have always said that if we took out everything that makes a Head First book a Head First book, the two things that absolutely are necessary are the heavy use of visuals (especially the diagrams) and the annotated code. The annotated code is a dramatically powerful way to help reduce the cognitive load experienced when trying to learn how things work in code. Part of that annotated code (not Java-code-annotations -- I mean the way we make 'notes' on the code) is also that we are able to keep repeating parts of the context in which the code we're discussing lives. A code snippet without repeating its context is a very difficult way to learn because very few people can see the original context just once and then remember it perfectly on the next page.
Kathy Sierra wrote:
I'll answer it this way by revealing something NOBODY knows (until now ;) -- my current project is working on a form of interactive learning for Java 8.