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Should I buy Oracle Certified Associate Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide (Exam 1Z0 - 808)?

 
Ganish Patil
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Are you using Oracle Certified Associate Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide (Exam 1Z0 - 808) by Jeanne Boyarsky book ? If yes then please tell me should I buy this book how is the book because in market It is the only book available. I've already added that book in Amazon's buying cart only one click away to place an order but was skeptical about book so should I buy this book for 1Z0-808 ?
 
Roel De Nijs
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Originally posted in this topic. Moved to a seperate thread, because it's a whole other discussion.
 
Roel De Nijs
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Hi Ganish,

First of all, a warm welcome on CodeRanch!

Ganish Patil wrote:but was skeptical about book so should I buy this book for 1Z0-808 ?

Why are you skeptical about the book?

Kind regards,
Roel
 
Ganish Patil
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On the Internet I've seen some reviews which said It has a lot of typo errors and just to be first in the market to release book for 1Z0-808 they hurriedly made this book so wait for another book such kind of review I've come across so was skeptical though yesterday I went to market to see It's hard copy in real but It wasn't available in the market of Pune,Maharashtra, India so just kept pending order on Amazon. so If someone is using that book please share how this book is so I can click on the order button.
 
Ganish Patil
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I've seen post by Jeanne Boyarsky in previous topic. was that the post by real author of that book ?
 
Roel De Nijs
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Ganish Patil wrote:I've seen post by Jeanne Boyarsky in previous topic. was that the post by real author of that book ?

Yes! Jeanne (and Scott as well) are active contributors to the ranch and visit this forum regularly.
 
Ganish Patil
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Ops ! I'm really sorry I didn't know that, I just read few reviews about book on the internet so posted else no offence.
 
Roel De Nijs
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Ganish Patil wrote:Ops ! I'm really sorry I didn't know that, I just read few reviews about book on the internet so posted else no offence.

No problem! I don't think Jeanne will be offended with you asking if it's a good thing to buy the book. That's one of the strenghts of the internet: you can easily get opinions of users/readers and then decide if you would purchase or not. I'm almost ready with a reply on your 2nd post. So stay tuned!
 
Ganish Patil
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Yes I'm eagerly waiting. I'm much delighted by seeing so many different forums and their replies so I'm damn sure, I'm on the correct site. Now I'm sure if I face any problem in Java programming lots of brains are there to help me. Relieved
 
Roel De Nijs
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Ganish Patil wrote:On the Internet I've seen some reviews which said It has a lot of typo errors and just to be first in the market to release book for 1Z0-808 they hurriedly made this book so wait for another book

I have indeed read that sole review as well. It's not hard to find as it's the only 2-star review (for this book) on Amazon (besides a bunch of 4 or 5-star reviews).

First of all, I have read my fair share of exam certification study guides and it's really an illusion to think you'll find a book without typos and errata. I even read a few of them being a technical reviewer of such study guides (like K&B7). So I think I have a certain experience to assess the quality of study guides. It's very, very, very hard (and I can't stress this enough) to write a study guide without any typo/error/mistake at all. Why? Because besides the author(s) a whole team is working on this book and most of these team members don't have a technical background (and thus know nothing about Java). So it's easy to have a minor slip-up due to a copy/paste mistake or not knowing boolean and Boolean are not the same thing in a Java world.
And to illustrate this statement: although already many editions of the K&B study guide were published (for Java 1.4, 5 and 6), the Java 7 edition of this bestselling study guide still has errata items as well.

Secondly, the authors keep an errata overview of every reported typo/mistake/error about this book. You can even use this forum to report such kind of mistakes. You'll find the errata overview of the book here. So I think we can agree that keeping track of all errata items publicly visible is a very good thing. Because if you are reading the book and think you spotted an errata item, you can check the list and see if it's already reported. If it's not and you still are in doubt, you can simply create a topic here on the ranch and you'll get your questions/doubts answered/clarified on very short notice because a whole Java community (including both authors of the book) is reading (and actively contributing to) these forums.

And finally, as you already mentioned currently just very few study guides are available for OCA 8 certification exam. You'll find the overview in this post. So your options are very limited:
  • don't buy a book and use other (online) (free) resource (e.g. Oracle's online tutorials) to prepare you for the exam
  • wait for another study guide to be published. But this could take quite a while, for OCA 7 the Mala Gupta study guide was for a avery long time the only study guide available, it took almost 1.5 years until another study guide (K&B7) was published
  • buy a OCA 7 book and either take the OCA 7 exam or use use other (online) (free) resource (e.g. Oracle's online tutorials) to study the new OCA 8 features (and take the OCA 8 exam)


  • It's completely up to you!

    Hope it helps!
    Kind regards,
    Roel
     
    Ganish Patil
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    Yes I'll definitely buy Oracle Certified Associate Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide by Jeanne Boyarsky and Scott Selikoff. I just wanted to clear my doubts. Thank you so much for your help.
     
    Roel De Nijs
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    Ganish Patil wrote:Yes I'll definitely buy Oracle Certified Associate Java SE 8 Programmer I Study Guide by Jeanne Boyarsky and Scott Selikoff. I just wanted to clear my doubts.

    Glad to hear I could help clear your doubts. If you have other doubts/questions (while studying), don't hesitate to start a new topic in this forum.

    Happy studying!
     
    Jeanne Boyarsky
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    Roel De Nijs wrote:
    Ganish Patil wrote:On the Internet I've seen some reviews which said It has a lot of typo errors and just to be first in the market to release book for 1Z0-808 they hurriedly made this book so wait for another book

    I have indeed read that sole review as well. It's not hard to find as it's the only 2-star review (for this book) on Amazon (besides a bunch of 4 or 5-star reviews)

    Hi. I'm Jeanne; one of the authors of the book. We didn't rush this book to market. We started well before the exam objectives came out.

    Roel De Nijs wrote:First of all, I have read my fair share of exam certification study guides and it's really an illusion to think you'll find a book without typos and errata. I even read a few of them being a technical reviewer of such study guides (like K&B7). So I think I have a certain experience to assess the quality of study guides. It's very, very, very hard (and I can't stress this enough) to write a study guide without any typo/error/mistake at all. Why? Because besides the author(s) a whole team is working on this book and most of these team members don't have a technical background (and thus know nothing about Java). So it's easy to have a minor slip-up due to a copy/paste mistake or not knowing boolean and Boolean are not the same thing in a Java world.
    And to illustrate this statement: although already many editions of the K&B study guide were published (for Java 1.4, 5 and 6), the Java 7 edition of this bestselling study guide still has errata items as well.

    It's interesting (to me) how errors managed to slip through multiple review cycles/editions. Roel is right - this confirms how tough it is.

    Roel De Nijs wrote:Secondly, the authors keep an errata overview of every reported typo/mistake/error about this book. You can even use this forum to report such kind of mistakes. You'll find the errata overview of the book here. So I think we can agree that keeping track of all errata items publicly visible is a very good thing. Because if you are reading the book and think you spotted an errata item, you can check the list and see if it's already reported. If it's not and you still are in doubt, you can simply create a topic here on the ranch and you'll get your questions/doubts answered/clarified on very short notice because a whole Java community (including both authors of the book) is reading (and actively contributing to) these forums.

    This is something that is important to me. When I read a book and see errors, the first thing I think is "if I found this error, how do I know I can trust the rest of the book." That's what the public errata is for. By listing each and every error (no matter how minor), you know there aren't significant errors waiting to bite you. And if you skim the errata left, you'll see they are mostly in "stupid typo land" and not things that are going to mess you up on the test.
     
    Ganish Patil
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    @ Roel De Nijs yes sure, If I get any doubts/problem while studying I'll post in the new forum. I've already ordered that book so excited to read that, will be delivered withing 7-8 days. Once again thank you so much.
     
    Ganish Patil
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    @ Jeanne Boyarsky It is my honor to get reply from you mam. I can't really believe, I'm chatting with an author. I believe in what you said and already ordered book after discussion with Roel De Nijs . Thank you so much to clarified my doubts.
     
    Grant Robertson
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    I am reading the book now. I posted a four-star review on Amazon. I will quickly reiterate what I wrote there:

    It is RELATIVELY well written but I think the topics are introduced in almost the exact opposite order from what they should be for beginners. In almost every explanation of every topic: they have to say, "but we will explain that part in a later chapter..." It gets really tiresome, especially when there was no real reason not to have discussed that other topic first. Only because I am using the book for review of the Java courses that I aced just five-to-seven years ago was I able to really "get" what is going on. The book is rarely completely wrong, but there are some explanations that seem as if they were phoned in by some ghost writer in Bangalore. The sentence structure and idioms used in those sections are both really bad AND different from the rest of the book.

    I have read a lot of books that purport to be for beginners but that completely gloss over important details or just expect a beginner to know or easily figure out important but difficult topics. In fact, most computer books, in general are pretty awful. Most of the writing in this book is far better than in most other computer books, especially when it comes to explaining things to beginners. However, I still feel it is only about 80% there. Yes, I am picky. I expect better from people who purport to be experts. No, I am not just talking about simple typos. I'm talking about sentence structure. I'm talking about choice of terms and consistency of use of those terms. I'm talking about organization and accessibility. I'm talking about burying important points, as an aside, in the middle of paragraphs two chapters AFTER where the topic was discussed or even in the answers to assessment questions.

    So, get the book, if only because it is the only OCA 8 book available. However, if you don't already know Java, then be prepared to read through it two or three times in order to really get it. And make sure to read every word in every section, even sections you think you know well, just to make sure you don't miss any important points.
     
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    Grant Robertson wrote: but there are some explanations that seem as if they were phoned in by some ghost writer in Bangalore. The sentence structure and idioms used in those sections are both really bad AND different from the rest of the book.

    I actually think I know what you are referring to there. Scott and I wrote most of the book ourselves. We did reuse a little content from Wiley's SCJP 6 book (with the author and publisher's permission). That was mostly because it was our first book and we thought that would make it easier. The author of that book isn't from India. But he is a different person, so would naturally have a different writing style.

    With the circular references, we tried to make it as linear as we could. We knew there were going to be forward references when we wrote the outline though. Since we didn't expect this to be anyone's first Java book, we viewed that as an acceptable tradeoff. The StringBuilder/array example you pointed out is a good example where we could have done a better job at it.

    Grant Robertson wrote:However, if you don't already know Java, then be prepared to read through it two or three times in order to really get it

    I'd actually make this stronger - if you don't know any Java, pick up another non-cert book first. In chapter 1, I recommend Head First Java, Thinking in Java or Java for Dummies as options. (Thinking in Java has the advantage of being free for older editions.)

    ps - I like that you wrote a thoughtful/detailed review. Have a cow for that!
     
    Grant Robertson
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    Jeanne Boyarsky wrote:... if you don't know any Java, pick up another non-cert book first. In chapter 1, I recommend Head First Java, Thinking in Java or Java for Dummies as options. (Thinking in Java has the advantage of being free for older editions.)


    I have found that the Head First series just bugs me. All of their different ways to get the information to stick in your head are just a distraction for me. But that's just me.

    I thoroughly hated Thinking in Java. The author has created his own library of code that shortcut through all the stuff the reader should be learning. Almost all of his examples use his library rather than the standard Java libraries. So the reader ends up learning how to use his libraries and NOT learning actual Java. I wrote a scathing review of that book on Amazon.

    I've never been a fan of the Dummies books because too many of them wave their hands over the important details and actually say things like, "Just have an expert do this part for you." In my view, a beginner's book should not skip important but esoteric details, they should spend even more time carefully explaining them. However, if the intended audience is actually "dummies" then perhaps they just expect that that their readership will truly be too stupid to ever understand said esoteric details. In that case, why write such a book about technical topics at all? Though I have not read any of their books on Java, so I can't give a review on them specifically.

    So, what do I recommend?
  • I highly recommend any book by Cay Horstman. Get one of the textbooks he has written. They are incredible.
  • If you want to really get practice writing code, try the Deitel and Deitel books. This brother team writes books about many different programming languages. What they do is work the reader through building a large project. Almost all the examples and exercises end up being or evolving into parts of the same overall project. But they also start with the basics and the parts of the language that are both easier to understand and don't require too much prior knowledge of other parts of the language.
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    Jeanne Boyarsky
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    Grant Robertson wrote:
  • I highly recommend any book by Cay Horstman. Get one of the textbooks he has written. They are incredible.

  • ++ I agree. I've loved all the books I've read by Cay. I haven't read his intro to Java book so I didn't feel comfortable recommending it.
     
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