C++ in Plain English

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Overview

C++ In Plain English is an essential reference guide for beginning and intermediate programmers. In addition to hundreds of valuable techniques and practical tips, you get clear, concise definitions of basic C++ keywords, functions, and terms. C++ In Plain English also provides in-depth coverage of ANSI C++ features, classes, operators, and virtual functions.

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1999 Trade paperback 2nd ed. Good. The book has been read but remains in clean condition. All pages are intact and the cover is intact. Some minor wear to the spine. Trade ... paperback (US). Glued binding. 565 p. In Plain English (IDG). *****PLEASE NOTE: This item is shipping from an authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

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Overview

C++ In Plain English is an essential reference guide for beginning and intermediate programmers. In addition to hundreds of valuable techniques and practical tips, you get clear, concise definitions of basic C++ keywords, functions, and terms. C++ In Plain English also provides in-depth coverage of ANSI C++ features, classes, operators, and virtual functions.

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Editorial Reviews

Jack J. Woehr

C++ in Plain English, Second Edition, by Brian Overland, takes on the thankless task of explaining C++ to someone who doesn't even know C, someone who doesn't want to be told he is going to learn C as a prelude, and wants his C++ right now, because that's where the jobs are. In short, C++ In Plain English is rather a good book within its limitations.

C++ in Plain English is a bit of a misnomer. It's more like "C++ in International Technical English" -- that specialized literary idiom used everywhere Usenet is accessed. Overland writes this stylized language well. NonU.S. engineers with limited colloquial American will be reasonably comfortable with this text.

On the other hand, the flagrant literatus, the programming language artist, and the aesthete will find this book a tad appalling. It starts in the author credits:

Brian Overland worked for Microsoft...[and] achieved the highest rank possible on the technical ladder for programmer/writer.

What rank? Is programmer/writer a job description in Redmond? Etcetera. This is not a book for people who prefer propositions unified with ground.

Then, along with the author, we start our first C++ program.

#include
void main() {
printf("Can you C++ now?");
}

A Jewish folksaying determines that a person can make "seven mistakes spelling 'Noah'" (a two-letter word in Hebrew). I see at least three flaws in this ostensibly beginner example:

  • It is obliged to include and use cout, not printf().
  • There is no void in argument list.
  • There is no '\n' in output string.

In short, a lot of this book is half-baked, hurried, but tolerably accurate. The truth is, if you are attempting to explain C++ to an individual of limited formal exposure and pressing professional need, there is no rational way to approach the task. So, if Overland seems to babble on occasion, it's because he has to satisfy readers' curiosity without fully answering their questions. There's a lot to cover and there's simply not enough paper handy.

Which brings us to the use of this inexpensive book. C++ in Plain English is eminently suited for a lightweight intro to C++ for high-school or adult-education classes. The instructor need not make a lesson plan, it's inherent in the simplistic text: Just follow Overland linearly and occasionally pause to point out the depth of the ocean of that which the text glosses over.
Electronic Review of Computer Books

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764545726
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 10/7/1999
  • Series: In Plain English Series
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 608
  • Product dimensions: 5.51 (w) x 8.51 (h) x 1.41 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
Pt. I Getting to Know C++
Ch. 1 What C++ Will Do for You 3
Ch. 2 Basic Features of C++ Programs 17
Ch. 3 Pointers, Strings, and Things 49
Ch. 4 Input, Output, and C++ 73
Ch. 5 A Touch of Class 91
Ch. 6 Another Look at Constructors 119
Ch. 7 Class Operations (Operator Overloading) 137
Ch. 8 Inheritance: C++ and Good Genes 165
Ch. 9 Virtual functions and Why They're Good 189
Pt. II C++ Reference 207
C++ in Plain English 209
C++ Elements A to Z 223
Ch. 10 Data Types 231
Ch. 11 Operators 247
Ch. 12 Cast Operators 271
Ch. 13 C++ Keywords 283
Ch. 14 Preprocessor Directives, Macros, and Operators 333
Ch. 15 Library Functions 351
Ch. 16 I/O Library Classes and Objects 431
App. A Summary of C/C++ Differences 463
App. B Overview of ANSI C++ Features 467
App. C Standard Exceptions 475
App. D ASCII Character Codes 479
Glossary of C++ Terms and Concepts 483
Index 525
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 18, 2000

    This is clutter-free info for a very difficult language

    I enrolled in an online C++ course. That has been the most difficult course I have ever taken, especially not being able to ask direct questions in a timely manner. C++ in Plain English has been a lifesaver for me in parsing out the key ideas of C++. I bought 5 other books on C++ and they were so loaded with intense detail or abstract concepts that some actually detracted from my learning. Mr. Overland's technical writing experience really shows. He takes out the key ideas and explains them in short, easy-to-understand sentences. This is not a book to learn code from. Consider it an in depth glossary to be used in conjunction with your other C++ books. I have not reviewed other books, but this one helped me so much that I thought I must pass on how this book can help those like me who are struggling with C++. I am normally a bit leary of 5 star ratings on books, However, when everything makes sense from cover to cover in a book on C++, then I have no choice. Technical writing is not easy by any means. Technical writing, like Mr. Overland's is meant to help people understand abstract concepts, not to be able to program. With that understanding, you can go back to your other books for coding lessons. For that purpose he has worked a miracle in my life and deserves 5 stars. There are other good C++ coding books that should be part of your library. This one should be used when you get stuck on concepts. I would not hesitate to buy sight-unseen other books by Mr. Overland.

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