A Programmer's Guide to Java Certification: A Comprehesive Primer / Edition 2

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Overview

To pass the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform 1.4 exam (SCPJ2 1.4) you need this book. It is written for any experienced programmer (with or without previous knowledge of Java) interested in mastering the Java programming language and passing the SCPJ2 1.4 exam.

A Programmer's Guide to Java™ Certification, Second Edition, contains detailed coverage of all exam topics and objectives, helpful code examples, exercises, review questions, and several full practice exams. In addition, as a comprehensive primer to the Java programming language, this book is an invaluable reference tool for the reader.

This new edition has been thoroughly updated to focus on the latest version of the exam (CX-310-035). In particular, it contains more in-depth explanations of the syntax and usage of core language features that are now emphasized on the exam. The accompanying CD contains a version of the SCPJ2 1.4 Exam Simulator developed by Whizlabs Software, which includes several mock exams and simulates the exam-taking experience. The CD also contains the complete source code for all the examples, and solutions to the programming exercises.

What you will find in this book:

  • Extensive coverage of all the objectives defined for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform 1.4 exam
  • Easy-to-follow structure with chapters organized according to the exam objectives as laid out by Sun Microsystems
  • Summaries that clearly state and differentiate the exam objectives and the supplementary objectives to be covered in each chapter
  • A list of Sun's objectives for the SCPJ2 1.4 exam, and a guide to taking the exam
  • A complete mock exam with new questions (not repeats of review questions)
  • A CD that includes several mock exams and a version of the SCJP 1.4 Exam Simulator by Whizlabs Software, which simulates the exam-taking experience
  • Numerous exam-relevant review questions to test your understanding of each major topic, with annotated answers
  • Programming exercises and solutions at the end of each chapter
  • Copious code examples illustrating concepts where the code has been compiled and thoroughly tested on multiple platforms
  • Program output demonstrating expected results from running the examples
  • Extensive use of UML (Unified Modeling Language) for illustration purposes
  • An introduction to basic terminology and concepts in object-oriented programming
  • Advice on how to avoid common pitfalls in mastering the language and taking the exam
  • Platform-independent coverage--platform-specific details are provided where relevant
  • Information about the SCPJ2 Upgrade exam

0201728281B07152003

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780201728286
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley
  • Publication date: 8/4/2003
  • Edition description: Book & CD-ROM
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 672
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Khalid A. Mughal is an associate professor at the Department of Informatics at the University of Bergen, Norway. During his extensive career, he has designed and implemented many courses on Java, object-oriented system development, and compiler techniques. He has also given seminars for the IT industry. He is the principal author of Java Som Forste Programmeringssprak (Java as a First Programming Language) published by Cappelen Akademisk Forlag, 2002.

Rolf W. Rasmussen is a system developer at Vizrt, a company that develops real-time graphics systems for TV, films, and the Web. Previously, he has worked on clean room implementations of the Java class libraries. He is coauthor, with Professor Mughal, of Java Som Forste Programmeringssprak.

0201728281AB07152003

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Read an Excerpt

Writing the Second Edition

The exam for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 (SCPJ2) Platform has changed considerably since the first edition of this book was published. The most noticeable change in the current version of the exam (SCPJ2 1.4) is the removal of GUI and I/O, and the shifting of emphasis toward the core features of the language. In our opinion, the new exam demands an even greater understanding and actual experience of the language, rather than mere recitation of facts. Proficiency in the language is the key to success.

The I/O and GUI topics of the first edition have been eliminated, as they have no relevance for the SCPJ2 exam. These topics are more relevant for the Sun Certified Developer for Java 2 (SCDJ2) Platform exam and, therefore, relegated to a possible future volume on the Developer exam topics.

Since the emphasis of the SCPJ2 exam is on the core features of Java, the second edition provides an even greater in-depth coverage of the relevant topics. The book covers not just the exam objectives, but also supplementary topics that aid in mastering the exam topics.

The second edition is still a one-source guide for the SCPJ2 exam: it provides a mixture of theory and practice for the exam. Use the book to learn Java, pass the SCPJ2 exam, and afterwards, use it as a handy language guide. The book also has an appendix devoted to the SCPJ2 Upgrade exam. To facilitate preparation for the exams, the second edition comes with a CD containing additional resources, including several mock exams developed by Whizlabs Software.

We have taken into consideration the feedback we have received from readers. The many hours spent in handling the delugeof e-mail have not been in vain. Every single e-mail is appreciated and is hereby acknowledged.

Preparing the second edition dispelled all our illusions about second editions being, to put it colloquially, a piece of cake. Every sentence from the first edition has been weighed carefully, and not many paragraphs have escaped rewriting. UML (Unified Modeling Language) is also extensively employed in this edition. Numerous new review questions have been added. In covering the new topics and expanding the existing ones, new examples, figures, and tables were also specifically created for the second edition.About This Book

This book provides an extensive coverage of the Java programming language and its core Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), with particular emphasis on its syntax and usage. The book is primarily intended for professionals who want to prepare for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform 1.4 exam (referred to as the SCPJ2 exam), but it is readily accessible to any programmer who wants to master the language. For both purposes, it provides an in-depth coverage of essential features of the language and its core APIs.

There is a great and increasing demand for certified Java programmers. Sun Microsystems has defined the SCPJ2 exam as one that professionals can take to validate their skills. The certification provides the IT industry with the standard to use for hiring such professionals, and allows the professionals to turn their Java skills into credentials that are important for career advancement.

The book helps the reader master all core features of the Java language, and this mastering of the language can culminate in accomplishing the exam. It provides an extensive coverage of all the objectives defined for the exam by Sun. Since the exam objectives are selective, they do not cover many of the essential features of Java. This book provides extensive coverage of additional topics that every Java programmer should master in order to be proficient in this field. In this regard, the book is a comprehensive primer for learning the Java programming language.

This book is not a complete reference for Java, as it does not attempt to list every member of every class from the Java System Development Kit (SDK) API documentation. Its purpose is not to document the Java SDK APIs. It is also not a book on teaching programming techniques. Its emphasis is on the Java programming language features, their syntax and correct usage.

The book assumes a background in programming. We believe the exam is accessible to any programmer who works through the book. A Java programmer can easily skip over material that is well understood and concentrate on parts that need reinforcing, whereas a programmer new to Java will find the concepts explained from basic principles.

Each topic is explained and discussed thoroughly with examples, and backed by review questions and exercises to reinforce the concepts. The book is not biased toward any particular platform, but provides platform-specific details where necessary.Using the Book

The reader can choose a linear or a non-linear route through the book, depending on her programming background. Non-Java programmers wishing to migrate to Java can read Chapter 1, which provides a short introduction to object-oriented programming concepts, and the procedure for compiling and running Java applications. For those preparing for the SCPJ2 exam, the book has a separate appendix providing all the pertinent information on taking the exam.

The table of contents, listings of tables, examples, and figures, and a comprehensive index facilitate locating topics discussed in the book.

In particular, we draw attention to the following features of the book:

Exam and Supplementary Objectives

  • Exam objectives are stated clearly at the start of every chapter, together with any supplementary objectives.
  • The objectives are defined by Sun and are organized into major sections, detailing the curriculum for the exam.
  • The book is organized into chapters that logically follow the order of these major sections.
  • The objectives are reproduced in a separate appendix where, for each section of the syllabus, study notes are included to point the reader to topics essential for the exam.
  • We believe that the supplementary objectives are important to the ultimate goal of mastering the language.

Review questions are provided after every major topic, in order to test and reinforce the material. These review questions reflect the kind of questions that can be asked on the actual exam. Annotated answers to the review questions are provided in a separate appendix.

Example Source Code

We encourage experimenting with the code examples in order to reinforce the material from the book. These can be downloaded from the book Web site (see p. xxxv).

Java code is written in a mono-spaced font. Lines of code in the examples or in code snippets are referenced in the text by a number, which is specified by using a single-line comment in the code. For example, in the following code snippet, the call to the method doSomethingInteresting() hopefully does something interesting at (1).// ...
doSomethingInteresting(); // (1)
// ...

Names of classes and interfaces start with an uppercase letter. Names of packages, variables, and methods start with a lowercase letter. Constants are all in uppercase letters.

Chapter SummaryEach chapter concludes with a summary of the topics, pointing out the major concepts discussed in the chapter.

Programming Exercises

Programming exercises at the end of each chapter provide the opportunity to put concepts into practice. Solutions to the programming exercises are provided in a separate appendix.

Mock Exam

A complete mock exam is provided in a separate appendix, which the reader can try when she is ready. In addition, the accompanying CD contains several mock exams for the SCPJ2 1.4 exam.

Java 2 SDK and API Documentation

A vertical gray bar is used to highlight methods and fields found in the classes of the core Java APIs.

Any explanation following the API information is also similarly highlighted.

In order to obtain optimal benefit from using this book in preparing for the SCPJ2 exam, we strongly recommend installing the latest version (at least 1.4) of the SDK and its accompanying API documentation. The book focuses solely on Java 2, and does not acknowledge previous versions.Java 2 Platform Upgrade Exam

For those who have taken the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform 1.2 Exam, and would like to prepare for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform Upgrade Exam, we have provided an appendix with details of the upgrade exam. The appendix contains the upgrade exam objectives, and for each section of the syllabus, study notes are included to point the reader to topics essential for the upgrade exam. The accompanying CD contains mock exams for the upgrade exam.Accompanying CD

The accompanying CD contains a wealth of information to help prepare for the exam, and provides numerous mock exams for the candidate to test her skills. The software included simulates near exam-like conditions in order to acquaint the candidate with the exam environment. Appendix H provides details about the contents of the CD.Book Web Sites

This book is backed by Web sites providing auxiliary material:

  • http://www.ii.uib.no/~khalid/pgjc2e/
  • http://www.awprofessional.com/ (search for ISBN 0201728281)

The contents of the Web sites include the following:

  • source code for all the examples and programming exercises in the book
  • mock exam engine
  • errata
  • links to miscellaneous Java resources (certification, discussion groups, tools, etc.)

Information about the Java 2 SDK Standard Edition and its documentation can be found at the following Web site:

http://java.sun.com/j2se/

The current authoritative technical reference for the Java programming language, The Java Language Specification, Second Edition (also published by Addison-Wesley), can be found at this Web site:

http://java.sun.com/docs/books/jls/Request for Feedback

Considerable effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the contents of this book. Several Java professionals have proofread the manuscript. All code examples (including code fragments) have been compiled and tested on various platforms. In the final analysis, any errors remaining are the sole responsibility of the authors.

Any questions, comments, suggestions, and corrections are welcome. Whether the book was helpful or detrimental for your purpose, we would like your assessment. Any feedback is valuable. The authors can be reached by the following e-mail alias:

pgjc2e@ii.uib.noAbout the AuthorsKhalid A. Mughal

Khalid A. Mughal is an Associate Professor at the Department of Informatics at the University of Bergen, Norway. Professor Mughal is responsible for designing and implementing various courses, which use Java, at the Department of Informatics. Over the years, he has taught Programming Languages (Java, C/C++, Pascal), Software Engineering (Object-oriented System Development), Databases (Data Modeling and Database Management Systems), and Compiler Techniques. He has also given numerous courses and seminars at various levels in object-oriented programming and system development, using Java and Java-related technology, both at the University and for the IT industry. He is the principal author of the book, responsible for writing the material covering the Java topics.

He is also the principal author of an introductory Norwegian textbook on programming in Java (Java som forste programmeringssprak/Java as First Programming Language, Cappelen Akademisk Forlag, ISBN 82-02-21782-2, 2002), which he co-authored with Torill Hamre and Rolf W. Rasmussen. His primary research is in theory, design, and implementation of programming languages and tools (Programming Environments). His current work involves applying Object Technology in the development of learning content management systems. For the past three years he has been responsible for developing and running a web-based programming course in Java, which is offered to off-campus students.

He is a member of the ACM.Rolf W. Rasmussen

Rolf W. Rasmussen is a Software Engineer, who over the years has worked both academically and professionally with numerous programming languages, including Java. He is employed as System Creator at vizrt, a company that develops solutions for the TV broadcast industry, including real-time 3D graphic renderers, and content and control systems.

He mainly works on control and automation systems, video processing, typography, and real-time visualization. He has in the past worked on clean room implementations of the Java class libraries, and is a contributor to the Free Software Foundation.

He is primarily responsible for developing the review questions and answers, the programming exercises and their solutions, the mock exam, and all the practical aspects related to taking the SCPJ2 exam, presented in this book.As mentioned above, he is also a co-author of an introductory textbook on programming in Java.

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Table of Contents

List of Figures
List of Tables
List of Examples
Foreword
Preface
1 Basics of Java Programming 1
2 Language Fundamentals 19
3 Operators and Assignments 41
4 Declarations and Access Control 99
5 Control Flow, Exception Handling, an Assertions 157
6 Object-oriented Programming 225
7 Nested Classes and Interfaces 283
8 Object Lifetime 317
9 Threads 349
10 Fundamental Classes 387
11 Collections and Maps 427
A Taking the SCPJ2 1.4 Exam 489
B Objectives for the SCPJ2 1.4 Exam 497
C Objectives for the Java 2 Platform Upgrade Exam 505
D Annotated Answers to Review Questions 511
E Solutions to Programming Exercises 545
F Mock Exam 561
G Number Systems and Number Representation 593
H About the CD 601
Index 603
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Preface

Writing the Second Edition

The exam for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 (SCPJ2) Platform has changed considerably since the first edition of this book was published. The most noticeable change in the current version of the exam (SCPJ2 1.4) is the removal of GUI and I/O, and the shifting of emphasis toward the core features of the language. In our opinion, the new exam demands an even greater understanding and actual experience of the language, rather than mere recitation of facts. Proficiency in the language is the key to success.

The I/O and GUI topics of the first edition have been eliminated, as they have no relevance for the SCPJ2 exam. These topics are more relevant for the Sun Certified Developer for Java 2 (SCDJ2) Platform exam and, therefore, relegated to a possible future volume on the Developer exam topics.

Since the emphasis of the SCPJ2 exam is on the core features of Java, the second edition provides an even greater in-depth coverage of the relevant topics. The book covers not just the exam objectives, but also supplementary topics that aid in mastering the exam topics.

The second edition is still a one-source guide for the SCPJ2 exam: it provides a mixture of theory and practice for the exam. Use the book to learn Java, pass the SCPJ2 exam, and afterwards, use it as a handy language guide. The book also has an appendix devoted to the SCPJ2 Upgrade exam. To facilitate preparation for the exams, the second edition comes with a CD containing additional resources, including several mock exams developed by Whizlabs Software.

We have taken into consideration the feedback we have received from readers. The many hours spent in handling the deluge of e-mail have not been in vain. Every single e-mail is appreciated and is hereby acknowledged.

Preparing the second edition dispelled all our illusions about second editions being, to put it colloquially, a piece of cake. Every sentence from the first edition has been weighed carefully, and not many paragraphs have escaped rewriting. UML (Unified Modeling Language) is also extensively employed in this edition. Numerous new review questions have been added. In covering the new topics and expanding the existing ones, new examples, figures, and tables were also specifically created for the second edition.

About This Book

This book provides an extensive coverage of the Java programming language and its core Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), with particular emphasis on its syntax and usage. The book is primarily intended for professionals who want to prepare for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform 1.4 exam (referred to as the SCPJ2 exam), but it is readily accessible to any programmer who wants to master the language. For both purposes, it provides an in-depth coverage of essential features of the language and its core APIs.

There is a great and increasing demand for certified Java programmers. Sun Microsystems has defined the SCPJ2 exam as one that professionals can take to validate their skills. The certification provides the IT industry with the standard to use for hiring such professionals, and allows the professionals to turn their Java skills into credentials that are important for career advancement.

The book helps the reader master all core features of the Java language, and this mastering of the language can culminate in accomplishing the exam. It provides an extensive coverage of all the objectives defined for the exam by Sun. Since the exam objectives are selective, they do not cover many of the essential features of Java. This book provides extensive coverage of additional topics that every Java programmer should master in order to be proficient in this field. In this regard, the book is a comprehensive primer for learning the Java programming language.

This book is not a complete reference for Java, as it does not attempt to list every member of every class from the Java System Development Kit (SDK) API documentation. Its purpose is not to document the Java SDK APIs. It is also not a book on teaching programming techniques. Its emphasis is on the Java programming language features, their syntax and correct usage.

The book assumes a background in programming. We believe the exam is accessible to any programmer who works through the book. A Java programmer can easily skip over material that is well understood and concentrate on parts that need reinforcing, whereas a programmer new to Java will find the concepts explained from basic principles.

Each topic is explained and discussed thoroughly with examples, and backed by review questions and exercises to reinforce the concepts. The book is not biased toward any particular platform, but provides platform-specific details where necessary.

Using the Book

The reader can choose a linear or a non-linear route through the book, depending on her programming background. Non-Java programmers wishing to migrate to Java can read Chapter 1, which provides a short introduction to object-oriented programming concepts, and the procedure for compiling and running Java applications. For those preparing for the SCPJ2 exam, the book has a separate appendix providing all the pertinent information on taking the exam.

The table of contents, listings of tables, examples, and figures, and a comprehensive index facilitate locating topics discussed in the book.

In particular, we draw attention to the following features of the book:

Exam and Supplementary Objectives

  • Exam objectives are stated clearly at the start of every chapter, together with any supplementary objectives.
  • The objectives are defined by Sun and are organized into major sections, detailing the curriculum for the exam.
  • The book is organized into chapters that logically follow the order of these major sections.
  • The objectives are reproduced in a separate appendix where, for each section of the syllabus, study notes are included to point the reader to topics essential for the exam.
  • We believe that the supplementary objectives are important to the ultimate goal of mastering the language.

Review questions are provided after every major topic, in order to test and reinforce the material. These review questions reflect the kind of questions that can be asked on the actual exam. Annotated answers to the review questions are provided in a separate appendix.

Example Source Code

We encourage experimenting with the code examples in order to reinforce the material from the book. These can be downloaded from the book Web site (see p. xxxv).

Java code is written in a mono-spaced font. Lines of code in the examples or in code snippets are referenced in the text by a number, which is specified by using a single-line comment in the code. For example, in the following code snippet, the call to the method doSomethingInteresting() hopefully does something interesting at (1).

// ...
doSomethingInteresting(); // (1)
// ...

Names of classes and interfaces start with an uppercase letter. Names of packages, variables, and methods start with a lowercase letter. Constants are all in uppercase letters.

Chapter Summary

Each chapter concludes with a summary of the topics, pointing out the major concepts discussed in the chapter.

Programming Exercises

Programming exercises at the end of each chapter provide the opportunity to put concepts into practice. Solutions to the programming exercises are provided in a separate appendix.

Mock Exam

A complete mock exam is provided in a separate appendix, which the reader can try when she is ready. In addition, the accompanying CD contains several mock exams for the SCPJ2 1.4 exam.

Java 2 SDK and API Documentation

A vertical gray bar is used to highlight methods and fields found in the classes of the core Java APIs.

Any explanation following the API information is also similarly highlighted.

In order to obtain optimal benefit from using this book in preparing for the SCPJ2 exam, we strongly recommend installing the latest version (at least 1.4) of the SDK and its accompanying API documentation. The book focuses solely on Java 2, and does not acknowledge previous versions.

Java 2 Platform Upgrade Exam

For those who have taken the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform 1.2 Exam, and would like to prepare for the Sun Certified Programmer for Java 2 Platform Upgrade Exam, we have provided an appendix with details of the upgrade exam. The appendix contains the upgrade exam objectives, and for each section of the syllabus, study notes are included to point the reader to topics essential for the upgrade exam. The accompanying CD contains mock exams for the upgrade exam.

Accompanying CD

The accompanying CD contains a wealth of information to help prepare for the exam, and provides numerous mock exams for the candidate to test her skills. The software included simulates near exam-like conditions in order to acquaint the candidate with the exam environment. Appendix H provides details about the contents of the CD.

Book Web Sites

This book is backed by Web sites providing auxiliary material:

  • http://www.ii.uib.no/~khalid/pgjc2e/
  • http://www.awprofessional.com/ (search for ISBN 0201728281)

The contents of the Web sites include the following:

  • source code for all the examples and programming exercises in the book
  • mock exam engine
  • errata
  • links to miscellaneous Java resources (certification, discussion groups, tools, etc.)

Information about the Java 2 SDK Standard Edition and its documentation can be found at the following Web site:

http://java.sun.com/j2se/

The current authoritative technical reference for the Java programming language, The Java Language Specification, Second Edition (also published by Addison-Wesley), can be found at this Web site:

http://java.sun.com/docs/books/jls/

Request for Feedback

Considerable effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the contents of this book. Several Java professionals have proofread the manuscript. All code examples (including code fragments) have been compiled and tested on various platforms. In the final analysis, any errors remaining are the sole responsibility of the authors.

Any questions, comments, suggestions, and corrections are welcome. Whether the book was helpful or detrimental for your purpose, we would like your assessment. Any feedback is valuable. The authors can be reached by the following e-mail alias:

pgjc2e@ii.uib.no

About the Authors

Khalid A. Mughal

Khalid A. Mughal is an Associate Professor at the Department of Informatics at the University of Bergen, Norway. Professor Mughal is responsible for designing and implementing various courses, which use Java, at the Department of Informatics. Over the years, he has taught Programming Languages (Java, C/C++, Pascal), Software Engineering (Object-oriented System Development), Databases (Data Modeling and Database Management Systems), and Compiler Techniques. He has also given numerous courses and seminars at various levels in object-oriented programming and system development, using Java and Java-related technology, both at the University and for the IT industry. He is the principal author of the book, responsible for writing the material covering the Java topics.

He is also the principal author of an introductory Norwegian textbook on programming in Java (Java som forste programmeringssprak/Java as First Programming Language, Cappelen Akademisk Forlag, ISBN 82-02-21782-2, 2002), which he co-authored with Torill Hamre and Rolf W. Rasmussen. His primary research is in theory, design, and implementation of programming languages and tools (Programming Environments). His current work involves applying Object Technology in the development of learning content management systems. For the past three years he has been responsible for developing and running a web-based programming course in Java, which is offered to off-campus students.

He is a member of the ACM.

Rolf W. Rasmussen

Rolf W. Rasmussen is a Software Engineer, who over the years has worked both academically and professionally with numerous programming languages, including Java. He is employed as System Creator at vizrt, a company that develops solutions for the TV broadcast industry, including real-time 3D graphic renderers, and content and control systems.

He mainly works on control and automation systems, video processing, typography, and real-time visualization. He has in the past worked on clean room implementations of the Java class libraries, and is a contributor to the Free Software Foundation.

He is primarily responsible for developing the review questions and answers, the programming exercises and their solutions, the mock exam, and all the practical aspects related to taking the SCPJ2 exam, presented in this book.As mentioned above, he is also a co-author of an introductory textbook on programming in Java.

0201728281P07152003

Read More Show Less

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2003

    Tests the minimal subset of java

    Perhaps the best advice I can give you on this book is by describing what it does NOT cover. Why? Well I opened this book and went to see its coverage of JTree, on which I have spent a lot of time using. But, no JTree?! Gosh, then I started looking for other Swing widgets. Nothing! No AWT either. Then I looked at the example exam. Indeed, no graphics are tested. The book is exactly defined for one purpose, passing the Certification Test. So it describes only that which is tested. Amazingly, huge sections of standard Java are omitted, quite apart from the abovementioned graphics. As far as I can tell, you do NOT need to know internationalisation, input/output, XML parsers, resource bundles, crypto or even the network modules. It appears that the test is more or less about the class structure of java and the associated syntax, plus other elementary syntactical manipulations. Why is it important for you to know what the book omits? I am assuming that you are time-constrained; you are probably wanting to study for the test on your own time. I figure you have a day job, or full time classes. [If I am wrong, then good for you, but I am being conservative.] So you need to be very focused about what you need to study. Maybe you know some of the omitted packages, but you are not exactly fluent in them. So you held off taking the test, until you gained more experience. Your worries may well have been unnecessary. No more excuses for procrastinating. Therefore I hope this message is reassuring. The book can save you a lot of time!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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