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Sams Teach Yourself Java in 24 Hours

Sams Teach Yourself Java in 24 Hours

3.8 17
by Rogers Cadenhead

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In just 24 lessons of one hour or less, you can learn how to create Java applications with the free NetBeans visual editing tools.


Using a straightforward, step-by-step approach, popular author Rogers Cadenhead helps you master the skills and technology you need to create desktop and web programs, web services, and even a browser


In just 24 lessons of one hour or less, you can learn how to create Java applications with the free NetBeans visual editing tools.


Using a straightforward, step-by-step approach, popular author Rogers Cadenhead helps you master the skills and technology you need to create desktop and web programs, web services, and even a browser game in Java. Each lesson builds on what you’ve already learned, giving you a solid understanding of the basic concepts and terminology.

  • Full-color figures and clear step-by-step instructions visually show you how to program with Java.
  • Quizzes and Exercises at the end of each chapter help you test your knowledge.
  • Notes, Tips, and Cautions provide related information, advice, and warnings.

Learn how to…

  • Set up your Java programming environment
  • Write your first working program in just minutes
  • Control program decisions and behavior
  • Store and work with information
  • Build straightforward user interfaces
  • Create interactive web programs
  • Use threading to build more responsive programs
  • Build a browser-based game from start to finish
  • Read and write files and XML data
  • Master best practices for object-oriented programming
  • Create flexible, interoperable web services with JAX-WS
  • Integrate graphics into your applications

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Cadenhead's Teach Yourself Java 2 in 24 Hours is a definite beginner's book, a self-tutorial in 24 one-hour chapters. The guides on networking, Threads (the ability of Java to multitask by allowing for multiple processes and actions at the same time), and Swing (a powerful Java interface package for visual design) are for advanced Java programmers but will fit well within most libraries. Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Cadenhead (a programmer and writer) writes clearly and with great wit, as though he were interacting with a college pal, making this primer on Java 2 an enjoyable read. The goal is to teach programming to anyone with rudimentary computer skills, described as those who can produce a decent resume, or design a web page. The chapters, designed to take an hour each, lead the reader through the basics of programming, the use of graphical user interface, interactive web programs, and creating multimedia programs using color, sound, and animation. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Product Details

Pearson Education
Publication date:
Sams Teach Yourself Series
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Barnes & Noble
File size:
16 MB
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Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1: Becoming a Programmer

Computer programming is insanely difficult. It requires a four-year degree in computer science, thousands of dollars in computer hardware and software, a keen analytical intellect, the patience of Job, and a strong liking for caffeinated drinks. If you're a programming novice, this is probably what you've heard about computer programming. Aside from the part about caffeine, all of the rumors are greatly exaggerated.

Programming is a lot easier than most people think, although there are several reasons why you might believe otherwise:

  • Computer programmers have been telling people for years that programming is hard. This belief makes it easier for us to find highpaying jobs (or so I've heard) and gives us more leeway to goof off during business hours.
  • Computer programming manuals are often written in a language that only a Scrabble player could appreciate. Strange acronyms like OOP, RAD, COM, and MUMPS are used frequently along with newly invented jargon like instantiation, bytecode, and makefile.
  • Many computer programming languages have been available only with software packages costing $200 or more, which is a lot of cabbage.

Because of the growth of the Internet and other factors, this is a great time to learn programming. Useful programming tools are being made available at low cost (or no cost), often as downloads from World Wide Web sites. Thousands of programmers are distributing their work under "open source" licenses so people can examine how the programs were written, correct errors, and add their own improvements.

The goal of this book is to teach programming to the person who hasnever tried to program before, or the person who tried programming but hated it with an intense passion. The English language will be used as much as possible instead of jargon and obscure acronyms, and all new programming terms will be thoroughly explained as they are introduced.

If I've succeeded, you will finish Sams Teach Yourself Java 2 in 24 Hours with enough programming skill to be a danger to yourself and others. You'll be able to write programs, dive into other programming books with more confidence, and learn programming languages more easily. You also will have developed skills with Java, the most exciting programming language to be introduced in a decade.

The first hour of this book provides some introductory material about programming and gives you instructions on how to set up your computer so you can write Java programs. The following topics will be covered:

  • Choosing which programming language to learn first
  • What Java is
  • Using programs to boss your computer around
  • How programs work
  • How program errors (called hugs) are fixed
  • Acquiring the free Java 2 Software Development Kit
  • Installing the Kit
  • Getting ready to write programs

Choosing a Language

As you might have surmised at this point, computer programming is not as hard as it's cracked up to be. If you're comfortable enough with a computer to create a nice-looking resume, balance a checkbook with software such as Intuit Quicken, or create your own home page on the Web, you can write programs.

The key to learning how to program is to start with the right language. The programming language you choose often depends on the tasks you want the computer to accomplish...

Meet the Author

Rogers Cadenhead is a writer, computer programmer, and web developer who has written 21 books on Internet-related topics, including Sams Teach Yourself Java 6 in 21 Days. He maintains the Drudge Retort and other websites that receive more than seven million visits a year. This book’s official website is www.java24hours.com.

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Sams Teach Yourself Java in 24 Hours (Sams Teach Yourself Series) 3.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Jefferson_Thomas More than 1 year ago
I recommend this book. I bought it to supplement a college textbook (the third edition, 2010, of Elizabeth Sugar Boese's inadequate "An Introduction to Programming with Java Applets," which focuses on the wrong things). I was not disappointed -- I soon began using the Sam's book instead of the textbook, because: 1. Most of it is written clearly and concisely. 2. It is better organized, because, for one thing, it introduces variables -- the heart and soul of all programming -- earlier than the Boese book does. As a programmer with 25 years' experience, I hereby assure you that variables should always be in Chapter One of all programming books, regardless of programming language, and especially in a language like Java that has so many different types of variables. 3. It focuses on other things in addition to just GUI programming (the Boese book focuses exclusively on GUI to the detriment of other important concepts). 4. It provides a link to a website from which one can download a program editor (NetBeans) superior to the one my college asked us to use. 5. I like the author's sense of humor. This book is not without problems: 1. Chapters 10 through 12 seem to have been written by someone else, someone not interested in explaining anything, someone who seems to have forgotten that one must DEFINE a new word before one can use it in a sentence, and that said definition must be written in clear, understandable language, and must be accompanied by clear examples. Chapters 10 through 12 use one undefined term after another, over and over again, in sentence after sentence, until the whole chapter deteriorates into an incomprehensible mess. Then, surprisingly, subsequent chapters that use the concepts so poorly presented in chapters 10 through 12 are perfectly understandable again. As I said, it is as though chapters 10 through 12 were written by someone else. 2. There should be a readily-accessible chart, for example in an appendix, that shows all types of variables Java uses (at least, as of the date of the writing of the book), what type of data each can contain, and, most importantly, HOW MUCH data each can contain, that is the number of digits, or minimum and maximum numerical values, each numeric variable can hold. This fundamental, elementary piece of information is critically important, and so should not be hidden in the middle of a chapter! Even so, my bottom line remains that, despite its flaws, this book is superior to the others I've seen, even "Java for Dummies," and I recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is by far the best book I have seen on Java. What others do poorly in 1000 pages, Cadenhead does well in 400. Explanations of OOP and other aspects of Java are clear and concise. Even for those with no programming experience, this is the one. For those with programming experience in low level languages, this is also the one, but you can skip the first 4-5 chapters. Hour 11 clarified OOP for me in 12 pages. An easy read with excellent examples, each followed by line-by-line clear explanations. Covers GUI & Swing in 4 chapters (60 pages of easy and entertaining reading). Has all you will need to start programming in Java.
BrianJester More than 1 year ago
Most examples from Ch1-8 have mangled text in the source code of the examples. Caveat Emptor if you are considering using the Nook edition, you will have to download the source from the author's personal web site, because the source code from the nookBook edition is nearly impossible to get to run. Examples are missing semicolons, missing braces, mismatched single and double quotes, along with text that is mangled. I highly recommend you purchase the text book version. I've emailed the author with no response. This nookBook appears to be missing a quality control step for the source code.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book "teaches" Java in 24 hours like the title suggests however; specific topics/chapters are rushed  and crammed into an "hour" lesson which isn't true for some individuals like myself especially the later chapters.  Also, the chapter activities at times are ridiculous as in they have you code programs that  contain topics that are at times vaguely covered or not covered at all and leave you scratching your head in frustration. Overall, this book comes in handy at teaching you the fundamentals and basics of Java but do not expect to code like a pro immediately after finishing the book. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Bought a nookcolor so I could start purchasing my books electronically. Am finding that you have to be carefull because the kindle version of some of these epubs are 1/2 the price as they are for nook. Barnes & Noble should start paying attention to this as this will for sure KILL the nook / nookcolor for technology professionals when they can pay 1/2 the price somewhere else for the EXACT same epub.
Drewbert More than 1 year ago
First, this book was the first book that actually HELPED me LEARN Java, not like the others I read that just made me curious to the language. The first half or so of the book is oriented around getting the basics of the language down, and defining some of the major parts of Java(classes, methods, etc.), then the rest builds on that, and focuses largely on the GUI(Graphic User Interface-Buttons, textboxes, etc.) aspects of it. I would HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone wanting to get their feet wet in Java.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Neug More than 1 year ago
Great for beginers. Easy to folow. Learn how to use java quickly.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Guest More than 1 year ago
I skimmed through 3 Java 2 books before I finnaly spotted this one. I partially understood HTML and could make a few little tricks with Javascript(if copy and paste counts). In the first five chapters I was convinced that learning Java was going to be a breeze, and I was right. This book taught me everything I needed to know with many anologies and real life situations. The question and answer part was very assuring and made it to where you understood the chapter. This is the first, and last, Java book I will ever need to buy. Its almost like learning basic math all over again! It is worth the money and the best begginers book ever. (I'm still a pre-teen and I know Java 2!). Its also one of the cheapest books to come with an intergrated site and step by step instructions on how to download Java software. IF YOU NEED TO LEARN JAVA IN 24 HOURS THIS IS THE BOOK. A PRIMATE COULD LEARN THIS STUFF!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The absolute best beginners book in print. I should know. I spent over $120 bucks before I found this book and still couldn't program. Thanks to Mr. Cadenhead for writing a book that everyone can understand.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book is well written, the examples are explaned line by line. The examples are 'real world' and useful. There is a web page with all the code for end of chapter assignments that is great. The author is also entertaining, making the reading almost fun.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's very useful for a new programmer of Java language. It's better than another Idiot's book for Java 2, I learned nothing from that book. But this book give me a brand new look at java.