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Socoder -> C/C++/C#/Other -> Trial-run.. C++ class.. Book selection

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Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 13:40
Afr0
Ok, you know the deal!
Who wants to participate?

So far it seems me, Spare and steve_ancell, possibly shroom_monk, are up for it! If anyone would like to volunteer as teachers, you can let it be known in this thread. Otherwise I think... that the class participants will just be helping each other out at the end of each week with examples.
Since I was the one who started this, I'll also volunteer to create an assignment at the end of each week that should be completed by the following week to make sure that everyone understands what they've been learning so far.

Possible books

Professional C++

Beginning C++ Game Programming

Teach Yourself C++ In 21 Days (5th Edition)

C++ How To Program

C++ Primer Plus

What I'd like people to do now is to announce their interest and vote on the book they think we should use. Note that if we end up going with 'Teach Yourself C++ In 21 Days', we might not need additional excersizes made by me, as the end of each chapter already contains one!

Edit: The aim of this isn't to take away the need to study and program - you're still required to do both those things. But in this context you can do it in a more interactive manner while getting advice and discussing things on the way.

Edit2: No, there won't be any opportunities to create an MMORPG until the end of the class!

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 13:42
CodersRule
Beginning C++ game programming is a decent book, although I don't think it would be very good for teaching.
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 14:36
Phoenix
I can offer to help, provided that there's anyone other than Afr0 who can say that they want to commit, rather than just "I might participate if I feel like it sometimes."

My suspicion is that actually buying a book will put people off. Therefore, Bruce Eckel's free and digital Thinking in C++ could be a good choice. It's available in printed form too, if anyone feels an urgent need to have a physical copy. And Afr0, without intending to offend, since you are one of the people learning, wouldn't it be better if someone who isn't created the exercises? That would make sure that the exercises would be relevant and purposeful.
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 14:57
Afr0
And Afr0, without intending to offend, since you are one of the people learning, wouldn't it be better if someone who isn't created the exercises? That would make sure that the exercises would be relevant and purposeful.


As I've said before.. I know a few things. I know quite alot about pointer theory, but then there are other aspects I know next to nothing about, like how to use templates and how to design them.
The theory is that I'll know enough by the end of the week about whatever I didn't know enough about before that I'll be able to make a decent excersize. But if other people wanted to help out and/or comment on the excersize to ensure it's purposeful then sure!

Edit: FFS, Jay, don't change my topic titles!!

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 15:00
Jayenkai
I agree with Phoenix, in that it'd be better to form these lessons around an online "book", since you can all follow along without having to spend a fortune doing it.
You should also agree on exactly which compiler/ide you're all going to use.

I've renamed the topic, because
A) "Official" is officially banned from topic titles from this moment on.. god damn, how dorky did that look!!! You don't see me writing "OFFICIAL WW #13289", or "OFFICIAL SOCODER NEWSLETTER" every week!
B) You had a perfectly good enough thread for this part of the proceedings, I don't really know why you started another just to pick the book!

Otherwise, carry on...
Pick a tutorial series, pick a devkit, get it all running.

And, as for the "You don't know it yet, why are you teaching"..
meh, that's half the fun, right!?!

Call it "Tutorial Following" or something. Could catch on!


-=-=-
''Load, Next List!''
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 15:28
Afr0
This is the Official Socoder C++ Class!!!
That's why I named the thread as such!

As for devkits... I honestly don't care, and don't think it matters whether people use a hax0red version of VS2008, the Microsoft C++ Express Edition IDE+Compiler, Dev-C++ or otherwise.
The class shouldn't really be about focusing on compiler/platform/OS specific code right now.
That said, I do reccommend people using Microsoft (Visual) C++ Express Edition 2008, because everyone except Jay and Agent... Agent... Agent-something who mostly just lurks these days thinks that it's the best IDE and compiler out there.

Oh and the reason I added a new thread was to make the class project more official and give the opportunity for other people to announce their interest as well as voting on a book to use.

I also am personally heavily against using an online book, because reading in front of the PC isn't really that much fun! If you have a physical book, you can read it while taking the subway to work, when you shouldn't be working (because work is boring!), when you're on the bathroom, when you're watching TV etc.
Also it takes away from getting into the habit of copypasta!

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 15:32
Jayenkai
USE THE SAME DEVKIT.
The last thing you need is Person A saying "But it doesn't work" when it obviously does for Person B.

Example, Me and Spinal both use DevKitPro and PALib.
His source code will not compile on my system.

100% exactly the same, or it breaks!

-=-=-
''Load, Next List!''
Thu, 03 Sep 2009, 17:43
CodersRule
I used C++ Programming for the Absolute Beginner, and I learnt it very quickly. It was the C++ book that made th most sense to me.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 00:08
Afr0
Thanks Agent Smith!
I'll take that book into consideration.
Hm...
That book now has two votes, I think.
'Thinking In C++' has one.

Unless anyone else pitches in with some more vote(s), I think we'll go with 'C++ Programming for the Absolute Beginner'.
The only two books I've read (haven't them cover to cover though) are 'Professional C++' and 'Beginning Game Programming With C++' - I think 'Professional C++' simply covers too much for this class to ever get through with in one 'session', and 'Game Programming' might be a little too advanced.

Edit: Just checked, and 'Professional C++' has 813 pages, including the Index and the 'Crash Course'.

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 00:35
shroom_monk
Afr0 possibly shroom_monk


I won't be participating. I'm going back to school in a few days, and I'm not particularly interested in being a 'student' on this course anyway. If possible, I can provide help on some of the simpler subjects if people are stuck, but I probably won't be able to actively help.

-=-=-
A mushroom a day keeps the doctor away...

Keep It Simple, Shroom!
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 01:12
Afr0
Well, that leaves me, Agent Smith, Spare and steve_ancell. Anyone else?

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 03:50
JL235
CodersRule Beginning C++ Game Programming is a decent book
My brother has this book and said it was terrible. I lent him a copy of Accelerated C++ (which is my recommendation) and he said in the first 20 pages in went into stuff that his book didn't even cover. IMHO I'd advise using a 'learn C++' book over a 'learn C++ game development' style of book. Game learning books typically just glance over both language and game topics, teaching far less overall.

I'm also with Jay that you should all use the same devkit. Not because of any IDE gains, but because it means you can write down explicit instructions/tutorials about learning C++ that another person can easily follow. Personally I'd recommend Visual Studio C++ 2008 Express, but it might be better to use any text editor + command line/bash/powershell + GCC.

If your going to be using Accelerated C++, then count me in. Otherwise I will probably just be a silent spectator.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 04:04
Afr0
Ok, one vote for Accelerated C++!

but because it means you can write down explicit instructions/tutorials about learning C++ that another person can easily follow.


What?

but it might be better to use command line/bash/powershell + GCC.


bash is the spawn of the devil, much like COM Objects.

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 04:35
CodersRule
JL235 My brother has this book and said it was terrible.


I was just saying that to sound nice. It's a pretty bad book, have to agree.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 04:37
JL235
I mean, lets say Shroom has never written or compiled C++ before (which I know is untrue, but this is an example) and so needs some help to get going. If he is using the same IDE as you and Spinal then you two can both tell him what to click on in order to make a new project or to solve any other issues he is having.

If he is using a different IDE, then it will be more combersome.

The advantage of using command line + GCC is that you don't have any of the IDE nonesense. It'll be purely about learning C++, and this might be an advantage for most of your. Although personally I plan to use VS.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 04:41
CodersRule
JL235 The advantage of using command line + GCC is that you don't have any of the IDE nonesense. It'll be purely about learning C++, and this might be an advantage for most of your. Although personally I plan to use VS.

I agree, learning how to get the most out of your IDE isn't the best way to learn C++, because you're not actually learning C++ using notepad. Which imo, is the way to go. If you can do it in notepad, you can do it.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 05:01
JL235
I'd hope people weren't using notepad, but working from the command line allows users to pick any text editor they wish.

Afro: why don't you pick a book and get started on this. Currently were still just talking about the idea, and as long as were all talking it won't get going.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 05:43
shroom_monk
Yeah, Notepad is a bad program to use for writing any language. I'd recommend Programmer's Notepad, if you're not using an IDE, since it has code highlighting, which is extremely useful for any language, as it helps with simple syntax debugging, and makes organisation easier.

-=-=-
A mushroom a day keeps the doctor away...

Keep It Simple, Shroom!
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 06:00
steve_ancell
Afr0, I know some C#, I'm not actually a C++ expert. Is C++ as easy to learn as C# ?. I've got a few books on C++, and although I've not done anything practical, I do understand it (sort of) when I read C++ source code.

I already understand Classes, objects etc, and it could be fun learning the differences between C# and C++ syntax
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 09:20
Phoenix
C# and C++ have some syntactic similarities, but they are completely different. Already knowing C# might ease you into the learning of C++ slightly, but they aren't the same and it is harder to pick up C++.
Fri, 04 Sep 2009, 10:39
Cower
C# and C++ are made with different programming paradigms in mind. They share a few, but overall they are different enough to say that knowing C# is probably not going to help with you much of anything short of basic declarations and a fear of braces. There are many constructs in C# that do not exist in C++ (using, interfaces, lambdas [for now - these are part of the C++0x standard], stuff like Linq, properties, etc.), and where they do overlap in naming the behavior tends to be different, so that's another thing to keep in mind.

The way I see it is that C# is targeted at morons, and that's not to say you're a moron, it's just intended to be made in such a way that a moron could pick it up easily. C++ is made for people who need to confirm that there is no god, don't particularly mind suffering, and like having absurd amounts of power at the price of their eternal soul. If the latter category fits you, then you can probably learn C++, although how advanced your learning is tends to be variable - I stopped at learning basic use of templates, since anything more advanced is liable to make me shoot myself.

And.. as editors go, I use Textmate. However, since most of you are the unwashed masses and do not use Macs, you probably don't have the luxury of using the best editor ever. I'm sorry, you're stuck with other programs that suck (Programmer's Notepad, Notepad++, etc.).
Tue, 08 Sep 2009, 09:38
JL235
So which book are you choosing Afro?
Tue, 08 Sep 2009, 12:29
Afr0
Honestly haven't time to think about it.
I've been sick most of the week, still am, and am forced to go to political debates to make sure we win the election.
I'm also trying to pay attention in school and getting enough sleep.
I'll have to think about it till Friday.

-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Thu, 10 Sep 2009, 13:18
Afr0
I've been thinking and I think we should use 'C++ Programming for the Absolute Beginner' because it got two votes (Agent Smith and Codersrule) and it seems like a reasonable book.

So unless someone's gonna start whining, buy this book now!


-=-=-
Afr0 Games

Project Dollhouse on Github - Please fork!
Sun, 13 Sep 2009, 06:18
CodersRule
Woo! I don't have to buy a book!
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