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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Contains what it says in the title
I first noticed this book when o'reilly added it to safari a couple of weeks ago. It's impressive, though a little heavy on GUI examples. However the chapters of References and Proxies are essential for any java developer that wants to progress beyond the "Hello World" stage of java coding.
My only caveat was that he seems to think that anonymous inner classes are...
Published on 1 April 2004 by M. W. Walker

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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing
In the preface, the author states that the goal of this book is to transform a developer from the intermediate level to a true guru. In the back cover it even promises that "you'll master the art of writing error-prone (sic!) code", and the reference to "error-prone code" sadly finds its confirmation once one starts reading.
It takes about two chapters to demolish...
Published on 30 Jun. 2004 by Alberto Gemin


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42 of 44 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, 30 Jun. 2004
By 
Alberto Gemin (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hardcore Java (Paperback)
In the preface, the author states that the goal of this book is to transform a developer from the intermediate level to a true guru. In the back cover it even promises that "you'll master the art of writing error-prone (sic!) code", and the reference to "error-prone code" sadly finds its confirmation once one starts reading.
It takes about two chapters to demolish the author's credibility as a guru, and you will be reading the rest of the book with a skeptical eye, doubting every assertion that looks questionable and suspecting that the author is talking well above his level of competence, and patronizing about it too!
The first chapters are an atrocious review of some Java concepts, densely packed with serious mistakes, not typos, mistakes (plenty of typos too).
As an example, on page 9 the definition of the 'for' statement is wrong, a simple check of the Java Language Specification would have spared the author some embarrassment.
On page 15 the author gives us wrong rules for labels in Java, and in the same page he confuses the logic of the 'break' and 'continue' statements, providing also a logically wrong code example, just to screw-up things even better.
I would not know how to describe the section on "Chained deferred initialization" on page 53, "raving" maybe. This one is cited in the errata page at oreilly.com, and the "author regrets that it slipped through the proverbial cracks". I am more concerned that something like that has been actually written (complete with code samples!), than that it has passed unscathed through editing and reviewing. Let's hope it was written by somebody else playing with the author's laptop. Somebody who does not know what JVM means.
There are also less severe but equally confidence-abating points, like, on page 25, the form:
new String("A button to show" + text);
which we should not find in books for guru wannabes.
The author is probably a productive software architect, some points, later in the book, are interesting, though nothing could be defined advanced, but he does not know Java better than an average developer, and this book does not add very much to an intermediate level, apart, maybe, from a warning about writing books: writing a book can transform you from a good developer into a bad author.
It is sad that we are flooded with such mediocre and unprofessional "error-prone"publications from such once reputable publishers, from time to time I still re-read and enjoy the conciseness, clarity and value of classics like K&R's "The C Programming Language" and I wonder why today's output is so vastly inferior.
As one of the few exceptions, I strongly recommend Bloch's "Effective Java" (Addison-Wesley) which is truly a book written by a guru. After reading that one, "Hardcore Java" will seem even emptier.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Contains what it says in the title, 1 April 2004
By 
M. W. Walker (Ottawa, ON) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hardcore Java (Paperback)
I first noticed this book when o'reilly added it to safari a couple of weeks ago. It's impressive, though a little heavy on GUI examples. However the chapters of References and Proxies are essential for any java developer that wants to progress beyond the "Hello World" stage of java coding.
My only caveat was that he seems to think that anonymous inner classes are "not mainstream Java... " (p.142), which is an appalling statement. Still considering the lack of books that go into this level of detail on any subject, he still gets 4 stars.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Something for everyone, 11 April 2006
By 
Jon Humble (Amble, Northumberland United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Hardcore Java (Paperback)
If you read this book and find out nothing you didn't already know then you should be writing books on Java, not reading them.
There are many gems in this book and although it is true what other reviewers have said about the typos, they failed to spoil the book for me.
All in all and excellent and educational read!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Probably better named Softcore java, 2 Dec. 2010
By 
S Fraser (Harrogate, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Hardcore Java (Kindle Edition)
If this is a book aimed at those wishing to become experts then it is no wonder it is so hard to recruit decent developers. The vast majority of it was blindingly obvious and the only unknown tidbits were insignificant details that I had forgotten through lack of ever having to use them. Pretty much everything here is covered in the SCJP exam, which I would consider to be an entry level exam, so I struggle to see what is so 'hardcore'.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad but a fair few typo's, 6 Sept. 2004
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This review is from: Hardcore Java (Paperback)
I think this book makes some fairly good points but I think a lot of the points are drawn out for too long and there are quite a few typos. Personally I think Effective Java would make a better buy.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Some excellent material, but not all is 'hardcore', 12 May 2005
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This review is from: Hardcore Java (Paperback)
This book presents some of the more arcane things you can do with Java, including esoteric uses of nested classes; this was a real eye-opener for me. While such things may not be particularly useful, other chapters present ways of programming defensively, using the final keyword and exception mechanisms (to be honest, I don't consider these topics to be particularly `hardcore').
Some chapters, including design modelling, seemed out of place in this book, and I certainly wouldn't consider these to be advanced topics.
However, overall this book has made me rethink how I write Java, and I recommend it to anyone that thinks they know the language.
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0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another useful O'Reilly book, 31 May 2004
This review is from: Hardcore Java (Paperback)
Another book to my O'Reilly collection, and again it did not disappoint me. Within 10 minutes of picking up this book I found myself opening my IDE and proceeded to modify my code. This book contains useful information to anyone who is looking to advance their java programming skills. This book is not for the complete beginner, the reader must be comfortable with the java language first.
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