4 Replies - 14270 Views - Last Post: 24 February 2010 - 07:55 AM

#1 NickDMax   User is offline

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Ravichandran's Books

Posted 23 February 2010 - 05:44 PM

I am not a big believer in censorship but I recently censored a post here on DIC:

View Postanbarasan.31143, on 06 August 2009 - 01:22 AM, said:

View Postbobby.l, on 10 Sep, 2007 - 04:29 AM, said:

I knew a little about cpp,so,what should I do next?
which book do you read first?




Please read local Author : Ravichandran , then go for Black book



Moderator Edit:

I am sorry anbarasan.31143 but Ravichandran's book is TERRIBLE and is one of the most horrible crimes being committed against beginner programmers. The book teaches horrible practices on an ancient compiler. We see so many frustrated young programmers on this site trying to get code from their ancient compilers to work on modern PCs and it is sad -- this book is largely to blame for their plight. I can not in good conscience allow this book to be recommended to new programmers. IMO using this book to teach from is criminal and ANYONE who charges money an uses this as a textbook should be jailed as a thief.

I can not let this recommendation stand.



But I really feel pretty strongly about this subject (see here and here).

For your consideration I present two books:
Programming in C by D. Ravichandran
Programming with C++ by D. Ravichandran

Now these books may have slipped into the past but I understand they have been reprinted in 2006.

These books are not quite as bad as: "Let us C" by Yashavant P. Kanetkar (though the Author here has made great strides in trying to update the text).

I thought I would open things up for discussion. Are these books as horrible as I make them out to be? OR am I too nice?

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Replies To: Ravichandran's Books

#2 carltech   User is offline

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Re: Ravichandran's Books

Posted 23 February 2010 - 06:34 PM

I looked through some of the C++ book in your link and it was horrible. The order of introducing concepts was poorly thought out, the examples were poorly written, and he kept using main instead of int main the whole time.

I can see why you don't like this book.

I didn't think you could write a bad C++ book but obviously you can.
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#3 eker676   User is offline

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Re: Ravichandran's Books

Posted 23 February 2010 - 06:42 PM

I scrolled through the first 20 pages of the C++ book and I thought... What the h*ll. It starts off with the reader being expected to memorize the first chapter without any examples whatsoever. After I saw void main() in a C++ book I quit reading.

It makes for many pages of kindling but that's about it. That book is like learning Calculus starting in the middle of the book and memorizing the first half of the book. I think this should be added to the list of banned books.
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#4 GenHornet18   User is offline

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Re: Ravichandran's Books

Posted 23 February 2010 - 08:51 PM

Well first off Nick I shame you for your censorship (it's not a privilege it's a right). But there is merit behind you actions, although shamefully they are very opinionated.

The two books you've linked to are fairly poorly written although understandable, most of the time. A beginner programmer would likely have a much more difficult time then I did reading through the chapters, but they do introduce the key concepts (albeit lacking detail). I've seen worse examples but this isn't terrible, it may take more effort to understand then other tutorials but it serves its purpose as a tutorial just the same. I wasn't forced to read them but if they were used as educational reading material in an institution I would enforce your opinion that the books are not of suitable quality.

It's personal preference, the person who linked to them may have found them easier to understand and learn from but that's their personal experience and their style of learning. Not my first recommendation but they do teach some fundamental practices just the same.
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#5 NickDMax   User is offline

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Re: Ravichandran's Books

Posted 24 February 2010 - 07:55 AM

Quote

Not my first recommendation but they do teach some fundamental practices for using an ancient and irrelevant compiler just the same.


My biggest complaint about this book is that the book was originally published in 1996 (back when I first got my hands on Borland C++ 3.1) and was probably a pretty good book at that time. Looking over the material I can see many parallels to "Mastering Borland C++ 3.1" by Tom Swan a book that I love (but would not recommend to beginners today).

The book teaches non-standard C++ using an ancient (albeit fantastic) compiler resulting in young programmers attempting to get 1990's programming working on 2010 computer systems.

I loved my Borland C++ 3.1. I WISH that every student of programming to get the pure joy that I experienced when I was using it. But a large part of that joy was from programming on what I thought was the edge -- doing new and exciting things. My current computer will not even run any of the programs I wrote back then.

Teachers who use these books in the classroom are doing their students a grave injustice -- they are denying them a chance to experience taking control of modern computer systems. They are teaching out dated non-standard irrelevant programming to students who will have a great deal of catching up to do.
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