So, now you know about as much as a person who has gone through Coding 101 (but not 102 - so don't get cocky). You should have a feeling that you are now staring into this giant vista ahead of you. Perhaps you are thinking "Wait a minute, it can't just all be if, while, for, and functions, can it?" Well, that's all it is. It's complexly intertangled loops and functions and ifs, but that's really all it is. You now know enough to go out and teach yourself, so I recommend doing so if you are still interested.
If you did manage to get through all of these lessons, please give me feedback; I'd love to hear from you. Either a \msg, or email to firstname.lastname@example.org. What went right, what went wrong, and where did I mess everything up? What sections left you confused, and which ones (if any) bestowed enlightenment? If you don't tell me, they won't get any better :).
Now, if you would like to learn more, here is a list of books1 and authors whose writings might help you, in no particular order:
- Learning Python, by Mark Lutz. Published by O'Reilly Press. This is the skinnier of the two Python books; do not buy the fat one as it kind of sucks compared to the online docs.
- The Art of Computer Programming by Donald Knuth. Every serious student of computer science should read and understand this series of books.
- In the Beginning was the Command Line, by Neal Stephenson. Arms you with good metaphors to aid understanding. If you are one of those humanities-type people, you might find this text to be really helpful. Also available online.
- The C Programming Language, by Brian Kernigan and Dennis Ritchie. The definitive book on C.
- The C++ Programming Language, by Bjarne Stroustroup. The definitive book on C++
- How to Think Like a Computer Scientist, by a whole host of authors. It is available online and has been translated into many different languages, both natural and computer.
- The GNU Manifesto - by RMS. I might as well start you off with one philosophical document that, for me at least, preaches to the choir.
- Code Complete, by Steve McConnell. grae recommends it highly, and I recommend following his recommendations.
- None of the "Learn X in 21 Days" or "Become a Y in 24 Hours" books. They all suck. Every single one of them.
- Buy the skinny computer books instead of the fat ones. It's not like you're going to read the fat ones, and all the reference material is online anyway. The skinny ones usually have been pared down until they have a decent signal to noise ratio.
What are you doing still reading this? Go code!
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- If anybody has any good ideas for additions to this list, I'd love to hear about them.