New to programming...advice needed! 
Author Message
 New to programming...advice needed!

I am new to programming and will be starting my Jr. year at a university
for a comp.sci major. From what I understand, C is a good language to
begin learning. It this accurate? Should I start somewhere else? I've
noticed numerous tutorials on the web...can I get a compiler at some
site? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank You!



Thu, 23 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 New to programming...advice needed!

Quote:

> I am new to programming and will be starting my Jr. year at a > university
What university?
> for a comp.sci major. From what I understand, C is a good language to
> begin learning. It this accurate? Should I start somewhere else? I've
> noticed numerous tutorials on the web...can I get a compiler at some
> site? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank You!

C is a good start.  It has a fairly shallow learning curve, can offer
you some powerful options and is fairly portable across many platforms.
From C you can go on to learn basically any language.  C was my second
language.  The biggest problem with learning a language is simply syntax
and knowing what the language can do.  Once you learn one language,
learning another is simple.  The toughest aspect of programming in a
language is algorithm design.  Since algorithms are not language
specific, you should probably start with the simplest language you can.
C will serve you well.

As for compilers, your school probably can offer you some deals on a
good compiler.  A friend of mine got MS Visual C++ throught the U of
Washington for rock bottom prices.  Nevermind Bill Gates and Paul Allen
donate large sums of money to UW for libraries, CS buildings, etc.
Contact the university, they can usually help you.  Most compilers
online are pretty crappy, just DOS compilers, without some of the
features you would want in a compiler.  Best of luck on your CS major.

--
Van Isaac Anderson




Thu, 23 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 New to programming...advice needed!



From what I understand, C is a good language to

Quote:
> begin learning. It this accurate? I noticed numerous tutorials on the

web...can I get a compiler at some site? Any advice would be greatly
appreciated. Thank You!

Now, I may be a little biased, but I think C would be a great language to
start with. It is the one I started with (well except for TI-BASIC for TI82
calculator - disgusting!) and I will always use. You can get DJGPP ( DOS
GNU compiler ) for free in several places on the web (do a yahoo search),
but I would recommend getting Visual C++ 4.0 if you have Win95, or
Microsoft C 5.1 if you have DOS. Since you are a student I believe you can
get the professional version of VC++ 4.0 for around $90. Regular price is
close to $400. That is, if you can afford it. I hope this helps!!

--------------
Justin
-------------



Sat, 25 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 New to programming...advice needed!

Quote:

> I am new to programming and will be starting my Jr. year at a university
> for a comp.sci major. From what I understand, C is a good language to
> begin learning. It this accurate? Should I start somewhere else? I've
> noticed numerous tutorials on the web...can I get a compiler at some
> site? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank You!

Yes C is a good place to start and stick with.

For command line software try GNU C from DJGPP at:
        http://www.delorie.com

For 32 bit Windows go to:
        http://www.cygnus.com/misc/gnu-win32/

Both are free for the downloading, both are full 32 bit C compilers.

If you REALLY want to spend money for a commercial compiler Borland C++
Professional 5.0 is (IMO) marginally better than MSVC++ 5.0, since they
cost about the same, I would recommend Borland (after GNU, of course).

Good luck and have fun.
--
********************************************

********************************************
We do not quite forgive a giver.
The hqand that feeds us is in some danger of being bitten.
                            Ralph Waldo Emerson



Sun, 26 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 New to programming...advice needed!

Quote:



> From what I understand, C is a good language to
> > begin learning. It this accurate? I noticed numerous tutorials on the
> web...can I get a compiler at some site? Any advice would be greatly
> appreciated. Thank You!
> Now, I may be a little biased, but I think C would be a great language to
> start with. It is the one I started with (well except for TI-BASIC for TI82
> calculator - disgusting!) and I will always use.
> You can get DJGPP ( DOS
> GNU compiler ) for free in several places on the web (do a yahoo search),

        http:\\www.delorie.com

Quote:
> but I would recommend getting Visual C++ 4.0 if you have Win95, or
> Microsoft C 5.1 if you have DOS.

It is rare that you find a C programmer who actually recommends MSVC++.
Note: The current version of MSVC++ is 5.0.

If you are programming for DOS, ask yourself one question - "WHY????"
then get GNU C and/or C++ and stay away from MSC.

If you are programming for Windows win32 or Windows 95/NT, you should
note that there is a beta version of GNU C for win32

        http://www.cygnus.com/misc/gnu-win32/

Quote:
> Since you are a student I believe you can
> get the professional version of VC++ 4.0 for around $90. Regular price is
> close to $400. That is, if you can afford it. I hope this helps!!

Both GNU C versions are free for the downloading.  Anybody can afford
that!

--
********************************************

********************************************
We do not quite forgive a giver.
The hqand that feeds us is in some danger of being bitten.
                            Ralph Waldo Emerson



Sun, 26 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 New to programming...advice needed!



Quote:

> It is rare that you find a C programmer who actually recommends MSVC++.
> Note: The current version of MSVC++ is 5.0.

> If you are programming for DOS, ask yourself one question - "WHY????"
> then get GNU C and/or C++ and stay away from MSC.

> If you are programming for Windows win32 or Windows 95/NT, you should
> note that there is a beta version of GNU C for win32

>     http://www.*-*-*.com/

> Both GNU C versions are free for the downloading.  Anybody can afford
> that!

Ick. First of all, I think that recommending C to a beginning programmer is
just a *bad* idea. Something like Pascal or BASIC would be more
appropriate. Of course, this has been discussed at length in this newsgroup
before, so I won't even go into it.

As for recommending gnu tools to them, that's just {*filter*}. gnu compilers
are nice compilers, but there is no "nice" interface (i.e., user friendly),
nor are the error messages that helpful. If I had to recommend a compiler
for a beginning C programmer, it'd be Turbo C 3.0 just because it's so
damn'd simple.

--
jfpoole - { TANSTAAFL, y'know.... }
http://www.*-*-*.com/ ~jfpoole
"When they start treating us for cynicism,
 we'll have no reason to drink." -- suck.com



Sun, 26 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 New to programming...advice needed!


: I am new to programming and will be starting my Jr. year at a university
: for a comp.sci major.

Great!

: From what I understand, C is a good language to
: begin learning. It this accurate?

I don't think so. An argument can be made either way, but
I think C is definitely a second or third language.

: Should I start somewhere else?

I'd start with Pascal or BASIC and work up to C. You have enough
to worry about learning structured programming without having
to deal with a language designed by and for operating system
writers. C is too quirky and low level to be a good first
language.

Scott



Sun, 26 Dec 1999 03:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 7 post ] 

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