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Chrysaor

STL reference book Suggestions

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Hey, I'm starting my third year of my software engineering degree. I figured its time I bought myself an STL book since I'm starting to use the STL more and more often. I went on Amazon to check up some books. However, there were a few books that got greats reviews. So, I search past topics here to see which ones were recommended, and they were pretty much all mentioned in one post or another. So, I would like some input. I'm looking for more of a reference book, something that will explain to me how to properly use the STL, how it works, etc.. and not a book that explains what a link-list, vector,.. are. I've already taken my data structures course so I dont really need to go over that again. Any help would be appreciated. I'm looking for to buy one book (possibly two if they aren't that expensive maybe, 100-150$CDN total, will have textbooks to buy shortly so money will be a problem). Here are the ones that have the best reviews: STL Tutorial and Reference Guide: C++ Programming with the Standard Template Library by David R. Musser (Author), Gillmer J. Derge (Author), Atul Saini (Author) Generic Programming and the STL: Using and Extending the C++ Standard Template Library by Matthew H. Austern (Author) C++ Standard Template Library, The by P.J. Plauger (Author), Alexander A. Stepanov (Author), Meng Lee (Author), David R. Musser (Author) The C++ Standard Library: A Tutorial and Reference by Nicolai M. Josuttis (Author) I would like the book to cover the Ansi Standard STL. Some of those books are quite old so not sure if they are dated. If someone has a diff book that I didnt mention, then feel free to suggest it. Thanks alot for your time! Edit:Btw, truly sorry if I posted in the wrong forum. Let me know which is the right one and I will post in it next time. Thanks!

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While I can't comment on the others, I would like to give a very enthusiastic recommendation to "STL Tutorial and Reference Guide" by Musser, Derge, and Saini. When I was looking for a book to fill in the missing gaps of my STL knowledge, I found that book was exactly what I was looking for.

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Josuttis' is the oft recommended book. It is a good reference for all of the little nuances of the Library. I don't care for the layout of the actual function reference [it's split across the book, rather than in an appendix or dedicated area] but the reference areas are good, even if the layout is less than ideal for a dedicated reference.

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Quote:
Original post by Telastyn
Josuttis' is the oft recommended book. It is a good reference for all of the little nuances of the Library. I don't care for the layout of the actual function reference [it's split across the book, rather than in an appendix or dedicated area] but the reference areas are good, even if the layout is less than ideal for a dedicated reference.


Seconded. Quite a few highly respectable people on these boards say it's the definitive book to have.

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Quote:
Original post by AzCoder
Josuttis




See whether you can get a second hand copy if you're on a tight budget.... although there might not be many people wanting to sell.

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If you're going to buy one book, buy Josuttis. If you have the cash, though, consider buying the Austern book too. It's a great source for perspective on generic programming as it relates to C++... it takes a much more theory-based, yet just as useful, approach to the STL than Josuttis.

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Effective STL by Scott Meyers is worth picking up as well. It's not a reference but it's a good book to read to improve your usage of the STL.

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For reference, I just use http://www.sgi.com/tech/stl/

Effective STL is good.

I also recommend "Modern C++ Design: Generic Programming and Design Patterns Applied". Not strictly about STL, but very template-heavy. It helped me understand the how/why's of STL a bit better.

Edit: Fruny is right - "Modern C++ Design" book does require some familiarity with STL and templates in general. Pick this up when you want to stretch your brain and knowlege a bit more.

[Edited by - JoshM on July 19, 2005 7:10:27 PM]

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I have both Musser/Saini's and Josuttis's books. "The C++ Standard Library" offer more breadth (it covers more than just the STL) and forms a good reference.

You can live without "Effective STL" for a while, though I would strongly consider picking it up if "things don't become clear", as it will guide you towards, well, effective usage of the library.

Finally, I don't recommend you bother with "Modern C++ Design" until you are familiar with the C++ standard library. It presents some advanced techniques which won't do you any good without a solid grounding.

On the other hand, since you seem to be past the "figuring out C++ syntax" stage, I strongly recommend Dewhurst's "Common C++ Knowledge" which will acquaint you with useful C++ Idioms and issues. Plus, at USD 21, it's cheap as far as computer books go.

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