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What now?

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In only a few months, I've finally approached the end of Head First Java. So, what now? I have figured out a few options: 1) Get another, more advanced, Java book. This seems like a bad choice, but that may be due to I don't know certain capabilities of Java not covered in my book. 2) Learn a completely new language. This is reasonable, but I'd rather stick to something similar to Java. 3) Groovy/Grails. This seems like a favorable choice since I get the familiar syntax and can begin some web development. Anyway, I'd like your suggestions. Feel free to use the three choices above or options of your own in a response.

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How about you pick some project and work on it? I don't know... a ray-tracer, a program that plays chess or checkers or go, a little game... Whatever floats your boat. The point of learning programming is to write programs.

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I wouldn't know how to do any of those things. Like I said, some parts of Java were barely discussed in the book (drawing images, etc). I'm not in a college course and I don't have a degree. I've just been teaching myself. What I'm trying to do is get a solid foundation for when I do need to make a ray tracer and such.

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Are you intending to use Java for game development?

A really nice gentle introduction to Java Game programming is Beginning Java Game Programming 2nd Edition by Johnathon Harbour. He builds a very simple (yet playable!) Asteroids like game. Good, laid back explanations of building a working game and gradually improving it using OOP techniques.

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I might look into that. I really don't see Java alone as too powerful for game creation and JOGL is so out-dated at this point. Also, JOGL requires knowledge of C++ for OpenGL. Still, it might be helpful.

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It all depends on what your objectives are in the long run. Are you planning on applying to a game programming position, working on your own indie title (if so what platform), etc?

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You reached the end, did you take any of it in? did it makes any sense?

What made you decide to start programming? Do that :D

You don't learn to drive a car with no intention of ever driving :P
Pick a project that interests you, and look for material that is focused more towards that. I know that's kinda hard when you don't know what you wanna do, and still don't know how to do anything. Just grab some code off the net that does something cool, run through it, and look up anything that your not familiar with yet. But that's just me, I learn by jumping in the deep end and learning backwards.

But yeah, getting more books always helps, just make sure you're actually trying out and playing around with what your reading.

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Quote:
Original post by Fuji
I might look into that. I really don't see Java alone as too powerful for game creation and JOGL is so out-dated at this point. Also, JOGL requires knowledge of C++ for OpenGL. Still, it might be helpful.

Then you've never seen this site:
Killer Game Programming in Java
Now that you finished Head First you should be able to follow all the game examples on this website to start making 2D and 3D games in Java.
Don't learn another language since Head First didn't even cover all of Java i.e. skipped input(presented as "ready-bake" code) and graphics as you mentioned,etc.
Look into another book like Java in nutshell that does cover all core language to reinforce all you learned because I know it didn't all stick first read through book. I know I don't remember all after reading that book.
"Difficult to believe a "nutshell" is over 1200 pages, but that's Java. This quote from a review on that book should give you a small taste of how big Java is :)


[Edited by - daviangel on April 4, 2010 10:09:01 PM]

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Wow, you're right. I HAVEN'T seen that site, nor have I heard of the book. I will definitely try things out from it here and there.

In the meantime, I've ordered The Definitive Guide to Grails and I'll be working through that as well.

There's no reason I can't do both. Both of these will build off my current Java abilities, so I'm not losing anything.

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