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Hey guys,

First post on these forums. I recently bought a Microsoft visual C# 2010 book from barnes and noble the other day. For a while now i have been interested in programming. Now that i have a bit of down time i actually have enough free time to get started.

Is C# a good language to start out with? I hear a lot of people recommend C but i really am not sure what the difference is.

Also, do you have any tips for someone just starting to learn?

Im on chapter 2 in the book and so far its guided me through creating a program that prompts the user to enter their name and upon hitting "Ok" it opens a new window and says "Hello _____". I havent had any issues with learning from this book so far.

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Quote:

Is C# a good language to start out with?

Yes.
Quote:

I hear a lot of people recommend C but i really am not sure what the difference is.

It is hard to explain to someone who doesn't know much about computer languages. It could be considered to be like trying to compare Latin and English to someone who has never spoken.

Also, many comparisons are at best misleading, at worst downright incorrect. One thing you will learn quickly is that programmers often have a religious attachment to their language(s) of choice, and will argue incessantly over their perceived strengths and weaknesses.

Ultimately, the language of choice is often a reflection of the programmers style of thinking and how they solve problems.
Quote:

Also, do you have any tips for someone just starting to learn?

This is the most important tip: practise. Do all exercises your book includes, do them at the end of each chapter before moving on. Programming is a practical skill, you must use it to learn it.

Don't worry about having to refer to the book (or the internet) at lot when you are starting. Programming is not about memorisation, and with enough practise you will quickly internalise the most frequently used parts anyway.

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Quick overview:

C# runs on windows can run on linux with the right libraries. has C syntax, less understanding of what is going on in the hardware to write code. (With pointers you can have some very nasty problems if you aren't sure how things work). Hides a lot of the nasty stuff in nice clean library calls (output and such).

C - strings will be a pain at first (remembering to null terminate to output). Not object oriented, faster, need to understand datatypes more than in C# (to not break the program, generally a good idea to get a thorough knowledge on what and why certain data types work the way they do regardless of language).

I would suggest C# for a beginner so they can worry about the main things used in programming: Loops, Conditions (If statements), arrays, and functions, and not struggle with things outside of those items (pointers is a big one).

After a good grasp of C#'s syntax and how the above mentioned items work, then moving onto C or C++ would be a good idea (I'd suggest C++ since C++ is basically C with some extra libraries and niceties, not quite but good enough for right now). Then learn how pointers work, and learn the standard libraries (they are very good and will save a ton of time, I do suggest creating a linked list when the time comes to help with pointers).

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Hello,

C# is a good language to start with.

C++ which is often praised as the "holy grail" of programing languages has so many pitfalls to offer you that it can be a real nightmare, no, will be a nightmare for someone who has never programed before.
If you didn't have problems following the book so far: great. Just keep working through it and do the exercises.
I started out with C++ before C# was really big (don't know if it was even around then) and pulled my hair on several occasions. To this date I wouldn't even call myself a complete C++ pro.

If you're not going to do low level stuff like device driver programing or similar you won't need to touch plain old C.

Scripting languages are also important in the games biz.

My tips:
learn more about programing in general. Algorithms, data structures and how they work and how they are applied.
Set yourself realistic goals. It's much more satisfying to complete a small project than being stuck in the middle of a monster program and not knowing what to do.

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Thanks for the info guys! I really dont know much about programming terminology or...well much of anything about programming. Do you guys know of a book or site that gives some general info about programming?

Also i must admit this is all rather intimidating. This book i bought is over 700 pages lol.

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People are just confusing you. Work through your entire book like rip-off suggested and then worry about what next. Your book should introduce programming concepts as you need them.

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