Head First Programming
A learner's guide to programming using the Python language
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: November 2009
Pages: 442

Looking for a reliable way to learn how to program on your own, without being overwhelmed by confusing concepts? Head First Programming introduces the core concepts of writing computer programs -- variables, decisions, loops, functions, and objects -- which apply regardless of the programming language. This book offers concrete examples and exercises in the dynamic and versatile Python language to demonstrate and reinforce these concepts.

Learn the basic tools to start writing the programs that interest you, and get a better understanding of what software can (and cannot) do. When you're finished, you'll have the necessary foundation to learn any programming language or tackle any software project you choose.

With a focus on programming concepts, this book teaches you how to:

  • Understand the core features of all programming languages, including: variables, statements, decisions, loops, expressions, and operators
  • Reuse code with functions
  • Use library code to save time and effort
  • Select the best data structure to manage complex data
  • Write programs that talk to the Web
  • Share your data with other programs
  • Write programs that test themselves and help you avoid embarrassing coding errors

We think your time is too valuable to waste struggling with new concepts. Using the latest research in cognitive science and learning theory to craft a multi-sensory learning experience, Head First Programming uses a visually rich format designed for the way your brain works, not a text-heavy approach that puts you to sleep.

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O'Reilly MediaHead First Programming
 
4.0

(based on 4 reviews)

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100%

of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

Pros

  • Easy to understand (4)
  • Helpful examples (4)
  • Well-written (3)

Cons

    Best Uses

    • Student (4)
    • Novice (3)

    Reviewed by 4 customers

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    (0 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    3.0

    After one chapter...

    By mike

    from Cottonwood, Arizona

    Verified Buyer

    Pros

    • Easy to understand
    • Helpful examples
    • Well-written

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Student

      Comments about O'Reilly Media Head First Programming:

      I don't know if my recommendation would be wise to follow as I've only been through one and a half chapter but it seems to be good. I think they should wait 6 months before asking for a recommendation.

      (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Chapter 3 needs to be re written

      By SlawDogg

      from Bristol, VA

      About Me Educator

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

      • Chapter 3 Needs Rewrite

      Best Uses

      • Expert
      • Intermediate
      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about O'Reilly Media Head First Programming:

      I would give this 5 stars on the merits of using alternate forms of parsing knowledge to those who are attempting to learn.
      The primary screw up in this book is chapter 3, which is no longer valid because of changes that twitter made to their environment.
      Chapter 3 needs to be re-written, with the target of pehaps an SMS output to show up in your text messaging on your smartphone. Otherwise, chapter 3 flies in the face of the Head First concept of eliminating confusion and consternation.
      Forget twitter and rewrite to use SMS, and re-release the chapter here online!

      (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      must have for Python beginners

      By Michal Owsiak

      from Poland

      About Me Developer

      Verified Reviewer

      Pros

      • Accurate
      • Concise
      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples
      • Well-written

      Cons

      • Too basic

      Best Uses

      • Novice
      • Student

      Comments about O'Reilly Media Head First Programming:

      I have read Head First series for quite some time. These books are just amazing. My first book was Head First Servlets and JSP and I liked the series from the very beginning. Now, I have few of them on my book shelf – I like the style of the series: well served knowledge. I know how to program and by reading Head First Programming I din't meant to actually learn programming – I wanted to get into Python. And I think, this is quite good way to achieve that. You not only get the idea of what programming is, you also learn basics of Python. This is a good start for people who have never used it. David and Paul go through all important topics for every beginner: branches, data structures, functions, file access, basic of the GUI and much, much more.

      The way book is organized is very similar to other titles from Head First series. Authors utilize recent concepts related to cognitive science – not only what, but also how is important. By introducing image based explanations (we humans base our cognition on pictures) and by explaining everything with very basic language (authors are not afraid that avoiding academic fuss will make them look "less competent") David and Paul go straight into what is most important – knowledge presented such way, that everybody can learn it. I know people who doesn't like this series – they assume that books like these are simply silly. They have right to think that way. In my opinion, Head First Programming is as good as other titles from Head First series, and if you want to lear Python and learn how to program – you have to buy it.

      (6 of 7 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Great for my needs

      By Sean

      from Springfield, MO

      Pros

      • Easy to understand
      • Helpful examples

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Novice
        • Student

        Comments about O'Reilly Media Head First Programming:

        I am a complete newbie to programming in general and I want to start learning how. This book is very good at bringing a concept approach to learning programming.

        There is a lesson however in chapter three that shows how to build a basic authentication program to update twitter statuses. However, it does not work because Twitter turned off basic authentication in August 2010. Other than this, I have been very impressed.

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