Fast becoming the standard language of commercial software development, C++ is an update of the C programming language, adding object-oriented features that are very helpful for today's larger graphical applications.
Practical C++ Programming is a complete introduction to the C++ language for the beginning programmer, and also for C programmers transitioning to C++. Unlike most other C++ books, this book emphasizes a practical, real-world approach, including how to debug, how to make your code understandable to others, and how to understand other people's code.
Almost as important, this book is written in the readable style that has made Nutshell Handbooks® famous.
Topics covered include:
- Good programming style
- C++ syntax, what to use and what not to use
- C++ class design
- Debugging and optimization
At the end of each chapter are a number of exercises you can use to make sure you've grasped the concepts. Solutions to most are provided.
Practical C++ Programming describes standard C++ features that are supported by all UNIX C++ compilers (including gcc) and DOS/Windows and NT compilers (including Microsoft Visual C++).
Comparison: Practical C++ Programming vs. C++: The Core Language
O'Reilly's policy is not to publish two books on the same topic for the same audience. We'd rather spend twice the time on making one book the industry's best. So why do we have two C++ tutorials? Which one should you get?
The answer is they're very different. Steve Oualline, author of the successful book Practical C Programming, came to us with the idea of doing a C++ edition. Thus was born Practical C++ Programming. It's a comprehensive tutorial to C++, starting from the ground up. It also covers the programming process, style, and other important real-world issues. By providing exercises and problems with answers, the book helps you make sure you understand before you move on.
While that book was under development, we received the proposal for C++: The Core Language. Its innovative approach is to cover only a subset of the language -- the part that's most important to learn first -- and to assume readers already know C. The idea is that C++ is just too complicated to learn all at once. Instead, you learn the basics solidly from this short book, which prepares you to start programming and to understand some of the other C++ books you'll need for reference.
These two books are based on different philosophies and are for different audiences. But there is one way in which they work together. If you are a C programmer, we recommend you start with C++: The Core Language, then read about advanced topics and real-world problems in Practical C++ Programming.