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Any recommendations for programming fundamental books for beginners?

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I'm reading currently reading Code Complete by Steve McConnell, which I find a great resource, but there are many parts that still assume a good amount of knowledge in computer science and programming. Some of the code examples don't make a lot of sense to me either, because I'm still a beginner.

Does anyone have any recommendations for a similar book geared towards super beginners that would be a good complement?

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I'm a bit late to the party on this one, but my favorite first book on programming is the Pragmatic Programmer by Andrew Hunt + Dave Thomas.

The Pragmatic Programmer does an amazing job of helping the reader to get into healthy + productive programming mindset. It's not heavy on algorithms or data structures - it's about all of the other things that make you a successful coder. It's the first book I give to any new folks who work on my teams! I also re-read it every year or two.

Good luck on your journey! The first part is the hardest part.


Thank you for your suggestion! I was actually really curious about the Pragmatic Programmer since it was recommended in a lot of other blog posts. I think I'll be reading that next ;)


You are welcome! Feel free to ping me if you're getting stuck at any point - I'm always happy to help.


I think you have first to pick up a programming language , for me i am doing java so i can recommend 'teach yourself java in 21 days' to have a good start , then 'Introduction to java programming by Y.Daniel Liang' . Doing some projects and choosing a framework to work with is the best way to start learning , this book from my point of view is not suitable for beginners , good luck !


Thanks Omar :) I have actually picked up the basics of my first programming language and worked on a couple of my own projects. Definitely good advice before jumping into Code Complete! I was wondering if there was a good book that was just a little easier than Code Complete. Maybe I just need a bit more experience working with the code and other projects!


That's right . You can start searching for design patterns book , in order to write an efficient good , you can read 'Head first design patterns' and start read and implement concepts like [MVC ,MVP and MVVM] for your projects . For me i'm applying now days MVP on android , best of luck .

Awesome! Thanks again! I'll pick up that design patterns book soon too. Good luck to you too


Thanks for the suggestion! I just checked it out and it sounds like it's going to be really helpful.


I highly recommend Grokking Algorithms! It's a great way to understand algorithms and data structures in a visual format.


The other recommendations here are really good. But in my opinion might be more suited to more experience devs. I would recommend working through a book with actual projects where you get to create something useful immediately. There's nothing like getting one's hands dirty to really appreciate the power of programming. Next, I would come up with a project that you find interesting and just go ahead and build it.


Hey Arik, thanks for the comment (actually I had just read your math post!). Yeah, I definitely think doing projects is one of the best ways to learn. I also wanted to get a little bit of background on the higher level concepts too :)

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I'm a former Japanese translator turned full-stack web engineer based in Japan. I work mostly with Ruby and Rails, and love working on both the back-end and the front-end.