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Paperback Java Language Specification Book

ISBN: 0201310082

ISBN13: 9780201310085

Java Language Specification

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Book Overview

Written by the inventors of the technology, The Java(tm) Language Specification, Third Edition , is the definitive technical reference for the Java(tm) programming language. If you want to know the... This description may be from another edition of this product.

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

For the guts of Java, there's nothing better...

Are you the type that has to know the "why" and "how" behind how a language behaves? Then this is the book you need... The Java Language Specification, Third Edition by James Gosling, Bill Joy, Guy Steele, Gilad Bracha. Provided you're buying it for the right reason, there's nothing close to it. Contents: Introduction; Grammars; Lexical Structure; Types, Values, and Variables; Conversions and Promotions; Names; Packages; Classes; Interfaces; Arrays; Exceptions; Execution; Binary Compatibility; Blocks and Statements; Expressions; Definite Assignment; Threads and Locks; Syntax; Index So why do I say "for the right reason"? Because if you pick it up expecting something else, you'll be highly disappointed. This is *not* a tutorial of the language, nor is it an easy-to-read conversation or discussion of Java. Instead, it's a computer engineering level coverage of how Java is structured and how it works, from the people who wrote it. As such, you're going to find information in here that you'll have a hard time getting elsewhere. You'll find out how the nitty-gritty of how things like classes and interfaces work, and how they *should* be structured. If you're just getting started in Java, you'll likely be over your head by the second chapter. The target of this type of writing would be people who are Java journeymen, and who have gotten to the point where they need to know some of the theory behind features and structure. You'll also need a book like this if you write development tools that target the Java environment. Armed with this book and a solid background in Java, you'll be able to produce software that behaves just as developers would expect. Don't let the depth and complexity of the material steer you away from the book if you're ready to go deeper with Java. Just don't pick up the book expecting to learn Java for the first time. There are better books out there for that purpose. But if you need to understand the guts of Java, this is it.

Must-have for the Java system developer

This is it, the complete and authoritative definition of the Java programming language. This edition covers the Java language up to 1.5, so it gives a full description of generics and type parameters, boxing and unboxing, enums, annotation, and all the latest. If you develop Java language tools - debuggers, compilers, etc. - you simply must have this book. If you care about Java details that much, you must have the newest edition. The typical programmer, someone who uses Java for application development, probably won't find much of interest in this book. This isn't a programmer's how-to manual. Nearly nothing describes how to use the language features. The code samples just illustrate language syntax and subtleties. There's nearly no discussion of the Java APIs, not even the java.lang.* packages or language-dependent reflection features. These are not flaws in this reference manual - this simply isn't a book meant to serve those needs. Despite its 650+ pages, this really is a concise, precise definition of the Java 1.5 programming language. If you care about the internals of Java or about OO lnaguages in general, then this book is for you. //wiredweird

Excellect, definitive guide to Java...

This book is essential for learning Java, and should be read by anyone serious about learning the language. Pay special attention to the example programs, as they highlight special cases and subtleties that are not explained in other books, and often misconstrued by the authors of other books.Bear in mind that this books is available for free from Sun Microsystems's web site. They offer it in either HTML or in PDF. So you can save some money.


I have half a shelf full of Java books, and a folder full of online bookmarks, but after a half dozen frustrating searches through the others, I've learned to always look here first for a question about the core language. This book doesn't cover the non-core packages, and it doesn't cover the newer (Java 2) extensions, but it is indispensible for what it does cover. Plus, it has the most interesting index of any technical book I've seen.

Best Java book for experienced programmers.

Never buy Internet/Programming books by the pound. If you already know how programming languages and compilers work (maybe you've written a compiler or two..) and you want evaluate Java as a language or you want to develop your Java programming "head" in addition to your "C" "head" and your assembler "head", this is the resource. This is learning the beauty of the Java language by drinking from the firehose, not slodging through the mud. The book is mercifully concise, Emily Dickinson would be proud.
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