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March 17, 2004

"Hardcore Java": Secrets of the Java Masters

Sebastopol, CA--Had they but world enough, and time, all Java developers would be Java gurus. But at their backs they always hear--not time's winged chariot hurrying near--but the unyielding insistence of deadlines and managers that can't be ignored. And even if deadlines and managers would relent, where would they turn for instruction? As Robert Simmons, Jr., author of Hardcore Java (O'Reilly, US $39.95) notes, the majority of computer books are often not appropriate for the intermediate to advanced programmer.

Says Simmons, "When looking at my rather impressive computer book library, I notice that my books tend to fall into two categories: many are introductions to concepts and most of the others are references to concepts. Although these books are very useful, there is a distinct lack of books that target the intermediate to advanced programmer." In short, there are few books that can really transform a developer from an intermediate-level programmer to a true guru.

That transformation is the goal of Hardcore Java. The book distills years of experience into a concise but generous compendium of java guru expertise, revealing the difficult and rarely understood secrets of Java that true master programmers need to know. Written for the working Java developer, Hardcore Java takes the language and breaks it apart, piece by piece. The book moves quickly through the fundamentals and then turns to advanced memory-management techniques, optimization and bytecode-level enhancements, and the techniques required to build lightning-fast GUIs. Thousands of lines of code, heavily commented and easily runnable, illustrate each concept in the book. Developers will master the art of writing and maintaining indestructible, error-proof code, while grasping the intricacies of the Java language.

Hardcore Java covers:

  • Using the "final" keyword to optimize and protect your Java classes
  • All types of nested classes, including how to optimize anonymous and inner classes
  • Immutable objects, including unique tips on when to use them (and when not to)
  • The elimination of bugs through exception-handling management
  • Constants, including their impact on the Java memory model
  • Reflection--moving far beyond the typical "Hello World" coverage
  • The construction and use of dynamic proxies, in both Java Standard and Enterprise editions
  • Weak references, including usage patterns and their role in garbage collection and memory management
  • There's an enormous difference between writing code that compiles and runs and writing code that reads like poetry: robust, extensible, and just plain elegant. It's that difference that distinguishes a master Java developer from a good developer. Hardcore Java will help even the most advanced developers move beyond their own limiting conceptions about Java into truly advanced applications of the language.

    Additional Resources:

    Hardcore Java
    Robert Simmons, Jr.
    ISBN 0-596-00568-7, 324 pages, $39.95 US, $57.95 CA
    order@oreilly.com
    1-800-998-9938; 1-707-827-7000

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