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Best book to learn VB.NET 2008

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  • Hi,

    Just want to get your thoughts on (what you believe is) the best book to learn VB. What are your thoughts, experiences? Any books you don't recommend? So far I've just been doing trial and error learning - getting code fixes off the net -  which doesn't work.

    Thanks
    Friday, February 20, 2009 9:07 AM

Answers

  • You are not going to find a single text that teaches you how to become an expert developer in VB.  It doesn't work that way.  Learning VB.NET or learning Visual Studio can be compared to learning how to use MS Word.  One can be become very proficient at doing mail merges, creating automatic footnotes, etc. 

    But, you could do this without knowledge of the English language.  You could even speak English, but still not know anything about how to write a formatted screenplay.  You could have all of those skills and you would still make a lousy poet.  Get the idea?

    I would suggest purchasing Microsoft's VB Language Reference.  An author cannot write well without a dictionary about the language that he is using.   Their "Step by Step" series is pretty good, but easily outgrown.  However, it is essential for absolute beginners.

    I would suggest researching basic programming concepts like the various ways to perform looping and branching.  Learn about Object Oriented Programming.  It is a lot like chess.  An hour to learn, a lifetime to master.

    And most importantly....Don't ever be afraid to ask questions.  Dumb questions are the questions that you do NOT ask.

    Rudedog   =8^D
    Mark the best replies as answers. "Fooling computers since 1971."
    • Marked as answer by Mercaton Saturday, February 21, 2009 11:32 PM
    Friday, February 20, 2009 6:10 PM

All replies

  • You are not going to find a single text that teaches you how to become an expert developer in VB.  It doesn't work that way.  Learning VB.NET or learning Visual Studio can be compared to learning how to use MS Word.  One can be become very proficient at doing mail merges, creating automatic footnotes, etc. 

    But, you could do this without knowledge of the English language.  You could even speak English, but still not know anything about how to write a formatted screenplay.  You could have all of those skills and you would still make a lousy poet.  Get the idea?

    I would suggest purchasing Microsoft's VB Language Reference.  An author cannot write well without a dictionary about the language that he is using.   Their "Step by Step" series is pretty good, but easily outgrown.  However, it is essential for absolute beginners.

    I would suggest researching basic programming concepts like the various ways to perform looping and branching.  Learn about Object Oriented Programming.  It is a lot like chess.  An hour to learn, a lifetime to master.

    And most importantly....Don't ever be afraid to ask questions.  Dumb questions are the questions that you do NOT ask.

    Rudedog   =8^D
    Mark the best replies as answers. "Fooling computers since 1971."
    • Marked as answer by Mercaton Saturday, February 21, 2009 11:32 PM
    Friday, February 20, 2009 6:10 PM
  • Mercaton
      I have only "read" 3 or 4 books - I learn better by "hands-on". But one book I did read that I thought would be good for starting out is Michael Halvorson's Visual Studio 2008 Step By Step. It explains things in easy to understand terminology and has a lot of walk-through practice applications to help understand some of the concepts. Similar to what RudeDog said, once you get comfortable with some of the basic concepts (OOP, looping and branching, etc) then you can delve deeper into it to do more. And also as stated above, get a good reference book to look things up; of course, there is always the MSDN website (when writing code, place the cursor over a term and hit F1 to go to Help).

    Friday, February 20, 2009 6:57 PM
  • I would say the best "book" is the internet.  pretty much anything you need to know is out there.  i have yet to come across a topic that i could not find explanations for.

    Jeff
    FREE DEVELOPER TOOLS, CODE & PROJECTS at www.srsoft.us Database Code Generator and Tutorial
    Friday, February 20, 2009 7:57 PM
  • js06 - www.SRSoft.us said:

    I would say the best "book" is the internet.  pretty much anything you need to know is out there.  i have yet to come across a topic that i could not find explanations for.

    Jeff


    FREE DEVELOPER TOOLS, CODE & PROJECTS at www.srsoft.us Database Code Generator and Tutorial



    Good point, but the OP stated that he has not had much luck.  Experience with the subject helps when it comes to searches.  But, I find it easier to sit back in Lay-Z-Boy with a book to read than trying to surf the web on my I-Phone.

    Mercaton, the Head First Series is great resource for beginners to learn about Object Oriented Programming.  I believe that they now have code samples in Visual Basic, C# and of course the original Java.

    Head First: Design Patterns

    Object Oriented Analysis and Design

    DoFactory: Design Patterns & Design Pattern Framework

    There are two items at that last link.  One is the GoF, Gang of Four, 23 Fundamental Design Patterns.  The other is the link currently on the right side of the page.  Design Pattern Framework.  Notice that they include the source code to both of the Head First books that I cited.  The source code in an older format is available from the Head First site, for VS2005.  DoFactory has different source for 2005 and 2008 which is better commented, as well as some PDF files that offer real world examples of when, why, and why not to use a given pattern.

    Hope this helps.

    Mark the best replies as answers. "Fooling computers since 1971."
    • Edited by Rudedog2MVP Friday, February 20, 2009 8:32 PM edit
    Friday, February 20, 2009 8:29 PM
  • Thanks for the info guys. One thing i notice about many online tutorials, is that they almost always explain things in terms of programming - i.e. the tutorials use programming terminology to explain it. Except i can't really explain it well now that i understand it, but before it was very frustrating.
    Saturday, February 21, 2009 11:31 PM
  • Hi Mercaton

    I started learning about 2 years ago and i found a really good book was Sams Teach Yourself Visual Basic 2005 / 8 in 24 Hours. It gave me quite a good starting point, but it is only the tip of the iceberg. As others have said hands on is the best learning tool. Internet and forums like this is a really good source of information to learn from.
    Regards 
    Sunday, February 22, 2009 11:10 AM