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Picturing Programs: an Introduction to Computer Programming
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  • Title Picturing Programs: an Introduction to Computer Programming
  • Author(s) Stephen Bloch
  • Publisher: College Publications (August 23, 2010); eBook (2013)
  • Paperback: 486 pages
  • eBook PDF files
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848900155
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848900158
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Book Description

This is a textbook for beginning computer programming, not directed towards learning a particular programming language, but rather at learning to program well. This book can be used at the high school (and perhaps middle school) level, while providing enough advanced concepts not usually found in a first course to challenge a college student.

A first programming course should not be directed towards learning a particular programming language, but rather at learning to program well; the programming language should get out of the way and serve this goal. The simple, powerful Racket language (related to Scheme) allows us to concentrate on the fundamental concepts and techniques of computer programming, without being distracted by complex syntax. As a result, this book can be used at the high school (and perhaps middle school) level, while providing enough advanced concepts not usually found in a first course to challenge a college student.

Those who have already done some programming (e.g. in Java, Python, or C++) will enhance their understanding of the fundamentals, un-learn some bad habits, and change the way they think about programming.

We take a graphics-early approach: you'll start manipulating and combining graphic images from Chapter 1 and writing event-driven GUI programs from Chapter 6, even before seeing arithmetic. We continue using graphics, GUI and game programming throughout to motivate fundamental concepts. At the same time, we emphasize data types, testing, and a concrete, step-by-step process of problem-solving. After working through this book, you'll be prepared to learn other programming languages and program well in them. Or, if this is the last programming course you ever take, you'll understand many of the issues that affect the programs you use every day.

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