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Book Review

Book Review: Beginning C# Object-Oriented Programming

Developing applications using object-oriented design

Beginning C# Object-Oriented Programming is a well-written book that meets the stated goals of its author: "The target audience for this book is the beginning C# programmer who wants to gain a foundation in object-oriented programming along with C# language basics." This book works on a lot of different levels. It gives the beginner a good feel for the software development life cycle (sdlc). It goes from cradle to grave in discussing the application design and implementation.

The book starts by laying out the foundation for a sample application called the office supply ordering application (oso). The first four chapters lay out the requirements and design of the application. It starts with the design of the application using UML and a free tool called UMLet. The author encourages you to use UML but points out that you can do the design with paper and pencil as well. The author discusses who will be the consumer of the application and what functionality is needed to build the application.

He then spends one chapter reviewing the .NET Framework and Visual Studio. The next four chapters are spent giving the reader a good foundation in object-oriented programming using C#. This is done in a well-thought-out manner. He proceeds from easier concepts to more advanced ones sprinkling each chapter with many activities that the reader can try out to strengthen their knowledge of each topic being covered.

As part of the coding of the application, the author discusses the three-tiered approach and how to implement a data access layer. This is followed by four chapters that give the reader a feel for the different types of applications that can be developed with Visual Studio, There is a chapter on building Windows applications using Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) , web applications using Silverlight, and creating Windows Communications Foundation (WCF) services.

In the next to last chapter, Mr. Clark puts all of the skills you have amassed into developing the OSO application that you designed at the beginning of the book. The final chapter is a wrap-up with suggestions as to what steps you should take to continue improving your skills. There are also three appendices to the book. The first appendix covers some basic C# language fundamentals. The second index reviews exception handling and the third appendix discusses how to procure the free tools needed to create all the exercises found in the book.

I strongly recommend that the reader try to create all of the exercises in the book as they are very informative and give you a good feel for the tools and applications that you can develop in Visual Studio. However, with that said, I felt that in the chapters on WPF and Silverlight, I spent a lot of time typing code instead of having the tool generate the code for me. Also, while Silverlight is an option for developing a rich application on the Internet, I think a beginning developer would have gained more by developing web applications using the basic web controls.

All in all though this is a wonderful book to get you started developing applications using object-oriented design and is highly recommended. As a final note, please do all the exercises; you'll learn a lot from them and they'll allow you to strengthen the concepts you have just learned. In addition, if as you do the exercises, you get some ideas that you want to try out go ahead and implement them. You only learn by doing and this will strengthen your skills as a developer.

More Stories By Steven Mandel

Steven Mandel has worked in the IT industry for over 15 years designing databases using Microsoft Access and SQL Server. He has developed Web and Windows applications using VB.NET and has written numerous articles and reviews about ASP.NET and VB.NET.

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