- Paperback: 608 pages
- Publisher: Wiley (2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 8126556013
- ISBN-13: 978-8126556014
- Package Dimensions: 23.6 x 19.8 x 2.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 2 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #22,937 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Introduction to Computer Science using Python Paperback – 2015
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About the Author
Charles Dierbach is an Associate Professor of computer science at Towson University. While a lecturer there, he received the Outstanding Teaching Award from the undergraduate chapter of the ACM. He also received a Towson University Faculty Excellence Award, and was Director of the Undergraduate Computer Science program for over ten years. Dr. Dierbach has regularly taught introductory undergraduate computer science courses for the past thirty-five years.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The presentation of content is extremely beginner friendly and tackles Object Oriented Programming using Python from scratch. It is an extraordinary introduction to programming and I have often found myself explaining various concepts to my peers using some of the concise wordings from the book.
I am truly impressed with the "Motivation" section in the beginning of the chapters as it puts the chapter in perspective. For anyone even mildly interested in the Computer Science discipline, this book teaches the most valuable lesson of programming being a tool to problem solving, the central focus of the book.
Although the book is beginner friendly, it is a wonderful Python and programming resource in general for intermediate programmers as well. The exercises aid comprehension greatly and the "Program Modification Problem" almost forces you to understand the topic. It is evident much thought and effort has been put into the book to ensure the reader gets the information he / she needs to venture into the field.
All in all, this book is very well thought out and in my own experience, I have not found any other resource similar to this. I highly reccomend this to anyone interesting in Python, programming, or CS students.
This is not your average Python book -- it is a college text intended for first-semester CS courses that happens to use Python. As such, in assumes absolutely no previous programming experience, and it looks like any previous computer experience is optional. Not only that, but the book starts with a step-by-step introduction to the art of computational problem solving. This is an idea that goes well beyond hacking together a website!
The book is incredibly thorough: there are exercises throughout the text (not just at the end of each chapter), and it includes a plethora of examples, screenshots, tables, charts, diagrams, and photos. (Yes, my picture is in there -- so are Alan Turing, JFK, and K&R. :-)
The author is not afraid of taking a stance; for example, he omits the 'break' and 'continue' statement because they do not fit within the paradigm of structured programming. This actually fits with the general goal of the book, which is to give an overview of many areas of computer science without getting too deep into the minutiae of any topic. I love the final chapter, which is an overview of the history of computing, starting with Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace.
At the same time, the book gives plenty of useful practical information, such as instructions for using IDLE and an extensive explanation of turtle graphics, culminating in a horse race simulation. (The author's Baltimore roots seem to show through here. :-)
All in all, I think this book is a great text for anyone teaching CS1 or interested in familiarizing themselves with computer science through serious self-study.