Tuesday, October 11, 2005

.Net Book Recommendations

Brad Abrams posted a list of book recommendations on his blog. I haven't read all of those books but of the ones I have read, I definetly agree with these:

These are all very good books.

Quite often, I get asked what books someone should read in order to learn Windows Forms. I always say that in order to be really effective developing Windows applications using the .Net Framework, you need to know 5 things:

  1. CLR
  2. C#
  3. Windows Forms
  4. GDI+ (in the .Net context)
  5. Interoperability

In that order.

I prefer C# but you can substitute your language of choice. For me, C# has a syntax that is very natural for a C++ programmer yet provides a simplicity that makes it easy to learn and highly productive.

So if I were to point someone to 5 books that covers the 5 topics above, they would be:

  1. Applied Microsoft .Net Framework Programming (CLR)
  2. Programming C#
  3. Windows Forms Programming in C#
  4. Graphics Programming with GDI+
  5. .NET and COM: The Complete Interoperability Guide

To me, the C# book is less important since Jeff Richter's Applied Microsoft .Net Framework Programming will give you the majority of what you need to know. I might substitute more of a C# reference book like The C# Programming Language.

If you are building a lot of foundation or shared libraries, then Framework Design Guidelines : Conventions, Idioms, and Patterns for Reusable .NET Libraries is a must read.

Once you have all of these books under your belt, it's all a matter of getting experience with the platform. Coding early helps make more sense of the books you are reading so try not to be too methodical :)

Visual Studio 2005 is about a month away, I can't wait to dig in to some new books that cover all of the .Net Framework 2.0 features and changes.


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