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ira
10-01-2006, 09:47 PM
Hello,
I am totally new to Alice...thinking of using it for the half-year java course in January. I was wondering how important getting a textbook is, since we already have java books, and getting more books will be a tough sell.

Thanks,
Ira

Mr Nemo
10-01-2006, 10:06 PM
I would suggest you at least get the brief version of the text. It has plenty of information in it that you can look up on the spot instead of having to log on and either search the forum or post a question.;)

Shadow Sovereign
10-27-2006, 10:44 PM
Well, I do agree and all, but still, a book would never really hurt at all... it's an excellent resource for me to find ways of getting out of a pickle and all (not necessarily meaning I like pickles in the 1st place :rolleyes: ), but on the other hand, these forums have some of the best knowledgeable programmers I've seen on the internet (not necessarily meaning I know a lot of programmers on the internet either :D ).

In any case, my point is that it would probably be best to have both, though you don't really NEED the book as if your life depended on it.

debussybunny563
09-11-2010, 05:37 PM
IMO, a book is TOTALLY UNNECESSARY, but nice to have.

I'm completely self-taught, and I feel confident enough to boast that I understand all facets of Alice (besides scripting-lol).
However this may require quite a bit of experimentation.

Anyway, this is an old thread, but I just want to say to those that don't have or want to get a book for Alice, but need some help, Dick Baldwin (he's a member too, but inactive for some time) has a nice tutorial for Alice online: Programming in Alice (http://www.dickbaldwin.com/tocalice.htm)

DensetsuNoKaboom
09-12-2010, 06:55 PM
If you're doing Alice for a class, ask your teacher whether you'll need the book.

If you're just playing around with Alice, I agree with bunny. You can read out of the textbook and learn from it, but then you have people like myself, bunny, and I'm sure many others, who are almost entirely self-taught, and are doing great with Alice. It's up to you.

debussybunny563
09-12-2010, 06:59 PM
If the class requires it, definitely get the book 'cause there are probably example problems and whatnot that you'll need to reference.

If you're just playing around with Alice, I agree with bunny. You can read out of the textbook and learn from it, but then you have people like myself, bunny, and I'm sure many others, who are almost entirely self-taught, and are doing great with Alice. It's up to you.

Kudos to you. Although I don't entirely consider it "playing around"... lol

seanc
09-24-2010, 11:00 AM
If you are in school i recommend getting a book. Just a good reference and your teacher will probally have you doing stuff out of it. Just makes life easier.

Fritz
09-24-2010, 01:30 PM
You really don't need books, alice is intuitive and ridicoulously easy to learn. Within the first three days of school I figured out enough to make this: http://alice.org/community/showthread.php?t=5046 with no use of the textbook or any community codes.

Kids learn better by messing around with it than with the book

seanc
09-24-2010, 07:44 PM
Yea true fritz I know in my class though there is tutorials and projects in the book that the teacher makes us do as assignments.. I guess you could just copy it out of someone else book or see if you can get a PDF or just a printout from the teacher.

flats
10-21-2010, 12:34 PM
Hello,
I am totally new to Alice...thinking of using it for the half-year java course in January. I was wondering how important getting a textbook is, since we already have java books, and getting more books will be a tough sell.

Thanks,
Ira

I'd get my hands on at least one copy of Dann/Cooper/Pausch; I borrowed mine last year from the local tech school that had some spares in their classroom set. There's a few unintuitive things that you can teach with Alice (e.g. arrays) where having the book helps.

Plus, their assignments are definitely worth using in class, although I usually give my students a chance to freestyle a little.

That said, once you have an idea of your scope and sequence, how to do arrays with the built-in visualizations, and a few of the other weird things that Alice does, they're not necessary. I got a classroom set this year, and I'm not sure how happy I am with it. The students try to follow the scripts in the book a little more often than I'd like. Plus, for a softcover, they're not cheap.