Is Java easy?

Java isn’t easy. It’s often more complex than needed. But being easy for beginners shouldn’t be a design goal with high priority.

Should a programming language be easy?

I don’t know why so many educational establishments use Java to teach programming. They often start with Java in the first semester. Even the Oracle tutorials expect the reader to already know some basics.  Java was designed for programmers who already know C/C++ as seen in this example.

The main method is similar to the main function in C and C++; it’s the entry point for your application and will subsequently invoke all the other methods required by your program. [Lesson: A Closer Look at the “Hello World!” Application]

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Misconceptions about Dates and Time

Was 1900 a leap year and does every minute have 60 seconds?

In Java we have a new API for Date and Time since Java SE 8. Before that, there was already an API with mutable dates and fore some reason there was a date just for SQL.
Since many were not happy with it there was Joda-Time, which later became the basis for JSR-310 and is now found in the package “java.time”.

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Set-theoretic explanation of IEEE 754

Why is 0.1+0.2 not equal to 0.3?

The IEEE Standard for Floating-Point Arithmetic is confusing for beginners. Here I try to give an alternative explanation. It’s not my goal to make it easy. It simply isn’t easy. But this might help understand some aspects of floating point arithmetic.

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Encapsulation

In my blog I write about misconceptions. Encapsulation is something you learn when you study Java and OOP. But it seems that most books fail to truly explain the problems you want to solve with it and those you get by using it. Often it’s just a short chapter or even just a small part about the important concepts of OOP. This is leading to misconceptions and poor understanding of OOP.

(Note: I wrote this before the release of Java 10. Expect that some things are somewhat outdated.)

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