This is another review of a “Step by Step” book. As mentioned earlier, I am doing a review of Visual C# 2012 as well as CLR via C# 4th Edition. I thought these books would dovetail with each other and I am pleased to say that they do, at least to a point. While each book has a unique author, and hence a slightly different style, the subject matters are intertwined and really in order to obtain maximum benefit in the least amount of time studying all three at the same time seemed wise.
What upsets me about these tutorials again is the high cost of entry to understand the material. In order to get the maximum benefit you should have SQL Server 2012 installed on your computer. While this is not an issue for many of those who are struggling students this can be a tough hurdle to overcome.
I am a big advocate of using open source tools and servers when teaching programming subjects. Sure, there are plenty of failed open source compilers out there, but those that survived have proven to be fairly robust alternatives. If there is a strong push to teach coding in the education system, then these large corporations, namely Microsoft, should make the process of learning these servers/compilers/systems a whole lot easier.
However, this book is compact but contains a wealth of information. There have been quite a few changes to SQL server over the years, so it is vital that you keep up to date with the new updates. Particularly of note are the error handling as well as the integration of SQL code into the other languages such as C#, if you are not able to understand this material it is safe to say you probably will not get a job in that field.
Trolling through the various job boards I can clearly see that just about every C# developer needs to have some understanding of SQL and vice versa. Without this duo on your resume you are not getting through the door.
Now, to learn and test out some of the material in the book I am not going with what is recommended, but rather what would a poor college student use. The reason for this is to discover the limitations of these books and also to find out how much you could learn just by using “ghetto” tools.
First impressions of the book and the author are positive. There really is not a whole lot left out which is a good sign. Obviously, if you want to get into the details of integrating this and other diverse servers you may need to seek guidance on the Internet.
Later on I will give you a review of the first few chapters and the various issues I may run into while trying to learn this material on a budget. Truthfully, this is probably not what the publisher or author expected, but I really want to get down to the nitty gritty of how “easily” you can learn a programming language today with very little money.