Beginning Programming for Dummies 4th edn

Adrian Williams adrian at
Sat Dec 9 07:26:11 EST 2006

As a new user of Revolution I agree with your analysis of Dummies.
Small things can make a huge difference to beginners!

For me 'Software At The Speed Of Thought' lacks an Index at the back
which would make zeroing in on snippets *much* easier to locate.
To counter this lack, I found myself having to use a highlighter pen on
virtually every word of Courier (of current interest) set in the text.

That's another thing. Typographically, the Times/Courier combination is
not a good one. Important single words of Courier are hard to detect.
One has to read the whole paragraph to encounter the Courier emphasized 
It does not have enough emphasis to make it stand out and contrast with 
All 'Code' text in Courier Bold would have been better and easy to do.

Yes, these comments are picky, but in a constructive way I hope and
free advice from a Typeface Designer.


On 9 Dec 2006, at 10:01, Peter Alcibiades wrote:
> Get Dan Shafer's book revised for a third edition, some introductory 
> parts
> slimmed down, a few more details on some of the topics, a few more 
> detailed
> howtos, and put the CD with the express edition with it.  Particularly 
> expand
> the parts about storing, retrieving and deleting data.  There's too 
> much
> about the user interface, and too little about how to write stuff that 
> deals
> with the data which is why the end user is writing the program in the 
> first
> place.
> But, small criticisms aside, 'Software at the speed of thought' is 
> really
> excellent for a first introduction for a sophisticated end user.  It is
> everything that the Dummies book is not - it just needs to go a little
> further.  And have the express edition packaged along with it.
> Get some detailed material on how to work with arrays, lists, and 
> tables  into
> the Revolution pdf.
> Peter

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