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Rezension bezieht sich auf: Programming in Scala (Taschenbuch)
Among the plethora of computing books swamping the markets few are as satisfying to read as 'Programming in scala'. The text is very much matter-of-fact and strikes a pleasant balance between depth and breadth. The newcomer to Scala will be able to derive from the book an overview of the language which is sufficient to get started. The language features are explained in full. However, even though the book seems to grow from edition to edition, many topics are only scratched at the surface. This is in particular true for specialized libraries such as XML, parsing, the test frameworks, or even the extensively covered collection framework. Once one has waded through the book, there remains a lot to discover - and as usual at that level of detail the available documentation becomes rather sparse.
Authors who introduce a programing language with its many grammatical features and its various libraries face the difficulty of including examples which must both be nontrivial and at the same time not overwhelm the text. The authors in 'Programming in Scala' have chosen to include few lengthy examples and mostly limit themselves to fractions of code which help understand the syntax. For a complete beginner to a functional language such as Scala this may make perusing, and then applying the book somewhat difficult. From own experience one will soon be tempted to complement the book with source code found elsewhere.
Those who approach this book with a sound knowledge of Java or C# or similar languages such find it easy to quickly progress beyond the first few chapters which explain the dreary fundamentals of the language. Here, a reader with a wish to be introduced to functional programming as such without the burden of details will be disappointed: Functional programming, in the guise of Scala, is only introduced step by step and in homeopathic doses. Thus those, who look for an introduction to functional programming as such or who wish to ignore the details and get right down to the cool possibilities the language offers to the expert will be disappointed.
'Programming in Scala' is thus a broad introduction to the language Scala which proceeds by (simple) example but keeps advanced examples to a bare minimum. Personally, I find the book a perfect vademecum which helps get one's feet wet with the language. Once you get down to writing real software, however, the book will soon become obsolete, and instead you will need to look at the actual API of the Scala-libraries, which are covered only at the surface.