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FOR MANY YEARS, C++ has served as the de facto language for writing fast, powerful, and enterprise-class object-oriented programs. As popular as C++ has become, the language is surprisingly difficult to grasp in full. There are simple, but powerful, techniques that professional C++ programmers use that don’t show up in traditional texts, and there are useful parts of C++ that remain a mystery even to experienced C++ programmers. Too often, programming books focus on the syntax of the language instead of its real-world use.
The typical C++ text introduces a major part of the language in each chapter, explaining the syntax and providing an example. Professional C++ does not follow this pattern. Instead of giving you just the nuts and bolts of the language with little real-world context, this book will teach you how to use C++ in the real world. It will show you the little-known features that will make your life easier, and the programming techniques that separate novice programmers from professional programmers.
WHO THIS BOOK IS FOR
Even if you have used the language for years, you might still be unfamiliar with the more-advanced features of C++ or might not be using the full capabilities of the language. Perhaps you write competent C++ code, but would like to learn more about design in C++ and good programming style. Or maybe you’re relatively new to C++, but want to learn the “right” way to program from the start. This book will meet those needs and bring your C++ skills to the professional level. Because this book focuses on advancing from basic or intermediate knowledge of C++ to becoming a professional C++ programmer, it assumes that you have some knowledge of the language. Chapter 1 covers the basics of C++ as a refresher, but it is not a substitute for actual training and use of the language.
If you are just starting with C++, but you have significant experience in another programming language such as C, Java, or C#, you should be able to pick up most of what you need from Chapter 1. In any case, you should have a solid foundation in programming fundamentals. You should know about loops, functions, and variables. You should know how to structure a program, and you should be familiar with fundamental techniques such as recursion. You should have some knowledge of common data structures such as hash tables and queues, and useful algorithms such as sorting and searching.
You don’t need to know about object-oriented programming just yet — that is covered in Chapter 5. You will also need to be familiar with the compiler you will be using to develop your code. This book does not provide detailed directions for using individual compilers. Refer to the documentation that came with your compiler for a refresher.
WHAT THIS BOOK COVERS
Professional C++ is an approach to C++ programming that will both increase the quality of your code and improve your programming efficiency. This third edition of Professional C++ includes discussions on new C++14 features throughout the book. New C++14 features are not just isolated to a few chapters or sections; instead, examples have been updated to use new features when appropriate. Professional C++ teaches more than just the syntax and language features of C++. It also emphasizes programming methodologies and good programming style. The Professional C++ methodology incorporates the entire software development process — from designing and writing code, to debugging, and working in groups. This approach will enable you to master the C++ language and its idiosyncrasies, as well as take advantage of its powerful capabilities for large-scale software development…