Beginning with Java

Welcome to the Java Tutorial

Welcome to a new tutorial of learning how to program with java!  I have tried to make videos of myself doing all of this, but I think this will work out better.  It is my goal in this tutorial to teach anyone interested the basics of programming.  We could start in any language, but I feel that Java offers the best structure to learn Object Oriented Programming.

Object Oriented Programming (OOP) is a way to organize a program into objects.  Java makes OOP a founding philosophy that creates a language that is very robust and expandable while making a complex program easy(er) to understand.  Granted it could be said that java just makes simple tasks very complex and that would not be wrong.  But it is also a very large leap forward from C++.

Java is a very interesting language.  A few advantages are:

  • forced Exception (error) Handling.  Any error that is created and known about must be handled at design time or else the program will not “compile”
  • Strict OOP programming style
  • platform and operating system independance
  • well documented
  • plenty of online tutorials
  • free Integrated Development Environments (IDEs)
  • easy switch to other OOP languages such as Microsoft’s C#

Numerous programs have been created with Java, including games. Minecraft is one example, but there are plenty more such as Applets that run on browsers that aide in seat selection at an online ticketing service, programs that automate coffee machines, parking machines, and plenty of others.  There is no better language to start with, not even, in my opinion, Visual Basic.

Let’s set up our environment!

In order to start our programming tutorial, a few programs must be in place.  The first step is to get the Java Runtime Environment (JRE).  In many cases, this is already installed.  The easiest way to verify this is to open a command line window and give the java -version command

java -version command

java -version command

If the screen looks like the window above, regardless of which java version is displayed, than a JRE is already installed and you need not worry about downloading it.  Otherwise, it must be installed.  To do this, go to the following webpage and search for the appropriate JRE install file:
It is also easy to find by putting JRE Download into google.

The next step would be to download the java development tookit (JDK).  That can be done at the following website
Again, only a simple google search is needed.  All you need is the standard edition.  It is not necessary to sign up or register for any of these downloads.

The third download is also very easy to find, and it will not be “installed” into the system, just started.  For this tutorial series, we will be using eclipse Juno.  Currently the newest release is Eclipse Kepler, but the two are almost identical and it is not important to have the same version as I have.  You can download eclipse from here:
I often download the EE version, but the standard is just as well for getting into java for the first time and for mostly all projects.  Once this file downloads, extract it into a place that it can stay for a longer period of time.  I do not recommend the desktop, but that is your decision.

Once that is finished, we will want to start eclipse.  To do that, just open that folder and open the eclipse executable that has a purple icon:
EclipseFolderA window will open up where you can select your desired workspace.  The default will be located in your personal documents folder.  You can change this if desired, or even create a new folder easily.  I started out creating a new workspace for every program I worked on, but this is unnecessary.
eclipseWorkspaceWith these steps done, eclipse will start and it is possible to start programming.  In the next tutorial, we will look at where to go from here, including looking at a few basic types in Java, and creating a program that allows us to put information into the user console.


About reederProgramming

I already have an about me page, so I will just put a quick bit of info here. I am a Notes/Domino developer at holistic-net GmbH located in Hannover, Germany. I use Java primarily at home and as often as I can at work. I have dabbled in C# and a few other languages and platforms. This website started out as a place for me to quickly store and access some of my most important how-tos and has started to become a place where I can really help others too!
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One Response to Beginning with Java

  1. james says:

    Back in the day when most people are doing C/C++, what we love about Java is it’s memory management. You can create instances and forget. Unlike in C/C++ where you need to manage really hard

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