This chapter introduces you to the basic concepts and functions of the Java programming language and gives you brief examples to illustrate important points. The later, more advanced chapters guide you through extensive samples of code, and so the examples in this chapter are short. By the end of this chapter, you should have a basic understanding of the Java language and be ready to explore in detail Java's class libraries in Chapter 3, "An Introduction to Java Classes."
Java programming will be fairly easy for you if you have had experience with C++ because Java is designed to look and feel like C++. If you are an experienced C programmer, you will have to let go of some old habits to program Java, however, as you will discover later in this chapter. Please do not be concerned if you have little or no experience in programming-this book assumes no prior knowledge of C++. You may need to read through the chapters more slowly and carefully than an experienced programmer.