Beginner Books – learn programming with free books

Last Updated on July 1, 2019

Learning to code still remains a buzz. The problem facing any budding new programmer is how to start. Questions abound. What’s the best programming language for a beginner? What’s the best way to learn? A beginner might be tempted by reading books titled ‘teach yourself [insert programming language] in 24 hours’. But don’t be in such a rush. In my opinion, it is best to first get interested in programming, then seek out some experienced coders and discuss and discuss, and learn programming by doing, practising with lots of practical examples and the aid of an excellent introductory book.

There are many mature programming languages to choose from. Functional languages, object-oriented languages, dynamic languages, compiled languages, declarative languages, interpreted languages, scripting languages, and imperative languages are some of the varied language types.

Like a fine wine, programming languages get better with age. Programming languages take years to become established and dominant. The deciding factor for many programmers when selecting a language for a particular project has been popularity and language acceptance. Another factor is previous experience with the language.

All of these books are excellent introductory texts. To help break down the barriers, this article presents my selection of the finest free introductory programming books available. There is 1 text selected per language.

Beginner Books
CThe C Book
C++Thinking in C++ 2nd Edition
C#C# Yellow Book - Cheese Edition
PHPPHP Essentials
PerlBeginning Perl
PythonThink Python - How to Think Like a Computer Scientist
JavaIntroduction to Programming in Java
JavaScriptEloquent JavaScript
LuaProgramming in Lua
PascalEssential Pascal
RubyLearn Ruby the Hard Way
CoffeeScriptSmooth CoffeeScript
ScalaLearning Scala
HaskellReal World Haskell
FortranInteractive Fortran 77
ForthStarting Forth
ErlangLearn You Some Erlang for Great Good!
RAn Introduction to R
LispCommon Lisp: A Gentle Introduction to Symbolic Computation
AdaAda 95: The Craft of Object-Oriented Programming
AssemblyProgramming from the Ground Up
PrologLearn Prolog Now!
SchemeThe Scheme Programming Language
Best Free and Open Source SoftwareRead our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.

There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.
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