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Learn Object Pascal with Delphi
by Rachele, Warren
The entire contents of this book is devoted to a "single" topic: the underlying language of Delphi, Object Pascal (or Delphi Pascal, if you like more). This is what's so special about the "Learn Object Pascal with Delphi". Aimed at beginner to intermediate (Delphi) developers, this book has everything you would expect from it. In 12 chapters you'll learn about the concepts of programming in Pascal, about variables and types, decision making, looping, ... in one "word", you'll learn about every important Delphi Pascal topic. Ok, but why is this book perfect for learning Delphi Pascal, you could ask. This is way: every chapter of the book ends with a Key Concepts questions to reinforce new concept; Test Your Knowledge exercises for trying out newfound skills. And finally there is an appendix listing Object Pascal's reserved words.
The books starts at the very basic level and takes you through conventional programming through 10 chapters. This book succeeds in providing non programmers with the foundation they need to understand what is going on in code behind the Delphi IDE. There's minimal discussion of the IDE, virtually nothing on the Visual Component Library, and hardly any discussion of the many built-in functions. But this is not what the book is suppose to teach you - therefore I'm not looking at this as a disappointment.
All code projects are built as console Delphi applications. For this purpose, the author does a nice job of building a CRT application template. You can use this book to learn Pascal for any Delphi version from 2 to 7. In the beginning of the book, the author discusses the fundamental structure of an Object Pascal program and what goes in it. Following chapters provide a well explained introduction to the core language features, including operators, variables and constants, and basic file handling with input and output. Rachele explains the advantages of modularising a program using procedures, functions and units as an aid to information hiding and security. Chapters 9 and 10 introduce arrays and records.
The companion CD-ROM puts you to work immediately with the complete Delphi 5.0 Standard Edition compiler ready for installation. The CD also contains the complete source code for all of the examples; trial versions of GLAD components; and a trial version of the UIL Security System from Unlimited Intelligence Limited.
In all, this book is a great value and an excellent read, for a novice Delphi developer as well as for those who still believe Pascal is a difficult language. It very well fits in the "Top Books For Delphi Beginners"
Zarko Gajic, your About Guide to Delphi Programming