August 28th, 2003, 04:50 PM
I disagree. I followed the link you provided and it comes up with a book written in 1994, so at best it can only reflect C89. The C standard was revised in 1999; at the very least it makes sense, if you're going to learn C, to learn up to and including the latest standard, known as C99.
You don't say which Schildt book, and he has written several. You're right about him having a bad reputation. My only gripe with that is that people repeat the same hearsay over and over again without providing any evidence, or having any first hand knowledge themselves. And so often they trot out the same outdated links - no disrespect but the same two links you quoted - and they were written years ago. They have no relevance to any Schildt beginners book for C that you can find on the shelves today.
In fact if you take a look at the ACCU review for the latest copy of Schildt's C Complete Reference 4th Edition, the reviewer, Francis Glassborow is much kinder to Schildt than he is in previous reviews and acknowledges that this book is an improvement. It's true that he doesn't go as far as recommending it, but if you look at the criticisms he makes, many of them will be of no concern to the average beginner learning C (e.g. the fact that Schildt includes a section on writing a C interpreter or that there are better references for algorithms - of course there are).
On Amazon, one of the first reviews shows several examples of Schildt's poor code from the book. I have access to a copy and checked the examples shown, and the errors don't exist in my version.
If someone wants to do a thorough review of Schildt's book and point out genuine errors, and enough of them, fair enough. I haven't seen anyone do that for a long time. If his recent books are of a much better standard than those linked to above, and given that his book has been updated to include C99, it's tempting to suggest that Schildt might be a better place to start than the book previously mentioned, or even the now out of date K&R 2. It's not the Complete C reference but for a tutorial style C book for beginners you can probably do worse.
I'm not about to go along with the usual claims on a Schildt book that he is 'the recognised authority on programming' but let's not forget, he was on the C standardisation committee. That must count for something.
Personally, unless Schildt's C The Complete Reference 4th Edition is shown to be poor by a thorough review, I'd suggest that it could be used as a good tutorial style book, alongside a copy of Harbison and Steele's C A Reference Manual 5th Edition for reference, which also includes C99. Between the two of them you'd be off to a good start.
Until a K&R 3 appears of course .... ;-)