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Programmer en Prolog (Anglais) Broché – 1985

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Book by Clocksin W F

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Newcomers to Prolog find that the task of writing a Prolog program is not like specifying an algorithm in the same way as in a conventional programming language. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 9 commentaires
40 internautes sur 40 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Dissatisfied 18 septembre 2009
Par John Smith - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
- Even someone with no programming or math knowledge could pick up the book, read it, and learn Prolog
- Uses ISO-Prolog
- Large section of helpful example programs

Big Cons:
(I'll give citations, only from the first 100 pages to keep things short, lest anyone think I am lying about the problems with the book)
- Frequent syntax errors *in program statements* - in Prolog, every comma and period is absolutely essential, when they are missing it entirely changes the meaning of the statement - the book misses them pretty routinely (p 81, twice)
- Frequent logic errors - in Prolog, the order of facts and rules is extremely important. The book commonly mixes things up, presenting you with programs that will not work (p 56 - note here that they are trying to give an example of what will/won't work, and they get it backwards)
- Frequent editing/formatting errors - charts, diagrams etc are fairly often on the wrong page or in the wrong location, etc. (p 48)
- Poor organization - looking through the table of contents, you would think the book is extremely well organized, but as you read it, you'll find new and important ideas thrown into random sections - if you forget something, and need to find it later, you'll probably need to re-skim the entire book. Things are almost never presented in convenient bullets/numbering, almost always in paragraph form, again, making essential ideas tedious to find.
- Confusing - I have degrees in math and computer science, and have been programming for 15 years, and I still found parts of the book hard to follow - note that it had nothing to do with Prolog itself, which is actually very straightforward, but rather with the explanations given, which sometimes seem meandering and poorly worded.
- A really short and crummy index makes things hard to find. For example, look up "atoms", a concept first mentioned on page 26, and routinely mentioned afterwards, a concept absolutely essential to understanding Prolog - the index shows that the first (and only) time it appears is on page 123.

Average Cons:
- Authors use an "arrow system" to trace Prolog decision making, I think a table system (which could easily show previous, current, and future steps, and details of each iteration) would have been better while presenting more information in a clearer fashion.
- Code re-use - normally a good thing, frustrating in this book. You might have a rule (like a function) called "mother(X)..." early on in the book, not use it for 100 pages, and then it appears again. If you want to try the program out yourself, you'll need to know the exact definition of "mother(X)...". There's no way to find what page the function was on in the index or TOC, so you find yourself spending 30 minutes leafing through the book to find it. 99% of these are a single line of code, so there's really no need to reuse them, it's hardly saving any space.
- Overly complex examples - sometimes the authors illustrate an idea with 20 lines of code, when 4 would have been sufficient. It makes for a lot of extra reading and deciphering.

Small Cons:
- (This could be a pro or con - since I don't know too many people who *start* their programming experience with Prolog, I assume the reader has some experience with programming, and so list this as a con) Book is far too detailed for someone with moderate programming or math experience. This helps some people, but makes it a tedious read for others. Every concept is thoroughly explained. If you're a programmer, this gets a little old during things like variables and recursion. If you know any math, verbose explanations of predicate logic will become tiresome. In fairness, it was no doubt the authors' intention to make a "complete" introduction to Prolog, and so it is hard to criticize this.
- (Another pro/con, depending on the reader) British examples - the authors are British (or at least one of them is), and use British references in their code all the time (9th century princes of Wales, p 34; horses who won races in Britain in 1927, p 53) - if you're British this might break up the monotony and make things a little more interesting, if you're not, it just gets a little old, I'd rather see every example just use "cat","dog","mouse".

- NOT a good reference book (and it wasn't meant to be), if you know Prolog already and need a reference book, look elsewhere. This is for people who do not know Prolog.

- I wish I bought a different book. BUT despite everything, I did adequately learn Prolog from this book, so will reluctantly give it 3 stars.
18 internautes sur 20 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Concise presentation of Prolog 15 juin 2000
Par Armen Jamkotchian - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Prolog is a complex subject, especially for someone not well familiar with mathematical logic. Thus, it is very important how the foundation would be laid down. Typically the books I had read on Prolog tend to two extremes. They are either too condensed for such a complicated subject as logical programming, or too broad and mathematically intensive. I would put this book into the first category. Though very concise and well structured, this book does not seem to be a good primer. I would rather recommend the book of Ivan Bratko "Prolog Programming for Artificial Intelligence (International Computer Science Series)" 2nd edition (the third edition of this book is due in August 2000). Ivan Bratko had managed to find the optimal style of presenting both the essence and the practical aspects of the language. Bratko's book covers various practical applications of the language and manages to convey the basic concepts of Prolog without overwhelming the beginner with too abstract or too condensed passages.
Nevertheless, "Programming in Prolog" could be a very good programming reference once you are relatively comfortable with the language.
5 internautes sur 6 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Excellent resource on the Prolog programming language 14 mars 2001
Par Andrew McCaffrey - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This is an extreme valuable book on the Prolog programming language that every computer science person should own. Prolog itself is actually a fairly simple language to learn, albeit slightly obscure. It's reputation for complexity comes from its non-standard implementation, but if you don't enter into it expecting it to look and behave like other languages then you should be all right. Once you get past the mathematics and logic, you should be able to get your mind working in that particular direction. This book is a very handy guide for getting the programmer into the Prolog mindset as well as bringing one up to speed on all the (sometimes very confused) syntax.
This book, like Prolog itself, is not for the beginning programmer. If you have a good background in logic or mathematics, then you should find this book to be very rewarding.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
A well done beginning prolog book 19 mars 2009
Par rationalist - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This book is a great introduction to learning prolog. I was learning prolog for neurolinguistics and AI applications. I have some facility with programming, python and C++, but am not a pro and it is not my day job by any means. I found this to be a very good basic introduction to prolog. There are a few typos, and a part on data structures where the commentary and the code it's on are switched. The book also loses pace and points and has to be plowed through. But on the whole, an excellent solid book to learn prolog a little.
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Highly Recommended 2 mai 2009
Par M. Marquardt - Publié sur
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Programming in Prolog is a clear, precise introduction to Prolog from the ground up.

While is does start with the basics, it is an incredibly thorough text, covering all minutia of the language. The text is clear, easy to understand, and to the point, moving quickly through topics without sacrificing understanding.

I used this book as a supplementary text in an upper-division college course. After reading only the first four chapters, I knew things about the language that the instructor did not.
I highly recommend this book to any programmer of any skill level that is interested in learning the Prolog programming language.

The following two books were recommended in the preface of Programming in Prolog. The first as a quicker (though not as complete) overview for the experienced programmer, and the second as a language reference.
Clause and Effect: Prolog Programming for the Working Programmer
Prolog: The Standard: Reference Manual
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