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  1. #1
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    Want to learn JScript...

    Hi everyone, I'm new to programming (haven't done any since the days of GWBasic) and want to start out with JScript. My reaonsing for this is that as I understand it JScript is kind of a "light version" of the Java programming language and it would be a good way for me to start. Once I have JScript down fairly well it would be a little easier for me to move on to full blown Java programming. Is that right or true? Is JScript just a light edition of the Java programming language?

    I also chose JScript because it is platform independent, unlike VBScript (which I do want to learn, but not first). Is that correct as well? Java runs on most platforms but VB runs primarily (or only?) on Windows based systems.

    Also, in wanting to do this I obviously need some resources. I'm looking for URL's and books taht offer help for beginners. You help is much appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Want to learn JScript...

    JavaScript shares some syntax conventions with Java, but really is a very different language. More browsers understand JavaScript or MS' variant, JScript, than understand VBScript. If you are creating client-side scripts for web pages, you will want to use JavaScript if possible.

    If you are learning programming in an academic sense, I think that Java might be a good choice. It is more "modern" than C and C++ and there are tons of resources and courses out there. On the other hand, if you are targeting a particular domain, such as Microsoft Office automation, it might make more sense to learn Visual Basic. I'm sure others would have suggestions if you tell us more...

  3. #3
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    Re: Want to learn JScript...

    Thx for the reply. Let me give you some more info. I don't necessarily want to be a programmer, but I want to be able to read code, understand what it is doing, etc. I want to be able to do this from a security point of view. My ultimate goal is to become a network security specialist. I understand that, although not necessary, understanding programming and perhaps being able to do some programming would be beneficial in this field of IT.

    I think about Steve Gibson at grc.com and his first DDoS article that he wrote, telling us all about his being DDoS'd and how he stopped it. One of the things he did was he got a hold of the t r o j a n that had infected over 400 computers and was able to look at it from a programming perspective. He saw something about IRC in it and looked up the RFC for IRC, read it, assimilated it, and re-wrote the trojan, not having know anything about IRC before then. I thought the whole thing was really cool. How he could look into the t r o j a n code and then read the RFC and understand it so well as to manipulate the code in the t r o j a n to help him take care of his DDoS problem.

    Now I understand that Steve Gibson is a programmer. I don't want to be a programmer, but I want to be able to view code and somewhat understand what it is doing. Does that help?

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: Want to learn JScript...

    Gibson is hardcore; I'm not sure I know of anyone else who still intentionally writes in assembly language!

    There are a lot of similarities between programming languages, so once you learn one you have a leg up in parsing another one. Since most code seems written in C or C++, those might be good choices to study. On the other hand, since those are compiled languages, you might never see the source code you would be looking for. For your purposes, learning the scripting languages first might make the most sense, because a lot of malware is written as VBScript.

    During the past couple of months I posted a link to an article comparing Visual Basic and C#, showing some similarities and differences in their basic constructs. The more of that you can find, the more insight you will gain.

  5. #5
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    Re: Want to learn JScript...

    Further to Jefferson's insights, you can start simple with a few things that you will find are very common: Visual Basic Scripting, and (gasp) batch files. NT batch files in particular are a very simplified programming language, but they can do amazing things within the NT realm. Pick up a book on using the Windows Scripting Host or general NT scripting and it will likely give you some valuable insights.

    Perl is also a popular language these days with applications that range from web design/programming to standalone executable programs.

    As Jefferson noted, once you understand the basics of a given language - the concept - you can apply that knowledge to other languages fairly simply. The movie "The Matrix" was out in left field, but there was one truth that was underscored: it's a world based on rules, as are all programming languages, so once you know the rules, you're set.
    -Mark

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