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I am C++ developer with some good experience on it. When I try to learn a new language ( have tried Java, C#, python, perl till now) I usually pickup a book and try to read it. But the problem with this is that these books typically start with some very basic programming concepts such as loops, operators etc and it starts to get very boring soon. Also, I feel I would get only theoeritcal knowledge without any practical knowledge on writing the code. So my question is how do you tacke these situations? do you just skip the chapters if its explaining something basic? also, do you have some standard set of programs that you will try to write in every new programming language you try to learn?