Is 'Real World OCaml' 1st ed worth bying for a beginner?

This page summarizes the projects mentioned and recommended in the original post on reddit.com/r/ocaml

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  • ocaml-containers

    A lightweight, modular standard library extension, string library, and interfaces to various libraries (unix, threads, etc.) BSD license.

    It focuses on Jane Street's alternate standard library, Base, which means you're not quite learning OCaml, you're learning a distorted dialect of it that is mostly the same but with a lot of unique, opinionated design decisions chosen by Jane Street developers to suit their company's workflow. If you want to use Base you pretty much have to opt in to its way of doing things and pulling in a lot of extra code, so I think it's better to learn OCaml first, then learn Jane Street's way, especially since OCaml's stdlib has grown and improved a good bit since the time when Base was made and RWO originally written. Plus there's also containers now, which is a stdlib extension that lets you cherry-pick the things you want in a more self-contained way that builds on what OCaml provides instead of trying to replace it.

  • book

    V2 of Real World OCaml (by realworldocaml)

    I've only been through the online version so I don't know if this is true of the print copy as well, but it felt very... I don't know, abridged, I guess? There's some good info in there, but it glosses over a lot of things as well, and when I first went over it I didn't feel like I came away with a good understanding of OCaml. I think it makes a good second book choice after reading the CS3110 one, though, because the abridged explanations act like a nice refresher on what you've already learned and read before adding extra detail.

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