How to expand past basic univ course

I took 1 semester of programming in college. It was in C++; the book was "Starting out with C++" by Tony Gaddis.

I did well in the course, although I haven't programmed in well over a year. Unfortunately I can't tell you exactly what concepts we covered that semester, but I know most of the basic programming stuff was covered, even if only briefly: loops, syntax, header files, basic input/output, arrays, functions, classes, etc.

I'm no longer in school, but I still have the urge to learn to program. Where do I start from here? I have a little bit of knowledge, so the utmost beginner's courses are dull and boring, but I'm not actually much above a beginner.

Most importantly, I'm interested in the practical real world side of programming, not the academic version. I assume this would mean learning to program with QT?

Can anyone recommend a good book that starts from a practical side, not academic side? A book teaching more C++ but also with QT/Boost/STL or whatever is most popular outside of hobbyist usage? Would a book be the best way to continue my learning?


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loops, syntax, header files, basic input/output, arrays, functions, etc.

i would say if you havent covered classes, then start on that. Refresh the basics. File I/O. Maybe learning some boost libs. Program something using what you know already. Then maybe delve into some SFML 2d game programming.
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We did cover classes; I've updated my op to reflect that. What is SFML?
SFML is a 2d game library. It is essentially the first steps of starting to make games. Even if you don't veer that way, that helps. Its a little more simpler than Qt library.

Thanks. I'll look in to it.
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