Swift essentials with challenge questions - Help

I am finding that I cannot do most if not all of the challenge questions. I read the questions and I have no clue what the question is asking for most of the time. I find myself constantly starring at the question and looking at the answers on the playground file (answers). For example, chapter 4, question 3 thru 10, I cannot do at all. I have no clue how to do these, but i look at the answers and still can’t figure out what is taken place.

Two others I know have reached this point and have given on on swift and this book. They claim that if this book is swift essentials and we can’t do the tasks, why should they continue and waste more time? They do have a point though - Why would the writers put so much effort on challenging questions when one is suppose to learn and build up the skills rather than break the confidence of one’s learning skills so early? You would think the authors would help someone build up the skills with lots of practice rather than provide such challenging questions and break confidence levels so early.

I don’t want to give up, but the two other people have quit and I’m finding my confidence level is quickly fading myself. Here is my reasoning: I play the guitar - I feel like this book is written as if I chose a hard song to play and had a beginner guitarist play the hardest song without giving them the basics to reach the learning curve so they quit playing the guitar. Are there other books or practice labs to become better at this? Any suggestions at this point? Any suggestions on how I can get the other two back on learning swift and this book? Thanks for your help and input!

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Sorry to hear about your problem with the book. I’m about half-way through Swift Apprentice and find it to be one of the best introductory books on programming that I’ve ever read. I have to say, if you can’t understand the answers to the challenges, you need to re-read the appropriate chapters. While reading, are you entering the presented code snippets into Playground to see if/how they work? I find that this is the best way to approach things. Also, I like to play with the code and make my own challenges to see if I really understand the concepts before I even embark on the mini-exercises or challenges.

As for the “challenges,” try to break up the problem into manageable pieces if you feel overwhelmed. For Chapter 4 (Challenge ‘3’), it might help to get out some graph paper and draw your chessboard. Labelling your rows/columns from 0 to 7 might help you visualize what your code is supposed to be doing. For the other questions, you might need to refresh your math skills by using Google to find basic math tutorials for quadratics, Fibonacci sequences and factorials. I know that may seem like a pain to do but it’s well worth it.

Don’t be frustrated if it takes a lot of time to grasp a particular concept. If it takes a week to solve a problem, then it takes a week. Hopefully you and your friends will get back to learning Swift because it is a lot of fun.

Please let me know what problems do you have trouble with solving exactly and I will be very glad to help and assist you after all for sure and for good indeed. I play the guitar too, so know the feeling :]