I'm going to preface this by saying that I really hate it when you follow the directions to the freaking letter and an installation still borks up.
I went to Oracle and downloaded the Java 7 JDK for 64-bit operating systems as the book instructed ("Download the Java 7 JDK for your operating system. If you download Java 8, it may not work.") I added the path to the PATH environment variable. I ran the javac command and got the expected result.
I downloaded Eclipse and extracted it to a Coding folder on my desktop.
I downloaded Forge and extracted it to the Coding folder on my desktop. (both of the above programs are in their own subfolders to Coding)
I set up Eclipse with no problem.
I then attempted to setup my workspace. Computer churns for a bit, goes through some things, and then says it can't find my JDK. Please make sure that the JAVA_HOME environmental variable points to the right place and that you have downloaded a JDK and not a JRE.
Book never said anything about a JAVA_HOME environmental variable, but what the hell. So, I set one up, pointing to the /bin directory of the Java 64-bit JDK folder (the same path that I added to the PATH environmental variable earlier) Still says it can't find it. I run the javac command again from the Forge directory, and get the expected result.
I am wondering if I should go back and download the x86 version of the JDK at this point.