Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Just Read: Facts and Fallacies of Software Engineering

Sometimes, when I read a book, I look at the publication date and wonder out loud: "what on earth was I doing this year to miss this one?". This is exactly what happened while reading this book from by Robert L. Glass. What on earth was I doing in 2002 to have missed such an excellent book?

Known as the F-Book, after its original title proposition ("Fifty-Five Frequently Forgotten Fundamental Facts (and a Few Fallacies) about Software Engineering", which thankfully was not kept by the editor), this dense book is truly the sum of all truths and untruths about software engineering.

This book is really invaluable as an aid for debunking hype of all sorts and performing reality checks on tools and methods that oftentimes are dumped on software engineers with the promise of a brighter future (that never materializes).

With half a century in the field, Robert has seen it all and heard it all already. If you think your problems or questions are new or unique, then read this book and keep it, because you will have to come back to it and quote it whenever you will need to challenge a snake-oil vendors or an ivory tower methodologists (pretty much like you do with the anti-patterns catalog for development mispractices).

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