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Code Complete (Microsoft Programming) 1st Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 157 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1556154843
ISBN-10: 1556154844
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Believed by many of our customers to be the best practical guide to writing commercial software, and Highly Recommended.

From the Publisher

From the Author's Preface: My primary concern in writing this book has been to narrow the gap between the knowledge of industry gurus and professors on one hand and common commercial practice on the other. Although leading-edge software-development practice has advanced rapidly in recent years, common practice hasn't. Many programs are still buggy, late, and over budget, and many fail to satisfy the needs of users. The research and programming experience collected in this book will help you to create high-quality software and do your work more quickly and with fewer problems.
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Product Details

  • Series: Microsoft Programming
  • Paperback: 857 pages
  • Publisher: Microsoft Press; 1 edition (January 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1556154844
  • ISBN-13: 978-1556154843
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1.8 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (157 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #187,304 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
About previous comments: Verbose? Don't think so, every page has some piece of valuable information
For beginners only? Don't think so, but if you are a beginner this is a good place to start. After several years of programming you'll mostly stop thinking about style and follow your habits... so you better have some good habits!
Insistence on using hungarian naming convention? Not at all, did you read this book? The author did talk about this convention but he also gives examples why this is can be bad (and also why it can be good).
This book covers a wide range of material, from variable declaration to software estimation and probably everything concerning software construction.
Also as this book talks a lot about style, the best thing is it is backed up with hard facts not just because of personal preference.
The examples are written in several languages (such as C, Pascal and Basic). One chapter is devoted to object orientation. Although you're heavily into OOP then in no way should you skip over this book as the advices in this book can be applied to every methodology of programming. So this book is in no way out dated.
Each chapter has a 'recommended reading' section so you know where to go for more. This is extremely handy.
I've read this book several times and I just love it. I own every book written by the author. Check them out also - they are very good too.
Summary: This book teaches you how you can write good and self-describing code. I wished every program I've had to read had been written by programmers who read this book and applied that knowledge.
Thanks, ABO
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Format: Paperback
I won't go into a review of the book as it has already been done so well by others here. Let me just say this:
As you read through the reviews, note those that give this book less than 5 stars (save one poor misguided fellow who must think 1 star is better than 5). These are people that I end up sending 'sorry you didn't get the job' letters to whenever I hire new programming staff.
The material in this book is so fundamental, so common sense, that it's easy to take it for granted. Don't. Buy a copy, and if you manage software projects and programmers buy copies for everyone involved (most of my people have copies of their own at home, I want them to have it available at work too). Then give them time to read it (or reread it). This will be the best investment in your staff you will ever make.
During interviews the mention of this book by a candidate when I ask about their personal professional reading counts as highly as any single other factor (and slightly ahead of most 'professional certifications' since I've found these to be a better indicator of ones ability to take tests than to perform in a production environment).
And don't forget to take your's down now and then as well.
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Format: Paperback
Reading this book was an eye-opening experience for me! I started programming a couple years ago in BASIC, then I switched to C taking over many of the bad programming style I developed with BASIC. Lately I discovered my interest in programming once again, read through an MFC book and began programming for Windows, a whole new field for me. I always wondered how professional programmers are able to maintain programs that are more complex than Notepad.
I thought it's just the experience and knowledge of almost all the possible (MFC) functions that exist. Code Complete showed me that it's a lot more than that, beginning by designing your program, not just starting to write code right away, up to topics like naming conventions for variables, how to determine what code to put into a routine or how to make your program easier to debug.
Although Code Complete may sound like a very dry book only for expert programmers, it really isn't. Steve McConnell even managed to throw in a lot of amusing anecdotes or witty tests - like the one: "How many of these data structures do you know?". If you checked (almost) ALL of them, you're advised to read the section about intellectual honesty - because some of the data structures are bogus names made up by the author. :)
All in all, I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone , whether you're a professional programmer (for me that is any programmer whose job is programming <g>) or a hobbyist like me, wanting to create the applications you always dreamed of but thought you could never manage it.
Especially interesting for students or anyone trying to start a career as a programmer: this book contains a lot of 'further reading' advices with short descriptions of the books. So this book is also an excellent entry point for those wanting to become a professional programmer and are looking to fill the mind gaps where necessary.
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Format: Paperback
Buy this book only if you are SERIOUS about programming. Because if you're not, you'll never get through it.
McConnell's book is an exhaustive guide to the nitty-gritty details of programming. There are entire CHAPTERS devoted to choosing names for variables, and dozens of pages covering every style of indenting since 1950. I am devouring programming books for my future career, and I am glad that I got this book. It covers all aspects of the design and coding process, with a heavy emphasis on readability and maintainability. It helped me to correct some bad coding practices that I developed.
I was most impressed by the references. McConnell has drawn together hundreds of papers, articles, and books written since the 60s and digested them all for you in this compact volume. He frequently quotes statistics and studies to support his claims. (Indenting lines 3-5 spaces boosts comprehension by 68%, but indenting by 6 or more spaces decreases it by 32%)
I got a real chuckle on his advice about how to deal with bosses who want to see code during the planning stages -- get printouts from previous projects and leave them around your desk, then lie!
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