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Optimized C++: Proven Techniques for Heightened Performance 1st Edition
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About the Author
A career technologist with broad experience in software development, Kurt has exceptional experience and skills in early stages of product development including market research, user needs analysis, and architectural design. In addition, Kurt has very deep C++ development experience. He currently works as a Software Engineer at iStreamPlanet.
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A few concepts I was hoping for are missing, including vectorization (SSE, AVX), which is mentioned only in passing; more depth to floating point arithmetic; better discussion of memory and cache access patterns (the handling of the CPU cache in particular is so vague that there's no takeaway message that I could apply to my code); ...
Meanwhile, there's an excessive amount of time spent on a handful of topics, including timers (why are sundials and grandfather clocks given full paragraphs?) and, as others have said, the C++ language itself.
I was hoping this book would be a reference guide once I'd finished reading it, but a lot of the material wasn't quite concrete enough for it to be useful. I would highly recommend reading Agner's manuals instead if you have knowledge of C++ already. In some places they're a little bit dated but still solid and very much grounded in computer architecture. (Do a search, they're free online.)
1. It is really for people who does not know C++. Literally half of the book is explanation what is std::string and” don’t do too much in the loop”.
2. It seems to me author himself does not understand relatively basic things about C++ optimization ( e.g. why binary search on sorted array could be faster than hash map ). Some statement such as “always move declaration of a variable out of the loop” is just incorrect.
Advise for beginners – don’t buy this book. Learn from experts: Scott Meyers, Nicolai M. Josuttis, Antony Williams, Andrei Alexandrescu, Herb Sutter …
OTOH, sometimes this real experience is a bit, well, stale. For example, for measuring time intervals the book states that "on PCs, the fastest tick counters available have 100-nanosecond resolution" - which isn't true even for Windows which corresponding section heavily leans to (there is RDTSC instruction with ~1ns resolution for about 20 years now on all what can be named PC). In another example, in the whole chapter dedicated to strings I didn't find a reference to Small String Optimization (SSO), which is a reality for 5+ years now, and which changes performance analysis significantly. Advice "perform I/O in a separate thread" is also outdated in the modern days of generally-better-performing async I/O (at the very least, async I/O should be mentioned in this context).
Overall, I'd give this book 3.5 stars, but there is no such option - and given that books with real-world experience are rare, I decided to round it up rather than down.
If you are just starting with C++ and care more or less how language and STL works under the hood then this is OK book to start with.
But if you already know the language and have ever looked into the language, and STL, specification/documentation than you should avoid this one.
But let's face it, if you are jus starting you won't be interested in optimization.
Beside I have found few errors in this book, unless some facts were purposely omitted by the author to prove his point.