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Ship it! A Practical Guide to Successful Software Projects Paperback – May 1, 2005
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"It’s rare to have this much fun reading a book about software. The ideas are smart, relevant, and fundamental. I can be a better programmer today because of the things I read today."
"A great book! The authors have done a great job in presenting the subject in a neutral way and avoiding any methodology-oriented traps."
"This is fantastic stuff. As I started reading, I almost fell out of my seat because the project I’m on right now is going through exactly the hurt you describe and would benefit greatly from material just like this."
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Top Customer Reviews
There's not much material that's truly new between these covers, but the presentation and point of view is refreshing. It's a rare book that speaks convincingly to both developers and managers, but this one does a good job. The book describes many of the practices of agile development -- continuous integration, automated testing, lightweight planning -- and combines them into a simple but powerful description of an approach to building software they call "Tracer Bullet Development." But the book doesn't assume you're going to do everything the authors suggest: they expect you to try just one thing as a time.
My favorite part of the book is compendium of one-page essays on common problems software projects have, and how to apply the principles and practices from the book to solve them. Unlike some other rather strained "antipatterns" catalogs that I've read, this section feels very practical and usable.
If your shop has trouble shipping quality software on time -- and let's face it, most do -- then this book is for you. If you're a manager, I'd say that doubly so.
Contents: Introduction; Tools and Infrastructure; Pragmatic Project Techniques; Tracer Bullet Development; Common Problems and How to Fix Them; Tip Summary; Source Code Management; Build Scripting Tools; Continuous Integration Systems; Issue Tracking Software; Development Methodologies; Testing Frameworks; Suggested Reading List; Index
Richardson and Gwaltney don't try to add yet another methodology that guarantees your life will be rosy. Basically, that methodology doesn't exist. But there are a number of best practices that they've found from real-world experience, and they share those here. The key word is "practical" (hence the "Pragmatic" part of the series title). Even if you can't necessarily adopt all of their suggestions, you can easily take one or two and merge them into your routine. Once they've changed the way you work, you'll be ready for a few new changes.
For instance, they are really big on automated build processes for your software development that requires a compile and packaging process. Having the process done manually means that it won't get done as often as it should, or it will be machine dependent. Taking the time to learn something like Ant can dramatically improve your effectiveness and productivity. Same with using continuous integration software.Read more ›
It is a good thing to know how to develop great software. It is better to know how to help others become great software developers. This is what the writers of "Ship It!" have done. They have given practical ways for average or good developers to become great at what they do and to begin to help their team develop top level, extremely well tested, reliable software that requires minimal maintenance.
One of the best things I could say about this book is that it is practical. It doesn't come at you with some high level theory or preach at you with an unrealistic unattainable development methodology (they are sometimes unattainable because they require other unwilling participants). This book gives you a number of real things you can begin to do even if no one else is willing to play along. As you make a few of these practices habits, the benefits of the practices become self-evident to the rest of your team and they begin to duplicate the practices that they see you doing. Then your test team, your maintenance team and your customer support team (you do have those teams, right??? OK...Stop laughing... I know most of you wear these hats as well) will love you because you have made their jobs easier. All the customer knows is that this software that you have developed is exactly what they expected and doesn't break anywhere near as many times as the 5 or 6 other applications that they routinely use.
My favorite part of the book is Chapter 5 "Common Problems and How to Fix Them." Also pay close attention to the sections on "Build Automatically" and "Review all Code." The book doesn't just tell you "code reviews are good.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Ship it summarizes best practices in software development and offers both practical advice on how to use various tools and how to deal with various scenarios that come up while... Read morePublished on March 26, 2014 by Noah Moerbeek
Funny thing - you won't know if you're really out of wack until you read it. If you have experience and aren't a drone, then all of this should be either a) already happening b)... Read morePublished on April 27, 2012 by S. Rylander
If you have missed on what has been happening on the Development front for last 5 yrs this is a quick catch up book. Its practical to the point guide to software development. Read morePublished on April 8, 2010 by Raghavan
Put it simply, if you have some real experience in software development industry for, say, 2-3 years, then you already should know most of what this book tells you. Read morePublished on November 1, 2009 by Anton
If you like 'The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master', you will love this book.
Like the 'The Pragmatic Programmer: From Journeyman to Master' is for programmer,... Read more
I actually stopped reading this book after about 30 pages. Something seems too obvious while reading it. Read morePublished on November 16, 2008 by Lior Bar-On
This book does not tell you what development methodology you should use instead it uses a variety of tools and applies them in real world environments. Read morePublished on November 10, 2008 by Derick Clack
The book contains 36 practices, which can be applied throughout the development process. The practices are grouped into Techniques, Infrastructure and Process. Read morePublished on January 20, 2008 by Cavigelli Matthias
If you are familiar with the "The Pragmatic Programmer"(written by Andy Hunt and Dave Thomas) then you will probably recognise the Pragmatic Bookshelf series of books, set up by... Read morePublished on July 29, 2007 by Mitchell Wheat