Book Review of the Month
by Ernest Friedman-Hill
Author/s : Jared Richardson, William A. Gwaltney
Publisher : Pragmatic Bookshelf
Category : Project Management, Process, and Best Practices
Review by : Ernest J. Friedman-Hill
Rating : 10 horseshoes
It! is both a guide to running successful software projects, and a life
preserver for projects that are failing. If you've ever worked on a
troubled software project, you know what it feels like. The
frustration. The sense of impending doom. The urge to polish your
resume. We've all been there. So have Richardson and Gwaltney -- and
they're offering to leverage their considerable experience to help save
you and your project from this fate.
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.
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.
More info at Amazon.com
More info at Amazon.co.uk