Ten “illnesses” afflict virtually every programmer. Left untreated, these illnesses kill projects. We’ll bet you’re infected. Brian Hawkins has your diagnosis -- and your cure.
Do you suffer from “Premature Optimization” -- investing precious time in optimization before it’s required? Perhaps you don’t think this is a disease? Optimizations often add dependencies between classes or modules that make your code more brittle. It’s often impossible to predict the ultimate impact of an early optimization: Thanks to cache misses and page faults, many optimizations actually reduce performance. Time spent optimizing is time you aren’t spending getting to market, or implementing business-critical features. And your too-early optimizations may not even survive to the finished software.
Perhaps you’re a victim of the CAP (cut-and-paste) epidemic? Casually duplicating code without the discipline of centralized code repositories and libraries is just asking for bugs. Tough bugs. Don’t like to annotate your code? That’s Docuphobia. And, says Hawkins, it can be managed, if not cured.
Hawkins offers detailed C++ and Java code "symptoms" that help you identify the presence of many of these maladies -- from "Complexification" and "Not Invented Here Syndrome" to "Requirements Deficiency" and "Myopia" (shortsighted development practices). He also offers specific "first aid," and a CD-ROM "doctor’s bag" full of curative demos and open source software: automated documentation generators (Doxygen and Doc-o-Matic), source control managers (Perforce and WinCVS), and more.
Step No. 1 is admitting you have a problem. Step No. 2 is reading this book. Bill Camarda
Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.