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Effective Programming: More Than Writing Code

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  931 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Jeff Atwood began the Coding Horror blog in 2004, and is convinced that it changed his life. He needed a way to keep track of software development over time – whatever he was thinking about or working on. He researched subjects he found interesting, then documented his research with a public blog post, which he could easily find and refer to later. Over time, increasing nu ...more
ebook, 283 pages
Published July 10th 2012 by Hyperink (first published July 4th 2012)
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May 24, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: tech-books
The only issue I have with this book is the amount of links it has to material on the web. Yes it is nice that he put references to show examples or to further prove his point, but I think every second sentence in the book is a link to a web document. I read this book on my train ride to work. Underground. On my iPod touch. So you can see I had no access to internet while reading this book. Also if I had to stop to read every single link that was included, it would have taken me 2 or 3 times lon ...more
Jon Cotton
Aug 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A solid, fast-reading, topic-grouped collection of articles from the "Coding Horror" blog. Consider the ebook over paper because there are many hyperlinks.

Some highlights:
- great execution requires a great team
- everyone on the team should be able to elevator pitch both the product and the current tasks they're doing
- "Without a clear focus and something to rally around, we lose the context around our code. That's why it's so important to have a clear project vision statement."
- ship version 1 e
Shafi Ibtesham
Oct 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
A collection of his blog posts. Read some of them before, but enjoyed reading again none the less. One thing I should mention is while reading in the blog posts, it was easier to follow the links or youtube videos. On the other hand while reading it as a kindle book on my paperwhite, found it very hard to follow those links. Just saying that the kindle format (on e-ink kindle devices not if you read it on the web reader), is not practical for this type of book.
Amit Saurav
Aug 31, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: computer-science
This book is a great read for anyone remotely linked to the field of software engineering. The author discusses a diverse set of topics from code reviews to testing and from ergonomics to advertising. It was a real eye opener for me and has somehow equipped me better to work on any future project I am involved in and deliver my best effort.
Haider Al-Mosawi
Mar 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Haider by: Mazyad Al-Abduljalil
Shelves: programming
This book is a collection of blog posts from the Coding Horror blog, written by Jeff Atwood, cofounder of the widely popular Stack Overflow Q&A platform for programmers.

The book spans a wide range of topics related to programming, with sparks of insightful thoughts and sprinkles of humor.

Highly recommended.
Emad Mokhtar
Oct 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoy reading this book, I love codehorror blog and these book organize Jeff Atwood's articles. ...more
Nithin Johnson
Jan 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
A top-level view of all facets of software engineering. I started reading coding horror quite recently. If you feel like browsing through the past blogs, this books covers the gems among them and you will love it.
Manoj M J
Nov 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book is filled with pure, practical, actionable advice. If you'd follow at least 10% of the rules mentioned in the book, you'd be a 10x engineer. ...more
Dec 07, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Many good advices and observations from the founder of StackOverflow. Pretty long and not always as good as I'd expected if you ask me, but was able to read to the end. ...more
Jul 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Being actually blog articles makes great bathroom reading.
May 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Lots of interesting nuggets about software development; many applicable beyond software development.
Alan Lewis
Jan 17, 2021 rated it it was ok
A bunch of blog posts does not make for a good book.
Nov 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: tech-science
As a self taught programmer, this book has been a big help on discovering what is my future action. The book is intended for general porgrammer discussing more fundamental topic such as motivation, work ethic, self learning and so on.
May 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
Atwood gives a collection of career advice as a programmer, the advice falls into several categories. Many advice not only applies to programmers but other profession as well.

In the end, Atwood explores the topic of happiness, and tackle the hard question of how to be happy. Approaching it as a programmer, he laid out a list of rules he developed over the years.

Great programmers can communicate their ideas. By persuading other people, they get leverage.
Strike a mindful balance betwe
Jun 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
To be honest, I started reading this book while watching a particularly one-sided NY Yankees vs Cleveland Indians game. I bought it in a particularly jolly mood and it sat around in my Kindle library until an opportune day like this. I think Jeff Atwood has been blogging about programming as long as I've been programming. Over past few years, I've come to respect him more as beyond some dude who blogs a lot about software and random things. If anything, his work on StackOverflow and Discourse sh ...more
Nov 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: programming
I started to read this book because I tough it would help me to become a better programmer, and its content resulted a surprise. First, it doesn't has new content, instead it contains post from the author's blog organized by topic but without revision, so there are repetitive information and embedded videos that you can't see in your ebook reader. Second and most important, I imagined it would has a lot of technical information, but it has more stuff about how to choose a programmer, how to deal ...more
Sebastian Gebski
Feb 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
I hate books that are just collections of blog posts.
*** But this is Coding Horror!
There are usually an easy-going cash sink: pointless, messed, un-inventive.
*** But this is Coding Horror!
And the price for value is outrageous, because you can read pretty much the same for free, on the blog.
*** But this is Coding Horror!

The resistance was futile. In the end I've bought the book. And read it. And ... it's really good. Jeff isn't just repeating cliches and obviousness. His statements, thoughts and
Aug 07, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: tech
This is a book of various blog posts about software development and, as the title suggests, thinking of writing/designing software on a higher level. Some posts are opinions (venturing into rant territory) that you may or may not share. Some themes are repeated (in the blog that is OK, but in book form I don't really need the same idea more than once).

Overall, though, there are quite a few good pieces of advice that I will think about when developing. One example that sticks out is to get versio
Daniel Judge
Dec 31, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2012-books
A great read for any developer or manger of developers. There's more additional readings and videos than I've ever seen in a book. It's got insight that should be required readings for every developer.

My favorite quotes:

1. "An essential part of being a humble programmer is realizing that whenever there's a problem with the code you've written, it's always your fault."

2. "Software developers think their job is writing code. But it's not. Their job is to solve the customer's problem."

3. "There's n
Robert Kennedy
Feb 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
As the title suggests, this book covers all of the things outside of writing code that will help you develop better software and it does a pretty good job of that. If you're cheap, do realize that most of this book is simply a compilation of Jeff Atwood's blog entries, and you could just read it there. As such, the book sometimes reads more like a blog than a contiguous book.

I would rate the usefulness of the information contained in this book at 5 stars, but personally I disliked the lack of c
Jul 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: programming
Wouldn't say this is a must read for programmer. But if you do coding for a living and you haven't read this book, you are missing out.

Don't expect in depth tutorials or very technical advices, there are plenty other books can give you that.

Do expect practical, useful in high level advices from one of the most successful programmer/entrepreneur/manager/founder in the world.

This book in a way reminds me of Code Complete. You probably have known most of the stuffs if you are in the industry long
Jul 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: geek
The book a great collection of "Coding Horror" blogposts. Even if you are a regular reader of the "Coding Horror" blog, the book is still great because the posts are well structured in in related themes(chapters) like:
* Getting shit done
* How to hire progremmers
* How to get yoor team to work together
* Good desing
* Security basics
* Working with a community

The only downside is that there are lots of links to other sources in the text and if you read it on ebook reader device, it is not convenient
Nov 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: electronic
Made up of some of Coding Horror's blog entries, this book is a great read for anyone in the IT business, be them managers, business analysts, front-end designers, back-end developers, testers or just someone who really likes to read stuff related to that "strange" world. Going into great detail on each entry, Jeff tackles the various (and radically different topics) with a mix of humour and pragmatics with a lot of his own experience while creating the Stack Exchange. Definitely a must read for ...more
Dec 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As someone who has been reading every now and then when a link there popped on my radar, I never did start reading through the archives. I'm glad that Atwood compiled this book as a summary of the best texts published in blog. His writing is clear and strong, and he never fears to voice his opinion. I think this is something a software developer should read. Thanks to the clear writing, I'd say it wouldn't be a bad introduction to the software developers' thinking for the uninit ...more
Sep 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
This is a pretty interesting compilation. I say compilation because most of the stuff in this book is available for free at Coding Horror. However, it's an interesting set of ideas to consider for anyone serious about a career in programming. Touches on important topics such as assembling the right team, community creation and growth, peer review vs. unit testing and many other things. ...more
Oct 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Great book, really enjoyable. It's filled of amazing advice of how to become a better and more effective software developer.

Even though all of the content is available on the Coding Horror website, the added value of this book is really great, as it groups the best blog post on the software development aspects.

I'd read it again for sure....
Nov 16, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012
3.5/5 - I've already read most of this before, so nothing new, but kind of nice to have a "best hits" compiled into a single collection. As usual, Atwood does a nice job of hitting broad and general points, although one could quibble with some of the details. ...more
Luiz Cavalcanti
Dec 13, 2012 rated it really liked it
Even though it's just a blog compilation, this book is so well organized by topic and chronology, that's an amazing reading experience to "coding horror". Highly recommended for developers, on crisis or not :) ...more
Jeff Patterson
Dec 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
You can read this book for free by reading his blog but I liked this book! I like this book alot!

Much of what Jeff had to say seemed to be right on the mark, even in the type of programming that I spend most of my time in, which was not web or app development.
Abdulrahman Al-zanki
May 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Programmers, entrepreneurs
A friend who has read quite a few books recommended this book, saying that it's the best programming book he read. Now I have not read that many books in my life, but I have feeling this is gonna be one of those books I'll always remember. ...more
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