“Code Craft” (ISBN: 1-59327-119-0) was written by Pete Goodliffe. The book is relevant to all developers: code is very language agnostic. Code Craft doesn’t just cover the design of the program, but also includes quite a bit of content on the process the program goes through “in the trenches.”
The book does include some minor annoyances such as the “Good Programmers… Bad Programmers..” part which is often a large part of each chapter’s content summary. Code Craft also suffers from a visually boring layout. Unfortunately, there are also some parts where it feels like Pete has taken a lot of work from secondary sources and just sort of glued it together.
The first time, I read Code Craft I had just started my first professional programming job. Reading Code Craft really made me ensure that I started using source control management, and really started to pay attention to the process of software design which I didn’t really grasp while in school. Immediately, these first few things were noticed at that first job and got me some kudos from the more senior programmer who reviewed a lot of my initial work.
Code Craft is a larger technical book and spends a lot of time describing the process that software should go through and other softer skills than just the technical side of things. There are sections on growing code, different architectures, and even coding itself but over all there’s something for most programmers even if the main idea already appears in other books.
Although, I think the book is excellent there isn’t exactly new concepts that can’t be found in other books such as Code Complete, Refactoring, and even a bit in Design Patterns. I don’t regret spending the $30 or so on the book, because I really do feel that I learned new things, was even entertained a little bit because Pete’s humour is light and even a little funny at times. Pete’s work has definitely helped me to create more meaningful software and to act as a mentor even when I didn’t have one.
Author: Brian Cline