Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Book review: Growing Object Oriented Software Guided by Tests

I’m a curious kind of guy. It is with some surprise, then, that I catch myself re-reading a technical book: Nat Pryce and Steve Freeman’s Growing Object Oriented Software Guided By Tests. It’s a very practical book, stuffed with code and useful advice, but it’s also more than that.

The first section of the book gives an overview of the basic principles of object-oriented design and test-driven development; not much is new but everything is clearly explained. The third and final section is a potpourri of test-centric techniques to identify problems and improve code quality. But the meat of the book is in the second section, a long walkthrough the development of a sample program. It’s a much larger example than usually found on programming books, tackling thorny issues such as asynchornous inter-process communication and end-to-end testing of GUIs. And it reads like a real software project, there are missteps, refactorings are rolled-back, some of the work is almost clerical, but then there are the great design breakthoughs, the elegant ideas that simultaneously solve several difficulties, the joy in seeing the product grow. It felt like reading a good novel. And that’s kind of what it is, a programming book that is a narrative, not an exposition. Besides making for a good read, the narrative aspect of the book is important for showing how modern object-orientation practice takes place.

OO criticisms nowadays are a dime a dozen, and though they sometimes present good points, often many of the arguments are directed at practices that aren’t so common, or at least that shouldn’t be so common. For instance, inheritance hierarchies, rampant mutable state, and patternitis (the FactoryFactory syndrome), are not indictments of object orientation, just symptoms of bad programming practice. One of the great things about GOOS is that it provides a great example of actual non-trivial object-orientation. And the same goes for test-driven-development, any abstract discussion of the benefits of TDD is bound to seem hand-wavey; this book helps to ground the understanding in real coding, done step by step in front of the reader’s eyes.

Anyway, I've read some pretty good technical books this year, but this one was the best.


Joshua Smith said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Natural wig short hair wig, hairdresser said that lush hair extensions this hairstyle is the summer when the best of hair extensions sale a female hairstyle, and this hairstyle do not have to cheap hair extensions worry about being out of date, enough brutal while also let you wear after There is clip in hair extensions a supernatural feeling.

Cosvillage said...

I wanted to thank you for this excellent read. Thank you for taking time to know more about in this subject. CosVillage is a leading online cosplay costume store who deals in the hair wig products at the best prices. For more cosplay costume store online

master said...

I do ponder there unit most extra satisfying open doors antecedently for those who tried your knowledge getting ready framework.

hair wig
hair wig
hair wig

mary Brown said...

As I read the blog I felt a tug on the heartstrings. it exhibits how much effort has been put into this.
Final Year Project Domains for CSE

Spring Training in Chennai

Project Centers in Chennai for CSE

Spring Framework Corporate TRaining

Terri Meeks said...

Great write-up, I am a big believer in commenting on blogs to inform the blog writers know that they’ve added something worthwhile to the world wide web!.. wigs for women

Slc Nanny said...

Funded Trader was founded for one reason and one reason only. To FINANCIALLY EMPOWER Traders and help them to make an INCOME doing what they LOVE. The firm was established by Traders for Traders who understand that a lot of people spend tons of money on expensive Trading courses and perfecting their skills but unfortunately lack the funds to actually take their newly acquired skills and actually make a living from it and more information click here Mexadroid Forex Robot: Should Forex Traders Trust Megadroid?
and get quality results.

Anonymous said...

Great book showing how and why developing object-oriented software starting with tests can lead to cleaner and more maintainable code while minimising waste.

Highly recommended KRW Personal Injury Attorneys said...

A must read for any green or brownfield software developer. I had to buy a second copy because all my colleagues keep borrowing it.

expresswigbraids said...

Thanks for sharing the best information and suggestions, I love your content, and they are very nice and very useful to us. If you are looking for the best Braided Wigs, then visit EXPRESS WIG BRAIDS. I appreciate the work you have put into this.

Photo Tour said...

hello admin, do you know? very nice blog and I am following this blog every day. Your author is also very high quality indeed. very nice article. My web site, and I strive to provide quality service for your blog. Would you like to look at my web site admin?