Book Review: 97 Things Every Programmer Should Know by Kevlin Henney
“Get 97 short and extremely useful tips from some of the most experienced and respected practitioners in the industry, including Uncle Bob Martin, Scott Meyers, Dan North, Linda Rising, Udi Dahan, Neal Ford, and many more. They encourage you to stretch yourself by learning new languages, looking at problems in new ways, following specific practices, taking responsibility for your work, and becoming as good at the entire craft of programming as you possibly can.”
Note: I read the ePub on my nook.
There is a ton of good information in this book, from general “learn how to talk to the people you work with”, to hints at common programming issues, to deeper more complex topics like “yes you can store larger numbers in this data type, but it won’t be as accurate”.
Some of the topics were things I’ve never even though of, likely because I’ve never actually programmed professionally, I just went to school to do so.Sometimes you’ll read a chapter with someone pointing out why something doesn’t work, then next chapter will be someone saying why it does.
I liked how similar topics were near each other instead of having chapters mostly about Testing being scattered through-out the book. I also liked that the Chapters were short.
I probably would have put the author bios under their names in the first chapter in which they appear, instead of leaving readers wondering “who the hell is this person and why do I care what they have to say?” unless you flip to the back of the book to read their bio.
Some things I took away from this book:
- You can learn more about languages you already know by learning new ones–they might have you doing something differently that you can apply to other language in ways you wouldn’t've previously come up with yourself. Basically, you can become a stronger programmer overall.
- There is no One Right Way to do something. Obviously I knew this, but as I said above, one author will give you reasons to do something a certain way, and the next will give you reasons not to do it that way.