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The ACCU passes on review copies of computer books to its members for them to review. The result is a large, high quality collection of book reviews by programmers, for programmers. Currently there are 1918 reviews in the database and more every month.
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Title:
Object Modelling and User Interface Design
Author:
Mark van Harmelen (ed)
ISBN:
0 201 65789 9
Publisher:
Addison-Wesley
Pages:
452pp
Price:
£34-99
Reviewer:
Paul S Usowicz
Subject:
design
Appeared in:
14-4
When I received this book I was very excited as I have a keen interest in both UML and user-interface design, having spent many years designing GUIs for industrial machinery using C++ and UML. My excitement soon turned to disappointment when I realised that this book was not what I had been hoping for. I was hoping for a nice structured walkthrough of developing user interfaces with UML. What I was presented with instead were 10 chapters by different authors with varying amounts of theory and examples.

I found the book very difficult to read and did not actually finish several of the chapters because they were either extremely hard going or a thinly disguised advert for a particular product. If I buy a book to learn how to use UML for a specific task I do not expect to then have to buy a specific application when I already have numerous UML editors.

The latter chapters in the book (especially chapter 9 - Toward Unified Models in User-Centred and Object-Oriented Design) were much better with quite a few nuggets of information gleaned.

The book is definitely written for someone after academic, as apposed to hands-on, information. Users, or potential users, of particular products (Idiom, OVID) may find it more interesting than most with various product comparisons scattered throughout.

Would I buy the book? No. I was expecting tools that I could use on a day-to-day basis but instead received some well written but, for me, mostly irrelevant information. Please bear this in mind if thinking of purchasing the book, especially if you are after a more academic read.