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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:
Developing Business Objects
Author:
Andy Carmichael
ISBN:
0 521 64825 4
Publisher:
SIGS books
Pages:
315pp
Price:
£24-95
Reviewer:
Roger N Lever
Subject:
object oriented
Appeared in:
11-2
The title suggests that it deals with the issues surrounding the development of business objects and its subtitle: lessons learned from applying and succeeding with object technology, re-enforces that. If you bought the book on the strength of its cover and you never should - read the ACCU review first, you would be disappointed.

Why disappointed? SIGS has the ability to call on a distinguished list of writers and regular columnists, for its publications and the material for this book is drawn from the Object Magazine. That is not the reason, the material is clear and well written, the concepts are well explained and typically references are quoted for further investigation. Is the logical thread of the material from diverse authors lost? No, the material proceeds, as one would expect from an introduction, through analysis and design to the development process. So why the disappointment?

The disappointment comes from two factors - lack of currency of some of the material and the lack of anecdotal evidence of 'lessons learned'. Although this book was published in 1998 much of the material seems to be drawn from 1995-1997 with, for example, one author commenting about Microsoft's OLE technology rather than COM, DCOM or even COM+. The majority of the material was contributed by consultancies and there was very little if any focus on lessons learned. So, given that, were there any redeeming factors? Yes, the material provides a useful culling of material from a SIGS publication over the years around a specific theme. Some of the principles and good practices described transcend time and are still applicable years later. So would I recommend the book? For developers definitely not because there is so little technical detail. For analysts who want to apply object technology the answer is no as there is simply not enough detailed coverage of any particular area. For project managers there is some value in its description of key techniques and understanding where others have applied the technology. For managers who want an overview of this 'Business Object' that IT keep talking about there is some value if those people aren't lost in the detail. Overall, one to avoid.