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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:
More Process Patterns
Author:
Scott Ambler
ISBN:
0 521 65262 6
Publisher:
SIGS books
Pages:
369pp
Price:
£24-95
Reviewer:
Roger N Lever
Subject:
patterns
Appeared in:
11-6
Having read some SIGS publications before I have mixed reactions to them in that I have found some to be superficial and dated, but this book impressed me.

For those working within large companies it is clear that development is much more than writing code especially where that is compounded with Regulation. This is where works like this book enter the equation as it details many process patterns associated with the latter end of the software development lifecycle (SDLC). The SDLC is broken down into four key phases:

  1. Initiate
  2. Construct
  3. Deliver
  4. Maintain and Support
The original book Process Patterns details 1) and 2) and this sequel focuses on 3) and 4).

One of the chords that struck home with me was the object oriented software process (OOSP) model and its combination of serial and iterative processes. This along with the wealth of information, tips and the anecdotes means I will certainly be reading this book again to get that additional understanding that comes from re-reading. The more process patterns covered here include: deliver, test-in-the- large, rework, release, assess, support, review, reuse, metrics... This is then rounded off with introducing OOSP into the organisation in recognition of the fact that the ideas may be good but getting them into practice is better - and harder. Inevitably this book covers much ground and other specific books will cover a specific subject in more detail, so at the end of each chapter is further recommended reading. My only minor criticism is that his own books are always in that list - but I guess that is no real surprise.

In summary, this book is clear, well structured and based on a wealth of experience captured in the Capability Maturity Model and from personal involvement with the SDLC for various projects. Developers should appreciate the insight into the OOSP and their contribution to it and how much else is also involved. Project managers and managers will also have much to learn from this book - in short, it belongs on your bookshelf.