Code complete electronic version ?

Jeremy Dillworth jwdillworth at
Wed Sep 3 14:52:21 CEST 2003

I had it, but got rid of it (gave to co-worker).

After reading the _The Pragmatic Programmer_, the 
"software development as construction" metaphor seemed
slightly broken IMHO and I couldn't get excited about 
reading it.

The authors of the latter explain software development like 
gardening, there being an element of unpredictability 
or at least hard-to-predictability.

I think this explains software development nicely.  
Sometimes what you planted doesn't grow like you expected.
Sometimes some weeding is necessary.  It's an ongoing thing,
more so than construction where once a building is built, 
it's built, maybe needing the occasional paint job or a new 
roof but those chores don't seem to make good software 
development metaphors.

Construction is also highly predictable.  If you throw N 
workers at building of X size the job will be done in Z
weeks.  Expecting such predictability from software 
development will lead to disappointment, tension, and 
possibly job loss.

Anyway, I highly recommend _The Pragmatic Programmer_.
Some bits of _Code Complete_ are also good, the "don't
flip the bozo bit" (IIRC) section contains some good 
advice.  And it does encourage one to take pride in 
their coding.

--- post400 <post400 at> wrote:
> Hi,
> apparently there is a very famous book that every developer should
> read: Code complete by Steve McConnell !
> Is there an electronic version freely downloadable ? After all, the
> book was released in 1993 , it should have been public domain by now !
> It would be nice to have a try before ! 50€ is not exactly cheap !
> What do you think ? Is it worth the money or not ?
> Thanks !
> post400
> -- 

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