Eric Bechner’s I. M Wright’s “Hard Code:” A Decade of Hard Learned Lessons from Microsft is one of the three books that I read over my vacation. In the interest of full discloser this review is written for O’Reilly’s Blogger Review program and this is a only a striaght review of the text; I will be looking at some of the ideas in the book in greater detail in later posts.
Overall the book is great and is applicable to pretty much any software developer of any level and I especially feel that the book should be read by students who are interested in working in a large software development firm or the IT department of a large corporation.
However, readers of the text should approach it with the understanding that they are not reading this text to learn how to develop software, but rather to learn how to navigate in the software development industry; i.e. you will not read anything about the intricasies of .NET, C#, or C++ in this book, but you will learn how to effectively interface with managers and co-workers.
There are parts of the book of course that are very particular to Microsoft, but these sections are few and far between and still provide an interesting read and many of the lessons from the Redmond specific chapters can be applied to many other large organizations. This is a must read for anyone interested in advancing their software development career in a corporate environment or if you are just interested in seeing how software development works in large companies.