Find the Bug
Author: Adam Barr
Publisher: Addison Wesley, 2004
Price: £26.99
Pages: 306
ISBN: 978-0321223913
Aimed at: Experienced programmers
Rating: 4
Pros: Could be seen as fun
Cons: There are too many bugs in the world to want to add to them on purpose.
Reviewed by: Harry Fairhead

This is a book that contains bugs in programs and your challenge is to find them. It aims to sensitise developers to the problems and indicate the sorts of approaches that can successfully solve them.

Author: Adam Barr
Publisher: Addison Wesley, 2004
Price: £26.99
Pages: 306
ISBN: 0321223918
Aimed at: Experienced programmers
Rating: 4
Pros: Could be seen as fun
Cons: There are too many bugs in the world to want to add to them on purpose.
Reviewed by: Harry Fairhead

This is a book that contains bugs in programs and your challenge is to find them. What can I say?

The world is full of enough bugs without needing tame caged examples for us to experiment on! Much of the early part of the book is fun to read and full of what should be obvious stuff to any practicing serious programmer – give variables sensible names, make sure functions do what they claim and don't have side effects, watch out for variable that have a restricted range. If some of this isn't familiar to you then it should be and you probably need to read this book. Even if it is familiar there is a warm glow to be gained from reading it again and shaking your head knowingly.

The latter part of the book is more radical. It consists of example programs in C, Java, Python, Perl, and 86x assembly language complete with bugs. Your task, should you choose to accept it, is to find the bugs. How useful this is depends on your approach to the whole programming problem. It's almost a matter of psychology. What is clear is that this book is too short and ephemeral to actually be successful in training you to be better at debugging. The best it can do is to sensitise you the nature of the problem and the sorts of approaches – logic, logic and more logic – that tend to be successful. In truth a good bug finder is either born or serves a much longer apprenticeship at the hands of a master than this book can offer. A good fun read that might reveal the truth to those ready to receive.

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C++ Programming in Easy Steps

Author: Mike McGrath
Publisher: In Easy Steps (4th Ed), 2011
Pages: 192
ISBN: 978-1840784329
Aimed at: Beginners wanting to learn C++
Rating: 3.5
Pros: Fast paced
Cons: Too short, tends to treat C++ like C
Reviewed by: Mike James

Getting started programming with C++ is probably more difficult than with any [ ... ]



Head First C# 3rd Edition

Author: Andrew Stellman and Jennifer Greene
Publisher: O'Reilly
Pages:960 
ISBN: 978-1449343507
Audience: Novice C# developers
Rating: 2
Reviewer: Mike James

A new edition but does it cover the new features in C# 5?


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