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Code Complete [Paperback]

Steve McConnell
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (143 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Jan. 1 1993 Microsoft Programming
Here is a thorough expert look at the intricate process of commercial software development. The text is rich in example code, contains powerful insights on managing technical yet creative people, and examines each milestone in software development in considerable detail. Ideal for professional, self-taught, and student programmers.

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Believed by many of our customers to be the best practical guide to writing commercial software, and Highly Recommended.

From the Publisher

'We were impressed by Code Complete...a pleasure to read, either straight through or as a reference. An invaluable $35 reference.' — PC Week. This runaway bestseller is a practical guide to software design that discusses the art and science of constructing software. Examples are provided in C, Pascal, Basic, Fortran, and Ada, but the focus is on successful programming techniques.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars What You Don't Know. Practice makes perfect. Oct. 15 2013
Ever since I first started to code Basic on an old Sinclair Z80 computer back in the 80's, I've learned a great deal since those days. The structure of code is not difficult to learn, but there are rules. Every computer language has the same reserved keywords words, like FOR, IF, ELSE, GOTO, and DO. The only real difference is structure of the language with it's own syntax. Steve teaches these principles very well, and if you note each example whether it's in Pascal or C, then you should look for signs for what your doing wrong. Steve explains how and why you should code this way. Debugging a logic error in code is very difficult, and overlooked 99% of the time, which may explain that every program in the world every written has bugs.

Steve's approach to common mistakes programming is the best ever written on the subject. Fortunately like most things it comes with a price. Your going have to learn to change your way how you think about how code is created and written. If it doesn't seem logical at first, then your on the right track. If these ">" "<" "<>" confuse you, then your not alone. I've spent hours trying decipher a stupid simple mistake. It makes the world of difference once you understand these principles. Make the first step writing better code by reading Steve's Book "Code Complete".
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic & Essential Book for a Programmer March 7 2004
If you are a programmer, get this book ASAP! This will make you a better programmer and give you guidence for continual improvement. This is a great book!
The only bad thing about this book is that it is a little outdated (goes up to C language; does not mention C++ or Java), but I think Code Complete 2 is coming out soon (June 2004).
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4.0 out of 5 stars Recommendation Feb. 24 2004
I am not jet finished reading this book, so maybe later I shall have some additional comments. The book is very old (copyright 1993), but it is valuable asset for professional programmer.
This book is the best example of the rule "the more you know the better is your benefit of reading a book". For example, although book does not deal with object oriented programming (as far as I read till now), even if you are professinal programmer who is in object programming you will get something that you very probably missed - a lot of important and fine details that will help you be a better programmer in object world. It is very hard to explain the profit you get with this book, but it is: you get your knowledge of coding polished to the maximum.
To return to the example of OOP (object oriented programming) this book will tell you about the cohesion of your methods (the book calls them traditional names, routines) and sorts of coupling; everything is the pure ground for OOP but from the perspective of traditional programming; even in OOP books you cannot find easily such explanations, and that done in traditional programming.
If you are a beginner, this book will show you how to name the routines and variables, will show you that statistically short routines of say 20 lines are more prone to errors per line of code than routines of 100 lines! Anyway, I do not want to spoil the pleasure of reading the book: don't expect too much from it, but if you are a brilliant programmer who appreciate precision and polishing of your knowledge, you will be on a right track if you choose this book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite book on general programming advice Jan. 13 2004
By ws__
This is a true must have. This is a true must read. It is already quite old but still fresh and up to date to our everyday problems.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Solid book Jan. 7 2004
As the other reviewers have overwhelmingly suggested, this is a solid book. It dives into sufficient detail, but doesn't bog the reader down with useless technicalities. This book is readable and well organized, making it a great reference or learning manual, which are two entities that very rarely exist together. It provides examples to illustrate the respective topics and includes an exhaustive bibliography for those who crave something extra.
This book is a good buy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars What Can I Add? Dec 24 2003
By Mark Nenadov TOP 1000 REVIEWER
There have already been over 130 reviews on this book, what can I add?
All I can do is repeat the good reviews that have already been made. This book is wonderful! It is one of the few books that I would say are essential read for anyone who calls themself a programmer! (It would be nice if some managers would take the time to read it also)
This book is old, but yet it is not out of date! The advise it gives is timeless. Oh how much better the worlds codebases would be if more programmers were to read this book! Good job Mr. McConnell.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Start from here Dec 22 2003
Every serious programmer, or at least the one who wants to become one should read this book.
Book is supported with structured programming examples (Ada,C,Pascal), but the underlying principles that it is trying to present are as contemoporary as always.
I started my career as a programmer. As a novice I got to work on some (other people's) pretty crappy code that kept me up very long at night, and costed me a great deal of stress. Learning from that frustrating experience I asked myself - what is a good programming, and what would it take to learn how to be a great programmer/developer.
I discovered Steve McConnel's book, and it helped me a lot in getting there. It remained one of the milestones of my career.
This book will teach you a lot. It will show you a bad way to code, and the good way to do it. It will give you a great coding tips, and it will show you some, as the author calls them, "coding horrors". Moreover, it will tell you some great 80/20 rules that should help you with debugging, testing and refactoring focus.
It will definitely change you as a programmer - a lot. Do I need to say again that every serious programmer should read this book.
The only thing that I could wish for would be a reflection on
Object-Oriented programming and its good vs. bad practices.
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