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Programming Pearls (2nd Edition) Paperback – Sep 27 1999


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 2 edition (Sept. 27 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0201657880
  • ISBN-13: 978-0201657883
  • Product Dimensions: 23.1 x 15.7 x 1.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,412 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By William A. Huber on Nov. 30 2001
Format: Paperback
This book is timeless because it discusses recurring problem situations with elegance, clarity, and insight. The book is about thinking and problem-solving more than it is about the particular circumstances it discusses.
For instance, the very first chapter ("Cracking the Oyster") would seem to be about the problem of sorting on disk: surely an archaic concern in these days of 1+GB RAM and 100 GB online media on PCs. But that would entirely miss the point, which Bentley clearly summarizes for us in the "principles" section of this chapter:
* "Defining the problem was 90 percent of this battle..."
* Select an appropriate data structure
* Consider multiple-pass algorithms
* A simple design: "a designer knows he has arrived at perfection not when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no longer anything to take away." -- St. Exupery
This advice might look like a string of old, worn-out chestnuts as set forth above. But within the context of the specific problem, we can see how the design challenges and solutions follow each other, through several iterations, culminating in a pretty solution, nicely illustrating the principles, and suggesting their relevance to other problems, too.
A thoughtful programmer, no matter whether her domain is machine language or OODBMSes, will come away from any chapter in this book full of new ideas and inspiration.
Problems (good ones) after each section encourage the kind of rumination that is necessary to derive the most from this book. Every few years I take it (and its companion, "More Programming Perals") off the shelf and dip into it again, and always come away enlightened.
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Format: Paperback
I bought the 2nd edition of the book.
This book takes you to the Basics of Programming: Problem definition, Algorithm design , choosing the correct data structures, Assertions, Performance considerations during Design and coding, Code Tuning, Squeezing the space.
Though the examples are mainly based on searching and sorting and other primitive programming problems, the fundamental concepts and conclusions at the end of each column, are still valuable and hold true as they are 2 decades ago.
The examples and the exercises are challenging and enjoyable. But, don't expect things related to modern programming like related to High Level Programming languages or Databases, this is purely a Basics book focussing on techniques of solving the problems the simplest and the best way.
Some of the gem quotes or conclusions from the book are:
"Coding skill is just one small part of writing correct programs. The majority of the task is problem definition, algorithm design and data structure selection."
"Defining the problem is about ninety percent of the battle"
Characteristics of a good Aircraft(or a good program) - "Simple, few parts, easy to maintain, very strong"
"A designer knows he has arrived perfection not when there is no longer anything to add, but when there is no longer anything to takeaway."
"Good programmers sit back and wait for an insight rather than rushing forward with their first idea"
"A proper view of data does indeed structure programs. Before writing code good programmers thoroughly understand the input, the output and the intermediate data structures around"
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Format: Paperback
for programming to be effective it is to be divided into 3 stages.in the first stage a clear formulation of the problem and the expected perfomance is laid out.inthe 2nd stage a suitable programming language is selected.in the 3rd stage coding is done.bentley stresses the need for search for the context under which the problem can be solved.it requires a cultivated laziness to outline solution ,which is akin to having an insight.there are no sure fire formulae to get this quickly.
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By A Customer on Feb. 5 2002
Format: Paperback
Eu já havia lido os dois volumes da primeira edição, os quais considero de alto nível. A segunda versão está impecável. Tenho usado na preparação de aulas para cursos de graduação e recomendo a sua leitura a todos que se interessam por programação.
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Format: Paperback
this is a thinking man's book. Lots of puzzles to get you thinking about proper data structure design, choice of alrogithm, and optimization. I like how it doesn't 'dumb down' and explain every last detail. Bentley is also an entertaining writer. There are answers to select questions that appear at the end of each chapter.
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By A Customer on July 13 2001
Format: Paperback
One of a few books I'd suggest every programmer read. For two reasons:
o the technical material is well-chosen and well-explained o the writing style is worthy of emulation
Overall, it's worthy of your bookshelf's space.
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