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on October 9, 2001
I was very pleased to see this book come out as I am a huge fan of Meyers' Effective C++ and More Effective C++. Both of those books offer many concrete suggestions on how to improve your C++ coding and do things you didn't think you could do. Effective STL, on the other hand, offers mainly suggestions of what not to do. You'll find most of the items tell you that you should not use a specific technique because it is not portable, not a clean design, or simply because it will not work.
All of this is good to know, but I didn't find it as useful as his other two Effective books. Other than the use of the built in looping functions like for_each the book didn't really provide me with many new "tricks" for my "bag."
However, all the information in the book is useful, and the intermediate level STL programmer will probably learn a lot of ways to avoid problems by reading this book. Hopefully there will be a second edition in the future that will give the book a little more utility.
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on August 17, 2001
I continue to be amazed at how well Scott Meyers' formula works: Pick a topic, set out to write exacttly 50 tips about it, and do it! The secret why this author is so successful with his formula (and never comes across as formulaic) is that he is both deeply knowledgeable about what works in the areas he writes about and has excellent intuition or experience about the areas in which other programmers working in the field are most likely to stumble.
This book is not a user's guide to the STL (And I won't hesitate to, once again, recommend Nicolai Josuttis' _The C++ Standard Library_ for that), but you will find this an excellent use of your time and money as a second book on the STL.
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on February 17, 2002
As with the earler EFFECTIVE C++ books, this book was pleasant to read and informative. It gave a lot of good tips that were not obvious from reading THE C++ PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE. It was well worth the time and money to read this.
I did not agree with everything in this book. The advice to avoid constant iterators seemed very shortsighted. The same arguments Mr. Meyers give could be applied to any const type, and basically amount to giving up type safety. Also, for some of the recommended optimizations, I would have liked more emperical evidence (timings) to go along with the theoretical arguments. However the useful information far outweighs these minor shortcomings.
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on November 24, 2006
I really enjoyed to read this book as it contains very good tips. The only detail that annoys me a little bit is the amount of cross references between the items. The author first 2 books were a little bit like that but it seems to me that this one is too much. I would have prefered to have items more self contained. If you want to refer to a particular item, this one will refer to 2 other items that will refer to some more items and so on to the point where if you would like to close the open loop, you would need to consult all the items.

Except for this small annoyance, this book is very good. You should read it or have it.
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on January 7, 2002
Scott Meyers shows off in this book what he has shown in his previous works on the C++ core language: command of subject matter and a breezy fun-to-read style. Anyone who can get me to laugh out loud at the humor in a book on this topic deserves to be read and re-read!
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