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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on 29 January 2002
An interesting read on the techniques that Kent Beck has found to work best when developing software. I personally wouldn't see myself adopting XP to the letter. But it does put a perspective on things and makes you doubt the way you do certain things when writing software. Developers need to be reminded that their way is not necessarily the best way and this book provides very useful ideas on how to improve your game. Most of the ideas are appealing because they clearly would make life easier in the long term, but the downside being they require significant change or investment in the short term. This book has definitely inspired me to rethink my way of working. Now all I need to do is implement those ideas...
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 28 June 2000
This book offers simple, crystal clear guidance on how to make small teams develop software faster with higher quality. I think ultimately the system can offer programmers an environment in which they can have a lot more fun doing their work. Following the system will, I am sure lead to participants feelling better about their work and give golden opportunities to develop new skills faster through pair programming with more experienced engineers.
I think the pair programming concept is the biggest challenge to established ideas - but it really works - I have tried it many times.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 3 August 2000
This book is the essential first primer for anyone wondering what XP is, whether evaluating it for their own project or having joined an XP team. An accessible short read that will have you looking at non-XP projects in a different light. XP and all its rules are hard to take on board particularly the more radical rules like pair programming, the planning game, and collective ownership. I haven't met anyone who has personal experience of 100% XP though everyone appears to be doing something thats "a bit like" XP, read this and see if your team really is XP then go and make it XP.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 3 March 2001
The semi-formal introduction to managing uncertainty through an analogy with Options and their pricing was very insightful and revealing. Though brief, that section alone cogently makes the case for replacing speculative software feature building time with early product releases and customer feedback. This feedback then drives directed feature building instead. A book with many good ideas aimed at the software development manager or lead techie.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 7 March 2001
I found this a really easy book to read. Written in a style that could be rapidly understood. My only real mis-giving is that the process described just seems to be too easy. I'd like to see it work in real life before I bet my company's hard earned money on it.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 5 November 1999
Not only describes XP very well, but also explains why it works. It is full of practical and useful insights (even more so than 'The Mythical Man Month') - it's obviously the result of real experience rather than being theoretical. It deserves to become a sw development classic.
It's easy to read - much more so than the XP wiki sites - which by their nature are rather 'bitty'. Although the wiki sites contain more detailed discussions about the practices, the book explains why the practices work together.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 27 November 1999
An excellent book. Distilled programming wisdom. Provides a micro-process for software development. An excellent recipe for small hyper productive development teams.
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29 of 36 people found the following review helpful
on 20 December 2001
Beck gives some very interesting arguments, and I would recommened this book to developers and managers just to hear him out and read about some interesting ideas.
Ultimately I feel XP is a great idea but just not workable in the real world. Beck himself acknowledges that a lot of projects just won't be able to use XP (e.g. fixed price, more than 10 staff on the team, projects using legacy systems and many more). I don't know about the other readers, but I have worked on many projects and none of them fit Beck's profile for an XP project.
If you find youself in the fortunate position of working on a green field project with a small and experienced team and an 'educated' customer this may work. I'd recommend Fowler's Refactoring if you want to deal with changing requirements, and any book by Steve McConnell for good advice on working on development projects. Beck is well worth reading, he knows his stuff, but I can't say this book is a 'must have'.
The bibliography is fascinating though, it certainly makes a change from the usual collection of learned by rather dry engineering texts!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 18 May 2000
This book is definitely worth the money. No question. You may not agree with everything in XP, but you will certainly be thinking again about your methodologies.
If nothing else, it challenges the sometimes set-in-stone principles of Software Engineering. I read it 3/4 of the way through my CS course, and I'm glad I did. I now look a little more askance at some lecture notes than I previously did.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 30 September 2003
Really an interesting book. It talks about EXtreme Programming keeping it clear and understandable. I'm writing my degree thesys about Extreme Programming and this book is really helping me. The reader is taken by hand by the author and walk together in discovering problems and resources of traditional programming design practises. Then together walks to a new and fresh methodology. Read it!
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