Customer Review

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Excellent information aggressively presented, 22 Oct 2005
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This review is from: The Inmates are Running the Asylum: Why High-tech Products Drive Us Crazy and How to Restore the Sanity (Paperback)
This book provides a wealth of knowledge if you can stick with it through the generalisations and attacks on the group of people who need this book the most.
Something Mr Cooper talks about is people not knowing their customers, but falls into this trap himself. While the book may have been written with managers and project leaders in mind, many developers will read it as a means of improving themselves.
With this in mind, writing a book that often hints at poor interface design being a deliberate attack on users, and in some places implies that software is hard to use because programmers are getting back at people because they were picked on in high school might be a little silly. This kind of hyperbole is not helpful in getting the message across, and will not help business people further understand their staff.
Helping business people understand that different people have different skills and getting the right person for the job will deliver better results than forcing someone to do a job they are not suited for would have been a better result. As it is, I can see how some PHBs would come away from this book believing that they produce bad software because their developers hate them, rather than because they have poor processes and do not invest enough time and money in the right places.
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Location: London, England

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