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on 21 June 2001
If anyone out there is managing an IT project and hasn't read this book stop now and go and buy and read this book. You will save yourself far more time than it will take you to read it.
This must be the only IT book I have read form cover to cover. I got through the whole book in a couple of days it gripped me like an novel. The book is just packed with practical advice on how to run a project. But its not just hints and tips but a whole approach - a survival mindset to get you through the project. If everyone followed the advice in this book very few IT projects would fail.
Want one example? Binary Milestones i.e. something is either done or it isn't none of this 'we are 90% done' any one who has worked on a real software project knows these sort statistics are meaningless.
Stop reading this and go and buy the book - by IT standards it is cheap and the best value for money you will ever get out of an IT book!
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on 22 January 1998
McConnell's released books on good construction practises, and good development practices. Now he finishes the circle with a book on good management practices. McConnell has a very good way of integrating the thoughts of many prominent industry gurus into a readible comprehensive format. His talent is to recognize the best ways that improve people as software workers. The thoughts and techniques from his previous work, Rapid Development, were excellent, and it is "the Software Project Survival Guide" that puts those techniques into concrete perspective. He concentrates on only a few of his published techniques, those that are most tried and true, but also provides a framework well suited to young and upcoming technical students hoping to become managers. (Like myself 8-D) A great companion to this book is Tom Demarco's "The Deadline", as it adds the human-element of managing projects that sometimes seems missing from McConnell's book. This is not to the detriment of McConnell's work, it is just that his approach is different. McConnell's books are readible, interesting, and are the _best_ comprehensive books on improving yourself as a software worker. He's the guru of the 90's.
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on 9 November 1997
Practical, insightful, and most important, readable. Should be required reading for anyone involved in the development of software. Not what I would say about most books taking on the subject of Software Project Management, but then, this is no ordinary book. I will recommend this to all of my clients, developers, QA personnel, and especially, project managers. Exactly what this industry needs, a concise guide to the best practices in software development.
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on 11 September 2000
I've always regarded people who can read these types of books as a bit sad! I borrowed a copy from my company library on Friday and managed to read it, cover to cover, during the weekend - despite interruptions from my five year old! It held my attention as well as any of my favourite authors of fiction! The contents is practical, clear and instructive - I went back to work on Monday with a several pages of A4 full of useful processes and ideas all of which I have since successfully put into practice. I think the most important lesson I have learnt is that it is possible, when handed a seemingly impossible implementation, to "manage" the impossible into something possible! If you follow my meaning! Thank you Steve!
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on 24 July 2000
Read this, if no other software books. This was the first software/technical book that actually held my interest until the end. Excellent resources provided in the book to help you implement some of ideas/methodologies discussed. Well written, easy reading language-style. Buy a copy of this book for all Developers and Managers in your Company and help make the job of Software QA Managers much easier, not to mention actually making a profit out of your Software...PKR
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on 8 September 2000
Software Project Survival Guide is an excellent reading for beginners and experienced project stake holders. This book has a lot of easy to understand and well motivated practical advice on project management. On less than 300 pages of text the author manages to compress most views on project management. The book is very easy to read and I agree that it should be in every project stake holders bookshelf, and I am sure that many of them would read it.
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on 16 December 1998
I ordered this book for my entire team of Software Developers. This book is not just a book on life-cycles and Software Engineering, it is also a guide and a recipe for building quality software. Every software development shop, esp. those engaged in distributed computing, i.e. Windows and client/server model, should own this book. It covers everything from planning to the post review of successful projects. Each chapter is clear, consise and to the point; and the summary lists a checklist of what works and what "bombs". The Author makes references to other computer scientist's work which builds credibility, i.e. Parnas, Booch, Brooks, etc., all who contribute to the problem of building quality software and how to create the best software team, i.e. highly skilled small teams. This book is proof that a Master's degree in Computer Science was worth it for me. This is not a book you want to expense, you'll want to take it with you when you move on!
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on 19 May 1998
I was disappointed in this book - perhaps it was a problem with expectations. McConnell's previous books - Code Complete and Rapid Development -were very well written and provided valuable insights into best practices in the computer industry. By attempting to do the same thing here, the author missed the mark. The Software Project Survival Guide presents a road map marked with good practice applied in a mature organization that understands the nature of software and responds rationally, providing the resources and time required to do the job right. The overwhelming majority of people who are taking on their first project management job will have few, if any, of the benefits that this book takes for granted.
Don't get me wrong. This is a great collection of really good ideas and it's really well written, but it doesn't give much guidance to the first-time project manager who needs to deal with misdirection and misunderstanding from those who he or she reports to. The book presents a fine set of suggestions on "Techniques for Really Good Project Management," but there isn't much on "Survival."
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on 18 February 1998
SPSG provides excellent guidance and a host of project tracking and documentation ideas that are sure to aid any type of development project. As a first-time project manager, I am part of the target audience the book was geared to (How to be sure your first important project isn't your last), and I was searching for some sort of guidance. My team has implemented and adapted many of the suggestions, and we are developing tight process controls as a result of the input from this book. The only thing that I wish for the book is that the valuable resources on the SPSG web site were also included on CD with the text. The companion site provides a wealth of ideas that have helped us to mold our project and set standards within both our company and our clients' organization. Every project manager should be required to read the SPSG.
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on 26 October 2004
Even though the focus is on the staged delivery method, anyone taking part or managing a project can benefit from reading this book, it's easy to read and is full of practical advices.
It really makes you think about how you manage your project.
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