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on 22 June 2017
very good and very true
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on 6 September 2010
Code blocks in the Kindle version of this book are rendered in a variable-width font, which detracts from their readability. Since the code samples are a very important part of the book, I can't award this a high rating if they are so difficult to read. Code should always be in a fixed-width font.

Also, the occurrence of grammar errors and odd typos is frequent enough to be distracting and irritating. At one point, "startlingly" is written "star-tlingly". Errors that stick out like a sore thumb indicate that this was not proof-read.
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on 24 April 2017
Must read book!
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on 21 January 2009
This book has a great summary chapter - Chapter 17. I read this first and decided to read the rest of the book even though there wasn't much I hadn't come across before.

The book really is very readable and covers a lot of ground, generally at intermediate developer level. Advanced developers won't come across anything new, however there is a lot of good advice in one place. This is generally clearly explained with some examples that hint at the level of simplicity that can be achieved in production code with a bit of extra time and a lot of extra effort.

The Law of Demeter is explained with the usual lack of clarity, but there is enough supporting material that I finally understood what it is really about - everything within a scope should be at the same level of abstraction. It was a bit of a revelation when the implications started to sink in.

The Formatting chapter has some interesting insights into the rationale of some of the formatting techniques that I developed naturally over more than 20 years of writing code.

The sub-title reads "A Handbook of Agile Software Craftsmanship". There is the odd nod in the Agile direction, but the text is much more about software craftsmanship than it is about agile, and none the worse for it.

I've already lent the book to one of my colleagues, and I hope to get it back before too long.

Unusually for a Prentice Hall publication the editing is not as good as it should be, and the cover is cheap - it had a distinctive curl after the first reading stint. This is a shame as it's a book that needs to be passed around.
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on 22 September 2011
I knew this was going to be an excellent book from the moment I heard Uncle Bod describing his ideas of Clean Code at his key note at an ACCU conference. I bought the book there and then, but didn't start reading it until a couple of years later. More recently I got it signed by Uncle Bob at Skillsmatter. After just a few pages it propelled itself into my top three books every programmer should read (behind Kent Beck's Test Driven Development and The Pragmatic Programmer by Andy Hunt & David Thomas) and at the end it's still there.

The chapter on comments is worth the price of the book alone. I have worked in places over the last few years, where comments have been encouraged to explain the code, rather than writing code that explains itself. Another great chapter is the one on functions and the advice to keep them small is especially good and compelling. As I look back over the table of contents now, every chapter that describes how to improve an aspect of code is an absolute mine of good advice.

The final few chapters contain a number of refactorings. One on an application from the ground up and the others on existing code written by other people. This is the only place where the book got gratuitous and I must admit I skipped most of the final refactoring.

The final chapter is a summary of the advice given in the rest of the book and something I will find myself referring to again and again.

If you've read Test Driven Development and The Pragmatic Programmer, make sure you read Clean Code next.
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on 26 October 2012
If you're new to software then I guess there is SOME good advice here but I found some astonishingly wrong statements in here like 'methods should do just one thing' with an example showing a method doing.... TWO.... things! Or using constants unless the 'magic number' is so obvious that a constant isn't needed. Here is a direct quote: 'And in the FEET_PER_MILE case, the number 5280 is so very well know and so unique a constant that readers would recognize it even if it stood alone on a page with no context surrounding it.' No, I didn't know that either (we live in the 21st century in Europe) but this guy can't see that a physicist might immediately recognise Plank's constant while the system admin guy fixing CERN's outage at 3am on Christmas morning is less likely to be familiar with this. He's got helpful advice like 'variables should be well named' (as if other books say they should be as badly named as possible). Its page after page of waffle, opinion, inaccuracies, contradictions and basically not worth the money. Buy Martin Fowler's Refactoring book instead - the advice is more concise and focused on the really critical areas of code and actually serves real world examples with solutions.

I'll give it 3 stars for the newbie programmers (no more) and 1 star for experienced programmers who want to improve their skills.
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on 1 April 2014
Experienced coders will recognise lots of good and sensible advice in this book, unfortunately, despite being a book that emphasises readability and attention to detail, poor editing and proof reading often result in statements that are misleading, incomplete or simply incorrect. This should not a problem to experienced readers who will know what was meant, but it is enough to leave the people who should benefit from this book struggling.

Not so obvious is that this is a collection of essays from different authors so can sometimes be incoherent or contradictory.

Deeply disapointing is the chapter and appendices on Concurency. The author states that this is hard and then goes out of their way to prove it, providing very little in the way of positive advice or guidelines.
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on 30 November 2008
Clean Code is a valuable book for any programmer's bookshelf. Although a lot of the information can be found in other books on software development, particularly those covering "agile" techniques, the text brings everything into one place with a very readable and enjoyable style. I could've done with this about fifteen years ago, rather than learning many of the lessons the hard way over the years.

The book does have some minor issues though. As mentioned by a previous reviewer, it uses Java exclusively for the examples and assumes you are an experienced Java developer. Some of the examples can be heavy going for those unfamiliar with the language.

The book could also do with a bit more proof-reading. Ignoring a copyright of 2009, the words "it's" and "its" seem to have been swapped throughout the book, "an" replaces "and" in a handful of sentences, and there are even some words in the text that are completely wrong. A bit of shame considering.

Don't let the Java or proof-reading put you off though.
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on 20 March 2009
It is the most up to date and succinct piece of writing regarding the construction of good software from the ground up as well as tackling legacy code. It's jam packed full of gems and practical advice that you can apply immediately. There is no fluff and no waffling, the examples are awesome (all in Java although I code in C#) and apply to "real world" problems that we face every day. There is no way you'll put this book down after reading it and just forget about the lessons like so many other books.
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on 21 January 2011
This book is quite simple:

You read it.

You start to think differently about your code.

You start to write better code.

By the time you finish this book, you will be a better developer. The examples are in Java, but you can translate the concept easily into any modern language. I am starting to apply this way of thinking to C#, PHP and JavaScript and the concepts work.
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