Practical API Design

Posted by F 31/08/2008 at 18h14

I wrote about API design guidelines before, collecting links, resources, papers and hoping someone would write a book on the subject.

The wait is over! Jaroslav Toulash published a book on Practical API Design!

Take a look at the book’s accompanying website for more details.

I’m waiting for my copy.

On API Design Guidelines 7

Posted by F 19/11/2006 at 22h31

Update: Good news! Jaroslav Toulash emailed me that he published a book on Practical API Design !!!

Looks like Brian McAllister may be preparing a talk on Designing Elegant APIs.

I've been very interested in good API design for a long time. But I could never find a single book on the subject. Many design and programming books provide good advice and guidelines that are essential for designing good APIs, but none of them tackles the matter directly.

I reviewed "Interface Oriented Programming" a few months back with disappointment. It may not be a bad book, but I felt it was quite basic and superficial. May be my expectations were too high, and too focused on API design.

Over time, I collected some links on the subject and shared some with Brian:

So, let's hope Brian gives his talk at a big conference, signs a contract with a big publisher and fills the void.

My Job Went to India...

Posted by F 18/12/2005 at 12h02

If you work as a software developer for a living, I recommend you get a copy of “My Job Went to India”. Ignore the curious title and funny cover. It’s about planning your career and making yourself a more valuable developer.

I read it right after “The World is Flat” (by the way, a fascinating description of today’s globalized economics), and it was a good 1-2 punch.

Full of great advice. Stimulating and motivating little book. It helped me find the energy to go back to work after taking a week off :-).

The book is divided in 52 concrete pieces of advice. You’ll get ideas for improving your technical abilities, as well as business-related knowledge and inter-personal skills.

A couple of paragraphs I liked, from the Introduction:

For some not-insignificant percentage of IT workers, the safest bet is to start looking for an alternate line of work. […] If you don’t have passion and a drive that would force you to create software […] you’re not going to be able to continue to compete with those who do.

… Software is a business […] To stay employed, you’re going to have to understand how you fit into the business’s plan to make money.

And this one below made me laugh, from advice #6 “Be a specialist”:

“Too many of us seem to believe that specializing in something simply means not knowing about other things.”

I would have titled it something like “The Mature Pragmatic Programmer”, as it is a perfect second volume for “The Pragmatic Programmer” (What? you haven’t read it? Stop reading this stupid blog and go get TPP now!).

Errata for "Holub on Patterns"

Posted by F 15/10/2005 at 21h51

Months ago, I was looking for a book on Design Patterns. I already own the great classic GoF and a few more, but I was looking for a more practical, real-world exposition of the classic Patterns. I wanted a book I could recommend to new developers, so they could really learn how to apply the concepts.

I came across Holub On Patterns. I liked it, but I was disappointed with the editorial quality of the book.

I found a long list of errors. Some of them are minor, but still may confuse readers, specially those new to the topic.