Favourite Software Bloggers

I have a few favourites when it comes to software blogging.

Joel On Software
I have been reading Joel Spolsky’s comments on the world of software for quite some time now. Sure he can be a trifle Windows-centric at times but he isn’t a Windows myopic.

He has a set of articles that he writes as a complement to his blog entries. He writes good stuff most of the time and does not feel the need to fill his days with blogging. The result is that the signal to noise ratio is high.

He certainly is opinionated. He is not a fan of Agile (with a capital ‘A’). He is often characterised as being a fan of BUFD (big up front design). To some degree this is fair. However, what he believes in is planning your work. From what I see in his writings he believes the agilists to be kidding themselves when they only do what they need to do now when they know more is coming along later. Joel would say he plans as much of it as he can up front and if that is BUFD so be it.

Rands In Repose
Rands spends most of his time writing about the nature of the development environment. What is takes to work in one, what is important.

He has a big range of articles, of which the most famous is “What To Do When You’re Screwed“. Rands also struggles with Nerd Attention Deficiency Disorder and has written about it on a number of occasions.

He is excellent on the issues facing the manager of a development effort. Way too well informed of the pitfalls and that is clearly from hard won experience.

Hacknot
This blog is interesting for its diversity. The author writes on a number of issues of which the most recent is on contracting. Past articles have covered gravy train development, mistakes in technical leadership and the merits of meeting driven development.

The author has an ironic style that I find enjoyable. Your may feel differently.

Coding Horror
Jeff Atwood’s blog covers a number of different topics but he has two main threads.One thread focuses on hardware and performance whilst the other concerns itself with the practice of development.

Recent articles have touched the following topics:

His article on whether Joel had Jumped The Shark was particularly enjoyable

Martin Fowler’s Bliki
Martin has a very simple format that I like. As I am sure you are aware he is a prolific writer with a large number of books to his credit. I had heard a lot about him over the years before I started reading his bliki or before I purchased one of his books. His book on refactoring is excellent and confirmed the feeling I had had for many years that reworking code to make it more understandable as your worked was the right thing to do. The refactoring tools inside IDEA neatly implement many of the refactorings that he describes.

His blog covers a number of issues but tend to concentrate on patterns and his thoughts on software development in general.

All very good stuff.

But he is a card-carrying Agilist so watch out for the evangelism.
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