This list was originally supposed to be published over a week ago, but life’s been busy. Sorry, folks! Happy St. Patrick’s Day!
- A succesful Git branching model considered harmful is a response to another article, A successful Git branching model. Both models can work; which one works better for you depends on a lot of factors that are likely to be unique to your development environment. (I’ve used both: I find the “cactus model” better, personally.)
- The Four Software Engineering Personality Types describes four personalities (surprise) in development environment: Iron Man, Michaelangelo (the sculptor, not the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle), Yoda, and Captain America.
- Iron Man is a tinkerer – get 90% of the project done, really quickly.
- Michaelangelo is the detail-oriented, deep-diving programmer – the one who spends years on a given project, working out every detail. Michaelangelos’ projects tend to be unusable until they’re done – then they’re mission-critical and awesome.
- Yoda is a teacher (or, if you like, a puppet with a hand up his… I mean, “a teacher.”) These are the guys who know tons of stuff, and show it to others, growing an organization and providing wisdom – and a great lever when they focus on doing specific tasks.
- Captain America is the workhorse, the one who’ll roll up his sleeves and do the unpleasant work. Like in the comics, Captain America and Iron Man go well together; Iron Man rockets through the stratosphere, flashy and quick, and Captain America cleans everything up and makes it work well.
- And now into our selection of excellent DZone content: Abstraction Considered Harmful..? has a bit to say about abstractions: they’re good, but sometimes they’re leaky (and therefore can be bad). But mostly they’re useful. From the article: “Abstraction, in and of itself, is not harmful. On the contrary, itâ€™s necessary for progress. Whatâ€™s harmful is relying on impenetrable barriers to protect our precious programmers from hard problems. After all, the 21st-century engineer understands that in order to play in the sand, we all need to be comfortable getting our feet a little wet from time to time.”
- In Anatomy of a Good Java Test, Sam Atkinson (who will show up again in this same collection of interesting links) walks through a simple recipe for good testing. It looks like it’s based around JUnit4 and Hamcrest – hardly awful choices, but also not necessarily the state of the art (or the only way to write good tests). Good baseline, though.
- In In Defense of the Fifth Year Developer, Matthew Casperson argues for some of the abstraction discussed earlier – the point’s not very clear, but complex code laden with abstractions is easier to test and verify, because it breaks problems down into identifiable units.
- And back to Sam Atkinson: In Constructor vs. Getter: A Better Way he discusses the use of no-operation classes to wrap optional behavior (thus:
NoOpNotifier, with methods that do nothing, instead of a
nullthat has to be checked). This simplifies the code path (a good thing), and also helps with that pesky abstraction thing. Good article.