The Mythical Man-Month

Yesterday I finished reading the classic project management book The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering by Frederick P. Brooks. Well… this book made me think a lot about nature of software projects, how primitive is our understanding about them and why managing such projects is usually hard fighting with a lot of different issues. The book has also interesting content from the past that is really interesting reading. To understand where you are you should know where you come from.

Should you read this book? Yes, sure! I bet you get hot topics to think about for a week or two. :)

Amazon editorial review

The classic book on the human elements of software engineering. Software tools and development environments may have changed in the 21 years since the first edition of this book, but the peculiarly nonlinear economies of scale in collaborative work and the nature of individuals and groups has not changed an epsilon. If you write code or depend upon those who do, get this book as soon as possible — from Amazon.com Books, your library, or anyone else. You (and/or your colleagues) will be forever grateful. Very Highest Recommendation.

Table of contents

  1. The Tar Pit.
  2. The Mythical Man-Month.
  3. The Surgical Team.
  4. Aristocracy, Democracy, and System Design.
  5. The Second-System Effect.
  6. Passing the Word.
  7. Why Did the Tower of Babel Fail?
  8. Calling the Shot.
  9. Ten Pounds in a Five-Pound Sack.
  10. The Documentary Hypothesis.
  11. Plan to Throw One Away.
  12. Sharp Tools.
  13. The Whole and the Parts.
  14. Hatching a Catastrophe.
  15. The Other Face.
  16. No Silver Bullet — Essence and Accident.
  17. "No Silver Bullet" ReFired.
  18. Propositions of The Mythical Man-Month: True or False?
  19. The Mythical Man-Month After 20 Years.
    Notes and references.
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