Book Review: Apprenticeship Patterns

Here is a book which sounds different from its title: “Apprenticeship Patterns” but considering the complete title: “Guidance for the Aspiring Software Craftsman” would make some sense of what the book would be about. And then once you read the back cover of the book then I think its becomes much clearer of what you can expect in the book. So this is how I went about buying the book – I had never heard of this book before, found it in the bookstore and purchased it in no time. I did search for almost all the Computer related books on Flipkart, but didn’t find this. So someone who would want to purchase this book can go here. Ok, but I need to convince you to buy the book, so here is my attempt to do so:

I would say this book very closely resembles to Passionate Programmer by Chad Fowler – resembles to some extent the content covered, Apprenticeship Patterns is to some extent can be said as a subset of the information. It also resembles in the way each chapter is structured, but Apprenticeship Patterns is a bit more structured in the sense it starts with the context, then explains the problem, then the solution and finally action items on the reader’s part, and also lists the related patterns which can be referred. So those were few of the similarities.

Clearly Apprenticeship Patterns is for people starting out their software software development careers or for people who have been in the field for some time say 1-2 years. But as authors- Dave H. Hoover and Adewale Oshineye claim this is book is not really useful for more experienced developers. Passionate Programmer is aimed at general programmers and not really focused on entry-level programmers, but I found it useful as well. And in the former the chapters are presented as patterns.

Some of the good points of the book:

  • the title clearly states that it aims at beginners to adopt and expertise the craft of software development from masters.
  • lists the actions/activities one has to undertake to learn the art of software development
  • quotes from different books and real life examples.
  • more of a collective opinion in addition to authors opinion.
  • the chapters/content has evolved as a cumulative effort by the authors and other readers (this justifies the point above).
  • provides links to additional reading material related to each topic being discussed.
  • the most important- 130 odd pages of content only. So its not a huge book to read and understand hundreds of pages.

I dont know if this is a valid con of the book: The font is a bit smaller, so might be a bit stressful for the reader. But this isn’t much of a concern.

I would say a must read* for all the beginners in software development. So you got to head out to Amazon or Flipkart to buy this immediately.

*must read: provided you have the dedication and interest to follow the patterns in the book

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