Art of UNIX Programming, The (Addison-Wesley Professional Computing Series) (英語) ペーパーバック – 2003/9/17
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This text reveals the software design secrets of the original Unix designers, showing how they produce software that is fast, portable, reuseable, modular and long-lived. Luminaries including Brian Kernighan, David Korn and Henry Spencer contribute to the book.
ERIC S. RAYMOND has been a Unix developer since 1982. Known as the resident anthropologist and roving ambassador of the open-source community, he wrote the movement's manifesto in The Cathedral and the Bazaar and is the editor of The New Hacker's Dictionary.
One or the other of you may object his casual style, however, it doesn't change a bit of the substance.
His criticism on Windows may appear somewhat biting, but let me tell you, having become quite familiar with both: touché. I honestly do admire Microsoft for what they managed to squeeze out of an OS born in a hurry, even in a technical sense. But that won't bridge the gap between Unix ("Do One Thing Well") and MS-DOS/Windows (hurried into "Do OnThing well" and had an automatic spelling checker flip the typo afterwards).
Chapter 3 "Contracts: Comparing the Unix Philosophy with Others" starts with this quote from a Dilbert newsletter, "If you have any trouble sounding condescending, find a Unix user to show you how it's done." Nevertheless, I am more likely to be less critical and more philosophical about designs after learning about the OS designs of VMS, MacOS, OS/2, Windows NT, BeOS, MVS, VM/CMS, and Linux.
The last chapter titled "Futures: Dangers and Opportunities" summarizes the philosophical differences between operating system design in the past and in the present with Linux. By the time I got to this last chapter, I see that this book is a real eye opener and you will think "philosophically" about software designs. Understanding history does help. The next generation is thinking about usability along with the open design patterns of the OS. This is paradigm shift for Unix and Windows gurus.
Besides learning about how to think philosophically, this book is a gold mine to a software engineer. For example, chapter 2 "Basics of the Unix Philosophy" covers 17 rules on design that every software engineer needs. Additionally, chapter 16 "Reuse: On Not Reinventing the Wheel" is a hoot. Today, some professors do grade on code readability, style, and program documentation.
Chapter 14 "Languages: To C or Not To C?" is another learning experience on language choice. I cannot help but wonder if the authors are not Zen-like enough because of their love of their offspring C, when today there is a growing community using Java for embedded Linux software, because of its portability, improved memory management, and eliminated pointer security problems. Platform neutral language and OS.
Chapter 19 "Open Source: Programming in the New Unix Community", should be required reading for a software engineer. We need to learn about the open source software development process.
If there were only time, this book would make an excellent addition to a computer science OS or software engineering course. Software architects need this book. The Masters have a done a great job by contributing to this.
Bought this to support the author though I already read a pirated copy years ago.
Good reading. Entertaining, generally engaging.
A teeny bit too much pride and pontificating at times, but he can do that, because he has earned it.